Help Needed - St Thomas, St John Dive Site Recommendations

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mwall04

Contributor
Messages
80
Reaction score
91
Location
St. Croix, US Virgin Islands
# of dives
1000 - 2499
So St. Croix seems to be the place for shallow reef diving.

How deep are the reefs in St. Croix?

How is the diving in the winter time? I know the summer months are better for diving in areas like the Keys, and wondering if St. Croix would be nice enough to dive in the winter months since it's further southeast?
Most of my reef dives here range from 60-90 feet maximum depth. A quick check of my dive computer shows most of my first dives range from 80-100 feet and second dives were 50-60 feet. These are all boat dives leaving from Christiansted. Typically the first dive is a wall or deeper reef and the 2nd is a shallower reef. On the deeper dives, you could easily dive them shallower by exploring the upper part of the wall while following the group. Also, most of my afternoon dives show both dives being shallower reefs. These afternoon dives tend to include people who are completing a resort course, so tend to be shallower and also much shorter boat ride (although they all feel relatively short here). If you prefer the shallower reefs, I'm sure any of the dive shops would accommodate.

Not a huge amount of difference between summer and winter diving here. Winter dives range from 78-79 degrees and summer dives hit 84 degrees according to my computer. In the winter we do get seasonal winds, but in the rare instance you couldn't dive the north side of the island, the west end (Frederiksted) would usually be flat. I personally have never had a dive canceled due to weather here.
 

NYSP230

Registered
Messages
8
Reaction score
1
Location
Noank
# of dives
1000 - 2499
St. Thomas / St. John Trip Report
Just a quick report on our bareboat dive report from St. Thomas and St. John, with many thanks to those that offered guidance prior to our trip...
Diving was excellent & conditions were ideal, but lack of mooring balls, or presence of questionable mooring balls at St. Thomas dive sites added another layer of complexity. With the exception of the Cartanza wreck off of Buck Island, we had to hover-dive in teams with a 51 ft. power cat on all St. Thomas sites. Additionally, public-use transient mooring balls in St. Thomas were non-existent, and mooring fields with suitable anchorages were very tight. Overall, it seemed that the St. Thomas economy is more focussed on the cruise ships than transient boaters. Quite the opposite however in St. John. The Park Service moorings are in good shape, and are a cheap $26 p/night - on the honor system. We only used one dive-site mooring ball in St. John, but like the overnight moorings - was in fine shape. Underwater Adventures run by Bob (dad) and Kyle (son) in Yacht Haven Grande were extremely helpful, and provided us all the gear we needed (15 tanks, weights, etc.). Kyle gave us many recommendations on sites, and even provided us with his GPS cheat sheet for 100 or so sites. Red Hook Dive Center was also helpful. Regrettably we did not get to do some of the more advanced deep wreck dives (mooring-less) as finding the sites and setting up a shot line while hovering with the cat presented us with too many moving parts - especially with a novice diver on board. Regardless, we were able to find many worthwhile dives; Cow and Calf, Cartanza Senora wreck, Congo Cay, Mingo Cay, and a night dive in Caneel Bay. Please reach out if you need any guidance...

Peace, and safe diving.
 
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