Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by fnerg » Thu Jan 03, 2013 11:49 am

Some of the coolest topography I've seen was in Monterey/Carmel with a REEF trip, which I wouldn't have been on if I wasn't into the critter thing. I'm into wrecks and there's no way I'd turn down a cave dive. I'd honestly say there's nothing I don't like about diving, except possibly the part where you see how much money you've spent on it.

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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by Tom Nic » Thu Jan 03, 2013 12:09 pm

CaptnJack wrote:I am struggling to think of places with structure but no current.


While not exclusively shore, "structure but no current" basically describes most of Hood Canal. There are walls - deep and shallow, pinnacles - deep and shallow, abundant opportunities for recreational or technical diving. Many of the well known recreational sites have deeper walls that are accessible to the technical diver. When you combine tech diving with a boat.... well, let's just say that a TON of opportunity opens up.

So Dylan... I am thinking that you either need to save your $$$$ for a boat or else be REALLY NICE :luv: to someone who already has one! A boat opens up HUGE possibilities in Hood Canal - even more than in the Sound, in my opinion.

And of course we haven't even begun to talk about the San Juans, although current must be taken into account there!
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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by CaptnJack » Thu Jan 03, 2013 12:22 pm

Tom Nic wrote:
CaptnJack wrote:I am struggling to think of places with structure but no current.


While not exclusively shore, "structure but no current" basically describes most of Hood Canal. There are walls - deep and shallow, pinnacles - deep and shallow, abundant opportunities for recreational or technical diving. Many of the well known recreational sites have deeper walls that are accessible to the technical diver. When you combine tech diving with a boat.... well, let's just say that a TON of opportunity opens up.

So Dylan... I am thinking that you either need to save your $$$$ for a boat or else be REALLY NICE :luv: to someone who already has one! A boat opens up HUGE possibilities in Hood Canal - even more than in the Sound, in my opinion.

And of course we haven't even begun to talk about the San Juans, although current must be taken into account there!


I guess. But honestly rocks are rocks. Pulali Point east vs. south don't really look different.

I only know of 1 divable pinnacle. Well 2 but one is way beyond recreational range. I don't count flagpole, that's like a tiny little bump.
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Jeff Pack
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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by Jeff Pack » Thu Jan 03, 2013 12:27 pm

CaptnJack wrote:totally agree with you there Tom Nic...

I am struggling to think of places with structure but no current. Lobster Shack is about the only place I can think of although a sand slope is "structure" its just not what most people want.


SW StatePark
Octo Hole, Jorsted, Rosies Ravine(Boat Dive though), Pinnacle (long scooter run), Sund for starters.
Norranders Reef and the other reefs in the area.
Watermans Wall

Just to name a few.
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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by CaptnJack » Thu Jan 03, 2013 12:50 pm

Salt water state park most definitely has current! And Waterman's even more so!!!
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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by Grateful Diver » Thu Jan 03, 2013 1:06 pm

CaptnJack wrote:totally agree with you there Tom Nic...

I am struggling to think of places with structure but no current. Lobster Shack is about the only place I can think of although a sand slope is "structure" its just not what most people want.


... Lobster Shop Wall can get ripping current at times ...

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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by Jeff Pack » Thu Jan 03, 2013 1:24 pm

so can redondo (like last saturday) and we had to hang onto the guy wire at MAST for 25m waiting out the "river".
(Which BTW stopped once my dive buddy aka "the jinx of redondo" left) :)
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- I got a good squirt in my mouth
- I would imagine that there would be a large amount of involuntary gagging
- I don't know about you but I'm not into swallowing it

CCR discussion on Caustic Cocktails.

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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by Jeff Pack » Thu Jan 03, 2013 1:31 pm

CaptnJack wrote:Salt water state park most definitely has current! And Waterman's even more so!!!


SW park is not really a current sensitive site,more like every once and awhile its get current (or from wind/wave action).

But yea, I was thinking Watermans wasnt current sensitive, but it certainly is although the couple of times I've done it, there was no current at all, not like doing DIW or Sunrise.
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- I got a good squirt in my mouth
- I would imagine that there would be a large amount of involuntary gagging
- I don't know about you but I'm not into swallowing it

CCR discussion on Caustic Cocktails.

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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by Tom Nic » Thu Jan 03, 2013 1:43 pm

Jeff Pack wrote:
CaptnJack wrote:Salt water state park most definitely has current! And Waterman's even more so!!!


SW park is not really a current sensitive site,more like every once and awhile its get current (or from wind/wave action)..


Not sure what you are basing that on.

