United States » Leon Sinks - Emerald Sink

  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Rated 3.7/5 stars (798 ratings)

Overview Location & Specifics Conditions Resources Nearby Systems  
Data for this system is still being collected and analyzed. Click here if you would like to contribute any information or resources for this cave system.

Click the map below for all mapping options.
Click to View Larger Map
Latitude: 30.29556
Longitude: -84.35225
Coordinate System:
Maximum Depth: 180'
 Cave Diving
 Cavern Diving
 Open Water Diving
Date Submitter Visbility Remarks
8/9/2021 Sean Carroll 6' Split sink was browned out so I assumed Emerald was too. The new trail to Emerald is very convenient
1/4/2020 Dominick Gheesling Great Emerald conditions are still holding and the visibility is excellent!
6/8/2019 David Moore 50 Last weekend vis was best I've seen it. This weekend it patchy but still really good. Went downstream a bit and second T had brown water pouring out of it. Upstream was good and REALLY good at Cheryl. I expect it's going under in the next 24 - 48 hours.
2/17/2018 Ben Tannic. Surface looks clear but tannic below 20 ft from recent rain.
12/4/2017 Pete Gelbman 20-30 vis in basin 20-30 ft, dark & cloudy. upstream line to Cheryl 30-40 ish in spots. At Black Abyss room vis opens up to 70-80 ish. We had mix and dropped down to peak in the funnel; water coming out of the deep upstream hole at 180 was quite clear. the gold mainlines in the big Black Abyss room are a bit of a mess; the one at the main room junction that goes around the left side of the room circuit (facing upstream) had several large limestone tieoffs broken off, had tumbled down the slope and was all wrapped up in the deep line. We cleaned it up best we could, the white line going into the deep duck under looked sketchy.
2/17/2017 Vince Ferris Tannic Did not dive. Surface tannic.
1/2/2017 Keith Mille 100' Visibility the best I've seen in a long time. Surface visible from 140 ft. Swam the Black Abyss circuit, conditions excellent throughout.
10/22/2016 from CDF 15-20 Water was still tannic, with 15-20 feet max vis and lots of particulate, percolation
10/20/2014 derek 3-10 we had an average of 5-10ft of vis both upstream and downstream. We only went a short distance to a depth of 150 feet on the downstream side." We then dove upstream to Cheryl and hit some lovely patches of 3-4ft of vis.
12/9/2013 AJ Gonzales 15-20 Tannic and a bit hazy, gets worse (10-15ft) past the Clearcut/Fishhole T.
11/19/2013 OFG-1 (via CDF) 20-30' A bit of milk and particles in the water. Noticeable flow.
6/16/2013 Steve 15'-100' Green-tinted soupy/milky surface in basin to 12ffw. Entire dive had slight milky thing going but even our 2 lower power LED primaries got us 60' or more of viz. We did he short Emerald->Split->Cheryl->Emerald; slight flow throughout. Cheryl basin was crystal clear.
5/24/2013 Jonathan Pitt 30 Cloudy and dark with muck and muddy silt. Generally a reasonably pleasant cave system. Initially we tied our primary reel at a depth of about 60 feet onto a white line tied into the ceiling on the opposite wall directly across the basin from the steps. Following this white line we came to a tee about 100 feet in. The rightward direction of the tee lead to a tanic black stagnant water area with a rapid downward decent and a major drop in temperature to about 58 degrees F. After reaching a depth of about 100 feet we turned around. Then we followed the leftward direction of the tee which ended in a tight restriction embedded in the muck. We returned to the sink and followed the gold line to Sheryl sink then turned and exited.
5/7/2012 Mer 80' Sink milky/chalky to 15', clear below. 80'ish in cave, very slight milkiness, slight green tinge. Did circuit through Split, Cheryl, Black Abyss then back to Emerald. Split and Cheryl appear clear to surface. Slight flow noticeable (flowing from N to S), flow is greater than in fall of 2011. Beware of bees nest in sink wall, 2-3' above waterline near stairs and wasps nest in portajohn (bees left us alone).
3/10/2012 Allen Beard 60'-70' Dive upstream to BA. Basin looking slightly emerald, but still clear. Dark and smokey to Cheryl and then 60' to 70' of vis beyond. Visibility in the deep section of the BA slightly decreased, but still excellent.
