Tim Wolfe's Dive Log
North Shore on 4/23/2006
The owner of 2Dive4 has posted a map of the dive on his site and links here. The entry is just East of his home - dirt pull out with easy trail to sand/small rocky beach. This is a relatively shallow dive (best light) over a large coral garden with sand channels. Current can be quite strong, so test it and plan your dive accordingly. It's a long swim out to the coral, and a long swim against the current back to the exit. Good workout, but there's nothing unique that can't be seen in other sites. As with others, not a lot of fish (other than tiny fish). I think beginners should not dive here due to the strong current, directional/navigational issues.
The Waves on 4/23/2006
The Waves is a couple hundred yards East of Cane Bay. I advise you enter just West of the hotel in a little bay that has a sandy bottom with a protective rock outcropping that breaks the surf (much better entry than the one pictured on this site in the middle of the hotel because the NE swell is blocked). Time your entry to the waves and swim hard for 30 seconds to get beyond the break. Short swim (5-7 minutes) to buoy. Similar dive to Cane bay - steep sand covered with coral, few large fish.
Rust Op Twist on 4/23/2006
This was the best shore dive we did in St. Croix. The most wildlife with some bigger fish, lots of barracuda and black durgons, the best reef in excellent condition (fan coral, tube coral, sponges, etc). The entry can be difficult due to loose bowling ball sized coral boulders that are on the bottom with surf coming in on you - this makes walking out hazardous to ankles but it is worth the effort. Navigation is ideal - there is a pipe you can follow out and best of all you can follow in making night diving very easy (we found this the best night dive for someone unfamiliar with the terrain). It's a bit of a swim out 12-15 minutes. Check the current and swim into it along a sloping wall covered in coral, then drift/swim back until you cross the pipe and follow it in.
Cane Bay on 4/23/2006
Cane Bay's best attribute is proximity to a nice customer friendly dive shop (30 yards) and very easy entry/exit on a beach. Even in big waves you should be able to get out. It is the busiest site on North shore (most others are empty). Swim 200-250 yards (10 minutes or so) to the buoy and drop into steep sand slopes covered with coral. Almost all dives on North shore are very similar so this is a good starter to see what you will find on the others. Fish life has been decimated by over fishing/hunting, but there are lots of tiny fish and coral. The best stuff is in less shallow waters, and below 90 feet is pretty barren.
North Star on 4/23/2006
North Star is the "best" shore accessible "wall" dive. The other "walls" are actually steep slopes. North Star drops straight down from about 40 feet to 90-100 feet before sloping sand begins. Lots of overhangs and slots with a curving wall so something is in sunlight all day. Easy entry with short 7-8 minute swim to the wall. Very few fish (empty caves, overhangs) throughout St. Croix (over fished and hunted). This and Rust-op Twist are the best shore dives, North Star having best topography.