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Dive Review of M/V Fling in
The Continental USA/Gulf of Mexico

M/V Fling, Aug, 2005,

by Clay Briscoe, TX, USA . Report 2082.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 51-100 dives
Where else diving Florida, Cozumel, Grand Cayman
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm
Water Temp 83 to 85 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 0
Water Visibility 80 to 100 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions A 3 hour surface interval was enforced. Dive depths were limited to 130' on the first dive of the day. All other dives were limited to 100'.
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 3 stars
Small Critters 3 stars Large Fish 5 stars
Large Pelagics 5 stars

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 Although I am not an underwater photographer but, the boat had a large table specifically for camera gear and two large rinse tanks that they told all divers was for camera gear only. They lowered all cameras into the water before entry and had a line available for camera extraction at the end of the dive.

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 4 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 1 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 2 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments The M/V Fling holds approximately 30 divers + crew. This trip was a 3 day adventure with the first events beginning with boarding @ 8:30 pm. By 9:00 the trip was underway and the 1st dive breifing is a whopper. The information comes first from the captin, then the Galley Admiral, and finally from the Divemasters. The first day contains 5 dives, the second day 4 dives, and the last day 2 dives. The first two days started with a 7:30am dive and ended with a night dive. The last day has a sunrise dive and then a morning dive before departing for the long boat ride back to the dock. The first day is spent on the East and West banks of the Flower Gardens. If the weather and sea is accomodating they will attempt to include a "rig" dive while traveling between the two locations. The second day will begin on the Flower Gardens and then they will move the 110' M/V Fling to Stetson Banks. Stetson is a large shelf that allows for a congregation point for aquatic life of all shapes and sizes. Further, there is not any coral for the critters to hide in. If the animal is there you get to see it in all of its' glory. This is very interesting during night dives since the edge of the shelf generally runs around 80' and drops off to well over 200' allowing for a wide range of surprizes on all dives but particularly during night dives. Several divers interested only in the large pelagics would position themselves about 100' off of the shelf at 75' and wait to see the big boys cruise in from the deeper water. The time that my buddy and I decided to join them we were excited to see several sharks a huge grouper, turtles and rays. Most of the diving on both locations is at depths greather than 70'. Currents can be strong and may run in different directions at different depths. This diving is physically chanllenging. Space on the boat is a little tight when they have a full load of divers and all of them are headed for the jump gate. Entry is a giant stride from the side of the boat. (At calm seas the drop from the boat to the water is approximately 7 feet.) These dives are challenging not only due to the physical conditions mentioned earlier but also because all divers are allowed to dive their profiles and while Divemasters are available, and in the water, each diver is handling their own navigation and exploration. Don't under estimate changing sea environments from the beginning of your dive to the end. This is a great place to encounter large fish and a great number of the Carribean tropicals. The food was good. A homecooked style of table fair and there was plenty of it between every dive. Sleeping accomodations were a little cramped and this operation requires you to provide all of your own equipment including a tank. (Nitrox diving and certification clases are available.) However, for the price this is excellent bargain. My buddy and I really enjoyed the trip and we will be booking early for next year's dives with the M/V Fling.
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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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