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Dive Review of Monterey Bay Dive Center in
The Continental USA/Monterey Bay

October, 2006, an Instant Reader Report by Jon Scott, NH, USA
Report Number 3076
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
26-50 dives
Where else diving
Caymans & New England lakes
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

Water Temp
56   to 0    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
20   to 60    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  3 stars
Tropical Fish
1 stars  
Small Critters
  4 stars
Large Fish
3 stars  
Large Pelagics
  1 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
Boat Facilities
Overall rating for UWP's  
Shore Facilities  
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
3 stars
3 stars
Service and Attitude
3 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
3 stars  
Shore Diving  
3 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
3 stars   
3 stars    
2-tank boat trip with Monterey Bay Dive Center on their 40-foot Silver
Prince on a Saturday morning. Both dives at 3rd Pinnacle in Carmel Bay, a
40-min trip from Monterey (swells and wind making for sickness difficulties
for some). Boat was not full with 12 divers (capacity 14) but full enough.
Needed to rent equipment as airlines temporarily misplaced gear. Dive shop
easy to work with; good quality equipment. Good dive and safety briefings.
Nice breakfast (bagels, coffee, etc.)and snacks on board. Good roll-call
procedures. Entry off side by giant stride; return by stern ladder; staff
assists with fin removal. All gear setups responsibility of diver. Dove
with guide/divemaster Jeff Conway, as this was a first kelp forest dive
experience and dive partner had not been diving in several years. Site
consisted of granite formations/walls with interesting channels to swim
through. Every hard surface covered with colorful anemones, urchins and cup
corals. Visibility and color both much better and even more spectacular
than expected. Abundant fish life. Interesting small critters. 2nd dive
stayed in/around kelp forest exploring fish and other life at different
levels. Like being on another planet. Much more dynamic than re-creation in
Monterey Aquarium. Thick clouds of fish everywhere; after a few minutes
clinging to stalks of kelp, you become invisible to the fish and they swarm
around. These dives left me hungry for more; dive op and staff made
potentially very challenging (cold water, unfamiliar conditions, surge,
etc.) dives a blast. Dive Center also arranges/supports shore diving; will
try that next time.
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