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Dive Review of Conch Republic/Ocean Pointe in
The Continental USA/Tavernier, Fla. Keys

October, 2009, an Instant Reader Report by Dawn Steedman, Fla, USA
Top Contributor   (33 reports)
Report Number 5135
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
251-500 dives
Where else diving
Palm Bch., Key Largo, Bonaire, Barbados, St. Thomas, Grand Turk, Cozumel,
Hawaii, Belize, Caymans, Roatan.
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

Water Temp
85   to 87    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
40   to 70    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Come back with 500 psi or at  one hour.  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
1 or 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  4 stars
Tropical Fish
4 stars  
Small Critters
  4 stars
Large Fish
3 stars  
Large Pelagics
  3 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
5 stars  
Boat Facilities
4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's  
4 stars  
Shore Facilities  
Large rinse tank and table for cameras.
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
4 stars
Service and Attitude
4 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
4 stars
Dive Operation
5 stars  
Shore Diving  
4 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
5 stars    
5 stars   
4 stars    
We drove over from the west coast of Fla, and were able to check into our
room at the Ocean Pointe before noon due to the slow time of the year. Our
room was an attractively decorated 2 bedrm/ 2 bath unit with a sofa sleeper
in the living room, full kitchen, washer and dryer, and small balcony with
a water view. We dove with Conch Republic Divers last year for the wreck
trek - diving the Bibb, Eagle, & Spiegel Grove - and had a great time.
These dives would be different. Our son, Quinn, came down from Atlanta with
our 16 yr. old recently cert. grandson, Josh - also along was our 13 year
old grandson, Christian, who has close to 50 dives. Josh had 30 minute
dives logged in his book, so we hired a guide (they charge to put a crew
member in the water). Jennifer turned out to be a great help, taking him
back to the boat when he was low on air, while we completed our hour long
dives both days. 
The friendly, likeable, crew is as we remembered them.  The roomy 46'
Newton has fresh shower heads and shampoo on board. After helping us on
with the gear, a roll call was taken, and a boat and safety briefing given.
The five of us were the only divers on the 46' boat the first day, and we
headed out to Alligator Reef,(which we had requested when we made the
reservation) for the first dive, and Patch AB for the 2nd.(AB Patch had a
line you could follow from the first patch reef to the second.)  Both were 
prolific sites with large green and spotted morays,Blue striped grunts,
angels, lobsters, mating nurse sharks under a ledge, midnight and rainbow
parrots, and all the rest of the gang. Fans, gorgonians, and sponges are
everywhere here. The second site had the addition of a green turtle and 3
nurse sharks cruising by. We handed our fins up to the crew, and they
welcomed everyone back, helped them to their seats, and made sure everyone
had a good dive. There is fresh drinking water, but no snacks on board, so
we brought fruit and peanut crackers along. The crew helps take gear off
the boat, and there are 2 large fresh water rinse tanks for gear. There are
large rolling racks complete with wetsuit and BC hangers to hang the gear
overnight, and the gear bags can be stored inside. We headed back to the
Ocean Pointe unencumbered, and enjoyed there large swimming pool for the
next hour and a half. We then headed to Islamorada for dinner at Lazy Days.
The restaurant has good food and overlooks the water (make a res. for an
outside table before sunset). The following morning we headed over to
Molasses Reef with a total of 13 divers, but the current was too strong, so
we diverted North to French's Reef- the site was Xmas Tree Caves. This is a
well developed spur and groove area with large boulder corals, arches, and
caves to swim through. This, and the next spot are probably my favorite
sites in the Keys. The fans, soft gorgonians, and sponges are the back drop
to the large black groupers, parrots, scrawled files,chromis and creole
wrasse schools, cudas, and angels.Two large snook were hanging out in one
of the caves. We headed back to Molasses for our second dive;luckily the
current had calmed down. This is another well developed spur and groove
area, with sandy patches dividing the boulder corals. We found three nurse
sharks here, snappers, grunts, graysbys, angels, and a school of Atlantis
spades. The highlight of this dive was a spotted eagle ray cruising down a
sand channel. We were sorry to leave this beautiful site and great dive
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