2/26/2012 Allen Beard 60'-80' Conditions are still great despite the recent rain. The sink is a little smokey, as is the upstream passage to Cheryl Sink. Beyond Cheryl, it's gets noticeably clearer, about 80' plus of visibility.
2/7/2012 brian richardson 80 emerald still looks amazing upstream and down towards clearcut. downstream fish hole line is still gross. probably worse than before.
1/17/2012 Brian Richardson 80 blue and AWESOME upstream and downstream towards clearcut. downstream towards the fish hole side is disgusting. 10' of vis and gross. nasty bacteria everywhere.
12/18/2011 Keith Gault 80 Emerald basin is clear at 80ft of vis with a little bit of a smokey look. Upstream the visibility improves past Cheryl to be 100 with no smokiness to the water.
10/7/2011 Keith Gault 80 plus Basin has cleared up. Base of deco tree (and beyond) is visible from the surface :) Visibility upstream has a slight amount of clouding offering backscatter for lights, but remains at above 80 ft of visibility through the Black Abyss down to 220 ft. If you can I suggest you dive it NOW!
9/23/2011 Keith Gault 80 Storm damage has left trees down near the sink, with some floating logs in the sink. The visibility in the top 15 ft remains only a few feet. Visibility below opens up to 80 ft. Visibility remains good yo Black Abyss, except for vincinity of split sink.
8/6/2011 Keith Gault 50-80 Visibility at the top of the basin has improved a few feet (6') since last weekend but the transition to clear water is not as sharp. The clear water starts at around 21ft now. Vis is 80ft from the tree to 100 ft past the downstream T (left at T). drops to around 50ft. Upstream visibility is 80ft.
7/30/2011 Keith Gault 3 - 80' Basin visibility remains the same as yesterday with a distict change at 17 ft. Visibility below 17 ft is 60 - 80 ft. Dove downstream today and took the right at the T. Soon after the T the visibility became cloudy and dropped to 20 ft.
7/29/2011 Keith Gault 3 to 80' Top 17 ft of basin has 3ft of Visibility maximum with a definate transition to clear visibility below. Deeper that 18ft and upstream to the Black Abyss the visibility was 60 - 80 ft. Basin vis was clear, got smokey as we approached the black abyss.
1/15/2011 Keith Gault 30-40 Vis has definately dropped :( Swam to the Black Abyss, and we never had more than 40 ft of visibility. Hopefully with no rain the system will clear again.
1/2/2011 Keith Gault 70 Raining for 24 hours, and the basin was still clear (50-60ft); downstream had similar vis to about 500ft past the T towards Clearcut. Upstream Circuit past Cheryl had better visibility.
11/12/2010 Keith Gault 100 Basin is clear. Surface is visible from 140ft. Downstream towards clearcut visibility exceeded the penetration of my 21W HID. right off downstream T 500ft in the tunnel is milky after 100 ft - vis dropped to 50ft or so. Upstream vis also exceeds light penetration in tunnel to Cheryl, vis was lower in bypass tunnel from Split sink. Felt a slight current coming from Cheryl but not from Split. Amazing dive.
6/26/2010 C. Evesque tannic and < 3 ft below 25-30 ft from surface One member of our team made a quick scout dive to verify conditions and see if it would be diveable below what we could see on the surface. She descended with a line and we lost sight of her just below 20 feet. She resurfaced after a very short dive and reported less than 3 ft viz (as far as the HID would illuminate) below 25 feet. Upon ascent, her bubbles caused black clouds to swirl up to the surface making for an interesting and less than pleasing impression. Plan B was implemented....Outback for lunch.
5/22/2009 Shirley Kasser 30', mostly We went downstream, and up. This was my first time in here, and I was thrilled with the viz. I hear it gets better, but it was looking good today. Downstream was a little clearer than upstream. The basin was nice, as well. I could clearly see the first team getting out of the water from about 50'.
7/20/2008 Allen Wooten 70 First 15 ft was 2 ft vis. But below this it cleared up to 70'. The system beyond Cheryl was all the same - clear. Black Abyss was a very nice dive with good vis. Slight flow on the exit.
