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Dive Review of Nautilus Explorer in
The Continental USA/Alaska

July, 2005, an Instant Reader Report by Rich Orman, CO, USA`
Report Number 1792
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
51-100 dives
Where else diving
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

sunny, cloudy  
calm, choppy, surge, currents, noCurrents  
Water Temp
45   to 52    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
20   to 70    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Back to safety stop with 500psi.  Divers doing deco diving had profiles
checked by divemaster prior to dive.  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  4 stars
Tropical Fish
1 stars  
Small Critters
  5 stars
Large Fish
3 stars  
Large Pelagics
  3 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
5 stars  
Boat Facilities
5 stars
Overall rating for UWP's  
5 stars  
Shore Facilities  
Very large area devoted exclusively to uw cameras and video equipment.  Two
freshwater tanks exclusively devoted to uw cameras and video. There was a
seperate area next to the camer tables devoted exclusively to battery
chargers for the uw equipment, with a plethora of plugs available.
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
5 stars
4 stars
Service and Attitude
5 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
5 stars  
Shore Diving  
3 stars  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
2 stars   
5 stars    
We did a 7 day Juneau Alaska-Prince Rupert, British Columbia trip aboard
the Nautilus Explorer in July 2005.  All the diving took place in Alaska. 
This was our first trip on the Nautilus Explorer, and it was a wonderful
experience from first to last.  The boat, in my opinion, is the most
perfectly designed live-aboard dive boat possible.  Most of the diving is
done from a skiff, which also has a wonderful design, complete with four
entry-exit points, and a recessed handrail running down the outside of both
gunwales so you can hang on while waiting for a ladder or having a
divemaster pull off your fins.  

Of course, the diving was cold water diving, but there was an incredible
amount of life and beauty in the waters of Alaska. The dives consisted of a
variety of wrecks and reefs, including one exploratory dive site that had
never been scuba dived before, at least to the captain and the crew's
knowledge.  We had five days of diving, and I logged 13 dives. One day was
devoted to Tracy Arms, which is a beautiful fjord with a tidewater glacier
at the end.  We put on our drysuits and snorkled with the icebergs that had
calved off the glacier.  How many live-aboards can boast that kind of
activity?  There was also plenty for my non-diving spouse to do, including
sea-kayaking and bear-watching trips.

The accomadations were great, and the food was tasty and plentiful, but the
crown jewel of this trip was the diving.  They don't hold your hand on this
boat, they let you dive.  You don't get saddled with a buddy that you don't
want.  They don't tell you how deep to go.  If you want to dive
rebreathers, they have the stuff you need. If you want to do deco-dives,
that's okay, although they generally have a one-hour dive time limit
because the slack tide only lasts that long.  They have nitrox availalbe,
steel tanks available, and even tri-mix available.  The boat and crew
really cater to all levels of experienced divers, and the facilities for
photographers and videographers are world class.  The diving in Alaska was
the most striking that I have ever seen, and the "macro" stuff
was everywhere.  I would give this operation, and this trip, 11 points out
of a possible 10.
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