Scuba Diving in Lake Afritz | Nice to meet you, Mr Eel
Often the good is so close! Recently I visited beautiful Carinthia to explore a few of the lakes there – and to scuba dive in them. We also dived in the Lake Afritz (or Afritzer See in German) and found plenty of eels. Definitely a unique experience – especially because the eels don't live in every lake and are only found in such numbers in Lake Afritz.
Scuba Diving in Lake Afritz
Actually, the Afritzer See looks just like any other lake, but it's very idyllic – and it's located directly next to the main road.
Together with Stefan from the dive school Pazifik Kärnten we'll explore the Afritzer lake and he told me all about the eels there on the way here. Now, of course, I'm all the more curious, because I've never spotted eels before!
After we assembled our equipment in the parking lot and threw ourselves in our suits, we follow the steps down to the lake.
So off into the water we go! Stefan will guide this dive and we turn right. The ground of the lake is quite muddy and good buoyancy is required to avoid fogging up the space we are in. I spot the first underwater plants such as milfoil. Now and then a small cloud of dust can be seen – the fish seem to be faster than us.
Meet Mr. Eel!
So we dive through the green water – in the shallows 4-8 m – and then I discover the first eel! What a nice guy! And fortunately, my fear of snakes does not kick in and I watch the half meter long eel for a while until he feels it's enough and disappears.
Our dive could be almost infinitely long at this shallow depth, but after 25 minutes we turn around – and are much luckier on the way back! The eels seem to have thought us gone!
Again and again we discover the dust clouds of the escaped eels or other fish, but every now and then we do spot them. Particularly impressive is one eel that lolls on the underwater plants as if it were a a pole for pole dance.
And just before we go ashore, we discover a licence plate and take the find with us (and later hand it to the police).
Information Scuba Diving in Afritzer See
Where to enter the lake: at the northern tip of the lake, there is a small beach from which to start the dive.
Parking: at the northern tip of the Afritzer lake there is a public car park. Table and benches are there, so the equipment does not need to be assembled on the ground or can be easily tightened.
Toilets: no (off to nature)
Night diving: yes
Filling station, guiding, equipment hire: Dive Shop Pazifik Kärnten at Lake Ossiach – by appointment only.
Have you ever been diving in Carinthia? What are your favourite lakes there?
ps. Pin me!