Fresh Water in the Atlantic Ocean?

  Several years ago, while living in Flagler County, Florida I heard rumors of a fresh water or submarine spring offshore in the Atlantic Ocean. Florida is known for its extensive aquafer system and there are at least 15 submarine springs found off the west coast.  These springs are generally close to shore, in bays or estuaries. The Crescent Beach Spring, located in St John’s County, however, is unique in that it is 2.5 miles offshore. On days of calm seas the “boil” can be seen on the surface, appearing a bit like an oil slick. The spring originates from a vent at a depth of approximately 60 feet with the deepest point of the vent trough at about 144 feet. This spring is classified as a Magnitude 2 Spring, meaning it discharges 10 to 100cf of water per second.  There are legends that the Crescent Beach Spring was used by mariners to resupply the fresh water on their ships, but information on this is very limited.  The water discharged from the spring was dated using carbon dating. It was determined in 1995 that the water flowing from the spring was approximately 10,450 years old, leading scientists to believe the spring has a deep flow system. As a scuba diver I find the Crescent Beach Spring fascinating. How interesting it would be to swim though salt water then fresh water and back to salt water again.  The buoyancy changes would be remarkable.  Interestingly, I don’t see any mention of having dived the spring on the usual scuba chat boards.  What do you think?  Would you scuba dive the Crescent Beach submarine spring?

My dive center of choice in Florida is Sea Experience, located in Ft Lauderdale.  The reefs and wreck diving in the area are beyond compare.  There is one dive trip a day and two snorkel trips and customer service is top priority.  If you are driving from north Florida, stop and dive the spring before heading to Ft Lauderdale to dive with Sea Experience.  Let me know what your experience was like diving fresh and salt water on the same dive!

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