Shipwreck Diving At It's Best
WHAT TO BRING
When packing for your trip to Isle Royale, please remember storage is limited. Bring only items you expect to use and bring all items listed below.
Scuba Equipment required
- Diving suit capable of keeping you comfortable in 40 degree Fahrenheit water. I would recommend a drysuit (with proper training and experience). If you choose to go wet, I strongly recommend three finger mitts and a hooded vest in addition to your 6-7 mill wetsuit.
- Adequate regulators for cold water. Your regulator system must have an alternate air as well as a primary second stage. You may also consider a pony or bail out system.
- Submersible tank pressure gauge and depth Gauge (a dive computer is not required, but highly recommended).
- Mask, fins, snorkel, dive light(s), knife, weights and weight belt and spare parts kit, (remember limited space).
- Tanks, 1 or 2 , tanks must be current in hydro and have a current VIP sticker or they will not be permitted on the boat.
- Watch or bottom timer, again a dive computer is highly recommended.
- Buoyancy compensator with a power inflator, whistle and compass.
- No dives will be permitted without the proper equipment — Make arrangements to buy , rent or borrow.
- If you bring a fully weight integrated bcd or very heavy gear, be prepared to have your buddy(s) help lift and lower gear to transom.
Air Fills, Nitrox & Argon
- On board compressor provides air fills to 3000 psi. Nitrox must be arranged prior to trip. Nitrox certification required. Nitrox cost is $100.00 per trip PREPAID ONLY. Argon fills available on boat $50.00/trip (with 6 cu. ‘tank, reg. & gauge).
Certifications and Diver Safety
- All divers must be certified. We recommend advanced certification and require sufficient experience for the profiles you wish to dive. Certifications will be checked before departure and each diver must sign the a liability waiver, PADI Statement of Understanding, and fill out the medical portion or the PADI medical Statement. Please note: if any of the listed medical conditions apply to you, we require you to consult a physician before participating in diving activities supervised by onboard instructors of which we all are.
Recompression Chambers – Emergency Evacuation
- Isle Royale is a wilderness area. There are no medical facilities on the island. Emergency evacuation by helicopter can be arranged through the National Park Service or the Coast Guard via marine radio. The nearest chambers are located in Marquette, MI and Minneapolis, MN. Due to the isolation of Isle Royale, transport can be delayed. Purchase of D.A.N. is highly recommended as some medical policies do not cover. DAN’S toll free membership number is 1-800-446-2671.
Wrecks and Depth Ranges
- Five day trips can possibly dive The America (2-80’), Cox (40-100’), Cumberland/Chisolm wreckage (30-90),Chisolm engine (120-155‘), Five finger Tug (10-20’), Emporer bow (25-100’), Emporer stern (100-155’), Congdon bow (70-110’), Congdon stern (20-200’), Monarch (20-70’) and the Glenlyon (10-50’).
- All dives are conducted with buddy teams.
- Visibility Vis is seldom less than 25’ and often exceeds 50’. Colder water is generally clearer water.
National Park Service Regulations
- Isle Royale is under the jurisdiction of the National Park Service. All activity within the park must comply with the NPS guidelines. The rules state in part:
- No souvenirs may be taken or disturbed.
- Each diver must provide operator with name, address and type of diving certification.
- Each diver must register at Windigo.
- Bring the clothing and towels you think you will use, remember space is limited. The lake keeps things cool, so bring warm clothing and a jacket. Please bring soft soled shoes like tennis shoes to wear on the boat. Please do not bring heavy hiking boots to wear on the boat.
- Please do not bring hard suitcases or rigid framed backpacks. They are impossible to stow. Bring your personal gear in a small duffel or similar soft container. Two small containers are better than one large one. Excessive weight may need to be eliminated.
- Bring your own bag and pillow.
- You may lodge on the boat the night before departure, but would probably prefer the Grand Portage Lodge (218-475-2401) located within a few miles of the marina. Make your reservations early. Grand Morais also has lodging only 35 minutes South.
- You should be able to park in the area close to boat or in lot. There could be a small fee, but I don’t anticipate that.
- There are two 110 VAC generators on board providing intermittent AC power through out the day. There are three 12 volt DC plug-ins. Extra battery packs are recommended.
Food and Beverages
- All meals are prepared daily by your crew. We do not supply alcohol and have a limited supply of soda pop. Feel free to bring your own in aluminum or plastic containers. Please, no glass bottles ! Alcohol consumption is expected to be kept to reasonable levels. No alcohol consumption is allowed before or between dives. COOLERS take up valuable floor space. In the early season (cool water) put beverages in plastic bags to lower in bilge. In latter season coolers will go on roof and cycle into refrigerator as room allows.
- Isle Royale Mint Brownies! Always a crowd pleaser. Click here for recipe
- NONE. Any illegal drugs found to be on board will terminate the charter immediately. The authorities will be contacted.
- Outside only and keep a reasonable time period before and after dives.
- There will be no refunds unless we would happen to get weathered out completely, (can’t leave the dock.), and in that case a compensating trip will be offered at a later date.
Departure and Return
- Plan to arrive at the boat at about 8:00 am CDT the morning of departure. Allow 1 1/2 hours for loading, pre-departure briefing, signing of liability releases and other paperwork. We will try to leave dockage at approximately 9:30 CDT. The crossing to Isle Royale will take approximately 2 & 1/2 hours. We will return to Grand Portage’s marina approximately 1-3:00 PM on the last day of your charter.
What to expect While at Isle Royale
- You will eat and sleep aboard the boat, remaining in the park for the duration of your cruise. During the day we will moor over one or more shipwrecks where you can dive subject to weather, National Park Service regulations, accepted safe diving practices and specific policies of Royale Diver. In the evening anchor in a secluded bay or dock at a lakeside campground. Do not feed animals and follow Parks quiet rules. We will possibly spend 1 night at Rock Harbor or Windigo which offers showers for a fee ($6.00) and a small convenience store. Bring the spending monies you might want. Souvenirs will be available at Rock Harbor, Windigo and/or on the boat.
- Live-aboard dive boat gratuities typically run between 10-15% of your charter cost. Gratuities are not included in your cost. Please show your appreciation. Gratuities may be offered individually or pooled and offered by the group leader.