Blue Heron Bridge

Florida
USA East

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Submitter Comments:
You can dive either East or West of the Park. Do not enter the boat lanes!

Directions:
 Exit 57 near mile marker 75, North of West Palm Beach. Head East, cross over the bridge until you see Phil Foster Park.

 

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Diver Reviews:    Click here to write a Site Review, and share any new information about this site!

04/08/2014 Jennifer from Dublin (Avg: 4.09 Review) - TIDE WINDOW! TIDE WINDOW! TIDE WINDOW! That's the most important thing to remember for this site. Be in the water 30-60 minutes before high tide, and you're almost guaranteed a fantastic dive. My husband and I did our first solo OW dive here, and we thought the tide window was just a suggestion. The water was so murky and the current so bad, that we were almost ready to give up diving. But we gave it another try, during the slack high tide, a couple of days later. It was AWESOME! Make sure you weight a bit heavy; due to the shallow depth you'll be more positive. And if you need anything, Force-E dive shop is just on the other side of the bridge. See them for night dives.

03/05/2014 Mark from Jesup (Avg: 4.77 Review) - Great place to dive, there is a lot of diversity. Went on three dives, one of which was a night dive. Saw some rays, wide variety of fish, fire worms eating crabs, and even some octopus. The warnings about timing the dive around high tide is good advice, if your late the currents are very strong. There are some fun snorkel courses just off the beach, dive them when you're coming back from the pier/bridge pilings.

02/23/2013 Isaac Pelletier (Avg: 3.91 Review) - This summer my family went down to Florida (primarily for diving). The trip was amazing and this was one of the nicest places that we went. This Bridge offers a wider variety of sea life, but if you are really into seeing big stuff (sharks, turtles, Mantas, Groupers), then this place may not excite you a ton. The likelihood of seeing a shark is very low compared to places like Lauderdale by the sea (another great place). I have been on 4 dives at this location and I have seen some rays, a snake eel, an octopus, a scorpion fish, countless barracuda, and many other beautiful tropical fish. I have heard that spotted eagle rays and manatees are not extremely rare here either. The main thing that you should worry about is getting in at the right time. We got in about a half hour before high tide and stayed until about a half hour after high tide. This left us time for a good dive. The snorkeling here is decent, but most of the exciting sea life is under the bridge, which may be difficult for some people to snorkel, but there is a small boat that is separate from the bridge that is easy for snorkelers to get to. This boat is surrounded by some very nice fish including large angelfish. Overall, I would say that this site is a 4.5 out of 5. (The .5 off would be due to the window of time to dive)

10/11/2012 John from ABQ (Avg: 3.13 Review) - Great site! Perfect conditions for beginner divers and a great place for all other divers! Tons of critters! If you're in a bare spot....Wait a minute something will be along within a few minutes! But, Beware on accommodations, Admirals'Cove - Was the perfect place to stay.... Set up reservations 6 months ago. Repeatedly sent re-confirmation and requests for info 3 weeks in advance of leaving...Finally received an email an hour before I flew out, that the resort had been sold. Luckily Hilton saved the day w/ super discounted prices.....

08/13/2012 DM Dave (Avg: 4.13 Review) - I would love to tell you that this is the worst dive site I have ever been to just to keep you away from here but I believe everyone should experience the Blue Heron Bridge at least once. I'm not going to add much more since everything has pretty much been covered by everyone else. If you've never been there and would like a FREE guide, see me at www.facebook.com/floridascubadiver

07/15/2012 Shane (Avg: 5.00 Review) - Great dive. A must do, just find out when high tide is and go diving 1/2 hr before then. Should get an hour or more dive before the current goes out.

