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Ghost Fleet Dive Charters

Thicket Lump Marina

212 Thicket Lump Road

Wanchese, NC 27981

(252) 423-0451

(252) 473-3667

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Ghost Fleet Dive Charters :: Outer Banks, NC


Interested in joining us on a dive charter?

Call Captain Crockett at (252)423-0451 for availability.

Diving the blue - green waters off North Carolina's Outer Banks, long known as the "GRAVEYARD OF THE ATLANTIC SHIPWRECKS", is a wonderful and unique experience. Join us on a boat trip there that will likely become one of your favorites. On the same day, visit the famous German U - Boat U-85, resting only 15 miles off the coast in 95 ft. of water and the ill-fated Coast Guard Cutter Jackson sunk during the storm in 1944. This is only one of the combination trips that let's the diver relieves maritime history. We have many other dives listed in our Brochure and some that are not. Several sites are new discoveries and have never been fully explored. Some are for the very experienced but most are for the well-trained divers. Selection of dive sites chosen by the Charter will be honored unless conditions (visibility, currents, weather) dictate otherwise. Fortunately, for the group the Captain knows where the best conditions are located daily. We also supply experienced certified dive masters to assist you on board and tie-in and un-tie descent lines. If your group brings a dive master, he or she is free to lead the dive.

 

Ghost Fleet Dive Charters' divers have years of experience diving the waters of the Outer Banks. With the best Divers, Service, and Equipment on the Outer Banks you are ensured a diving experience you will not forget! Please call Captain Crockett at (252) 423-0451 or (252) 473-3667

OUR DIVERS:

Captain Crockett: Experienced Boat Captain with experience from Maine to Florida and Hawaii. Captain Crockett has been a lifelong fisherman of the Outer Banks and has the experience and knowledge of the local waterways needed to ensure a safe dive charter.

Captain Gene Berry: NASE Dive Instructor with 11 years diving experience.

Captain Frank Saulle: PADI Dive Instructor with 12 Years Diving experience.

Jim Bunch (JB): NAUI Scuba Instructor he has certified several thousand divers over the past 20 years. Started his diving career on the Outer Banks in 1955.

Billy Cox: Professional Commercial Diver

Wreaks We Dive:

USCG Cutter “Jackson”
Depth: 80fsw
Dimensions: 125’x 24’ x 7’
Date Sunk: Sept 14, 1944
Cause of Sinking : Hurricane
Crew : 39 Survivors:18


The Jackson is in pretty good shape if you compare it to some of the other WWII era wrecks. She is in two pieces, separated by about 25 feet of bottom. The stern is upright and still has some of its decking intact. The bow section has about a 30-degree list to starboard. There are a couple of places that can be penetrated by the adventurous. It is one of the crew’s favorite dives because of its relatively shallow depth and the rich history surrounding this vessel.

USCG Cutter Bedloe
Depth: 140fsw
Dimensions: 125’x 24’ x 7’
Date Sunk: Sept 14,1944
Cause of Sinking: Hurricane
Crew: 36 Survivors: 11


Capt. Crockett of the Dive Boat “Poppy” only recently discovered this wonderful wreck. Billy Cox was the first person to see her after 60 years on the bottom. The Bedloe is the sister ship to the Jackson. The Bedloe is in much better shape than her sister the Jackson though. It looks as though she may just rise up from the bottom and continue on her journey, keeping watch for the enemy and making things safe for us here at home. She is lying fully intact on her port side. The elements are playing havoc on her though. Since we started diving on her she has lost some of her plating and her machine gun has fallen off of its once proud mount. There are several holes in the deck for penetration. This wreck is a little deeper so bottom time is limited but it is well worth the effort. The fish on this wreck are Hugh do to the lack of spear fishing. We have had schools of Dolphin come and hang out with us on our Deco stops. The largest leatherback turtle that you have ever seen hangs out on this wreck. I have seen more variety of sharks here than anywhere else that we dive.

US Coast Guard Research Vessel
AdvanceII
Depth: 80fsw
Dimensions: 185’
Date Sunk: 1994
Cause of Sinking: Artificial Reef Program


The Advance II is a great dive for beginners to intermediate divers. It is also a great place to hone your wreck diving skills. There are plenty of places two swim through. It has an abundant amount of sea life hanging about. I have seen the spadefish so thick that they block out the light from the surface. The Amber Jacks also enjoy swimming in their playful circles. The Advance is pretty much intact. Sitting perfectly upright on the bottom. The wheelhouse was blown off by a hurricane a couple of years ago but other than that she is just sitting out there waiting for the next group to come and leisurely swim through over and around her.

Crockett’s Tug
Depth: 80fsw
Dimensions: 114’ x 24’
Date Sunk: Unknown
Cause of Sinking: Unknown


This wreck was first dove by the Dive Boat “Poppy”. Capt Crocket sent Billy Cox down to dive on a “hang numbers” that he had wanted to check out. There are several reasons that we enjoy this wreck. Its identity is still unknown. Therefore someone will eventually find something that identifies her. It may be you it may be me. The only way to find her identity is to dive her. The main structure of this wreck is still intact. It is covered in corals and sponges. It is unusual to see a wreck this far north with this type of growth on her. We have seen all the cold water fish ( taug, sea bass, monk, oyster toads) along with some of your warm water tropical varieties. Such as Barracudas, Spades, mackerel, cobia and small tropicals. Someone even spotted a large lobster on it. It is also closer to the Oregon Inlet so it is not quite as long a boat ride as some of the other wrecks we dive. The wreck is easily navigated in one dive. There is an area in the deck that can be penetrated by the skillful. It has one screw sticking up out of the sand with one of the blades broke off. There have been several portholes taken off this wreck. There is still a lot of brass on her for all the brass hunters out there.

