Practicalities – Alaska and British Columbia

© Werner Thiele Photography

Diving Conditions

Visibility can vary. Some dive sites are virtually always free of plankton blooms and the visibility ranges from 8 to 25 metres. Plankton blooms may affect other sites in which case visibility may be low on the surface but will be always very good underneath (10 to 25 metres). Note that low viz is because of massive upwellings of nutrients which support a vast profusion of marine life and that’s exactly what makes this place so special. Currents can be very strong but dives will only be staged during the slack tide. Currents may still run at 1-2 knots around slack. All diving is done from a jet-powered (no props) skiff. Water temperature is usually 8-9 degrees Celsius, sometimes warmer.

Diving Experience

Suitable for all divers with good buoyancy skills and dry-suit experience. No problem if you are new to a dry-suit as long as you take a training course before joining the ship. One of our dive-masters will be pleased to accompany any diver looking for a wee bit of assistance. Diving is easily handled from a high-speed 38-foot dive skiff and most sites are within only 3-4 minutes ride. A good dive light is recommended on all dives.

Sea Conditions

The Swell operates in the sheltered and calm Inside Passage of B.C. and Alaska. The Nautilus Swell has an impressive draft of 11 feet which makes for a very stable and comfortable ride. Most ships of this size draw 5-6 feet. The ship will often go for an entire trip without experiencing any uncomfortable movements.

Please also see general information under FAQ.