The old saying goes that there’s no bad conditions, only bad gear. The Nikiski Fire Department is testing exactly how far that goes with some of the hardest conditions imaginable: underwater beneath about three feet of ice, with blizzard conditions raging outside.
Luckily, they’re outfitted to match it. Each diver from the Nikiski Fire Department wears about 100 pounds of gear and is attached to a rope. As divers Kassidy Stock and Matt Quiner prepared to descend into the frigid waters of Island Lake on Friday, they first tied themselves together. Some light makes it through the clear ice, but with the addition about a foot of snow that fell Thursday, the divers don’t have to go far from the hole before the light fades.