There is no better time to introduce divers to the REAL world of sharks than during this popular, but oh so overly dramatized, Discovery Channel’s Shark Week. With a boatload of divers, both young and young-at-heart, we headed north to Shark Canyon for our first dive.
Conditions were ideal with 80 degree water temperature, a moderate north current, about 50 feet of visibility, and glass-calm seas. Just minutes after reaching the area we call the Amphitheater, numerous reef sharks began to show up. Without baiting the water, these sharks would simply swim around the reef. Never really coming in very close and never making any of the divers feel they were in danger. This is the REAL Shark Week — this is the way sharks behave regularly when observed in a natural setting without food in the water.
Alas, Discovery Channel’s Shark Week would put a lot of people to sleep if sharks were shown in their trance-like motion. They truly are a majestic and awe-inspiring creature to watch NATURALLY! Aside from sharks, there were sea turtles, a goliath grouper, and tons of tropical fish to enjoy throughout the dive.
For our second dive we headed back south to the Danny wreck. Conditions were the same as on Shark Canyon, but instead of sharks on this dive we had giant goliath groupers. Approaching the Danny wreck, numerous groupers stood guard at the bow of the ship. These large fish appeared to be using the ship’s wake, created by the current, to hover in place without as much as moving a fin.
We explored the interior of this ship finding a couple of goliath groupers hiding within the ship wreck as well. We decided to take a shot at moving up to the sand in front of the bow to get some photos of the groupers. The current was moving but still manageable. Many of the groupers swam away as we approached (they can be quite timid), but one particular grouper’s curiosity allowed us to photograph him against this gorgeous wreck.
A couple of us decided to stick around and explore what else the Danny wreck had to offer while the rest of the group headed across Atlantis and the other wrecks — encountering turtles and tons of other marine life along the way.
The diversity of diving in Palm Beach is truly fantastic! Best of all, diving out here, especially with shark and groupers, quickly makes people realize that so much of what we see on TV in shows like Discovery Channel’s Shark Week is far from the reality of it all. The ocean and its creatures are awe-inspiring and magical to experience, and we truly have nothing to fear from them. Come out diving with us and experience a REAL Shark Week. You’ll be glad you did!