02/14/2012 Nate Ewigman (Avg: 4.23 Review) - In my mind, this is a perfect dive site. It is by far the strangest site I've dived in a very good way. I spent about 5 hours on the reef during 01/2012 and explored the entire site - I felt like I needed that much time. I see the dive site in three distinct parts. 1. The E side of the park is where all of the sailboats are, and the bottom is sandy/muck with occasional coral growths off of anchors and trash. While it doesn't sound appealing, it's incredible, and the most likely to see beautiful seahorses. I also saw a 9 ft manatee with my fiancé! 2. The S side (in between the sailboats and bridge) is muck diving, and is a little hit or miss. But I'll say, that's the first dive I'd do next time because that's apparently where the frogfish hang. Giant starfish, many rays (one really big one!). You'll get this part in transit from the E or W side. 3. The W side has thousands of tropicals, great corals (highly active!) on the bridge. Barracudas, rays, amazing shrimp and crabs. I swear I saw a giant hermit crab. Explore the entire bridge - include the pilings to the N of the larger bridge that you come to first. There is a wonderful rock pilings where I saw 2 batfish, octo, eels, etc. Got a little twilight action in on this side, and the reef starts to change. I would imagine the night diving to be spectacular. General advice: FOLLOW the advice to be in the water 30 minutes pre high tide (you can still get a 2 hour dive in as the MOD = 18 ft or so) as the current can be impressively strong, go REALLY slowly, please as always don't touch anything (such a fragile and beautiful u/w community at BHB) or take anything of course, the photographers always know where the cool stuff is but don't crowd them, night diving is not allowed without a shop that has a license on special nights, this is probably obvious but given that most of the dive is very shallow I found it helpful to have a few lbs more on me (and I had more neoprene because the temp in Jan was 68 f). Enjoy, this is a national treasure and should be protected (IMHO) from fishing and boating in certain areas.

07/31/2011 Omar Paez (Avg: 4.18 Review) - Had a great time with the kids. Dove 40 Minutes before peak high tide. The bridge pillars had several fish and fauna to take micro photography pictures. I dove the west side and will post the pictures. I highly recommend the dive. Free parking and free entrance to park. I saw file fish, octopus, French and Gray Angle fish, sting ray, parrot fish, lobster, and a wide variety of fish. Make sure you time the high tide because at the end of the dive the current started to come in.

10/24/2010 Brittany (Avg: 3.46 Review) - Haven't been diving in years! This dive made it super easy and fun to 'dive' back into it. Recently moved to FL and so glad I did!!! EASY beach entrance. EASY FREE parking. Kinda crowded but we went on a Sunday. I suggest a weekday if you can make it. Dive during high tide. Bring a camera, even if it's a cheap one because there will be SOMETHING you will want to take a pic of. There are plenty of small and large fish, invertebrates, BEWARE THE FIRE WORM!! Plant life too.

07/16/2010 Sportxlh (Avg: 4.10 Review) - If you enjoy photography, this is the place for you. I've done about 75 dives at Blue Heron Bridge in the last 18 months and am constantly surprised at what I might see. On several occasions, I've had manatees swim up to me. Spotted morays can be seen on most dives: once-in-a-while you'll see a purple mouth eel. On about 1/3 of the dives, I've seen sharp-tailed eels. Spotted eagle rays are common, especially during the winter. Southern rays are also present. I've seen cow nose rays and one bull nose ray too. Octopi come out late in the day and some are quite brave and will interact with the divers: I've had a few gently touch my camera or glove as I photographed them. All manner of tropicals swim in these waters: angels, barracuda, tangs, filefish, parrots, spadefish, slippery dicks, puffers, balloonfish, flying gurnards, sea robins, batfish etc. etc. From a macro standpoint, you'll see mantis shrimp, blennies, nudibranches, arrowcrabs and all sorts of other tiny critters. Right now the east side of Phil Foster park is closed to diving due to bridge repairs; repairs should be completed in mid 2011. The sand area side south of the park contains critters on the mooring ball lines and the west span of the bridge is prolific with sea life. Parking is normally easy, but can be a challenge in late morning or early afternoon on weekends during the late spring and summer as fisherman, picnickers and scuba divers compete for spaces. Best to arrive earlier. You can set up on the picnic tables when they are not being used. You can wash off in the showers or the fish cleaning stations (when not being used by someone to clean fish). Slack high tide is the time to dive: you're normally safe 60 minutes prior to high tide unless the current looks swift. If you find that the current is too robust but you've already entered the water, just duck behind a bridge piling for a few minutes and enjoy watching the critters and fish that congregate on and around the piling. I can easily get in a two hour dive and have done a 2 hour 45 minute dive when the high tide was fairly 'low'. Carry a knife to free yourself if you can tangled up in a fishing line. Bring a dive flag so fishermen don't mistakenly cast into you (and because it’s the law). Force-E has been sponsoring some night dives during 2010 so call the shop on Blue Heron Blvd to get details: night dives take special permits so don't try doing one without a shop. Force-E is where I get my air fills. Enjoy!

