Padi Wreck Diving Specialty
Boca Chica, Dominican Republic
Last weekend I flew down to Boca Chica, DR to do my wreck diving specialty with Caribbean Divers in Boca Chica. I did 5 dives over 3 days. The class was 4 of them, the other was a reef dive.
For the class, we dove the Cutuan, which was the Mohican out of Port Huron prior to moving to the Domican Republic. It is a tug boat that was sunk in about a 5-10 minute boat ride from the Dive shop in about 70 feet of water right on a coral reef. My instructor was Raphael. He was teaching multiple classes at the same time, one of which was my wreck specialty. Dive 1 involved surveying the ship from the outside and making sure it was stable. Dive 2 we did a similar survey, in addition surveyed the interior of the ship to determine what entry points would be safe and which ones were not. Dive 3 involved penetrating the wreck, following the same way out that we entered. Dive 4 involved use of a reel underwater. The big emphasis on the class was working on bouyancy and reducing making moves that would disturb the wreck in any way.
The reef around the wreck was in good shape. Saw many varieties of fish, from pufferfish, to spotted drumfish, to trumpet fish and many other species inbetween. We also saw spotted green and brown moral eels, including a 5-6 footer that lived under one side of the wreck. The coral looked to be healthy as well. Visiblity was in the 50 foot range for the week. Weather would vary depending upon the wind. The morning dives were very calm. In the afternoon we would have some chop, maybe 1-4 foot max.
All of the dives were done from what looked to be a 12 foot dingy with an outboard motor. We would enter and exit the boat from the beach and leave for the wrecks fully dressed. Put on our fins and rigs and do back rolls off the boat. upon ending the dive, we would pass up our rigs and then have to climb over the side of the boat, no ladder provided.
Overall it was a very good experience that I would repeat. I may try Treasure Divers who had more dedicated dive boats, but were a further distance from Isla Bonita, the resort we were staying at which was right next door to the shop.