OUR DIVE LOCATIONS
Known for its white beaches and turquoise waters, St. Thomas is home to the capital city of the U.S. Virgin Islands. National Geographic has rated St. Thomas among the top destinations for sailing, fishing, and SCUBA Diving.
Our dive boat is a well maintained, USCG-Inspected 32ft Island Hopper designed for diving. It has easy entry into the water from the dive platform and a large ladder for coming back aboard. Our captains are U.S. Coast Guide licensed captains and our crew are randomly drug tested as part of our safety program. We offer fresh fruit and water on all of our trips. Our crew is always ready and eager to assist you with your SCUBA equipment or any other of your diving needs
Buck Island wall can be one of two dive sites - Dive Flag Rock or Andres' Reef. This site is on the north side of Buck Island and is one of the deeper dives that we can do. We don't have the continental shelf drop offs that St. Croix has, but this wall is one of the nicer reefs we dive. There are pieces of machinery that were left in the 1960's and has been invaded by schools of blue and brown chromis, and the occasional eel or shark. The sand is in 60-70 ft of water and the top of the reef is in 30 feet for a nice multi-level dive. Sting rays and Eagle rays regularly cruise by as well.
BUCK ISLAND WALL
Calf Rock is right next to Cow Rock but it is a totally different dive site. Calf has lots of ledges to look under and crevices to peek into where you might be rewarded by the sight of a huge green moray or lobster (that won't fit into a normal cooking pot.) There is a large field of soft corals and gorgonians that sway with the waves and huge stands of Elkhorn coral for the smaller fish to hide under. Fairy Basslets hang out under one large overhang by the dozens. The clear blue water and shallow depth at this site makes it a fantastic dive for photographers.
Cow Rock has a series of swim-throughs with any number of cool critters residing in the crevices and a maximum depth of 45 feet. We regularly see lobsters clinging to the ceiling, brittle stars in between the rocks, and spotted drum in the swim-through. There's also the "Champagne Cork" - when there's enough wave action, this swim-through has the distinct feature of sucking you up spitting you out the top - just like a cork. Winding in and around the rocks you will be able to watch the waves breaking out over the tops of the formation. You'll see tarpon and usually a turtle or two.
French Cap is an uninhabited island approximately 6 miles south of St. Thomas. Because it is unprotected, the seas must be relatively calm before we even THINK about going there. In 90 feet of water this is one of the few places you will see Black Durgeons & huge schools of Sennet fish. Lobster are in abundance here, as are any number of the larger game fish, hog fish & permit, just to name a few. We usually do both dives on French Cap, with a shallower dive to 60 feet on the northwest side of the island. On the second dive you will be treated to a swim-through that has a nice cathedral ceiling you can actually surface into.
Fish Stick is a one way dive starting at Buck Island Point and goes straight into Buck Island cove. This is a great dive for those who are great on air and want to see large southern sting rays, reef sharks and play hide and go seek with the boat. At a max depth of 80 feet and being a one directional dive this is the closest thing to a drift dive you'll find here in St Thomas.
This is one of the nicest dive sites we go to - great for diving as well as snorkeling, so snorkelers don't be afraid to come with us on this one. There are two sets of ledges, one that gets to about 40 ft, to swim by and check out as well as several rocks to meander around. Turtles, eagle rays and yellow-headed jawfish are regularly seen on this dive. We do find the occasional 'sleeping' basket star fish and nurse sharks as well, all bundled up in gorgonian coral for the day. There is also a very large dog snapper in residence, as well as goodly number of yellow-tail snapper, affectionately called 'salt water piranha'.
LEDGES AT LITTLE ST. JAMES
Coral Bowl or as we locally call it "Joes Jam" is a cathedral of coral. Our max depth here is 80 feet which shallows out to the sandy bottom "Coral Bowl" where from 55 feet as you look up you are in an amphitheater of coral all the way up to the gorgeous sea fans at 20 feet. We often see large reef sharks, wandering lobsters, Nassau groupers and the occasional lion fish. This is one of our favorite dive sites for calmer days.