07/16/2010 Flaski (Avg: 4.48 Review) - This dive was surprisingly awesome, I never expected it to be so good. This is the best shore dive I have dove in the USA yet. (3300+dives) Loaded with life. It is a must do dive a couple times a year. We did 126 minute dive on a single 80cu tank, average depth 22',temp was 85 degrees, but a 3 mil was perfect for a 2+ hour dive a 3 mil shorty would be good too. Force E dive shop is closest dive shop for air fills. Parking is free at park.

08/28/2009 Bill Stohler (Avg: 3.86 Review) - After parking next to the bridge, gear up, grab your flag (required) and walk under the bridge towards the life guard stand. Don't enter in the area demarked by white buoys, and don't swim or submerge in this area. This was my first muck dive, and I'll have to admit, it was fun! Lots of cool critters. I'm not used to diving with folks carrying three stacking wet close-up lenses! Arrow crabs are everywhere, along with thousands of collector urchins. Colorful sea stars and occasional anemones spot the bottom. The Sea Robin and a spotted (snake?) eel were the highlights of the dive for me, as I didn't find the sea horses or striated frogfish. Great dive, but heed the advice of diving 45-60 minutes prior to high tide, let the outgoing current pull you under the bridge, and then an hour or so later, let the incoming current pull you back to the beginning with diminishing visibility. Lots of junk here, including several small wrecks!

08/27/2009 Jay and Tara (Avg: 4.67 Review) - What a GREAT easy dive. My wife and I had a long weekend, and planned a few boat dives in the area. The ocean was blown out, and our dive boat canceled. We heard about Blue Heron Bridge, and did a quick check of when slack tide was that day. Make sure you dive this spot at slack tide, or you won't be coming in where you entered ;-) Some of the locals gave us the 411 of where to head. There are 2 small boat wrecks directly south of where you enter about 75 feet apart. There was a abundance of life here, and we were in less than 20 feet of water. Next we swam Northwest toward the bridge. We spotted a beautiful Spotted Eagle Ray. Here is a link to some video I took. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ViZ7743sbAc The viz was 30-40 feet. Considering the seas were blown out, we were pleasantly surprised. All in all a wonderful, easy dive.

07/21/2009 Ken from Florida (Avg: 3.33 Review) - Just to back everyone up, they have said it all, this is a great shore dive, I use it all the time just to get in the water during the week or if I don't have the time or money to do a deep dive. There is lots of life here. It's a great place to practice skills like navigation. I have done an hour and 40 min before vis got too bad from the current.

12/30/2008 Anonymous (Avg: 3.81 Review) - This site can be dived year round. Enter the water 20-40 minutes prior to high tide (you're diving at the slack high tide period). I dove the west span and the fishing pier on 12/29/08 with a 3MM wet suit and was comfortable. Many critters such as bat fish, sea robins, flying gurnards, horseshoe crabs, sharp tailed eels, arrow crabs, scorpion fish, drums, parrotfish, trigger fish, spade fish, grunts, other tropicals, octopus, large sea stars (starfish), fire worms etc. etc. Sea floor is mucky, so be careful not to kick up sand which will limit vis for your dive buddy. Scope out the fisherman before entering the water, you don't want to get hooked and, depending on the number of people fishing, you might want to avoid the fishing pier. There are a couple of dive shops nearby for air fills or rental of equipment (I tend to use Force-E which is located west of Phil Foster Park, on Blue Heron Blvd.) Facilities are good with restrooms and outdoor showers. If fish are not being cleaned, you can use the hose at the cleaning station on the west side of the park to clean your gear. But give the fisherman (and woman) first dibs on the cleaning station. I just 'discovered' this dive site two months ago and have dove it 6 times. It is a nice change from boat/reef diving.

08/21/2008 Mike Walsh (Avg: 3.28 Review) - Dive during low current only on slack tide. Always something new. Very nice shore dive.

10/24/2007 Anonymous (Avg: 4.53 Review) - Great dive site for both beginners and advanced divers. I saw huge schools of barracuda, angelfish, parrotfish, lots of lobsters, and two huge sting rays. There are endless amounts of small creatures on the bottom, so take your time as you cruise along.

