Crystal River

Florida, USA East
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Snorkeling and Scuba Diving at Crystal River

Crystal River is a fresh water river complex fed by warm freshwater springs. It offers a variety of fish (mullets, catfish, tarpon, etc.) and many Manatees. I found the manatees were friendly and unintimidated by SCUBA. Sadly, all of the manatees I saw had suffered multiple prop injuries. If you do boat in manatee territory, please look out for them. This is an easy site to dive and offers a good environment for beginners. Maximum depth is around 40 feet. The water is in the mid 70s to low 80s year round and I was comfortable diving in a 3-mil skin. I know it can be shore-dived, but, I don't know a lot of the details of shore diving this site. I dove it from a small inflatable. I know it's in the North Western section of the Florida Peninsula, and, I believe it's a state park. Sorry I don't have more information. I only dove there once.
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Troy Ochowicz
Troy Ochowicz
Oct 23, 2012, 12:00 AM
Snorkeling the river here is great. Manatees are so friendly here they will come right up to you. You can snorkel the river but you need to be a little clever about finding an entry location. There are a few parks on the river that have access. To see manatees in the river you need to go in the fall to spring when the ocean gets too cold for them. The best time is when they start coming in in the fall. We had dozens come up to us last time we were there.