Ediz Hook, Port Angeles

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60south
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Ediz Hook, Port Angeles

Post by 60south » Sat Aug 01, 2009 11:06 pm

Dive Site Name: Ediz Hook, Port Angeles, Washington

Skill Level: All levels.

Important Note: Ediz Hook is a long sand spit with many possible locations for diving. This post describes only one location, on the inside of the bay, near the end of the spit. Other locations, especially on the straits-side, may have wildly different conditions than described here.

Current Sensitive: Not usually.

Location: Port Angeles, WA

Driving Directions: From points east (Seattle, Olympia, Moab, etc.) take Highway 101 west until you fall into the swamp of Port Angeles traffic. Proceed west through town, resisting the urge to turn. Highway 101 eventually veers off but you should continue straight along Front Street to the marina at the west end of town. A wise person would turn around at this point but no, not you, you're going to go through the paper mill just ahead. Seriously. After passing through the paper mill like an undigested peanut, you are now driving on Ediz Hook Road. Follow the spit road a couple miles, almost to the end. Look for a restroom on the left; then turn around and park on the opposite side (see attached image).

Free Parking: Yes.

Staging Area: A gravel parking lot, very rough. The beach entry is reasonably easy.

Surface Swim: Tidally dependent. More of a trudge into the water.

Nearby Facilities: The status of the facilities is variable... Restrooms are across the street. There is a shack a couple hundred feet east up the road, used by the local salmon farmers: there may be a fresh water hose at the west end of the shack. There is also a picnic area west, down the road near the towers, with fresh water at the shack used by the kayak club -- we've used this too and nobody has complained. Food, drink, and tank fills are all back in Port Angeles. There is one dive shop in town, on Front Street (you drove past it). It's actually a bike/kayak store that has scuba supplies and air fills in the back; the diving section may not be staffed even if the main part of the store is open.

Special Considerations: Once you get out beyond the shallows it goes deep quickly. There are numerous large logs, in various stages of decay, and they may be perched precariously on each other. Use caution around the logs.

Maximum Depth: As deep as you want. Most of the life -- the prettiest stuff -- is shallower than about 60fsw.

Dive Site Description: Life in the shallow areas can be abundant and colorful. As you go deeper you'll find a lot of 'dead heads', logs that have sunk to the bottom. In some places the rotting logs are stacked several layers deep. Look for big ling cod, crabs, nudibranchs, anemones, bacterial mats and golf balls. The best diving seems to be vaguely to the right (facing the water from the parking area), but there is a lot of territory to explore. Deeper down the logs become dominant, the life decreases, and things get kind of creepy. The presence of so much rotting wood has changed the chemistry of the bay, the subject of ongoing scientific studies and cleanup action. Since the bay, at least at this location, is not very current sensitive, this site makes a good default dive when the currents are bad elsewhere. This would also be a great place to conduct classes or practice skills.

edizhook1.jpg
Ediz Hook dive site, road, and parking area.
Last edited by 60south on Mon Apr 16, 2018 11:53 am, edited 10 times in total.

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BASSMAN
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Re: Ediz Hook, Port Angeles

Post by BASSMAN » Sun Aug 02, 2009 6:52 am

60south wrote:Driving Directions: From points east (Seattle, Olympia, Moab, etc.) take Highway 101 west until you fall into the swamp of Port Angeles traffic. Proceed west through town, resisting the urge to turn. Highway 101 eventually veers off but you should continue straight along Front Street to the marina at the west end of town. A wise person would turn around at this point but no, not you, you're going to go through the paper mill just ahead. Seriously. After passing through the paper mill like an undigested peanut, you are now driving on Ediz Hook Road. Follow the spit road a couple miles, almost to the end. Look for a restroom on the left; then turn around and park on the opposite side (see attached image). If you run the gate at the Coast Guard Station and get shot, you've gone too far. People coming from points west (La Push, Kalaloch) won't make it past the vampires in Forks, or the proliferation of Twilight kitsch stores.


:laughing3:
Those are some great directions! :supz:
Thanks for the new divesite! =D>
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Re: Ediz Hook, Port Angeles

Post by dwashbur » Sun Aug 02, 2009 10:23 am

We did two dives at Ediz Hook back when we took our REEF class from Janna in Port Angeles. It's a very nice site, and I agree the best stuff is above 60 feet. We saw our first yellowtail rockfish there, as well as a plethora of shrimps and tubeworms of varying shapes and sizes up in the shallows. It's one of the more unsung dive sites in the area, perhaps because of the lack of a decent dive shop nearby. At least there wasn't one when we were there; things may have changed by now, so don't hold me to that part. But if you bring yourself a couple of tanks, it's worth the trip.
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Re: Ediz Hook, Port Angeles

Post by dwashbur » Sun Aug 02, 2009 2:28 pm

BlackToe wrote:
dwashbur wrote:It's one of the more unsung dive sites in the area, perhaps because of the lack of a decent dive shop nearby. At least there wasn't one when we were there; things may have changed by now, so don't hold me to that part. But if you bring yourself a couple of tanks, it's worth the trip.

