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This year, the Big Apple Divers will be once again diving in the Thousand Islands! We are planning two and a half days of diving the weekend after Labor Day, driving up Friday afternoon, September 6th, 2024. We will dive morning and afternoon on Saturday and Sunday. We will then dive Monday morning, and return home that afternoon.

This is a terrific opportunity to dive some fantastic wrecks in fresh, clear waters near 70°F, all within a half day's drive from home. The Thousand Islands is the name given to a beautiful region along the St. Lawrence river, which is the border between New York State and Canada. The river flows from Lake Ontario to the Atlantic Ocean, and has been a major shipping channel for a very long time.

The river has numerous submerged islands, rocks, and shallow shoals, which have caused many ships to run aground and sink over the years. Some of these are wooden ships that date to the 19th century; thanks to the fresh water, they have been preserved in excellent shape. Zebra mussels (an invasive species) has helped to clear the waters providing great visibility, sometimes up to 50 feet.

You might assume that this is cold water diving, but that's not the case. Although the river does get cold in the winter, it is fed by the top layer of Lake Ontario, which warms over the summer. During our trip, we expect water temperatures in the low 70s, top to bottom with no thermocline! A 5 mm wetsuit is adequate for many divers.

These wrecks can be accessed from either the US or the Canadian side of the river. We have found that staying on the Canadian side is preferable, with diving amenities being more convenient, diverse, and inexpensive for recreational divers. When diving from either side of the river, you will need to cross the International boundary on your dive boat to access some of the wrecks, but it is easier for Canadian boats to cross into US waters than the reverse. To join us on this trip, you need a passport, passport card, enhanced state driver’s license for border travel, or a NEXUS card.

There are several options for housing, and once we have a final roster we will make those arrangements. We will be diving with Dive Brockville. For more information about these wrecks, click here.

The price for the diving (including lunch on Saturday and Sunday) is $640 Canadian, which is currently $475 US. The final price may be a bit lower, depending on the total number of divers. We will refund any excess costs once the payment to the dive shop has been made, but to reserve a spot, we will need this amount by Zelle to The deadline for payment is Monday, April 1st.

This price does not include tank rental or gas fills. For Saturday and Sunday, we will not have time between the morning and afternoon dives to fill tanks, so we will either have all four tanks for the day on the boat, or we will return to swap out tanks during lunch (depending on the total numbers).

If you are diving open circuit and do not have four tanks to bring with you, the shop will rent you four tanks for $50 Canadian per day. This would bring your total tank rental cost to about $110 USD for the three days. Gas fills are not included in this price, they will be charged separately depending on the diver's requirements.

As with all Big Apple Divers trips, the club does not provide training, guiding or buddies. We do not vet divers - you alone are responsible for determining your fitness for each dive. While these dives are all within recreational depths, there are special challenges associated with diving in a river current. Please discuss the local conditions with the dive operator if you are not sure if this trip is appropriate for you. Of course, I am also happy to discuss the trip at any time, feel free to contact me at any time.

Michael Rothschild

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Planned wrecks (subject to change based on conditions)

Saturday, 9/7:
  Muscallonge, 100'
  Robert W. Gaskin, 70’
  Daryaw, 90’
  Lillie Parsons, 80’

Sunday, 9/8:
  Keystorm, 20’ - 110’
  America, 70’
  Vickery, 65' - 120’
  Kinghorn, 90’

Monday 9/9:
  Drift dive
  Drift dive

Cost of diving: $475 US. This includes tax, and lunch on Saturday and Sunday, but not crew tips, gear rental or gas fills. Possible minor variations due to Canadian dollar exchange rate.
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