This impressive 251' ship was a fully equipped diver support vessel designed to assist submarines in distress. 6. Diving the USS Kittiwake wreck is a spectacular experience as the wreck has managed to remain pretty much intact. The Ex USS Kittiwake is probably Grand Cayman’s number one wreck site. The USS Kittiwake, a de-commissioned naval ship, was sunk January 5th, 2011 at 2:34 PM on the North end of Grand Cayman’s world famous Seven Mile Beach, providing underwater enthusiasts of all skill levels with a new year-round diving destination that is both easy to access and a thrill to explore. Cayman web design by Melbourne. We were again joined by our friend Meng, who snorkelled during the free dive then joined us for SCUBA.The Ex USS Kittiwake is, as usual, an awesome dive. This is a wreck dive we went on in 2016 (Greg Rowe, Lisa Rowe, Josh Duren) USS Kittiwake Dive - Grand Cayman - October 2016 on Vimeo Join Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands, British West Indies. With numerous entry and egress points diving the USS Kittiwake is safe and quite interesting. In fact, its one of a few handful of US military ships transferred to a foreign country for an artificial reef program. ©2020 Imagine Cayman. Prior to her sinking, the Kittiwake was prepared to make a safe environment for divers to explore with additional entrance and exit holes cut into the thick steel structure to make more fluid routes to swim in and around the wreck. Now it will join the MV Captain Keith Tibbets, a Russian Frigate sunk off the coast of Cayman Brac in 1996, as one of the greatest artificial reefs in the Caribbean. Kittiwake Shipwreck Scuba Dive Dive the latest and most exciting attraction in Grand Cayman - the former USS Kittiwake!She is now 64-feet under the crystal waters off the North West point of Seven Mile Beach and makes for one of the best Adventure Scuba Dives in Grand Cayman. - Check out Tripadvisor members' 11,980 candid photos and videos. Following 50 years of active service in the US navy as a submarine support vessel, the Kittiwake was sunk near Seven Mile Beach to make an artificial reef and playground for divers. Copy link Cayman's top requested dive site, this is a 251ft US Navy submarine rescue ship. Kittiwake is well worth the dive. If you said the Kittiwake, you are correct! Tom runs a first class diving operation. It's like our fair Malta's P29, but shallower and in much clearer water.The USS Kittiwake was sunk as an artificial reef in 2011. She says choosing the USS Kittiwake was the easy part of her eight-year effort. This makes the wreck great for the first time wreck diver or one who wishes to take part in a “wreck specialty” course. Share on Twitter Share on Facebook. USS KITTIWAKE DIVE REVIEW – FINAL VERDICT. What to Expect on a Ex-USS Kittiwake Liveaboard. To join us in giving the old girl a big underwater anniversary kiss, give us a call on 946-5658 or shoot us a message at info@divetech.com It's double digits! After shakedown, Kittiwake departed Charleston, South Carolina, 3 October for Balboa, Canal Zone, arriving 8 October. The USS Kittiwake is a popular wreck dive located off Grand Cayman. And being located off Seven-Mile Beach in relatively shallow waters, this dive site is popular amongst scuba divers and snorkelers. 7. Her title was transferred in November 2008 for an undisclosed amount to the government of the Cayman Islands for the purpose of using Kittiwake to form a new artificial reef. of water an the superstructure comes with 10-12ft. Most of her missions are still cover by the official secrets acts but her most notable role was when she helped to find the black box from the Challenger Space disaster. Several of the better snorkeling spots are nearby USS Kittiwake including Cemetery Reef and Marriott Beach. It toppled over (it's at a 45 degree angle) in 2017, and stays like that til today. The USS Kittiwake was originally commissioned as a Chanticleer-class submarine rescue ship in the United States Navy during World War II. We had an amazing two weeks of diving with Off the Wall Divers in July. You can swim in and out of a lot of the the wreck safely without needing technical diving skills or