Everything I have heard or experienced is just the opposite. I wish it was not current sensitive - I would dive it scrutiny week.
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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by Jeff Pack » Thu Jan 03, 2013 2:06 pm

I've dove it 10 times now, only once with current, and that was storm surge(which wasnt fun). Maybe I'm just extremely lucky.

Although if SW Park was current sensitive, Redondo would be, they are darned near next to each other.(30 blocks apart)
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- I got a good squirt in my mouth
- I would imagine that there would be a large amount of involuntary gagging
- I don't know about you but I'm not into swallowing it

CCR discussion on Caustic Cocktails.

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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by CaptnJack » Thu Jan 03, 2013 4:25 pm

Jeff Pack wrote:Although if SW Park was current sensitive, Redondo would be, they are darned near next to each other.(30 blocks apart)

Really now ya don't say??

Jeff Pack wrote:so can redondo (like last saturday) and we had to hang onto the guy wire at MAST for 25m waiting out the "river".
(Which BTW stopped once my dive buddy aka "the jinx of redondo" left) :)

Oh wait you did!! :rofl:
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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by Jeff Pack » Thu Jan 03, 2013 4:28 pm

by that definition just about anywhere is current sensitive then.

oh, and by the way, we happened to hit redondo on slack, so if you can explain the redondo river and how to predict it, you'll truly be a diving god.
=============================================

- I got a good squirt in my mouth
- I would imagine that there would be a large amount of involuntary gagging
- I don't know about you but I'm not into swallowing it

CCR discussion on Caustic Cocktails.

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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by Tom Nic » Thu Jan 03, 2013 4:48 pm

Jeff Pack wrote:I've dove it 10 times now, only once with current, and that was storm surge(which wasnt fun). Maybe I'm just extremely lucky.

Although if SW Park was current sensitive, Redondo would be, they are darned near next to each other.(30 blocks apart)


I can't tell you how much I hope / wish you are right. Everything I read and my own experience tells me that is not the case. Again, I hope you are right - I will dive there as much as I do Redondo & Three Tree as the structure is better even if the swim is longer.

Redondo is in the curve of a largish bay, Saltwater is more exposed. The "Redondo River" is a fairly rare occurrence that seems to show up on larger exchanges.

Three Tree is not as current sensitive because of the same structure - large bay that sets up a back eddy that is pretty consistent. Occasionally the back eddy is annoying on a dive, but doesn't cause serious problems unless the diver is pretty inexperienced and not able to hold their position in the water column well.
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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by CaptnJack » Thu Jan 03, 2013 4:52 pm

My limited experience at Saltwater is that there can be quite an ebb there - at least on the surface. Floods are not so bad. Its a bear of a swim either way and not someplace you want to just show up on a random day to see that the water is 200+ yards from the car. Or that a SW wind is hammering it.
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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by Grateful Diver » Fri Jan 04, 2013 9:27 am

Jeff Pack wrote:by that definition just about anywhere is current sensitive then.

oh, and by the way, we happened to hit redondo on slack, so if you can explain the redondo river and how to predict it, you'll truly be a diving god.


Well, if you got current at Redondo then you didn't dive it on slack ... that would be a contradiction of terms. What you really mean to say is that you planned for slack ... but slack didn't happen when you thought it would. Redondo doesn't exactly follow any measuring station ... and it seems to defy consistent corrections.

You don't need to be a diving god to predict when you'll get current there ... you need to be a diving god to be correct every time ... it's not the sort of place where predictions are going to be consistent. There's just too many variables contributing to the conditions that result in that current we all know as the Redondo River. However, there are some generalities that can be applied toward understanding when the risk of current is the highest. I've learned these over the past eight years ... doing 60-80 dives a year there.

First off, you have to understand that the current is much stronger on an ebb than a flood. This is because of the way the water flows around Dash Point, through a deep trough, and into a shallow area where it tends to speed up. How much it speeds up depends on how much tidal exchange there is, but that's not always a good predictor because the water tends to eddy around Dash Point as it's coming through the area. And if you've ever watched moving water that eddys you've noticed that you can't always predict when it's going to speed up or slow down (i.e. watch the formation of whirlpools at a place like Deception Pass ... there's no discernable pattern because it depends on dynamically-changing conditions).

So ... assume that you can't use the size of tidal exchange as a reliable predictor ... I've experienced significant current there on days with a moderate 4 or 5 foot ebb. Often when that happens, the strongest current is transitory, and could be very strong for only a few minutes and then tail off to practically nothing. After a while you get to recognise the onset, and if you're smart you'll either get out of the water or duck behind something for a few minutes until it's gone.

