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Blue Heron Bridge aka Phil Foster Park, BHB - Riviera Beach FL


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Blue Heron Bridge aka Phil Foster Park, BHB is a shore accessible salt water dive site, located at 900 E Blue Heron Blvd. Rt 708, Riviera Beach, FL 33404. This dive site has an average rating of 4.17 out of 5 from 64 scuba divers. The maximum depth is 21-25ft/6-8m. The average visibility is 26-30ft/8-9m. This dive site provides bathrooms and airfills.

Day in and day out, this Riviera Beach location may well be the best shore dive in Florida. It has two distinct sites, tons of small critters for the macro person, enough big fish to keep you looking around, and best of all, it’s free, dawn until sunset.

You never know what may show up, Manatees, schools of whatever and even a Manta ; facebook.com/ForceEScuba/videos/960319150645629/?fref=nf

Dive on high slack tide. You can enter about 30 minutes before high tide and get in an hour dive before currents become a problem. The park closes at dusk so the high tide must be during the day however Force-E, the LDS on Blue Heron Blvd and Pura Vida which is a few blocks east (look on map below) of the park sometimes get permits for a dusk dive, check with them for dates and how to get on the permit. With Pura Vida you get an after hours parking permit to leave on the dash. On night dives it’s some different fish and starfish, more shrimp and squid.

Like all areas in the lagoon system, to get clean water and low current, it should be dived near high slack tide. This means to schedule it, you have to avail yourself to NOAA tide tables. Be at the water’s edge ready to enter 30 minutes before high tide.

Tides; sinkfloridasink.com/blue-heron-bridge-tides-chart-riviera-beach-florida/

Park in Phil Foster Park as near to the bridge as possible. Under the bridge you will see the swim area, divers must stay outside the swim buoys. Suit up and walk down to the water, there is boat traffic here so a diver down flag is a must.

Option 1, swim straight south into the mooring field, there are things living on those moorings but watch your flag doesn’t get tangled on the mooring rode. Starting 7/9/2012 they will be creating an artificial reef here. Pro; less current change here. Con; less to see.

Option 2, swim right under the west span but do not go into the boat channel, there is even a history of boat traffic short cutting between the boat channel and the next bridge piling. Pro; short swim. Con; boat traffic and more current change.

Option 3, either long walk east to the end of the beach or long swim out and around the swimming area toward east span. Here you get more choices, under the east span is macro heaven, shrimp, arrow crabs, seahorses, frogfish, jawfish but it’s dark so you will need a light.

2nd choice at east end of beach, turn right, there is an old fiberglass boat with outboard sitting in 15’ with good marine growth, grunts to arrow crabs.



3rd choice at east end of beach, turn right and head south past the old boat, past the can/spar bouy marking the swimming area, at 19’ is what looks like an old wooden ship hull upside down but isn’t. Great marine growth, lots of fish inside and out, cleaning stations, macro stuff.



Option 4, New reef and snorkel trail puravidadivers.com/blue-heron-bridge-dive-park

More info on snorkel trair with video; floridarambler.com/florida-best-beaches/snorkelin.../?platform=hootsuite

At the end of the dive there are two showers and two bathrooms in the park One west near the channel and another toward the boat ramp.

Yes, the bridge has a FB page! facebook.com/?ref=hp#!/pages/Blue-Heron-Bridge-D...ve-Club/291908803047

Sport Diver magazine sportdiver.com/photos/blue-heron-bridge-secret-mecca-muck

Park info; pbcgov.com/parks/locations/philfoster.htm#.U7yFr5RdWGM

Snorkeling info puravidadivers.com/snorkeling-at-phil-foster-park

More snorkeling info with map: palmbeachillustrated.com/PhilFosterSnorkelTrail

From SportDiver magazines Planet’s 50 greatest dives, #1 on the list: Blue Heron Bridge

West Palm, Florida, USA
If you’re a fan of the Cantina — the fictional bar from Star Wars — and its freakish alien patrons, you’ll love the weird marine life lurking in the shallows of West Palm Beach’s Blue Heron Bridge. Flying gurnards, bandtail sea robins and striated frogfish commonly populate this South Florida site, a critter hunter’s paradise in only 12 feet of water. Time the dive for high tide, and when you’re finished, head to the Riviera Beach Marina and order the catch of the day. — Patricia Wuest

sportdiver.com/photos/planets-50-greatest-dives?c...ortId=MjEwMzc3MDk1S0

A good video tour on YouTube; youtube.com/watch?v=hLIjYX0Mk2s&feature=youtu.be...6LiWUdDSNEhXQUwpcx1U

