Bacardi Limon Beach Dive Team

Beach Dive Florida Florida - OceanFest / Lauderdale-By-The-Sea


Dive Trip Report to: Lauderdale-By-The-Sea.
Purpose: To Beach Dive Florida see the close in Reefs of Lauderdale!

Dive Reports:

Dive #1: Saturday, 10-June, Morning Dive. My Dive #301
A. Dive Boat / Location: Beach Dive - Lauderdale-By-The-Sea, just south of the fishing pier!
B. Conditions:
Visibility: 0 to 25 ft. Zero vis on the surface and close in to shore. 15 ft vis on the 1st reef even with the end of the fishing pier. 25 ft vis at the 2nd reef, 100 yards past the end of the fishing pier.
Seas: 1 - 3 ft at start, 2 - 4 ft at the end of the dive!
Water Temp: 80 deg. I'm still wearing a full Farmer John (a warm water wimp)!
Skies: Sunny, Clear Blue Skies! No Rain!
Air Temp: 80's
C. Dive Information:
Depth & Time: Me: Genesis Nitrox Dive Computer - 17 ft for 1 hr 5 min
Air consumption: Me: 3600 lb to 1100 lb (120 cu ft]. Lots of extra air was used on both the entry and exit
Current: Medium to Strong Surge, slight current to the South!

Well, the Bacardi Limon Beach Dive Team wanted to visited Lauderdale's OceanFest 2000 and join the ritual morning Beach Dive! The weather forecast as of Wednesday was not good - winds 10 - 15 knots out of the East! At Ft. Pierce, this translates to 3-5 ft seas. Anything over a 1 ft sea is extremely difficult and dangerous for a beach entry! The dive was off, then we said we'd go to OceanFest and just for the heck of it bring along the dive gear - it was back on again! We left Melbourne at 5:20 am (after picking up some others and filling the gas tank), stopped of at Vero for another diver and were in Lauderdale by 7:50 am! Beach Divers ARE EarlyBirds - ya gotta be to get in before the wind and waves startup!! The goal was to be in the water by 8:00 am - we entered at 8:10 am. The winds were strong out of the East - at least 10 knots. The waves were there about 1-2 ft, but with not as much roughness as in the Ft. Pierce area. The Irishman and ScubaGirl entered the surf. SnorkelLady sat on the beach! The entry was not for the novice, the waves were there and almost knocked us over, but we did get out! We were about 100 yards south of the fishing pier.

At 200 yards off the beach and even with the pier, we found the 1st reef, depth was about 10 feet. It was small flat rocks, not much life. We continued out to the next reef, it was a long swim to this reef about another 100 yards past the end of the pier. The depth at the sand on the way out was 15 ft, at the 2nd reef about 10 ft! We headed south for 20 minutes then in to the 1st reef and started back north! There was a medium to strong surge. You'd kick for 10 seconds and not move at all, then when the surge went your way, you'd move 10 ft! Over the sand, we would pull ourselves across the sand instead of kicking - saves energy, air and you move faster. After a few minutes of northward travel on this sparse reef, we headed back out to the 2nd reef again. After another 20 minutes heading back north, we were down to 1600 lbs of air. Being a half mile off shore, and knowing we'd have a difficult exit, we headed back in. We stayed on the bottom till vis went to zero - about 100 yards off shore in 4 ft of water. Then standing, attempting to take off the fins, getting hit with 3-4 ft waves, we managed to exit in one piece! The worst part of the exit is always just as you exit the water - there seems to be a few inch drop into soft sand and stones - it's hard to get your footing!

On both the entry and exit, the Beach Dive Team has their mask on and regulator in the mouth from the time your feet touch the water till your back up on sand! Our conclusion on this dive, it was not for snorkeler - the waves (1 - 3 ft) would have filled their snorkeler and they would not have been able to see the bottom at all from the top! It was not for novice beach divers - the waves and surge was very strong! It was at about our limit. And, in keeping with the tradition of the Beach Dive Team, we each toasted with a Limon and Coke at the conclusion of the diving! As we were packing up, members of the Space Coast Descenders Club showed up to dive! While walking through OceanFest we spied other SCDC and Beach Dive Team members.

ScubaGirl's fish and creature of merit awards go to: nurse shark hiding in the first reef, brown moray with tiny brown spots, as yet unidentified (thinking it's a juvenile of a more common species), cowfish, 2 decent sized lobster, balloonfish, as well as all oft he usual suspects.....I found the coral to actually be more plentiful and varied on the third reef, then I have seen it in some sites in West Palm.....Difficult entry and exit due to kind of rough seas, but do-able for the beach-diving experienced. Definitely worth the trip...if only Vero's beach-diving looked like this!

OceanFest: Well there were lot's and lot's of trips for sale - all over the world! There were only a few dive shops and dive equipment vendors. The food was expensive. The seminars were great (air conditioned)! We all did manage to walk away with a shopping back full of literature and some shirts!

Beach Dive:
ScubaGirl and Irishman about to enter the water!!
ScubaGirl and Irishman entering the water!!
ScubaGirl and Irishman entering the water!!
Space Coast Descenders Dive Club members, and fellow Beach Divers readying for the beach dive
Space Coast Descenders Dive Club member, Kent readying for the beach dive
Bacardi Beach Dive Team Member , ScubaGirl stands next to her Dream Vehicle!!

Irishman Software, Satellite Beach, Florida
Mail Corrections / Additions to : Irishman@SpryNet.Com