Flip Flop Weather... Pun Intended!
I have been many places in my life where the saying, “If you don’t like the weather, wait 15 minutes” was often used. Now I firmly believe that saying was born in the Florida Keys, and in reality if you wait 15 minutes, you may miss some of the beauty the quickly changing weather brings. It has been an exciting close to 2014 and it’s sure to continue into early 2015.
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Cayman Salvage Master Green Eel, one of two spotted on the dive.
Photo: Captain’s Corner Dive Master, Tom Squiga[/caption]
We saw the worst weather of 2014 during the Christmas holiday morning, then 15 minutes later mid-summer weather had returned. All kidding aside, we had a front blow through on Christmas Day bringing 28 knot winds and 8 foot seas but then just a bit later, after a break for lunch, we went out to find the seas calm, the wind had turned to a gentle breeze and visibility was outstanding on the reef. I could never have predicted such a quick change but we played the odds and decided to go out to see what it looked like and we were not only amazed but we were the only ones on the water.
Crazy? Probably, but that has nothing to do with it!
We would never put anyone in harm’s way, but when you have so many people that have traveled for so many miles and managed to squeeze in that one day of diving we can’t just sit at the pier and cancel the trip without some confirmation. Sometimes we just have to go stick our nose out there to see what the seas are doing and hopefully not get punched in the process. Sometimes it’s too foul to get out past the protected harbor of Key West other times, such as this one, you’re treated to a delight to revel in when no one else decided to take the chance.
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Group of young divers and a few great Captain’s Corner instructors.
Photo: Capt. Mac[/caption]
We were lucky enough to be the only boat on the reef and we were able to show our customers one of the best dive days I have seen since August. We had bottlenose dolphin circle the boat several times and according to our divers, you would have thought they had just visited the National Aquarium. They reported several reef sharks, nurse sharks, sting rays, and turtles just to name a few on the list.
Oh, and I forgot to mention about half of our divers were on the morning wreck dive trip with 8 foot seas, crazy, absolutely! These divers were able to witness both ends of the spectrum of typical weather here in the Florida Keys and what could be better than helping them write the stories they will tell for years to come, maybe just as a note in a dive log or what they share when they get home.
We always look forward to making memories when we take people out. One customer recently asked me if I loved my job. With a pirate-like belly laugh, I answered as I always do, “Of course I do!
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Dolphin circle our boat during a reef dive.
Photo: Capt Mac.[/caption]
You have to love it, you’ll never get rich doing this job” ,then I point to one of our dive instructors tagging along for the reef dive after working the morning wreck dives. She’s not out here for the overtime.....but I digress.
Our conditions for the early part of 2015 have been unpredictable, interesting - but very enjoyable. Water temps still hover at 73 degrees fahrenheit, with air temps anywhere from 65-80 degrees.
Visibility can be 100+ feet on the deep wrecks to 50-60 feet on the reefs, (exceptional for our typical winter conditions). We will continue to see our normal “cold” fronts push through but most of that cold has been spent on those to the north of us. We may get a gust of wind up to 25-30 knots (1.2mph per knot) during these fronts but they pass quickly and may bring a little welcome rain for those with landscaping (never snow). Like many say down here, the only ice/slush you’ll see is in your frozen cocktail. The only way we take it.
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Captain’s Corner M/V Sea Eagle returning from an afternoon dive.
Photo: Captain’s Corner instructor, Henry Rose[/caption]
Last I must say we have had some phenomenal sunsets over the last few weeks. I’ll share a couple but they are best viewed in person.
Stay safe and happy diving, we’ll see you on the water.
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