More info and video; aquaviews.net/scuba-dive-destinations/check-action-fl...0730670014-409007109

(Dive shop at west end of bridge) ForceE’s BHB page has info, video and map; force-e.com/blue-heron-bridge-diving/

(Dive shop at east end of bridge) Pura Vida’s BHB page; puravidadivers.com/dive-blue-heron-bridge-phil-foster-park

Dive shop in the park at North End. Blue Heron Bridge Scuba & Watersports has closed. RayC/LA



AlertDiver story and photos; alertdiver.com/Blue-Heron-Bridge

4/20/2015


Being added to the underwater park June 2015


Now on the west side of the snorkel trail.


Map showing location of sharks


Snorkel trail, those yellow squares are square steel pilings installed in 3/2017


Reef modules added to snorkel trail


It’s official. The FWC ruled to ban Marine Life Collecting at BHB, effective April 1, 2019. Congratulations to everyone who played a part



Dive Site Map

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Comments

joe_bird - 12 days 5 hours ago.
I went scuba diving here on 10/8/2020. Average viz: 21-25ft/6-8m. Water temp: 81-85°F/27-29°C.
joe_bird - 16 days 20 hours ago.
I went scuba diving here on 10/4/2020. Average viz: 16-20ft/5-6m. Water temp: 76-80°F/24-27°C.
DarlingDiver - 15 days ago.
I am looking for a dive buddy on either 10/12 or 10/13/20 in the pm?
joe_bird - 14 days 5 hours ago.
I can’t do either day unfortunately, sorry! Hope you’re able to find a buddy
DarlingDiver - 12 days 23 hours ago.
Thanks anyway Joe. ... FYI someone reached out to me through my previous comment, and I accidentally deleted their message. This person asked what time I would be diving, my answer is high tide on the 12th is at 5:14 and Hi tide on the 13th is at 6:08 pm. So at least one hour prior to high tide.
joe_bird - 12 days 21 hours ago.
Glad to hear it, I was able to go today and got to see a spotted eagle ray, vis about 25 ft and water temp nice and warm. I’ll be going tomorrow also I think if you’re available then
DarlingDiver - 12 days 18 hours ago.
Joe, that is amazing to be able to see an eagle ray. I’m only in the area during the week of October 11th through 18 on vacation. Wish I could Blue Heron everyday.
joe_bird - 8/30/2020 6:08 PM
I went scuba diving here on 8/30/2020. Average viz: 36-40ft/11-12m. Water temp: 76-80°F/24-27°C.
joe_bird - 8/16/2020 1:30 PM
I went scuba diving here on 8/16/2020. Average viz: 41-50ft/12-15m. Water temp: 81-85°F/27-29°C.
Great night dive. Saw an octopus, a southern ray and a spotted eagle ray, puffer, lion fish, and an eel. Parrotfish were resting so it was easy to get up close to them for a close look.
joe_bird - 8/09/2020 4:43 PM
I went scuba diving here on 8/9/2020. Average viz: 36-40ft/11-12m. Water temp: 81-85°F/27-29°C.
joe_bird - 7/19/2020 6:04 PM
I went scuba diving here on 7/18/2020. Average viz: 36-40ft/11-12m. Water temp: Over 85°F/29°C.
joe_bird - 7/03/2020 7:08 PM
I went scuba diving here on 7/2/2020. Average viz: 41-50ft/12-15m. Water temp: Over 85°F/29°C.
bsharp117 - 6/22/2020 9:41 PM
I went scuba diving here on 6/21/2020. Average viz: 11-15ft/3-5m. Water temp: 81-85°F/27-29°C.
bsharp117 - 6/13/2020 4:54 PM
I went scuba diving here on 6/12/2020. Average viz: 16-20ft/5-6m. Water temp: 76-80°F/24-27°C.
bsharp117 - 6/07/2020 2:05 PM
I went scuba diving here on 6/7/2020. Average viz: 5-10ft/2-3m. Water temp: 76-80°F/24-27°C.
Finally saw a Seahorse, a lot of hermit crabs.