York / Norvana
Depth: 110fsw
Dimensions: 253’ x 43’ x 26’
Date Sunk: Jan 20, 1942
Cause of Sinking: U-66 torpedo


The York is a wreck that rarely gets dove. The reason is it is a little further from the Oregon Inlet than some of the other wrecks that we dive. It is however a great dive. The York was a freighter that was torpedoed in WWII by a German Submarine. Most of the wrecks that we dive have a rich history that is one of the things that appeals to most of the divers that dive this area. This wreck is no exception. The events surrounding this ship are really quite tragic because there were no survivors. Of the 30 crew on board not one lived to tell their horrific tale. All that is really known is that it left port in Charleston, SC in route to Norfolk, Va. and was never heard from again. It was discovered in 1944 by Navy Salvage Service. This group was hired to remove the ship because it was a menace to navigation. They brought the bell up which identified her as “ Lake Gatun” this was her name before she was renamed the “York”. Today She lies in about 110fsw. She is a fairly large wreck. She is broken up with her bow still intact. There are usually some large tau togs hanging out amongst her remains. It really deserves to be dove more, I know that there are many treasures left to be discovered on her.

Byron D. Benson
Depth: 105fsw
Dimensions: 465’x60’x36’
Date Sunk: April 7, 1942
Cause of Sinking: Torpedoed by U-552


This is another wreck that is not dove much because of its proximity to the Oregon Inlet. It is an oil tanker that was sunk in WWII by A German Submarine. It did however have survivors that told tells of that horrible night on April 5, 1942. The vessel was torpedoed and then shelled several times to make sure that the oil that she carried would never be used in the allied war effort going on against their beloved Germany and it’s great leader Adolph Hitler. The vessel however didn’t sink right away, in fact, it took three days for it to finally burn out and sink to the graveyard, that has received so many ships that it in fact carries the name “The Graveyard of the Atlantic” .The Navy wire dragged the vessel in 1945 because of its hazard to navigation. Today it is very large impressive wreck that is home to the largest Tau Tog that I have ever seen. It is easily penetrated with several places to swim in and out of. There are still artifacts that can be recovered by the curious. It has some of the largest anchors that you will ever see on a wreck. I can’t wait to see someone try to put a lift bag on one of those giants. It is a great dive and one that really needs to be dove more often.

U-85
Depth: 95fsw
Dimensions: 218’x20’x15’
Date Sunk: April 14, 1942
Cause of Sinking: Shelled by the USS Roper
Survivors: 0


This is probably without a doubt, the most dove on wreck in this part of North Carolina. It has been dove, pumped, parts blown off, parts hacked off, all of this to get a piece of history to take home. This was one of the first naval victories against the German war effort in 1942. The Germans had pretty much been having their way, upsetting the shipping all along the Eastern Seaboard. This was a chance for the USS Roper to give a little payback. She sunk the U-Boat after a short surface battle. Then she preceded to depth charge the area just in case there was another U-Boat hanging about. After all the shelling and depth charges the only ones left alive were the crew of the USS Roper. Take That!!!! Today even after all attempts to bring her up one artifact at a time, it is still a great dive. She is still an intact WWII Type VII-B German Undersea boat. You can’t dive this wreck without some how wondering about all the death and destruction that was dealt out by Germany in her effort to take over the world in WWII. You also realize just how close the German war effort came to the shores of our beloved United States. The U-85 is a great dive even if you don’t take anything but pictures from her. She now lies on her starboard side with the conning tower still intact. Her deck gun is still there now home to the Conger eels that call the 85 home. She is slowly giving into the ravages of the salt water on her hull. There is still a torpedo located near the stern of the vessel. I strongly recommend that if you have never dove this wreck that you try to do so. I guarantee that it will be one of your most remembered dives.

U-701
Depth: 115fsw
Dimensions: 218’x20’x’15’
Date Sunk: July 7, 1942
Cause of Sinking: Aerial Depth-Charge


The U-701 was like a ghost for many years after sinking. There were many that looked and many that claimed to know where her final resting place was. Uwe Lovas was the first person to actually find the remains of our once proud enemy. In 1989 his brother Ron and He went down in diving history as the first people to see the U-Boat since the crew left her in 1942. The U-701 was on a fairly successful run when her luck ran out. She was sunk by depth charges dropped from an airplane that was looking for just such a target. Luckily for the plane and its crew of five the U-boat didn’t spot them until it was to late, unfortunately for the crew of U boat they couldn’t get underwater fast enough. Two of the three depth charges were direct hits, leaving the U-boat dead on the bottom. There were 35 German sailors able to get out but only seven that survived their ordeal in the sea after the sinking. The crew floated around for days waiting to be rescued by the ones that just days before they were trying to eliminate with extreme prejudice.
I was more than happy to go with Capt Crockett aboard the “Poppy” in 2003 to check out some numbers that he had from his fishing season the winter before. I was even more thrilled to see a wreck at the end of the anchor line. Then to make it out as a German sub the one everyone and his brother (except Lovas of course) was looking for. It was incredible, a fully intact German sub. Nothing was missing as far as we could tell. The guns were still on her the conning tower hatch was open and filled to the brim with sand. Her forward deck was Square and sticking up out of the sand. The aft deck was pretty much covered. We just couldn’t get over the fact that after all this time here she was and here we were diving on her. We decided not to take any thing but memories with us. The wreck is mostly under the sand but still a great dive if you can catch it when the currents are just right.

     

Ghost Fleet Dive Charters

212 Thicket Lump Road

Wanchese, NC 27981

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