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Dive Review of Nekton in
Bahamas/Cay Lobos

Nekton, Jul, 2003,

by Philip Hamilton, Texas, USA . Report 548.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 101-250 dives
Where else diving Cozumel, Grand Cayman, Bermuda, Barbados, St Lucia, Hawaii, Arabian Sea, Flower Gardens, etc.
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm
Water Temp 82 to 84 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 50 to 70 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions 130 ft max, no planned deco, Captain warned us in Cay Lobos area that we were in Bahamas waters but Cuban airspace - any medical evacuation would require a nine hour cruise to get into useable airspace.
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 2 stars Tropical Fish 2 stars
Small Critters 4 stars Large Fish 4 stars
Large Pelagics 5 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments Water was a bit cloudy, making photos challenging. Did wall dive in Cay Lobos, hole dives in Cay Sal and Anguilla, and reef dives in Bimini.

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 4 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 4 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments Nekton Cay Lobos itinerary departs from Ft Lauderdale Saturdays. They run a shuttle back and forth from the airport throughout the day, and deliver the guests to the Las Olas Mall. At 7:00 pm, they return to collect the divers, and take them to the vessel en masse. The Nekton Rorqual is, frankly, one of the ugliest dive boats you will run across. Boxy and square, It looks like a duplex mounted on pontoons. From the inside, however, it is roomy and well laid out. The top deck contains the pilothouse, a covered area for dive briefings and shade lovers, and a sundeck complete with hot tub. One flight down is the galley, lounge, camera table, and some of the cabins, while the lowest deck contains more rooms and crew quarters. Suspended at the stern is the dive deck; a hydraulically operated unit which is lowered to the water on site for diving, and raised while the vessel is underway. The adverts claim it is seasick proof, but dont count on it. The boat does move, albeit less than a monohull if you get seasick easily, you will still need the pills. We had a few uncomfortable folks on board. Due to the distance covered during this itinerary, there are only two night dives, one at Cay Lobos, and one at Bimini on the last night, so arrange your flight home accordingly if you want to night dive Friday. The dive deck on the Rorqual is generally open from shortly after 8 am in the morning until quarter to twelve, and again from about 1:30 pm until quarter to six. Often this meant that we got in two dives per site, and except for the first dive of the trip, the deck was not crowded. The crew was friendly and competent - and always ready to buddy with you if you needed one. We dove our own profiles, limited only by 130 foot depth limit, and no planned deco. Break the rules, and you will be out of the water for 24 hours. While not haute cuisine, the food was very good, and plentiful. Nekton encourages BYOB, and will stop on the way to the boat for you to buy your own soft drinks and adult beverages, and they provide an ice chest for them. The boat uses steel 95s, which are 6 pounds more negative than AL80s, and give you a bit more bottom time. Nitrox was being installed in July - 16 stations in place - by publication time, should have 100%. It cannot be stressed enough to bring lots of swimsuits and T shirts, very few other items of clothing. No shoes worn all week. Bring more wetsuit than you think, and perhaps even a hood - possible 24 dives during the week will chill you. I wore a 3mm full in avg 83f water, and was comfortable.
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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