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Re: Point Hudson

Posted: Fri Aug 04, 2017 5:27 pm
by 60south
A note on slack times at Pt. Hudson...

For the past few days we dove the slack just after a big flood tide. The slack has been occurring much earlier than predicted.

Today, for instance, the slack was predicted at 14:26 but the actual slack occurred at roughly 13:40 (46 minutes early). The same kind of delay is visible in the current meter tests I did earlier. But during other dives the slack has been spot-on with the prediction.

So..... Bottom line, it's kind of unpredictable, but getting in earlier is probably a good idea rather than getting in late. Or just dive during the first half of the flood tide and don't worry about it. :eric:

Today's currents:
tide.3262.png (16.44 KiB) Viewed 1015 times

Measured currents from last year:
point hudson current.png
point hudson current.png (45.15 KiB) Viewed 1015 times


Re: Point Hudson

Posted: Sun Sep 04, 2016 9:24 am
by 60south
Jeremy wrote:Do Keystone next please..... :)

Absolutely! Things are just crazy-pants there.

It's going to be a while, tho... I'm hoping to make a Mark II version of the sensor, easier to manufacture and deploy.

For now it's back to work/school in Colorado, The Desiccated Place. On this trip I got in 17 dives. Yay! Special thanks to Tom Nic, bradmond, and JasonDiver for being 'sudden diving' buddies.

Re: Point Hudson

Posted: Sun Sep 04, 2016 7:55 am
by Scubak
Thanks Dusty
That's what you have always said about it! Good Reminder!!!
Hope all is well with you!

Re: Point Hudson

Posted: Sat Sep 03, 2016 5:03 pm
by Dusty2
Yep, ebbs will get ya at Hudson. It's pretty simple really. If the tide is coming in it will have little effect because it is flowing north/south past the point. However on outgoing the point becomes the fulcrum of all that water trying to get out of the bay and around the point heading north. Currents tend to be much less on incoming tides but if the exchange is heavy you can sometimes experience an eddy current that is actually pushing you out in stead of in as you would expect.

Hudson is a great spot if you time it right but it can kick butt if you don't.

Re: Point Hudson

Posted: Sat Sep 03, 2016 7:49 am
by Scubak
That is very cool!!!

Re: Point Hudson

Posted: Fri Sep 02, 2016 4:56 pm
by YellowEye
very cool!

Re: Point Hudson

Posted: Fri Sep 02, 2016 4:48 pm
by Jeremy
Do Keystone next please..... :)

Re: Point Hudson

Posted: Fri Sep 02, 2016 3:39 pm
by JasonDiver
I dive-guide there frequently and was happy to see that I was not crazy. I have been showing up 1.5 hours before the predicted slack (<ebb) and finding the water calming. We have splashed and hour before on multiple and had a calm dive with current started to pick up just about the predicted slack time. Also, I think the life at Point Hudson is the best I have seen in years.

Re: Point Hudson

Posted: Fri Sep 02, 2016 3:32 pm
by Jeremy
That is so awesome!!


Posted: Fri Sep 02, 2016 3:14 pm
by 60south
Many of us have noticed that the currents at Point Hudson don't always match the predictions. That's putting it nicely. The nearest current estimates are apparently 0.5 miles away, somewhere in the straits. The tidal basin of Townsend Bay messes with the flow, so Point Hudson is often wildly different.

Backstory: This past year I've had a small team of undergraduate engineering students (my Minions) designing a low-cost ocean current sensor. This was intended for studies unrelated to the local conditions, but the Maritime Center pier in PT made a nice place to test the prototype...


Using our usual current prediction website, I was hoping to get a rough picture of the sensor's performance. Instead, what I found was a crazy tidal pattern that explains why our local dives get blown out so often. Caveat: I only collected data for 24 hours, and the sensor is not yet accurately calibrated, so treat the estimated currents as very preliminary. A real study would likely require a month or more of data, not just a day.

point hudson current.png

On the chart, flood tides are positive current speeds and ebb tides are negative. What you can see from this is that the 'big flood' predicted currents don't really have much of an effect near Point Hudson. If anything, they produce a slight ebb. Instead, the ebb currents are amplified. Today, for instance, a big flood tide was predicted around 1:30pm; I went down to the pier and... nothing. Ah-ha!

The data is still sketchy, but on future dives I would plan as follows:

- On the tail-end of a flood tide, plan to splash before the flood ends and be out of the water near the predicted slack time.
- Following an ebb tide, plan to splash at slack, just as the ebb is ending, and dive during the beginning of the flood.
- You could also probably dive during a flood tide without too much trouble, especially further in-town.

Re: Point Hudson

Posted: Fri Sep 02, 2016 2:52 pm
by 60south
Update: The barge is pretty much rubble these days, but there's still a lot of critters in that area.

Re: Point Hudson

Posted: Wed Apr 11, 2012 7:54 am
by 60south
Good info Dusty. I updated the dive site listing, thanks.

Re: Point Hudson

Posted: Tue Apr 10, 2012 11:43 pm
by Dusty2
Addendum: This site review was done some time ago while the maritime center was still under construction and many things have changed since then.

