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Revision 10/01/2019 3:46 AM by Airworks
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Rappahannock/Fredericksburg Quarry - Fredericksburg VA


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This quarry is closed to the general public, but is accessible to scuba divers under very specific conditions.
It is managed by the Virginia Outdoor Center (VOC; 540-371-5085), and is used for kayak, canoe, and paddleboard training. Dive shops interested in using the quarry for dive training must coordinate with the VOC.
You will need to contact, and be approved by, Bill Micks of the VOC in order to get a quarry pass if you want to scuba dive in the quarry.
Mr. Micks will only allow diving if you are a dive instructor, are part of a government or private dive team, or are an individual with a dive business. You must also have dive insurance.
As of June 5 2019, Zach Santulli is the primary go-to for quarry access. There are several new policies and requirements in place due to VDOT construction occurring on Quarry Road.
For your diving convenience, The Scuba Shack (540-373-1030), a local dive shop, is located about 2 miles from the quarry. Mad About Diving (540-424-4973) is a new shop that recently opened in downtown Fredericksburg. Patriot Scuba (703-490-1175) is another shop that frequently visits the quarry. There are a couple of others also authorized to use it.
If you would like to scuba dive in the quarry, call the shops mentioned here to find out if they will allow you to tag along for "fun dives." If so, you’ll probably be required to fill out a waiver.
The quarry itself has training platforms, and several submerged objects. See the dive map for a complete list.
Fauna includes bass, bluegill, painted turtles, freshwater jellyfish, freshwater eel, and channel catfish.
Visibility varies greatly depending on weather and human traffic, but averages between 10’ to 20’. The thermocline temp stays a steady 44-49 degrees year round.
Horizontally-suspended silt clouds can be observed in most places and give the underwater environment a ghostly appearance. Large stones and huge boulders are scattered throughout, but the southeast area has most of the larger ones. They are packed close together, creating cave-like crevices that provide shelter and protection for fish and eels.
The quarry walls offer spectacular views.
For divers willing to take the challenge, the south and southwest areas of the quarry have many large submerged trees and branches that offer the opportunity of practicing buoyancy control and tight-space maneuvering. Slowly weaving through the natural "obstacle course" helps develop patience and alertness. Make sure to carry a dive tool that has a serrated edge and knife combination in case of entanglement. In that kind of environment, slow is fast!
Be sure to check out the photos associated with the quarry. There are also a couple of Youtube videos that will give you a general idea of what you might see and experience.
Here are some links:
youtube.com/watch?v=wiCFsr50nxI
youtu.be/uRhxnqd-x7U