If you are lucky to have a boat, these Off-shore dives are a fanatic place to see a variety of marine life. Off-shore dives are generally 20 miles and beyond from the pensacola pass. These sites range from 100’+ in depth depending upon the location you are diving.
GPS Location: Latitude 30 00.582′ N Longitude 87 07.774′ W
The M/S Antares was intentionally sunk as an artificial reef in 1995. The 347′ freighter lies in 130′ of water 21 miles SE of Pensacola Pass. Hurricane Opal damaged the wreck and broke the hull however the stern section remains intact with the rest of the wreckage spread out over a wide area.
GPS Location: Latitude 30 2.550′ N Longitude 87 0.383′ W
On May 17, 2006 the 911′ US Aircraft Carrier was sunk approximately 22.5 miles southeast of Pensacola pass making it the world’s largest intentionally-created artificial reef. Nicknamed “The Mighty O” and “The Great Carrier Reef” USS Oriskany is truly a world class dive. The massive carrier lays in 212′ of water with the top of the “island” sitting at around 84′. The wreck is a habitat for all kinds of marine life from small tropical fish such as blennies, damselfish and angelfish to large game fish such as snapper, grouper and massive amberjack. Pelagic fish species can sometimes be spotted racing by and even whale sharks and manta rays have been spotted cruising around the tower of the carrier.
GPS Location: Latitude 30 04.244′ N Longitude 87 02.118′ W
The Chevron Rig consist of two platform jackets that were donated and deployed in 1993 as a part of the “Rigs to Reefs” program turning retired oil platforms into artificial reefs. This is a popular site for spearfishing and lobster gathering due to the fact that the open structure of the rigs are very effective at attracting large varieties of marine life.
GPS Location: Latitude 29 59.733’N Longitude 87 05.111’W
Located roughly 22 miles SSE of Pensacola Pass the Tenneco Rig Site consist of two 500 ton structures donated to Escambia County by the Tenneco Oil Company. Deployed in 1982 as a part of the “Rigs to Reefs” program, this was the first site to use a complete platform to form an artificial reef. This site is popular for advanced and technical divers and is known for large game fish so it is a very popular site for spearfishing as well.
GPS Location: Latitude 29 58.399′ N Longitude 87 12.630’W
The Avocet was a 247′ long, 52′ wide clam shell dredge that was sunk in 1991 to create an artificial reef. It now rest in 115′ of water about 21 miles SSE from Pensacola Pass. Over the years the upper section of the wreck has been broken off and scattered and the hull has sepearated into two sections about 10′ apart.