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Dive Review of Florida Keys Dive Center in
The Continental USA/Upper Keys (Key Largo)

September, 2006, an Instant Reader Report by Tom Chase, KY, USA
Sr. Reviewer   (7 reports)
Report Number 3069
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
101-250 dives
Where else diving
Carribean,Puerto Rico, Turks, Belize, Hawaii, NC, CA, Great Lakes
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

Water Temp
83   to 85    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
50   to 75    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Time limits (1 hour) and/or computer limits on deep dives.  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
1 or 2 
Whale Sharks
1 or 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  4 stars
Tropical Fish
4 stars  
Small Critters
  2 stars
Large Fish
2 stars  
Large Pelagics
  1 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
Boat Facilities
3 stars
Overall rating for UWP's  
Shore Facilities  
Rinse bucket only.
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
4 stars
2 stars
Service and Attitude
4 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
5 stars  
Shore Diving  
3 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
5 stars   
4 stars    
I dove with this operator for four two tank day trips and a night dive.  I
had my newly certified 14 year old daughter with me. She had just completed
her advanced open water and Nitrox courses.  The staff and crew were very
accommodating to our needs.  Even though they were very busy with a large
charter for the weekend, they made us feel comfortable and welcome.  They
matched divers up by interest and experience.  Both boats were in good
shape and well set up.  I much prefer the larger and faster Big Dipper to
the Little Dipper.  

We dove the shallow reefs and did two wreck divesthe Eagle and Spiegel
Grove.  The Eagle is a great dive.  We saw three monster Goliath Groupers
in the cargo hold.  The conditions on the day we dove the Spiegel Grove
were not as good so the dive was not as impressive as it would have been on
a better visibility day.  It is such a massive ship that it would take 4-5
dives to cover it.  

Crew did a great job with dive briefings and review of boat procedures.  I
wish they had a better ladder because you have to take your fins off on the
tow line and that is sometimes difficult with chop and if you have a
camera, lobster gear or dive lights.  

I heard some internal squabbles between staff members (they were stressed
out because of this large group of college kids who were all taking a
course and were not too concerned about being punctual or paying attention
to briefings etc.) but they never let that manifest to passengers or
guests.  When we dove the Spiegel it was very choppy.  There were several
people who were on that trip for snorkeling purposes.  Since the Spiegel is
over 100 deep, there would be no meaningful snorkeling opportunities so
the only chance they had to snorkel was on the shallow reef dive that was
our second dive that day.  I am surprised that the crew didnt try to talk
them out of that trip since it would be marginal at best.  However, they
may have said something to them and I just didnt observe it. 

I was quite pleased with this operator.   I had originally booked all my
trips through Tavernier Dive Center, but this operation purchased them
before our trip so by default we ended up at the Florida Keys Dive Center. 
I am glad we ended up there.  I would highly recommend them.
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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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