LOCATION: (lat. 28°33'17.2" N., long. 82°36'33.2" W.)
Eagles Nest is located Northwest of Weeki Wachee, East of Hwy 50 in the Chassahowitzka Wildlife Management Area in Hernando County, FL. Divers must check in at an iron ranger at the main entrance off US 19 and pay a $3.00 daily fee. A yearly CWMA pass can purchased for $26.50 at gun shops or Wal-Mart. Please display your day pass stub or yearly pass along with your C-Card on the dash so that law enforcement can see them while you are diving.
This site has really been improved since becoming part of the Wildlife Management Area. Though the entrance road is located several miles North and requires backtracking to the Nest, the roads have been improved with limerock and should be passable by most vehicles. A beautiful dock with steps has also been erected along with a weatherproof stand for the divers sign in sheet.
At first glance, it looks like any other old pond in the woods, but below lies one of the most awesome deep dives around. The basin slopes down like a funnel where a large solution tube and a couple of smaller ones lead into a massive cavern with a large debris mound. Following the slope of the mound down to depth of around 200', one encounters the "duck under" restriction of the downstream section of the cave. On the opposite side of the cavern, the walls and floor give way to the larger opening of the upstream section. Over 6000' feet of passage has been mapped, some at depths in excess of 300'. This is definitly an advanced site for divers who are trained and experienced in technical diving.
A beautiful map of this site was drawn by Eric Hutchinson, I believe it's readily availble from the NSS-CDS. Chris Brown's Docent Productions also created a nice video while the mapping project was taking place.
A clip from the old video (10meg).
Newer video of the upstream section (Thanks to AUE).
A shot looking up through the entrance
Simple Map (St. Pete Times)