The Berry Patch Tug Wreck

Type of Dive

Standard Wreck.

Skill Level

Intermediate: Open Water or Advanced jr Open Diver 13 years and older.

Dive Site Depths

50 feet on top of the Wrecki & 70 feet to the sand.

The dive site is located offshore in front of Deerfield Beach 26 18.0872’N / 80 03.6851’W 2.11 Nm @ 1730 from Boca Inlet & 2.88 Nm @ 0260 from Hillsboro Inlet. 0.82 Nm off-shore from the beach and about 50 feet west of our main reef.

Ship Description

The AL Spencer (Berry Patch) Tug Boat is 62 feet long and 16 feet wide. It is a relatively small tugboat that you can penetrate from the rear or from the two side entrances to the wheelhouse.

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Dive Site Information

The AL Spencer (Berry Patch) Tug Boat is currently sitting upright in the sand with the bow facing East Southeast there is a large amount of growth on the rack and it is a well-established habitat for tropical fish and local nurse sharks and groupers.

The wreck site is relatively small however you can do some light penetration into the wheelhouse and there is a little spot in the back of the wheelhouse that you can look inside of. However there are eels so be careful. The site is excellent for photography and it is only a few feet to the main reef. This dive is typically part of the ancient mariner dive.

Leaving the bow of the ancient mariner heading to the East, Southeast about 300 feet you will find the Berry patch tug. You can also wander to the Merritt Barge to the south. However you must be really good on air and navigation in order to make all three wrecks in one dive.

The Dive Plan:

2 Dives 2 Locations

We start off the day with a wreck dive on the Ancient Mariner and the Berry Patch tug wreck, followed by a drift dive off the third reef. The reef dive location will depend on visibility and current. We typically leave that up to the captain's discretion. We have 45 min. to 1 hour on each site. Air and bottom time permitting.

Departure Location

The departure dock location for this dive trip is located in Pompano Beach.

Dive Trip Schedule

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Berry Patch Tug Video.

Ships History

There is not a whole lot of information about the previous history of the AL Spencer tugboat. However what we do know is that the ship was originally built in 1940. She originally operated both in South Florida and in the Bahamas hauling sand back in the 70s and 80s.

At the end of her career she was eventually sold and on August 15, 1987 she was scuttled and turned into an artificial reef. She’s been underwater now for 35+ years and is a well-established artificial reef. The wheelhouse is still intact and it is an excellent place for photography.

Resident Marine Life

This is a well-established wreck site and there is an abundance of marine life that resides in the area. It is common to see large schools of small and medium tropical fish, stingrays large and small, eels, lobsters and the occasional Turtle or Eagle Ray..

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