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Thread: Easy entry shore dives

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
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    Long Island,New York
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    Red face Easy entry shore dives

    Hello,
    Can anyone recommend easy shore dives? We are also looking for shore divers that isn't a long swim to bouy. We have the Bonaire Shore Diving Book, but would like to know from you . Thank you Juju

  2. #2
    bcwolfen Lurker

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    Further south the swim out to the dropoff gets longer, towards city centre and further north it is quit a bit shorter. We usually drop underwater within 10 feet of shore and do not swim out on the surface. Even in the shallows/sand there is much to see, often eagle rays and turtles so we enjoy our 5-15minute swim out to the reef. Then we drop down to 80-90 and slowly work our we shallower as we dive. By the time we reach 1/2 tank and turn we are usually up in the 40-50' range and make our way back slowly into 30'. We easily manage a 60-80min dive on this profile.

    If you take a look at google maps on satellite view you can actually see that the band of light blue is almost 2x as wide down towards the south. But there are some beautiful dive sites there that I would not pass up due to a longer swim through the shallows.

    Almost forgot: Pretty much all the site from the north end of town south are easy entry. There is always about a 6"-1' step right at the shore. Watch your footing and time your step with a wave. Some of the northern sites such as Karpata can be a bit tricky.
    Easiest entry: Oil slick leap. Just giant stride of the edge of the cliff. There is a ladder to climb back out.
    Last edited by bcwolfen; 12-28-2012 at 07:23 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
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    Gatineau, QC
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    A few of my favourites when in the mood for a nice, relaxing, easy entry shore dive are Yellow Submarine, WindSock, Calabas Reef, 18th Palm, Bachelor's Beach, Vista Blue and Salt Pier (I was there earlier this year and the past requirement for Harbor Master approval and dive master no longer exists so it is open to all and not to be missed).

    Oil Slick, as recommended by bcwolfen, is also a very good choice but earlier this year there was broken rung on the ladder making it rather difficult for someone without good strong legs to make the huge step up to the next rung.

  4. #4
    tursiops's Avatar
    tursiops is offline Bonaire Lover SUPPORTING MEMBER - Bonaire Talker
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    Quote Originally Posted by Helene View Post
    Salt Pier (I was there earlier this year and the past requirement for Harbor Master approval and dive master no longer exists so it is open to all and not to be missed).
    When this year? I was there in October and the requirements were still in place.
    Mel Briscoe, Alexandria, Virginia

  5. #5
    TankHalfFull is offline Bonaire Lover SUPPORTING MEMBER - Bonaire Talker
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    The Lake, Tori's Reef, and The Rock (unmarked, just past Invisables) are some of our easy ones.

  6. #6
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    Sep 2011
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    The "First State" Delaware
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    What about some of the house reefs? Just go in off the dock. I would second some of these sites such as Windsock and The Lake for easy entry, but each is up to the individual diver. While Oil Slick does have a short swim out to the reef, I would not advise trying to time the climb out the ladder without a few boat dives under your weightbelt for experience. We like 1000 Steps for the shore entry, but there are those steps. Enjoy.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2011
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    Rockaway, NJ
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    One of the best and easiest shore dives IMHO is "Something Special". The shallows are filled with juvies and is a short swim to the reef.

  8. #8
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    Nova Scotia Canada
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    I would second "Something Special' as one of the easiets shore dive entries.You can park very close to the water and it's only a short walk with your gear to the water.

    So does anyone have an answer for" Salt Pier" whether approval is required and if a dive master is needed to dive this site???

  9. #9
    kob's Avatar
    kob is offline Bonaire Lover SUPPORTING MEMBER - Bonaire Talker
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    We were there in October. We were told that as long as no ships were docked, you could dive Salt Pier. Although we were mostly diving non-marked dive sites east & north, when we did drive by Salt Pier, we saw divers there entering & exiting.
    KOB
    PADI CD-159014
    KOBScuba.com
    Lighthouse Beach Resort #32

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    Kralendijk
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    Salt Pier is one of the best dives on the island. Most people enter from the right (north) side and swim along the raised conveyor belt to the several masses of pilings at the loading dock. This makes navigation easy but is not advised due to the unstable condition of the pier on the north end.
    There is a small beach to the left (south) of the salt conveyor belt with an easy entry where you can swim out to the pilings sets across a shallow sandy plain. If you get confused about your direction it's easy to take a compass heading to the pilings and use the opposite for your return to the beach. This side has already collapsed and is much safer than the north side.
    There are a number of piling sets in relatively shallow depths where the fish populations are huge and diverse. There is also an incredible amount of trash and debris (tires and cable and steel drums etc.) that was tossed off the pier that makes habitat for the fish.
    The reason the site was deemed off limits in the first place (besides the ship traffic) was because of the collapse of the concrete structure on the south end. It is assumed that the north end will also collapse at some point.
    Meanwhile, the question of diving the site has to be viewed in the context of rules vs enforcement. Yes there is a rule against diving the pier, but nobody is trying to stop anyone from doing it. Cargill Salt Works won't stop you; STINAPA or Bonaire Marine Park Rangers won't stop you; The Harbormaster (who has the authority) won't stop you and the dive shop operators (who will guide you there for a fee) won't stop you, so until someone is injured or the eventual collapse on the north occurs, you're free to dive the site like any other.
    Last edited by mpement; 01-02-2013 at 12:34 PM.

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