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The Private, Exclusive Guide for Serious Divers Since 1975
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July 2017    Download the Entire Issue (PDF) Vol. 32, No. 7   RSS Feed for Undercurrent Issues
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Dominica, Fiji, Belize, Costa Rica, Florida

big animals, no head counts, free flowing regulators

from the July, 2017 issue of Undercurrent   Subscribe Now

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Though we divers like to dream of exotic places in the South Pacific and the Indian Ocean, most of us still find the Caribbean and the Western Pacific our primary destination. And many find surprisingly good diving.

For example, long-time Undercurrent subscriber Clem Clapp (Maplesfield, AL) wrote after a May trip to the Blackbird Resort on Turneffe Atoll in Belize, "Our suite with hot tub on the water was roomy and comfortable, with plenty of hot water and really nice bed ... On almost, if not every dive, we encountered blacktip and nurse sharks, loggerhead turtles, eagle and sting rays, eels and large schools of fish. All dives were really nice and led by Aldo and Ralphie (a fill-in from Hopkins), two of the more competent dive leaders in my diving history. They were very alert looking for critters and always on the lookout for the many lionfish encountered, many of which were taken or fed injured to groupers or morays."

Diving in the West Pacific can be very different from the Caribbean, as Paul Fitzpatrick (San Antonio, TX) discovered. Diving with Aquacenter Diving at the Flamingo Beach Resort in Playa Flamingo, Costa Rica, in May, he reported, "Like much of the Pacific coast of the Americas, there is little coral, but the fish are much larger. The best dives were great. We saw mantas on three of eight dives, usually at the safety stop. There was a huge school of lesser devil rays overhead on one dive and a group of six white tip sharks on another. Several times we were swimming in large schools of the kind that are rarely seen in the Caribbean anymore ... There are a limited number of dive sites, so we were repeating sites by dive number six or so. Some were outstanding, with lots of wildlife, and others were just dead. The dives were all close to the islands (rocks really) so there was a lot of surge even at 60 feet (18m). We mostly swam beside or around an island. There was a substantial thermocline at 50 feet (15m), going from 84F (28C) to 73-75F (22C)"

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