Had alot of issues with my mask leaking, probably because I didnt shave. I ended the dive after 70 minutes with 120 PSI left in my tank.
joe_bird - 5/31/2020 7:40 PM
I went scuba diving here on 5/31/2020. Average viz: 21-25ft/6-8m. Water temp: 81-85°F/27-29°C.
bsharp117 - 6/01/2020 10:47 AM
Damn, I was there last Saturday and vi was 5-10ft. Glad you had a good dive.
joe_bird - 6/01/2020 1:19 PM
It was good just to be back in the water after two and a half months
bsharp117 - 6/01/2020 4:59 PM
I hear you. Im thinking about doing LBTS on Saturday.
joe_bird - 6/02/2020 6:06 AM
It was good just to be back in the water after two and a half months
joe_bird - 6/03/2020 6:16 PM
I haven’t gone diving there yet, maybe if we get to dive sometime we can go there. Hopefully it’s a good dive even with all this rain.
bsharp117 - 6/04/2020 4:03 PM
Im sure eventually well meet up and dive. Just waiting for mother nature to cooperate.
bsharp117 - 5/29/2020 4:08 PM
I went scuba diving here on 5/23/2020. Average viz: 11-15ft/3-5m. Water temp: 76-80°F/24-27°C.
LatitudeAdjustment - 3/20/2020 6:08 AM
I went scuba diving here on 3/13/2020. Average viz: 36-40ft/11-12m. Water temp: 71-75°F/22-24°C.
Went west, lots of schooling, small spotted eel, parrots, pipefish, angels both adult and juveniles
joe_bird - 3/14/2020 5:02 PM
I went scuba diving here on 3/14/2020. Average viz: 36-40ft/11-12m. Water temp: 76-80°F/24-27°C.
joe_bird - 3/08/2020 3:14 PM
I went scuba diving here on 3/7/2020. Average viz: 5-10ft/2-3m. Water temp: 71-75°F/22-24°C.
LatitudeAdjustment - 3/02/2020 6:22 PM
I went scuba diving here on 3/2/2020. Average viz: 16-20ft/5-6m. Water temp: 71-75°F/22-24°C.
As soon as I put my face in there was a Seahorse :) Under the west span were baitfish and a big Rainbow Parrot, near the Hammerheads a Spotted ray, some Barracuda getting cleaned, over on the snorkel trail a Spotted Moray and Arrowcrab. A lot of divers today.
bsharp117 - 3/03/2020 7:43 PM
your so lucky, ive never seen any of that when ive dove there. I havent even been able to find the snorkle trail.
joe_bird - 3/01/2020 6:20 PM
I went scuba diving here on 3/1/2020. Average viz: 21-25ft/6-8m. Water temp: 76-80°F/24-27°C.
bsharp117 - 3/03/2020 7:44 PM
wow, i attempted this site last sunday and called it because of no visibilty and cold water
joe_bird - 3/07/2020 8:38 AM
Vis was great compared to what I’m used to in freshwater lakes in Arizona. Water temp was good despite the chilly weather leading up to the weekend, I was surprised. I wore a full 3 and was comfortable throughout. I think I could have been comfortable with a shorty as well. I figure wear more than you’ll need because you could always cool off, but you can’t warm up during the dive.
bsharp117 - 2/18/2020 6:08 AM
I went scuba diving here on 2/16/2020. Average viz: 11-15ft/3-5m. Water temp: 71-75°F/22-24°C.
LatitudeAdjustment - 2/14/2020 6:11 AM
I went scuba diving here on 2/12/2020. Average viz: 21-25ft/6-8m. Water temp: 71-75°F/22-24°C.
Out to Publix then east along snorkel trail to channel and back. Lot’s of schooling, sheepshead, grouper, angels, damsels defending their farm and one spotted eel out hunting, no crabs
NancyHobbies - 1/27/2020 5:22 PM
I went scuba diving here on 1/27/2020. Average viz: 5-10ft/2-3m. Water temp: 76-80°F/24-27°C.
First of many dives here! Downloading GoPro vids now!
bsharp117 - 2/08/2020 3:01 PM
If youu need a dive buddy next time you go hit me up. Bernie