:’( Sad to see her go. The Tarpon was my favourite boat to serve as crew on and dive from. She’s the boat I logged most of the dives I needed to get into the DMA on, with Captain Dennis as her skipper. Tarpon was always, in my opinion, much more hospitable for crews than any of the Newtons with her huge, carpeted deck that was just perfect for sprawling out on on the way to/from a site, during lunch, or after a long day of diving. Her speaker system (and of course, the most awesome captain in the world – Captain Dennis) made it a pleasant ride out to/back from dive sites, and the raised dive platform was, to me, so much more comfortable to enter the water from. I have many fond memories of kids getting stuck in inner tubes, having fun diving off the boat during lunch (or pushing each other/their divemasters off the boat), even the occasional hilarious trip/faceplant into the water, and they’re all from that boat.
OH! And of course, the “splash zone.” Who could forget the “splash zone?” I often described the Tarpon as the rollercoaster of FSB in rough seas. I loved being aboard her in those conditions – waves crashing over the bow, the boat pitching and crashing onto the waves, but always remaining as steady as could be. In rough seas, the Tarpon carried a certain thrill not found on the Newtons.
Even with all of her old age issues (which, in my opinion, added to her charm), she was still a great boat. Perhaps not the fastest, but the best (though I’m biased).
Farewell, dear Tarpon. You will certainly be missed. <3 I hope your new owners treat you well. – April
Worked the Tarpon the summers of ’09 and ’10. Working with Dennis and Sea Base was some of the most fun I’ve ever had in my life. I know those Newtons are designed for diving, and don’t break ask often, but they will never match the Tarpon in my eyes. – Dan Mikalian
Four Coral Reef Sailing crews and one Sea Exploring crew returned to the Florida Sea Base Thursday for their luau. No new crews checked in and no one was in for shore leave.
The divers completed two more dives Thursday. The first was at a large patch reef named Capital and the second was at a smaller, crescent shaped patch named Crescent (imagine that). They are scheduled for two more dives today and one more Saturday morning.
Scuba Instructor David Ball and I took eight questionable scuba tanks to Quiescence Diving Services for a second opinion. The good news was that seven of them were fine. The eighth tank was “borderline” according to their inspector. Borderline is not acceptable so I had the tank condemned.
Thursday started out very windy, overcast and cold but ended with a light breeze, clear skies and comfortably warm. The forecast calls for another cool, breezy morning today. The wind has clocked to the northeast and it may be a tad bumpy for the divers today.The good news is the crew has 8 dives in their logbook so far this week and have matured substantially in their diving ability.
Capt. Steve Willis
Professional Scuba Bum™
Aboard S/V Escape