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Dive Review of Shallon Marine Service/NA in
Canada/Vancouver

Shallon Marine Service/NA, Feb, 2003,

by William Sledge, CT, USA . Report 593.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving North Atlantic, all through the Carribean, Western Pacific (Palau and Truk, Northern Florida (caves)
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm
Water Temp 42 to 46 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 0
Water Visibility 20 to 60 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions There were no restrictions imposed by the operator; however, the natural restrictions of cold water diving certainly applied.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins 1 or 2 Whale Sharks None
Turtles None Whales None
Corals 5 stars Tropical Fish 1 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish 5 stars
Large Pelagics 5 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities N/A
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 2 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments Kevin VanCleemput, the owner operator of the day boat, Shallon, together with his mate, provided some of the most exciting of shore based day trip diving I have ever experienced. First the area is full of interesting possibilities with wild life unique to the area such the Pacific Giant Octopus, the "cloud sponge" formations, and marine mammals of dolphins and Killer Whales. We did not see Killer Whales on my trip but there was a profusion of animals at all levels and sizes. In addition, there are the artificial reefs of the war ships MacKenzie and GB Church. VanCleemput is completely knowledgable of the area and is on a first name basis with the local giant octopuses as he used to study them.

It is cold water diving (I was there at the end of Feb) and it is hard to imagine doing it comfortably without a dry suit although some do. VanCleemput is extremely supportive and ran the trips with only one diver, me! He serves an excellent hearty hot soup and bread for lunch which is perfect for the type of diving and the coldness. I learned a great deal about cold water diving despite my experience in the North Atlantic.

The boat runs out of Sidney, BC, and the prices for all services were very reasonable. I cannot wait to return. My only regret was not budgeting more time for this wonderful dive experience in the Vancouver Island area.

The operation can be reached at 250-479-4276.
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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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