equipment. Sunk in 2011, the shipwreck is now under the protection of the National Park of Cayman Islands. Liveaboards to the Ex-USS Kittiwake will take divers to one of the most sought-after dive sites in the Cayman Islands.Lying in shallow crystalline waters off Grand Cayman's Seven Mile Beach, the wreck of the Ex-USS Kittiwake - a former US submarine rescue ship is now a thriving artificial reef.. Discover Grand Cayman's most requested dive, the USS Kittiwake. This wreck blew our minds. Kittiwake was decommissioned on 30 September 1994 and struck from the Naval Vessel Register on the same day. Furthermore, the ship provides a great opportunity for training on wreck diving and exploration. This really consists of two dives back-to-back: a free dive, then a SCUBA dive. The Kittiwake is magical and mystical, she is soaking in the heritage of The Kittiwake is a pristine wreck dive, situated in a marine park that is protected under law in Cayman. This impressive 251' ship was a fully equipped diver support vessel designed to assist submarines in distress. As I said in the beginning, Grand Cayman is one of the best places in the world to scuba dive. The main role of the USS-Kittiwake was to rescue sailors from submarines. 5. it is a 251ft Submarine Rescue Vessel that was sank as a reef in 2011 in Grand Cayman. This impressive 251' ship was a fully equipped diver support vessel designed to assist submarines in distress. Share. Under direct supervision Open Water divers are allowed to dive decks 1-3 of the Kittiwake and Advanced Open Water divers are allowed on all decks in areas where there is direct surface access. USS KITTIWAKE WRECK. Overall, USS Kittiwake is the 16th most popular snorkel dive spot of all 25 snorkeling dives in Grand Cayman. Anniversary of the sinking of the lovely lady USS Kittiwake, we will be paying her a visit tomorrow night at 5.15pm There'll be barnacle cake all round and sea shanties sang in her honour. The USS Kittiwake, lying on it's port side with the broken anchor chains (Photo: Jason Washington/iDive Global) By Mark 'Crowley' Russell One of the Caribbean's most famous wrecks has been moved, pushed onto its side and damaged by the passing of Hurricane Nate. in Grand Cayman. The ship is still pretty much intact, sitting on its keel with the top part reaching shallow water. Discover the Cayman Islands #1 requested dive, the USS Kittiwake, sunk January 5, 2011. The first ship in the Navy to bear the name, the USS KITTIWAKE was one of the CHANTICLEER - class Submarine Rescue Ships. USS Kittiwake. https://www.scubadiving.com/history-grand-cayman-kittiwake-shipwreck Whether you are a recreational or beginning diver to an experienced wreck diver, diving the USS Kittiwake offers a wonderful scuba diving adventure. The USS Kittiwake snorkeling dive site is located south of the Turtle Reef dive site at the northern end of Seven Mile Beach. of the surface. Even snorkelers can see the vessel from above. Scuba diving on the USS Kittiwake Wreck is a must when you are diving in the Cayman Islands.The former World War II ship was bought by the Cayman Islands government in 2010 and sunk in Grand Cayman for scuba divers to enjoy. NOTE: the ex-USS Kittiwake is located within a “park” and there is a $25 park/medallion fee to dive the wreck. Top choice diving. Dive the newest shipwreck in the Cayman Islands, the USS Kittiwake a 251-ft. wreck that used to be an ex-US navy submarine rescue vessel and now, an artificial of the surface. The wreck is very “diver friendly” and allows for a lot of penetration opportunities. In 2011 the decommissioned ship was successfully situated underwater in an almost perfectly upright position, six years later however, the power of mother nature repositioned the wreck by lying it on its port side. Prior to her sinking, the Kittiwake was prepared to make a safe environment for divers to explore with additional entrance and exit holes cut into the thick steel structure to make more fluid routes to swim in and around the wreck.