08/23/2007 Anonymous (Avg: 3.78 Review) - Lots of life. We've seen octopuses every time we go. Tons of reef fish, eels, lobster.

08/12/2007 Mike Walsh (Avg: 4.01 Review) - Try it, and you will enjoy it! On I 95 take exit # 76 and go east. Go over the Intercoastal Bridge and you will see a park on the left. Go into park and bear left. Parking is free! Park near the bridge & small beach. Diving can only be done at slack tide! There well be no current at this time. Have fun and be safe. Please have fun, be safe and don't damage the coral as it is coming back!

05/26/2007 J. Hasley (Avg: 3.34 Review) - Dive the site beginning one hour before slack tide up to one hour after slack tide and visibility is crystal clear. Once the tides are moving, visibility quickly goes to near zero. For a shallow dive there is an impressive collection of life including stone crabs, lobster (occasionally one or two of legal size), snook, snapper, sheephead, octopus, sharp tooth eels, and a number of tropicals. All of these can be seen regularly and on just one dive. Night diving couldn't be easier and is better than day diving. You can park on the street right next to the stairs to access the beach. It's a short walk down a clean, firm sand beach to the water.

10/27/2003 Don the Seadog (Avg: 3.71 Review) - Dove many times; always lots of life; easy currents and usually god vis; great dive for all levels of divers.

09/20/2003 Anonymous (Avg: 2.84 Review) - Probably the best beach dive in Florida!


Dive Site Links:
   (If you have a relevant link for Blue Heron Bridge, please write us here.)
*  Wade's Page -- Info about the Blue Heron Bridge dive
*  Wade's Page -- And some great photos of the area


Dive Site Pictures:
   (If you have pictures for Blue Heron Bridge, please send them here.)

Special thanks to Dave!
Parking.
Submitted by Dave



Special thanks to Dave!
Overview.
Submitted by Dave



Special thanks to Dave!
Entry.
Submitted by Dave



Special thanks to Dave!
Critters.
Submitted by Dave



Special thanks to Dave!
Critters.
Submitted by Dave



Special thanks to Dave!
Critters.
Submitted by Dave



Special thanks to Dave!
Critters.
Submitted by Dave



Special thanks to Dave!
Critters.
Submitted by Dave



Special thanks to Omar!
The west side.
Submitted by Omar



Special thanks to Omar!
The west side.
Submitted by Omar



Special thanks to Omar!
The west side.
Submitted by Omar



Special thanks to Omar!
The west side.
Submitted by Omar



Special thanks to Omar!
The west side.
Submitted by Omar



Special thanks to Bill Stohler!
Spotted Eel.
Submitted by Bill Stohler



Special thanks to Bill Stohler!
Anemone.
Submitted by Bill Stohler



Special thanks to Bill Stohler!
Arrow Crab.
Submitted by Bill Stohler



Special thanks to Bill Stohler!
Fire Worm.
Submitted by Bill Stohler



Special thanks to Bill Stohler!
Lobster.
Submitted by Bill Stohler



Special thanks to Bill Stohler!
Sea Robin.
Submitted by Bill Stohler



Special thanks to Bill Stohler!
Scorpionfish.
Submitted by Bill Stohler



Special thanks to Bill Stohler!
Sea Star.
Submitted by Bill Stohler



Special thanks to Colleen Johnson!
Cushion sea star.
Submitted by Colleen Johnson



Special thanks to Colleen Johnson!
Atlantic longarm octopus.
Submitted by Colleen Johnson



Special thanks to Colleen Johnson!
Atlantic longarm octopus.
Submitted by Colleen Johnson



Special thanks to Colleen Johnson!
Lined seahorse.
Submitted by Colleen Johnson


 

Diver Averages for  Blue Heron Bridge  (1=worst, 5=best)


Average Site Condition

Ease of Shore Entry:  4.64
Bottom Conditions:  4.09
Reef Conditions:  3.50
Animal Life:  4.45
Plant Life:  3.36
Facilities:  3.68
Solitude 3.09
Roads:  4.41
*Site Average:  3.94
   

Average Enjoyment Level

Snorkel:  3.64
Beginner Scuba:  4.68
Intermediate Scuba:  4.45
Advanced Scuba:  4.05
Night diving Scuba:  4.23

Number of reviews for this site: 22

730-6-5-4


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