Diving the North Atlantic, sort of…

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Posted by Patrick on July 15, 2006 at 21:07:59:

Arrived yesterday in beautiful Homestead Florida to initiate yet another year of work on the wrecks in Biscayne National Park. We are scheduled to begin 07-16-06, Sunday, so of course to prepare for a week’s worth of wreck diving, we took our one day off and went wreck diving.
Signed up for a morning jump on the Spiegel Grove and it was interesting. Current was stiff and viz was very poor for the area – perhaps 20-30 feet and very hazy. None of the larger wreck inhabitants were to be seen, just one medium sized ‘Cuda that headed for less crowded environs when the 20 divers on our boat dragged ourselves into his territory. A challenging dive with the current that was running. The dive boat captain was heard to say, “Well, sometimes it’s like this when you dive the North Atlantic…”

Divers "flagged out" on the down line.

Port boom on Speigal Grove

Second dive was at Molasses Reef and was very mellow. Critters seen included moderate-sized moray, ‘cudas, nurse sharks, Nassau Grouper, eagle rays along with clouds of the striped grunts and the usual other reef critters. The extremes of these two dives was amazing.

One of the Visitor Center workers...

Look just above the grouper's tail.

Hoping for better conditions tomorrow. We’ll be in 25-foot Whalers with aluminum-framed “T” tops and the Park Service is very strict regarding operating these vessels around thunderstorm activity. They really hate to have any of their boats struck by lighting since the replacement budgets are non-existent. And the paperwork on the employees that get fried is a pain, too.

Stay wet.

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