PDA

View Full Version : Easy entry shore dives



jujubees
12-28-2012, 05:16 PM
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

bcwolfen
12-28-2012, 07:16 PM
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. :)

Helene
12-29-2012, 12:18 AM
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.

tursiops
12-29-2012, 11:29 AM
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.

TankHalfFull
12-29-2012, 12:50 PM
The Lake, Tori's Reef, and The Rock (unmarked, just past Invisables) are some of our easy ones.

Bill K
12-29-2012, 08:22 PM
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.

billmosel
12-29-2012, 10:27 PM
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.

townses
12-30-2012, 11:01 AM
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???

kob
12-31-2012, 10:19 AM
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.

mpement
01-02-2013, 12:28 PM
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.

ModCecil
01-02-2013, 01:17 PM
Thank you Michael, great info. I do love that dive.

Do watch out for the Marichi bands and Flamingo piss (see below link on last dive).
http://www.bonairetalk.com/forums/showthread.php?72796-Late-March-Early-April-2012-Cecil-and-Sue

Helene
01-05-2013, 12:28 AM
Tursiops....We were there in May and dove Salt Pier almost every day for 2 weeks. We were told to just make sure that there were no ships docked. There were always quite a few other divers there and nobody had a guide.

tursiops
01-05-2013, 05:57 PM
We were told
Who told you?

Bill Murphy
01-06-2013, 09:26 PM
9364

The Salt Pier is open for diving and perhaps the best dive on the island and not be missed. The most recent dive pamphlets announce that the pier is pen for diving. It is a photographer's dream! Go late in the afternoon and take your time, it is not going anywhere and make sure you make several dives to see the whole pier!

Carol Murphy
Owner of Bellafonte Bonaire 102
Tje best kept secret in Bonaire!

tursiops
01-07-2013, 11:19 AM
The most recent dive pamphlets announce that the pier is pen for diving.

What are these "dive pamphlets" you refer to?

lorimich
01-08-2013, 10:09 PM
Hi,

What's your thoughts about Bari reef? Is it easy, too?
ty
lori

lorimich
01-08-2013, 10:13 PM
I bought the "Bonaire shore diving made easy: guide to dive and snorkel sites" by Susan Porter. It's ok - it wasn't very clear and I prefer visuals with my info. That's just me, though.
~Lori



What are these "dive pamphlets" you refer to?

Bill Murphy
01-08-2013, 11:01 PM
The pamphlet according to Dr Murphy is the new spiral bound shore dive book that we left at Bellafonte Bonaire 102 for our guests. The Bonaire Reporter also reported the same news. We dove the Salt Pier site with Mike and Cindy Trusdale, John Drew and the Canadians three times during Thanksgiving week and it was awesome in the afternoon light.
Don't miss it.

Bill and Carol Murphy
Owners of Bellafonte Bonaire 102

randl
01-09-2013, 08:31 AM
Bari Reef might be the easiest entry on the island. Just walk in.

Again, though, what is the spiral dive book? Link please.

smits
01-09-2013, 12:48 PM
Bari Reef might be the easiest entry on the island. Just walk in.

Again, though, what is the spiral dive book? Link please.

maybe this: http://www.infobonaire.com/bsdme/

tursiops
01-09-2013, 01:08 PM
maybe this: http://www.infobonaire.com/bsdme/

Not spiral bound (at least, not my copy).

I find it remarkable that people are so willing to dive the site based on opinions and hearsay.
It certainly appears that the site is indeed closed, but no one enforces the closure.
The dive shops have no (financial) incentive to tell you the actual situation, whatever that is, if it means they can't charge $25/diver any more.
But this is my opinion based on the info I can get.
"Someone told me" and unnamed "pamphlets" are not compelling!

Neptune Nick
01-10-2013, 10:44 AM
Hello-
My wife and I stay at The Plaza Resort and have found their house reef, 18th Palm, a very easy shore entry. Either by the Coconut Crash tiki bar or by The Tipsy Seagull restaurant.