Now, what to expect. The water comes sweeping into the bay, eddys around Dash Point, and sweeps across the south part of the beach ... gaining speed as it approaches the structure around the boat ramp and fishing pier. If you've ever spent any time diving on the south side, as I have, you'll notice that the further south you go the less current you'll experience.

It sweeps along, hits the dropoff, and turns into a downwelling ... anybody who's dived the dropoff on a good ebb knows exactly what I'm talking about ... the current wants to take you back to the bottle field ... where it tails off as the slope flattens out. It's actualy pooling in the trough, where it stops moving west (because it runs out of slope) and turns north.

Heading north ... where the bottom shallows out again ... the current will pick up. If you're unlucky enough to be over in the eelgrass beds, and fairly far north, when this happens, you're in for a hard swim back. But as you get closer to the structure of the MAST center, it decreases. Or you can just hide behind Salty's and come in at the North Beach. Sometimes you won't have a choice, as it'll gain enough strength you can't make headway against it, and you have to exit at the north beach.

Or you can just choose to dive the place on a flood and avoid all the guesswork ... currents on a flood are a lot less interesting and a lot more predictable. That's because the direction of the water means it's moving from shallower to deeper depths ... which tends to slow it down.

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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by spatman » Fri Jan 04, 2013 10:06 am

Great write up, Bob. I bookmarked this one for future reference.
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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by Tom Nic » Fri Jan 04, 2013 10:12 am

spatman wrote:Great write up, Bob. I bookmarked this one for future reference.


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Re: Non current sensitive

Post by Nwbrewer » Fri Jan 04, 2013 3:00 pm

Jeremy wrote:
Grateful Diver wrote:
Jeremy wrote:Kayak Point dude


Unless you're crabbing, there is absolutely NOTHING to see at Kayak Point. I think most of the crabs there die of boredom ...

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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by H20doctor » Fri Jan 04, 2013 4:53 pm

If your not boat diving, then your not livin as a diver.. Boat dives are the Bomb !!
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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by Jeff Pack » Fri Jan 04, 2013 4:59 pm

Grateful Diver wrote:Or you can just choose to dive the place on a flood and avoid all the guesswork ... currents on a flood are a lot less interesting and a lot more predictable. That's because the direction of the water means it's moving from shallower to deeper depths ... which tends to slow it down.

... Bob (Grateful Diver)



That makes sense, as it was an ebb current based upon what the tide was doing, and flood when I got into the water abit later.

But I still blame it on my dive buddy, she's a jinx at redondo.
=============================================

- I got a good squirt in my mouth
- I would imagine that there would be a large amount of involuntary gagging
- I don't know about you but I'm not into swallowing it

CCR discussion on Caustic Cocktails.

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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by isac777 » Sun Jan 06, 2013 6:49 am

Grateful Diver wrote:What about Norrander's Reef? Only ever dived there once from shore, but I don't recall much for current.

Harper Ferry? A shallow dive, but it can be dived on a big-exchange day when a lot of other places are off-limits ... or just for a change of pace kind of dive.

... Bob (Grateful Diver)


My pal and I went there yesterday! Im a newbie and it was a pretty rad dive.

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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by Rooinater » Sun Jan 06, 2013 11:15 am

Dylan, Next saturday we are headed to dive The Ranger, The Comet, and maybe scooter to find another one. I can send you the fb event page if you are interested.

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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by Furnari » Sun Jan 06, 2013 12:32 pm

I got to thinking- some of the coolest rock structure I've seen has been in rivers. I have no idea what you washingonians have up there, but it might be worth looking into for late summer / early fall. There's current (duh), but it can be manageable and predictable. As an example, around here we dive a 50'-deep hole in the McKenzie that's just a few minutes from town. Talk to fisherman for intel- in fact, you might even be able to earn a few bucks scavenging lures and lead.

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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by Mortuus » Sun Jan 06, 2013 2:49 pm

Ive been dying to dive some rivers actually. I would absolutely love that, but I dont know which ones are deep enough for any serious OW diving (40+ ffw maybe?).

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Re: Non current sensitive "off the beaten path" dive sites?

Post by CaptnJack » Sun Jan 06, 2013 6:35 pm

Mortuus wrote:Ive been dying to dive some rivers actually. I would absolutely love that, but I dont know which ones are deep enough for any serious OW diving (40+ ffw maybe?).


The only river that deep is the Columbia. Excluding reservoirs obviously. But if you made the trek to the Tricities, I imagine Ben would be thrilled. :)
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