Synopsis from the back cover of the book:
An avid Santa Barbara surfer gets into sea urchin diving as a means to explore the waves of the Channel Islands. His travels take him from the harbor at Santa Barbara to the harsh waters of the North Coast, and the shark-infested Farallon Islands. This intimate snapshot follows a unique group of underwater pioneers from 1978 through 1996, chronicling the adventure, humor, and tragedy of the people involved in this fascinating way of life.
I just finished this book. It’s not the most exhilarating book on diving ever, but a good read nonetheless.
It’s a memoir of one diver’s career in the sea urchin (or uni, to be precise) business, but is primarily comprised of many short anecdotes ranging from details on diving equipment to stories of other divers and their antics. It’s a good, easy read for someone, like myself, who knew little about the business before reading the book. There are some stories of great hauls, diving accidents, island surfing, and of course, great white shark encounters. It attempts to explain the economics of the industry through its heyday; apparently, divers were making over $2,000 per day in the late 80’s and early 90’s. There are a few mentions of poaching, which is unfortunate, but at least its honest portrayal to a certain degree.
I would recommend this book to anyone who dives in California waters, whether it be freediving or SCUBA. It can be purchased on Amazon.com.