Marked by a series of mooring buoys, the remains of the Adolphus Busch, a 210-foot freighter, lay 6 miles southwest of Big Pine Key. The vessel was originally named Ocean Alley but was later renamed Adolphus Busch after the senior member of the Busch brewing family.
This ship was intentionally sunk in 100-feet of water in 1998 to create an artificial reef system. The vessel is intact and upright. Because of its location in a protected sanctuary, no explosives were used during the sinking of this ship. As a result, she merely endured the placement of 12 holes above her water line.
She then had water pumped into her hull until she could no longer stay afloat. This ship remains in great condition and is a good site for exploration. The 12 large holes make for easy swim through paths and allow entrance into the ship.
Three goliath grouper (“jewfish”) frequent this dive site, the largest weighing in excess of 400 pounds. This is a good dive for nitrox. It is recommended that divers who visit this site have an advanced open water certification. For the experienced diver, this site is a great place to observe sea life and enjoy penetrating the vessel.