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Dive Review of Octopus Diving/Private Residence in
St. Maarten

Octopus Diving/Private Residence, Jun, 2010,

by Cameron Cole, GA, US ( 2 reports). Report 5539.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 0-25 dives
Where else diving Boynton Beach, Fl
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy, rainy, cloudy Seas calm, choppy
Water Temp 86 to 86 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility 30 to 40 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile ?
Enforced diving restrictions First diver to reach 1500psi marks halfway and has everyone heading back to the boat. Our dives over 40' had a 3 minute safety stop.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? no

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter N/A Boat Facilities N/A
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments [None]

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

Accommodations N/A Food N/A
Service and Attitude N/A Environmental Sensitivity 4 stars
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling 3 stars
Value for $$ 3 stars
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 2 stars
Comments Octopus Diving is what I would consider a good operation with excellent owners. They take your gear to one of their two small 6 pack boats for you. You do a short 3' or so deep wade to their boats so careful not to take anything that can get wet or make the proper precautions. Divers sit in the bow in a comfortable, clean and well organized but open area while the crew connects all your gear. On sunny days, a hat is advisable as finding a shady spot isn't easy. Snacks are provided in a small cooler. The first day we got a nice variety the second day of diving only two water bottles were in the cooler so you may want to bring along your own goodies if you need them between dives. Dive plan on both days was straight forward, thorough and simple. The first day we did the French side and found it to be somewhat barren of corals and quite silty. Lots of fish and we did get right next to a large sting ray, turtles in the distance, several barracuda and a seahorse. Lots of fish expected for the region and a nice variety of terrain including an interesting rocky area with lots of crevices to swim through. Between dives they change the gear over to the other tank and help you don your gear. The second day, we went over to the Dutch side for some simple wreck diving in 45' or so of water. We went to this side due to the rough seas on the French side. The first dive site had four small wrecks with some interesting creatures most of which we saw the first day including a large group of lobsters and a close encounter with a barracuda cutting a fish in half. Still lots of silt and not many corals. The second dive of the day and final dive for us was on a larger cargo ship. More of what we saw earlier with a big eel and small shark but still enjoyable. Currents at the surface were moderate and light towards the bottom. I would classify the diving as easy for most divers. One thing to note is that the ladders are pretty short on their boats. I don't think it is a significant issue but it does require some lifting if you decide to keep your gear on while boarding the boat. In calmer seas, it was easy to hand them the BC rig then come aboard but the second day in rough seas had us keeping our rigs on as we were in 3'-4' seas. They do help and again not a huge concern if you are reasonably fit or calm seas. When the dives are done, they carry your gear back to the shop where they have a nice big rinse tank for an easy soaking. If we ever get back their way, I would use them again.
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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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