​This is one of Grand Cayman's signature dives that should not be missedWhat is Provided:Pick up and Drop off at Georgetown Port or your Seven Mile HotelAll Dive Gear (Mask, Fins, BCD, Regulator, Tanks, Weight Belt, Computer)You are welcome to use your own gear as wellProfessional Boat and CrewDuration of Excursion:2.5 HoursKnow before you book:It is recommended that you bring sunscreen and a towelCheck in 30 minutes before excursion timeMust be Scuba Certified and have Certification Card Present, P.O.Box 11310George Town, Grand Cayman, The Cayman Islands KY1-1008. Following almost 50 years of active service in the US Navy, she was sunk deliberately on January 5th, 2011 to make an artificial reef, divers playground and an ocean tribute to seafarers worldwide. Divers with Wreck Diver Specialty certification may dive the wreck with a buddy after a supervised orientation dive. All rights reserved. One of the more popular wreck dives in the Caribbean, the Kittiwake is top of the to-do list for divers visiting Grand Cayman. We got the chance to dive the USS Kittiwake while we were in Grand Cayman this past week. Save. 251 long ship with 5 accessible decks to dive with great VIZ. Originally used by the US Navy for underwater salvage and recovery missions, it had been decommissioned and put to mothball in the Virginia shipyards until the people of Grand Cayman had the idea to turn it into a dive attraction. The former submarine rescue vessel sits in 65ft. During her years of service she had some interesting times including the rescue of a stranded battleship. We're showing the free dive sequence in the chart above. Following almost 50 years of active service in the US Navy, she was sunk deliberately on January 5th, 2011 to make an artificial reef, divers playground and an ocean tribute to seafarers worldwide. It's unusual because there is almost no silt. USS Kittiwake. Both decommissioned and stricken from the Navy list on September 30, 1994, the USS KITTIWAKE spent the following years laid up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, James River, Fort Eustis, Va., awaiting final disposal. Living The Dream Divers, Seven Mile Beach Picture: USS Kittiwake wreck dive. I will definitely go back and I want to spend a lot more time exploring the USS Kittiwake. She was very much a dive boat. This dive was more planned out than the first and began with a lot more historical research. Our Wreck Dive is on the USS Kittiwake, a purposefully sunken ship that was donated from the Maritime Administration in the Wrecks to Reefs program in 2009.The ship sits on a sandy bottom in 65 feet of water and is accessible to both snorkelers and divers. Much more can be learned about this wreck at www.kittiwakecayman.com. Divers from the Kittiwake recovered the black box from the space … The former submarine rescue vessel sits in 65ft. Following almost 50 years of active service in the US Navy, she was sunk deliberately on January 5th, 2011 to make an artificial reef, divers playground and an ocean tribute to seafarers worldwide. of water an the superstructure comes with 10-12ft. Over 250 foot long and sitting in only 60 foot of water, the Kittiwake is a truly spectacular dive. If you are cruising to the island or otherwise visiting, I would highly recommend it. And this time we were lucky in being joined by two hawksbill sea turtle (Eretmochelys imbricata) friends! From the first phone call to discuss our vacation to the personalized service he and his staff provide on the boat, you feel like family. Discover Grand Cayman's most requested dive, the USS Kittiwake. Located off of 7 Mile Beach, the ex-USS Kittiwake was sunk on January 5th, 2011 to serve as a dive site for the Cayman Islands. While based at Balboa, her operations carried her to the Virgin Islands, to Puerto Rico, and along the Atlantic coast to th… Our dive group was lucky enough to… Diving the USS Kittiwake … The USS Kittiwake served for 50 years as a submarine support and rescue vessel. Discover Grand Cayman's most requested dive, the USS Kittiwake. Located off of 7 Mile Beach, the ex-USS Kittiwake was sunk on January 5th, 2011 to serve as a dive site for the Cayman Islands. Grand Cayman Snorkeling. "She was a ship that served divers all of her life," she says, "so it just seemed the appropriate ship." 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