The Less Traveled Reef: Going Deep Reveals Abundant and Unusual Sealife – Tim Grollimund Photography

The Less Traveled Reef: Going Deep Reveals Abundant and Unusual Sealife


A DIVE TIME Column focused on the deep sections of the reef

There are a few places in the outer edges of the Florida Keys reef tract reefs that are a whole different world. Deep French, Deep Elbow and Deep Molasses are quite different than the shallower namesakes. The contours begin around 50 feet, and usually bottom out in the 80 to 90 foot range. Nitrox is the preferred gas on these dives, with a mix of 32 to 36 percent preferred. Once you are down the line the first thing you notice is the abundance and variety of tube and barrel sponges. There is a very different feel to these dives, and I would encourage you, if you have a boat full of advanced or higher level divers, to give these sites a try. Again, these dives are not for beginners. These are advanced dives. We have done them as drift dives as well. The perfect scenario would be a sixpack operator or private boat with experienced dive buddies.

About the author

Tim Grollimund

Tim is based in Key Largo, Florida. He wrote the scuba diving column for the local newspaper, The Reporter, for over three years, and also served as a Working Group member and Alternate Representative on the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Council. His ebooks are all based on his newspaper columns. Each ebook has a collection of underwater images shot by Tim. The ebooks cover a wide range of marine life species and ocean conservation topics.

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