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Thread: Flower Gardens

  1. #1
    TadPole
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    Flower Gardens

    My husband and I would love to take our newly certified junior scuba diver daughter scuba diving in the ocean. We live in DFW and think it would be cheaper for us to drive to Galveston and go diving in the Flower Gardens. Is there any 1 day charter boats that will take us out to the Flower Gardens and if so, how much will it cost?
    Carolyn

  2. #2
    Grand Poobah Founding Member
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    ScubaToys Larry's Avatar
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    Fling Charters

    It's actually pretty challenging diving... not so sure I'd take young inexperienced divers there, and not 1 day... but 3 day trips. Might be better off doing a Florida thing or Cozumel, and by the time you do the gas and time and cost of the charter... it would not be a lot more - and much better diving for your situation in my opinion.

  3. #3
    Dominus Diabolus Urinatoris ST-Forum Mod DevilDiver's Avatar
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    The FG's are great and a unique experience but (like Larry said) this is not diving for new divers.

    Cozumel or PDC would be a great first bluewater dive trip, plus it is an easy trip out of DFW.
    DevilDiver

  4. #4
    Grouper
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    get your new diver used to diving where you can't see squat in front of you... this way when she drops in and can see clean to the bottom of a 60 ft drop, it will be easy for her. plus it helps with night diving too

    ~Recon

  5. #5
    Barracuda Founding Member
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    I'll chime in with an echo. I am a huge fan of the Flower Gardens and recommend it to all experienced divers. I almost always advise against brand new divers going out there, though. We may hear from divers who tell us how they went out there for their first post-cert dives and had no problems. And it's true, there are days when the gulf is flat and the currents slack where the diving is as easy as the local lake. And then there are days when it isn't... Often on the same day and with little or no notice.

    IMO the biggest issue is the task loading that new divers are not used to. There are lots of things you have to keep in mind, none of them that difficult but put them all together and a new diver can become overloaded. Not to mention the dives are all over 60' and a new OW diver is not recommended below that depth.
    The water's more exciting.. with CHUM in it!

  6. #6
    Grouper
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    What about diving out of Corpus? I know there are some one day charters there. Not sure how challenging the diving is though. Have you guys gone to Clear Springs Scuba Park or Mammoth Lake Scuba Park near Houston? Clear springs is great and is pretty easy, I've heard Mammoth is similar.

  7. #7
    Grouper
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    Adding to the echo..................

    What is the depth limit for Junior Scuba Divers? 40 ft ?? The Flower Gardens are a minimum of 60 feet deep. Better to wait a few years.

  8. #8
    Grouper
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    I just went to the FG this last month and I readily agree with what everyone else says above. I felt like it was diving boot camp!! Certainly not for anyone who doesn't feel very comfortable with their diving skills. On the days I was there, the currents were very high and/or the waves got up to 6-8 feet which made getting back on the boat very challenging and somewhat dangerous. I was so focused on getting myself on and off the boat that I really could not have dealt with anyone else (especially my first time there). Also, as mentioned I'm not sure that we were ever less than 80 feet at the bottom. Since it took so much effort to get off/on the boat, you really had to monitor your air supply-sometimes you had to wait in line a while to get back on and it is a requirement that you be able to take a breath off your tank or you must lay out 24 hours.... That said, I had a great time with the crew and the other divers. The day after, I probably would have said I wouldn't go again-now....I might consider it now. I dove air but if going again, I would want to be Nitrox certified as a couple of my dives were limited by my nitrogen load.

  9. #9
    Grouper Founding Member
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    For quick turn blue-water trips I highly recommend Fort Lauderdale, or the Keys. Both are easy to get to, with NO passport/immigration issues, and you can enjoy other surface activities before and after dives. This time of year water is still warm, vis is generally 60'+, and you can certainly find dive sites within her depth restriction which would still be great fun!
    Tom
    NAUI Instructor. Scubatoys dive staff. Loyal Scubatoys customer.

  10. #10
    Grand Master Spammer
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    Quote Originally Posted by Divingguy View Post
    For quick turn blue-water trips I highly recommend Fort Lauderdale, or the Keys. Both are easy to get to, with NO passport/immigration issues, and you can enjoy other surface activities before and after dives. This time of year water is still warm, vis is generally 60'+, and you can certainly find dive sites within her depth restriction which would still be great fun!
    Tom

    I'll have to agree with that. Although all of my diving has been about 30+ minutes north (Jupiter, West Palm, Boynton), there are tons of easy shallow dives in the Lauderdale area from what I've been told. They say there's great beach diving there too.

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