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Diving the Odyssey   by Laura Radford

The Odyssey

The Odyssey is one of the Caribbeanís largest wrecks with a length of 300 feet and is nearly 85 feet tall. It was sunk off Roatanís north shore in over 100 feet of water in 2002 and so has not yet developed quite as much marine life as El Aguila. For this reason is considered Roatanís second best wreck dive. I, however, found it more exciting than the Aguila.

Skill Level

The Odyssey is more an advanced dive than the Aguila. It is still intact and so wreck diving certification is recommended if you want to penetrate it. It also is further from the reef and more attention isRoatan Honduras - Morning Squall required when ascending in blue water.

Holes have been cut into the side of the wreck for easier penetration, but a flashlight is necessary if you wish to explore inside. Even with a light, a good rule of thumb is to always keep ambient light and an exit point within sight. If you are a new diver, you may wish to explore this wreck from the outside.

Highlights

  • The wreck is much too large to explore on one or two or even three dives.
  • If you are only going to make one dive here, I recommend starting at the stern.
    It has several large, easily accessible compartments to explore.
  • From there, swim the length of the ship toward the bow.
  • Donít linger too much as your bottom time is limited.
  • Re-enter the wreck below the wheelhouse.
  • Once inside find the stairwell which zigzags steeply all the way to the top of the wreck.
  • The ship is listing slightly and the dive is deep so expect to feel a little dizzy or disoriented as you swim up the tight passages. If this happens, slow down and find your bearings.

Many rooms are visible on this route including the captainís quarters. You can even see the tile inside the captainís bathroom. Once you reach the top, it will be time to begin your ascent to your safety stop.

Marine Life

Even though this wreck is new, scallops and other invertebrates have already started to populate it. Schools of barracuda, grouper, and tuna have been known to congregate above the wreck. If you remain on the outside, you will be able to see the early stages of reef life taking hold.
 


Laura Radford is a writer and a PADI certified SCUBA Instructor.  In 1995 after completing an MFA in Creative Writing she moved from Alaska to Costa Rica where she taught diving and lead SCUBA tours.   She later returned to her home state of California where she worked as a high school English teacher. 

Currently Laura is working as a freelance writer and is traveling and diving in her free time, which is most of time.  She was drawn to Honduras by the extraordinary diving off the Bay Islands but was lured to mainland by Hondurasís natural beauty and fascinating history.

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Many thanks to Laura Radford for her articles and photos on Roatan diving and Honduras.

Laura would be glad to answer any of your Roatan diving and Honduras diving questions.  She may be reached

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