West Palm Beach - Dive RAMPAGE! 09-May-99

Dive Trip Report to: West Palm Beach
Purpose: TO DIVE WPB!!!

Dive Reports:

Dive #1: Sunday, 09-May, Lunch/Afternoon Dive. My Dive #193
A. Dive Boat / Location: Rampage - Juno Ledges
B. Conditions:
Visibility: 70'
Seas: Less Than One foot!
Water Temp: 77
Skies: FCBS (Florida Clear Blue Skies) with some CN's to the East!
Air Temp: 80 - 90
C. Dive Information:
Depth & Time: Me: Genesis Nitrox Dive Computer - 89' for 32 min, Me: Analog - 89',
Dive Partner: 90' for 33 min (Also Genesis Nitrox Dive Computer)
Cochran Dive Partner: 81' for 33 min
Air consumption: Me: 3450 lb.. to 1200 lb.. (120 cu ft),
Dive Partner: 3300 lb.. to 700 lb.. (80 cu ft)
Current: Medium to Strong
Description: Well, this was one of the best dives of the year (and maybe even including last year). We arrived in WPB for the 11:30 dive trip! Capt Bob was a little late from the earilier trip of Reef Watchers!! We had a total of 5 divers and one DiveMaster on board for the 11:30 am dive! Since we all had computers, I asked Capt Bob if he could do Juno Ledges - My Favorite dive in the State of Florida! Well, he agreed! It's a much longer boat ride to the Ledges verses the normal WPB dive locations, so most boats do not go up there! We entered the water and could see the reef from 20'. Capt Bob dropped us right on the reef line! As we approached the bottom, there were schools and schools of fish, vis about 50 - 70'. There was a noticeable current - somewhere in the medium to strong range. It was weak enough to allow you to turn around a stop or go back to see a site! It was strong enough to carry you down the reef line! You did have to kick to move from the 65' to the 90' areas or down in some of the many canyons!

My dive partner was the eagle-eye on this trip! First there was an 8' nurse shark just laying on the bottom, we flew over her without stopping. Then there was a big sleeping turtle at the deeper side of the reef line under a small ledge! There was a smaller turtle swimming out from the reef line also! At the very edge of our visibility we could see a 6' reef shark . It was quite a site - almost reminded me of Jaws ! We were all glad the shark was going away from us. There were numerous large puffer fish - none of which would puff up! At the bottom of a deep ledge a big green moray had its head out. While we were looking at the moray, (we all swam back to look it over) eric - the divemaster - spotted a really big shark on the top part of the reef. We didn't get to see it! As we were gliding along the reef line, there were numerous large flashes of silver at the top of the reef line. These turned out to be hundreds of spadfish - big ones!

In the words of my dive partner - "there were thousands of millions of schools of fish!" That was about the truth! As we drifed along there would be large schools (hundreds of fish) of various varieties of fish! We beleive we saw almost every type of local fish on this one dive! As we were ascending at the end of the dive, there were several big (6') baracuda under us heading for the reef lne! About the only item we didn't see were some bugs (Florida Lobster) - but the bug season is over now!

This was an awsome dive and we all thank Capt Bob for going the extra way to this really great dive location.

Dive #2: Early Afternoon Dive. My Dive #194
A. Dive Boat / Location: Rampage - South Yellow Tail Reef
B. Conditions:
Visibility: 30'
Seas: 1 - 2' (The seas were a building)
Water Temp: 77
Skies: Dark CN to the east, high stuff overhead, the sun was blocked!
Air Temp: 80's
C. Dive Information:
Depth & Time: Me: Genesis Nitrox Dive Computer - 82' for 36 min
Dive Partner: 85' for 39 min
Cochran Dive Partner: 77' for 36 min
Air consumption: Me: 3400 lb.. to 1400 lb.. (120 cu ft),
Dive Partner: 3250 lb.. to 700 lb.. (80 cu ft)
Current: Mild to Medium
Description: Well, due to a threating T-Boomer to the west of Jupiter, a second dive on Juno Ledges was out! Capt Bob headed back south to the WPB area in order to clear the very large storm just to the west of Jupiter and possibly headed our way! After an hour of up time, we went into a new reef for me - South Yellow Tail reef. It was north of the inlet and off the Singer Island beaches. The depth ranged from the 80' level at initial entry to 65'. It was flat, not as much coral and rock as the Breakers. There were some sponges, and a small amount of fish! It was an interesting drift dive! My dive partner spotted a big puffer under a small ledge. We lay on the bottom for a few minutes trying to entice the fish out! It did come out some, I sure wouldn't want to put my finger in its mouth!! At the end of the dive, while decompressing at 15', we drifed over the "Little Barge". It was almost an invitation to swim down to it and see what it was all about - but, not enough air or bottom time was available - and the current was moving us past it at a rapid pace!

Irishman Software, Satellite Beach, Florida
Mail Corrections / Additions to : Irishman@SpryNet.Com
Last Updated 25-May-99