Enjoy,
Neptune Nick

mpement
01-11-2013, 06:13 PM
There is a relatively new dive guide edited by Marloes Otten that is "spiral bound" and called "Dive Guide Bonaire". It can be found at www.caribbeandiveguides.com (http://www.caribbeandiveguides.com) and purchased on Bonaire at the local bookstore on Kaya Grandi. It has 103 dive sites described including some not included in Susan Porter's "Bonaire Shore Diving Made Easy".

tursiops
01-11-2013, 07:45 PM
There is a relatively new dive guide edited by Marloes Otten that is "spiral bound" and called "Dive Guide Bonaire". It can be found at www.caribbeandiveguides.com (http://www.caribbeandiveguides.com) and purchased on Bonaire at the local bookstore on Kaya Grandi. It has 103 dive sites described including some not included in Susan Porter's "Bonaire Shore Diving Made Easy".
Interesting, thanks. If it has 103 sites, then i likely contains the boat-diving sites as well as the shore-diving sites....like Klein and several to the north.

If it says Salt Pier is open for diving, I'd be interested in how it knows.....

I'll be there in Feb with a group, and i know (because they always do!) they'll want to dive the site. I'd like to know what to tell them that is not hearsay or opinion. It's not cool to tell your group something is OK and then have them hassled by Cargill, or BMP, or Harbormaster, or local police.

Tom
01-11-2013, 08:02 PM
You could always tell your group that you don't know for sure, but that you know lots of people do it with no problem. Then suggest that as adults they can make their own decisions as they see fit.

Just a thought.

tursiops
01-12-2013, 01:10 AM
You could always tell your group that you don't know for sure, but that you know lots of people do it with no problem. Then suggest that as adults they can make their own decisions as they see fit.

Just a thought.
Thanks for the suggestion, but I'd rather know the answer, and they would too.

Cornhusker
01-12-2013, 10:18 AM
Remember that it is best to always ask first to access a dive site as some dive operations or resorts that have dive sites charge if you do not use their services. I have only encountered one not nice at all guy that operated the dive shop just south of the Sand Dollar 2-years ago. We would have certainly paid a fee as it is a really great location, but rather drove the truck to site next door, dove the same location and took the money we saved and went over to Ellie;s Deli and had a great lunch!

Anyway, ask 1st as great people on Bonaire and being polite is a great trait one can have.

Cornhusker

Cornhusker
01-12-2013, 10:21 AM
Sorry--forgot to also suggest to simply ask other divers about the entry. On our 1st trip to Bonaire we would ask divers resting or who came out of the water about the entry and every was very helpful. Also having some time to suface swim out to a marker gives time to go over your plan for the dive, double check you have everything and also is good excercise!

Cornhusker

randl
01-12-2013, 11:26 AM
There is a relatively new dive guide edited by Marloes Otten that is "spiral bound" and called "Dive Guide Bonaire". It can be found at www.caribbeandiveguides.com (http://www.caribbeandiveguides.com) and purchased on Bonaire at the local bookstore on Kaya Grandi.According to the website, they won't mail it to the US so it will have to wait until March. Just one more reason I can't wait until March...

Bill Murphy
01-12-2013, 08:00 PM
http://www.bonaireinsider.com/index.php/bonaireinsider/bonaire_reigns_supreme_once_again_with_17_awards_in_scuba_diving_magazine

Bill Murphy
01-13-2013, 09:59 AM
Bonaire Reigns Supreme Once Again with 17 Awards in Scuba Diving Magazineís Readersí Choice AwardsBonaire has once again swept top honors receiving seventeen different awards in Scuba Diving Magazineís Readersí Choice Awards, more than any other destination in the region, including five #1 ratings, proving the islandís dominance as the premiere dive destination in the Caribbean and around the world. For the twentieth consecutive year, Bonaire has taken first place for the #1 Shore Diving Destination.
In the Caribbean/Atlantic region, the #1 rankings received by Bonaire include Best Macro Diving, Best Advanced Diving, Best Beginner Diving, Best Shore Diving, and Best Underwater Photography. The #2 rankings include Best Overall Diving, Best Value of Diving Dollar, and Best Marine Environment. In addition to its high rankings, the island also was awarded nine slots out of 100 in the Top 100 Gold List, as voted upon by readers of Scuba Diving magazine.
For the Readersí Choice Awards, thousands of Scuba Diving subscribers and web users rated their dive experiences on a scale of one to five. Results of the 2013 Awards are featured in the January/February 2013 issue of Scuba Diving magazine. (Source: TCB-NY)