Diving Overview for Alabama
Alabama, often called the 'Heart of the Dixie', is in the southeastern region on the USA extending to the Gulf of Mexico on the south.
There are several quarries for diving in Alabama, however most Dive centres make regular trips to the Gulf of Mexico, often to Orange Beach (Alabama) and to Panama City (Florida) as well s further south into Mexico.
The top attract in Alabama is the USS Oriskany close to Orange Beach considered to be the world's largest ever wreck purposefully sunk in 2006 to establish an artificial reef. This wreck sits approximates 23 miles offshore in 65m (212 ft) of water. The top of the bridge starts are just 20m and there is plenty to see above 30m.
There are several quarries inland for diving. The Pelham Keys is a 26-acre flooded limestone quarry. Maximum depth is just over 40m and there are two 1940s fire trucks, several cars, trucks, even a school bus and some boats to explore. Marine life includes catfish, bass, bluegill, Japanese coy, rainbow trouts, carp, several turtles and sunfish. Visibility here ranges from 7-10m in summer and up to 30m in winter. Water temperatures vary seasonally from 30 degrees celsius at the surface in summer with bottom temperatures remaining constant all year at about 11-12 degrees.
Diveland Park is another freshwater quarry with several sunken cars, boats, a tractor trailer and some rocky walls, look out for the freshwater jellyfish and carp. The main attract here is the landscape and wildlife above the water -where else can you dive with mountain goats? Maximum depth is 45m, visibility below the thermacline is about 20-22m, note that water temperatures can drop to about 5 degrees celsius in winter to suit up! Diveland is not always open on weekdays so make sure you call your dive centre to avoid appointment.
NOTE: Gulf of Mexico oil spill disaster may affect costal diving -check latest updates with your dive centre.
Videos of Alabama