The maritime center is complete as is the city park across the parking lot from the center. Please be aware that the gravel parking lot between the center and the park is private property belonging to the PT Salmon club and a permit is required to park there. Parking there could get you towed to the tow co. holding lot in port hadlock and could be very expensive. Parking on the street is limited to 2 hours and it is monitored especially on weekends. The Landfall restaurant is no more and is now a small lot for parking across from the maritime center on the east end. There are picnic tables near the water at the park and there are also tables on the patio behind the maritime center with steps leading down to the water though you may need to clear some logs from the beach to make it safer to get to the water. The boat launch is heavily used on weekends during good weather both by fishermen and by the racing sculls stored in the centers hanger area so use caution on this side of the pier. Try to be good neighbors here. This is a multiple use area and the people managing the center have been quite good to divers so far and we want to keep it that way. There are restrooms and a coffee shop in the breezeway please try to keep the restrooms clean and not track allot of sand in. there is a cold water shower on the west side of the platform during warmer months.

One additional thing, The wooden boat festival is in Sept. During that weekend things really get congested so check before going to dive because it is not advisable due to the hundreds of tourists and lots of boat traffic. Not to mention that parking is non existent that weekend because they block off most of that area for foot traffic.

Re: Point Hudson

Posted: Tue Apr 10, 2012 9:36 pm
by climb2freefall
I LOVE PT and Im looking forward to giving this spot a good exploration when I get a chance next month! It is definitely on the top of my list of local spots to dive! Thanks for the post!

Re: Point Hudson

Posted: Sun Aug 31, 2008 10:32 am
by Dusty2
Nice job
A note to the above description,
The barge is steel and is becoming quite delicate due to age and parts of it may collapse if touched so please try not to accelerate this by touching the structure and be careful as you could become snagged or trapped by falling metal. Also be aware that this site is very current sensitive and should only be dove at slack. The jetty and the barge are focal points for the currents and tend to be more intence than the points further in toward town. Use the current guides NOT the tide tables as they don't match up and if you just go by the tide table you could get into trouble. Like other such sites, it doesn't always read the current tables so be careful and mindful that the currents can change quite quickly. Add to that due to eddy effect the current runs east 90% or more of the time.

Re: Point Hudson

Posted: Sun Aug 31, 2008 9:52 am
by dwashbur
That's Dusty2's favorite spot. Dive it with him and you'll see tons of stuff you never knew was there.

Point Hudson

Posted: Fri Aug 29, 2008 9:59 am
by 60south
Dive Site Name: Point Hudson, Port Townsend, Washington

Skill Level: All divers. See caution below about current.

Current Sensitive: Yes. Recommended for slack dives only. A current predictor can be found at:
...which is often inaccurate for this site. See the additional post in this thread regarding currents.

Location: 412 Water Street, Port Townsend WA.

Driving Directions: Coming from highway 104, follow the signs into Port Townsend. The main road into town is state highway 20, which turns into Water Street in lower downtown. Pass all the Victorian shops and hubbub until you come to the end of Water Street. Park next to the Maritime Center or nearby.

Free Parking: Yes.

Staging Area: The street parking along Water Street. There is a bit of a walk from the street to the water.

Surface Swim: Short.

Nearby Facilities: Restrooms can be found in the breezeway on the bottom floor of the Maritime Center, and also a short way up Water Street just past the park. An outside shower A faucet is available outside the Maritime Center (SW side), if you bring your own hose. Air, nitrox and technical gas tank fills can be obtained from Octopus Gardens Diving, in the Boat Haven as you're coming into town.

Special Considerations: Divers have to thread their way around the Maritime Center, making for a bit of a walk. Facing the water, the left (north) side of the jetty is the entrance to the Hudson Point marina; avoid diving or surfacing in that area. The dive area itself has occasional small boat traffic.

Maximum Depth: Typically 65ft maximum. Most of the attractions are in the 20-55ft range. Beyond the barge the bottom levels out at around 100ft, give or take, but there isn't much to see.

Dive Site Description: Refer to the map below: The pedestrian jetty and rocks (2) that form the entrance to the marina are covered with life. This site has many different kinds of nudibranchs and macro critters, sculpins of all sizes, and one or two GPOs hidden in the rocks. At the end of the jetty is a sunken barge (1). Ropes lead to-and-fro, and down to the "log jam" (3). To the west of the jetty (towards downtown) is a "dolphin" (4), a collection of pilings that is covered in anemones. Juvenile wolf eels are occasionally seen here. Other photogenic creatures can be found in the eelgrass and kelp beds (6), and under the new kayak/sail school pier (7). Look for sunglasses, credit cards, wallets, and other booty accidentally dropped by sailing students under the dock. A good place to enter the water is actually the boat launch ramp, identified with the large word DANGER on the right side of the map -- the gentle entry is much safer than clambering over the rocks elsewhere. The parking lot beside the boat ramp is private and unauthorized vehicles will be towed.
Map of Hudson Point dive site.