Rarely do I experience such strong "love at first sight" feelings over a piece of dive gear. Normally it takes me at least a few days to become totally smitten. But the next-level, whale-tail design of SCUBAPRO's Sea Wing Nova fins caught my eye the second they came out of the box. When I finally got them underwater, the affair intensified, due to major-league power with minimal leg strain, thanks to an extended heel plate that efficiently transfers effort into thrust. I also liked the simple, super-sturdy bungee straps that created a perfect fit without adjustments. And the Monprene material they use to build them not only seems bulletproof, but its super lightweight as well, which makes a big difference at the airline check in counter.
Over the next few months, I took these beauties on assignment to the Galapagos, Aruba, the Cayman Islands, Costa Rica and lots of local diving around my Florida home base. In fact, my staff and contributors performed similar field-testing on a hand picked range of equipment, from the latest computers to wetsuits, BCs, regulators, dive bags, masks, dive lights and more. The results of this yearlong project became the foundation of our November/December issue's Test Dives feature. "Road Tested," which starting on page 39, presents our findings on how 16 pieces of select gear performed in the real world where it really counts.