JOE'S JAM & CORAL BOWL
Stragglers is an assortment of rocks that straggle off of Greater St. James. This 40' dive consists of canyons that weave through out the rocks. In the walls of the canyons you can find eels, octopus , lobster and the occasional eagle ray soaring overhead. the topography of this dive is like none other.
Packet rock is out in the middle of the cut between St. Thomas and Buck Island, right out in front of Bolongo Bay. The rocks come within a few feet of the surface and go down to about 50 feet. A short swim around the rocks will have you looking at lots of barracudas on this site. There is also an old ship's cauldron on the south east side. Ships would sail thousands of miles and get within sight of land and run smack into these rocks. As a result, divers can find various pieces of pottery and other artifacts if they take the time to look.
Right off of Buck Island Cove is Wye Reef. Such named, because the wreck of the sister ship to the RMS Rhone sank on that reef. There's no wreckage left, but the reef is fantastic. There are several terraces that go down to a maximum of 60 ft on this dive, and you will be treated to octopus, large groupings of rocks with huge barrel sponges.
Carvel Rock was mistaken by some ancient seafarer as a ship who was so sure of his identification that he fired on the ‘ship.’ Upon approach to the site, you will see perhaps 100 yards of rocks that get larger from west to east.The mooring ball is on the south side of the largest rock and you always have to check the current, lest you wind up in Tortola. You’ll be treated to schools of bait fish and tarpon. Also to be seen are coral encrusted rock formations with interesting sponge structures, sea fans and tunicates.The north side is the deepest at 80 ft and the most fun, as you’re swimming through a canyon with almost totally vertical walls.
This dive is at the western end, near the point, and the normal dive route takes you through canyons, around pinnacles and a sand chute that’s like an underwater ski jump down to 80 ft. For some of the dive, you’ll be treated to white sand and octocorals and at other aerial rocky encrusted coral makes up the terrain housing invertebrates galore. This site is great for fish watchers, who are treated to large schools of silversides, and even the possibility of sharks and bottlenose dolphins. More likely than not though, you’ll be seeing stingrays buried in the sand.
This site is often used for training as its maximum depth is only 45 feet, and it houses a host of invertebrates. There are small coral heads and they have a steep slope of about 45 degrees. Photographers, bring your macro lenses! There aren’t any dramatic crevasses, but there are thousands of tiny holes where tube worms, crinoids, and urchins hide.
Grass Cay is on the eastern end of St Thomas, in the Atlantic. It is a large conglomeration of huge coral heads and large sea fans. It gently slopes from the island , and there is some sand bottom to 55 feet and wonderful scenery. Conch are seen here and if they're large enough - and in season - there might be a little Ceviche that night for dinner.
GRASS CAY - NORTH
WIT Concrete is a 350ft bulk carrier originally sunk during hurricane Marilyn and relocated by the Army Corps of Engineers in 100 feet of water off of St Thomas west end. She sits fully upright and is covered in an array of sponges and corals. Often you can find her resident goliath grouper as well as large reef sharks swimming among the wreck.
There are two barges we make this dive on to a 40 foot maximum. There is a nice low coral 'path' that leads from one to the other. They were originally housing for the Navy when the submarine base was still in use. There were five in total sunk in the area 3 are currently considered dive sites. During shark breeding season in June, it is not unusual to see congregations of sharks resting under one portion of the wreck, large ones of 6 feet or more. Always a treat.
The Cartanza Sr. is split into 3 pieces all throughout Buck Island Cove. We adventure into 40 feet to snorkel and dive this old shipping vessel where you can even see the engines still intact! Yellow tail snapper follow along for the ride where we then explore the connecting Wye Reef. This wreck is great for snorkelers and divers alike.
CARTANZA SR. WRECK
Miss Opportunity Once a hospital ship, and then used as an office complex, the Miss Opportunity lies on her side in just over 90 feet of water, and can be accessed at 40 feet. Just over 300 feet long, and slowly acquiring a splendid coating of coral since her 1985 sinking, the ship was deployed as an artificial reef and broke wide open upon hitting the bottom. The wreck is easily penetrated, and with multiple decks to explore, she is a fascinating site for even the most seasoned wreck diver. You’ll find sharks, moray eels, huge groupers, and plenty of other creatures hiding in the wreckage.