2/24/2008 OFG-1 20'-40' Gerry and I dove Emerald yesterday. After 5 inches of rain, the system was clear/tannic. That is to say the water was still free of sediment, but was a light tannic color rather than clear. In the basin, we could see 40 or so feet. I could see the steps from the upstream/downstream goldline tieoff. We swam towards Split, and we had 20-30 feet all the way through. The Split cave has more white in it than the Cheryl tunnel and was not too bad. There was a pretty good flow.
2/3/2008 Vince Ferris 5 ft Tannic intrusion both upstream and downsream. Apparently, much worse conditions than divers had downstream at Promise & Go-Between today. Extremely faint, surface light at 70 foot at bottom of tree.
12/2/2007 OFG-1 Clear f you are not signed up to dive here yet, you are missing out. It is as clear as I have seen it in 10 years. Surface to bottom in the basin, the limit of my 10 watt in the cave. Light percolation, a bit of suspended sediment. A bit more on exit. Cheers.
9/7/2007 Allen Wooten 60 ft Despite the rains in Tally, vis in the basin of Emerald was 60 feet once you got below 10 ft of depth. We dove the deep downstream section. Vis reduced further back maybe to 40 ft. We poked our heads into the shallow cave towards Split Sink during deco. Vis was very manageable. Over all, a very divable cave still.
7/10/2007 Rich 80 The sink is very milky for the first 15 ft or so, then opens right up. Vis is good, but the BA was somewhat hazy. We dropped some cookies at the first T, indicating which line goes to Cheryl and which line goes to Split and tied some cord on the bottom of the steps to hang your bottles from.
4/16/2007 Vince Ferris 50 feet Conditions near perfect for diving. Basin clear. Daylight visible from 150ft. Gold line in great shape. 5 day advance notice required with Park Manager.
8/26/2006 Gregg Stanton surface poor The first of 2 weekend workshops to construct the steps and platforms for diver access was conducted this weekend. Over 20 folks showed up to volunteer. The Wakulla Springs State Park cut a new road and provided a gravel parking lot. The cave diving community collected funds and is providing labor to construct these facilities. Please come help out September 15-16, 2006.
Click here if you would like to contribute any information or resources for this system.
Description Type Date Author Remarks
 Dive Application PDF
 Home Page Web Site
 Sink Map Map
 System Map Map
 Video YouTube
Sslect Search Radius:
System Depth Cave Cavern OW Last Report Distance (mi)
 Overview Information Available for Cherokee Sink  Cherokee Sink 80 True True True 6/18/2023 6.4
 Overview Information Available for Mcbrides Slough  Mcbride's Slough 90 True False False 6/22/2017 6.3
 Overview Information Available for Indian Springs  Indian Springs 110 True False False 10/20/2016 3.6
 Overview Information Available for Church Sink  Church Sink 67 True False False 8/17/2015 7.5
   Leon Sinks - Promise Sink True False False 6/15/2012 0.9
 Overview Information Available for Leon Sinks - Upper River Sink  Leon Sinks - Upper River Sink True False False 2/9/2012 1.3
   Leon Sinks - Whiskey Mill Sink 220 True False False 6/11/2011 1.6
   Leon Sinks - Go Between Sink True False False 1/19/2011 0.9
   Leon Sinks - Little Dismal 250 True False False 1/18/2010 1.3
   Leon Sinks - Big Dismal Sink 250 True False False 1/18/2010 1.4
   Leon Sinks - Gopher Hole True False False 1/18/2010 0.9
   Leon Sinks - Innisfree Sink True False False 12/5/2009 1.7
   Meeting House Sink True False False 2.5
   Ames Sink True False False 3.6
 Overview Information Available for Leon Sinks - Wakulla Springs  Leon Sinks - Wakulla Springs 320 True True False 5.1
   Leon Sinks - Sullivan Sink 225 True False False 1
 Overview Information Available for Sally Ward Spring  Sally Ward Spring 350 True False False 4.5
   Kelly Sink True False False 3.8
   Leon Sinks - Split Sink 45 True False False 0.2
   Leon Sinks - Turner Sink True False False 2.2
   Leon Sinks - Cheryl Sink 110 True True False 0.2
 Overview Information Available for Chips Hole  Chip's Hole 120 True False False 1.7