Main Menu
Join Undercurrent on Facebook

The Private, Exclusive Guide for Serious Divers Since 1975 | |
For Divers since 1975
The Private, Exclusive Guide for Serious Divers Since 1975
Join Undercurrent on Facebook
"Best of the Web: scuba tips no other
source dares to publish" -- Forbes
 

Dive Review of Sea Fever Liveaboard in
Bahamas/Bimini

Sea Fever Liveaboard, Nov, 2002,

by Dean Knudson, 55422, USA (Contributor Contributor 15 reports). Report 472.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 101-250 dives
Where else diving Mexico, Florida, Midwest
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm
Water Temp 75 to 82 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 60 to 110 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions No decompression diving, stay above 130'.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas 1 or 2
Dolphins 1 or 2 Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 4 stars Tropical Fish 3 stars
Small Critters 4 stars Large Fish 3 stars
Large Pelagics 3 stars

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

Subject Matter 3 stars Boat Facilities 5 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 5 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments Large secured multilevel camera table, dedicated rinse tank, all in a shaded and dry area. Quite nice for video or still cameras.

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

Accommodations 3 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments Booked this trip with Green Bay Scuba. Sea Fever sells few individual bunks, but they offer links on their website to various dive shops that have purchased the week. This week was a little over $1000, which was an excellent value. Normal rate is $300 to $600 higher. Most passengers from the Green Bay area, and were very nice folks, despite their curious addiction to the Packers. Green Bay scuba is very easy to deal with, and the shop owner fixed my pressure gauge for next to nothing as a courtesy. I will give him as much of my future business as I can, he was a real delight to work with, and sent us free digital photo files at the end of the trip.
Accomodations are clean but spartan, not much room, bunkbed style berths, but good AC and odor free. The ships head is noisy, if you are assigned a room near it, you will sleep much better if you place a simple note on the door asking other passengers to use the topside head from 11pm to 7am. Very little storage space in the rooms. Ample freshwater, they appear to have a high capacity water generator, which can also be noisy.
This boat is well powered, three large diesels, and cruises at 15 knots. The gulf stream crossing is a quick three hours. The downside is the noise at full throttle near the stern, and you also will catch a whiff of diesel smoke from time to time. The boat motion can be more severe than the SWATH type boats, but most of the diving is in protected waters. The boat will, at times, swing very widely at anchor, 50 yards or so, making it necessary to wait on the surface at certain dive sites for the boat to swing back to you for re-boarding. It's a fairly heavy boat, compared to the Blackbeard's 65 foot sloops, and there are certain moorings that can't hold it when the wind kicks up. This usually means that Sea Fever can't moor at the Bimini Barge, which is a shame, since that is an excellent Bimini area dive. Another disadvantage to the large size is that when the wind kicks up, the Sea Fever cannot safely approach Bimini in the dredged channel to the harbor entrance. We were stuck for 24 hours at anchor behind Cat Cay because of this. No diving for that 24 hours, so we watched videos and drank Red's Deadly Rum Punch. One of the two Blackbeard's boats made it into Bimini during the same time, and they got to spend the down time in port.
The crew is excellent, Red's cooking is uniformly excellent, although I was suprised to see several guests return his pasta sauce as "too spicy". One passenger had a list of allergies and food intolerances that had 25 items on it, and Red handled it without difficulty. Big breakfasts are cooked to order.
The boat offers five dives a day, if you can stand it. The dive briefings are good, and they have a large goodie box for busted dive gear. The topside sun deck is a nice spot for dive intervals.
The website lists two hotels to stay at the night prior to departure. We stayed at the Ramada, which was cheap but a bit run down. I've stayed in worse at the same price. If I were to do it again, I would stay at the suggested hotel in South Beach, which is a lot livelier.
One of the guests was from England, and completed his 1000th dive on the boat. The crew printed a certificate of achievement and organized a party for him. Very nice touch, and a lot of fun.
The shark dive at the end of the week is at the same spot used by Blackbeards. It was my third shark dive, and I'm starting to rethink the experience. As per standard protocol, everyone was placed in position, backs to the coral, and all divers checked in as OK. A dinghy then motored on the surface with the fish-on-a-spear "shark kabob" and attached it to a line floated to the surface from a pulley attached to concrete bottom anchor block. As the "kabob" was pulled down sharks started to attack it. One of the sharks struck the kabob near the end attached to the line and then rolled. That shark became entangled in the line and started swimming in large circles, over the heads of the divers. Other sharks kept hitting the "kabob", very near the entangled shark. The entangled shark started jerking violently, nearly pulling the divemaster holding the other end off the bottom. Other crewmembers had to help secure the end of the line. I was very nervous that the entangled shark would be badly bitten, and that that might spread blood and flesh onto the circled divers. After 45 seconds the entangled shark escaped, a lucky break for the crew and divers. I discretely asked the crew what the plan might have been had the shark not escaped, and they indicated that they had never seen or heard of anything like this before, and they really didn't have and specific plan, other than to cut the line free, or possibly try to "hold down" the entangled shark to cut the entangling lines. While it's true that the vast majority of shark dives are uncomplicated, it is certainly not a risk free venture. I did note that that section of video from the shark dive was edited out of the final trip video.

Was this report helpful to you?
Bookmark and Share
Leave a comment (Subscribers only -- 200 words max)
Subscribers can comment here
 

Subscribe Now
Subscribers can post comments, ask the reviewer questions, as well as getting immediate and complete access to ALL 363 dive reviews of Bahamas and all other dive destinations. Complete access to all issues and Chapbooks is also included.

Bookmark and Share

Want to assemble your own collection of Bahamas reports in one place?
Use the Mini Chapbook Facility to create your personalized collection.

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.

Undercurrent Home


Get more dive info like these and other important scuba updates sent monthly to your email.
And a FREE Recent Issue of Undercurrent

Free Undercurrent Issue
Get a free
monthly email and
a sample issue!



Find in  

| Home | Online Members Area | My Account |
| Travel Index | Dive Gear Index | Health/Safety Index | Environment & Misc. Index | Seasonal Planner | Forums | Blogs | Free Articles | Book Picks | News |
| Dive Resort & Liveaboard Reviews | Featured Reports | Recent Issues | Back Issues | Login | Join | Special Offers | RSS | FAQ | About Us | Contact Us | Links |


Copyright © 1996-2017 Undercurrent (www.undercurrent.org)
3020 Bridgeway, Ste 102, Sausalito, Ca 94965
All rights reserved.

Page displayed in 0.38 seconds