Wreck diving is one of the must-see dives while visiting St.
Croix. While there are dozens of shipwrecks to visit on St.
Croix, the THREE most popular and accessible are the
Deep & Shallow Wrecks @ Butler Bay and Armageddon.
Butler Bay is 2.7 miles north of Frederiksted, the wrecks
are most often reached with N2theBlue's daily boats (8:30am and
1:00pm). However, the wrecks are also a popular shore dive but
strenuous 15-20 minute surface swim. If you do shore-dive
the wrecks, please be sure to leave your valuables at N2theBlue
when you get your tanks (kids will be kids and they know you're
away for a while).
Deep Wrecks @ Butler Bay:
shipwrecks. We start the dive with the boat tied onto the
newest wreck (the tug boat) and sway towards the 177'
Rosa Marie. We dive to the open gates of the freighter
at ~76' and work our way towards the back. The deepest
point of the Rosa Marie is about 117' with her tower up near
80'. After circling around the back end, we glide on over
to the tugboat named Coakley Bay. The tug sits in about 60' with her tower up
near 30'. From here we ascend along the mooring line, make
our safety stop, and enjoy a surface interval before heading off
to our next destination. Definitely bring a camera/GoPro
for this dive. The coral and sponges have made these
wrecks a spectacular sites. There is often a shy seahorse
to be found on the back of the Rosa Marie (named Steve) and
schools of Atlantic spadefish circling the tug. Be sure to
look in the sandy bottom for resting southern stingrays -- they
make for great photos.
a 177-foot freighter
The Rosaomaira is a 177 foot long, steel hulled Venezuelan
freighter. She capsized while her cargo was being prepared
for off loading. Apparently the weight of her cargo was not
balanced correctly, causing the ship to tip. After
attempting to right the vessel and failing, it was
discovered that the ship's owner was trying to smuggle
diesel fuel onboard. The Rosaomaira was then towed to Butler
Bay and sunk in April of 1986 with the aid of explosives.
This wreck, known also as the Rosa, is now sitting in 110
feet of water, completely intact and upright. Left untouched
since her sinking, her crews clothing and personal effects
can still be found in their cabins. Average 80 to 200 feet,
and there is usually little or no current.
an oil-refinery tug
Shallow Wrecks @ Butler Bay:
wrecks. The shallow wrecks include a trawler, tug boat,
and a massive oil barge. If you look closely at Google
Earth, you can just barely make out the wrecks from satellite
imagery. Amazing. In the midst of these wrecks is
NOAA's old HydroLab.
a 144-foot trawler
Only a few hundred yards south of the Rosaomaira and a
hundred yards north of the Northwind lies the wreck of the
Suffolk Maid. She was a 144 foot long, steel hulled North
sea trawler. The Suffolk Maid was washed up onto
Frederiksted Pier during a hurricane in 1984.
In December of 1985, the Suffolk Maid was towed to its
present location and scuttled. She is know sitting upright
on the ocean floor in 60 feet of water. Her superstructure
was removed prior to her sinking. Again, this site has
little or no current, and visibility is almost always good,
ranging from 100 to 200 feet. Divers can still recognize the
ship's name on her bow.
a 300-foot oil barge
a 75-foot tug used in the TV movie Dreams
of God — The Mel Fisher Story
The Northwind is a 75 foot long, steel
hulled ocean tug named after Mel Fisher's salvage boat that
was used on the Atocha treasure recovery. According to Tom
Long, the tug was used as a prop for the movie "Dream of
Gold", starring Loretta Swit and Cliff Robertson a story
about Fisher's search for the Atocha. After filming was
completed, the tug was left behind. The Northwind was sunk
by Cruzan Divers Inc. and Ship Services in May of 1986.
Today, the vessel sits upright in 55 feet of water. Average
visibility in the area ranges from 100 to 200 feet, and
divers will marvel at the abundance of marine life which
includes goat fish, rays, yellow tails, and an occasional
Deep, non-traditional wreck -- this the remains of a large
portion of the old Frederiksted Pier that was destroyed in 1989
by category 5 hurricane Hugo. Steel girders reach in all
directions towards the sky, slabs of concrete, portions of paved
cement street surface, truck chassis, and more are piled into an
enormous wreck at ~100' down. This wreck is like watching
the 1995 movie, Waterworld.
Other wrecks we don’t get to as often:
• The Victory
• a small airplane (only portions of a frame remain)
• historic wooden wrecks – only their shattered cargo remains
• classic 1700s anchors overgrown with corals (typically found
embedded in coral on the north shore).
WRECK DIVER CERTIFICATION SPECIALTY
PADI Wreck Diver specialty certification. With a Two Tank Dive,
you’re half way finished with this specialty – so may as well
get a certification out of it! Although, we do recommend
taking Peak Performance Buoyancy course before this. It'll
help you in so many ways.
DEEP DIVER CERTIFICATION SPECIALTY
PADI Deep Diver specialty certification. Here in St. Croix,
there are so many dep dives, you'll easily be able to wrap up
your Deep Diver Specialty Certification. Do you know that
colors disappear as you get deeper? The color RED is gone
after about 18 feet -- your eyes are amazing at color
correction, but seriously, take the class and learn about Deep
Diving. There's quite a bit to pick up!
ADVANCED OPEN WATER CERTIFICATION
Deep dive is a requirement top get your AOW
(Advanced Open Water). Let us know you want to get your
AOW and we'll get you advanced in your diving skills! This
is an easy certification with just 5 dives; you can knock out in
two dive days. Let's have fun!
Butler Bay Shallow Wrecks
with N2theBlue's boat headed there for a dive.