There's a shop in downtown PA that's only a few minutes from the Hook. We get fills there whenever we're diving Salt Creek or Lake Crescent. Most of the business is occupied by a cycle/kayak shop, and the fill station is in the back-right corner.



That's the one I was talking about. We were decidedly unimpressed, especially when we smelled the air we got from them.
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Re: Ediz Hook, Port Angeles

Post by dwashbur » Mon Aug 03, 2009 10:28 am

BlackToe wrote:
At any rate, I don't want to be accused of hijacking the thread or anything. I suppose the quality of shops and services near a dive site is relevant to the briefing. Thanks to the OP for the post -- the Hook is a great and easy site to hit in the PA area.


Agreed. It has a diversity and abundance of life that we hadn't expected. Hopefully once this leg is done healing we can go back there some time.
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Re: Ediz Hook, Port Angeles

Post by straitscuba » Sat Nov 10, 2012 10:30 am

The dive by the repeater tower about 3/4 of a mile closer to town is another great spot for seeing fish. West of the repeater tower (closer to the mill) is more or less dead. From the entry point listed above there is also an old tug around 75fsw depending on tides. All that is left is the old boiler, steam engine, rudder, and some other steel parts that are too big to be pilfered and haven't rotted away. In the shallows just to the right of the entry point if facing town is a great eel grass bed to swim around and there is a good chance of running into playful harbor seals at this site. The outside of the spit is not worth a dive in my opinion, I have tried several times there and it is just a steep, current swept, gravel slope with little life and poor entry options. If you are lucky enough to take a boat just to the east of the pilot station you will see an old rock landing coming off of the Coast Guard base. Below that are the underwater remains of an old dock called "the rockpile" by local divers. Its an AWESOME dive! I have a video that I made of diving the rockpile from the fish farm here:

http://www.straitscuba.com/Site%20Pages/Videos.htm

Ediz Hook, or "the spit" as it is called locally can be a great site to explore and dive without having to worry too much about currents. It is great for beginners and classes. Lots of parking, but beware of drop offs when you turn into the gravel parking lots!

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Re: Ediz Hook, Port Angeles

Post by 60south » Mon Sep 02, 2013 8:59 am

straitscuba wrote:The dive by the repeater tower about 3/4 of a mile closer to town is another great spot for seeing fish.


Thanks for the feedback! Yeah, we dove that site earlier this year and it was good. There's also fresh water available at the kayak shack (?) and picnic area nearby. I just updated the dive site description (above) a bit.

Also heard that there was some good diving near or beyond the salmon farming docks, although I haven't dove there yet. I'd be interested in hearing about it if someone knows more. Shore access seems a bit problematic.

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Re: Ediz Hook, Port Angeles

Post by straitscuba » Fri Jun 06, 2014 9:31 am

Yes there is a GREAT dive between the Puget Sound Pilot station and the fish pens called the Rockpile. Unfortunately it can only be accessed by boat now because of maritime security issues. You used to enter by the boat ramp and swim out under the pilot station but that is no more. The last time I got a chance to dive there we went in from the fish pens and scootered over to the dive site, here is a short video of diving the rockpile:

http://www.straitscuba.com/Site%20Pages/Videos.htm

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Re: Ediz Hook, Port Angeles

Post by Jeff Pack » Fri Jun 06, 2014 9:48 am

can it still be scootered, or boat only?
=============================================

- 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: Ediz Hook, Port Angeles

Post by 60south » Fri Jun 06, 2014 11:37 am

straitscuba wrote:Yes there is a GREAT dive between the Puget Sound Pilot station and the fish pens called the Rockpile.


Can you post a little map of the Rockpile location in this thread? Thanks!

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Re: Ediz Hook, Port Angeles

Post by CaptnJack » Fri Jun 06, 2014 11:44 am

60south wrote:
straitscuba wrote:Yes there is a GREAT dive between the Puget Sound Pilot station and the fish pens called the Rockpile.


Can you post a little map of the Rockpile location in this thread? Thanks!


Yeah I am confused since west to east its:
boat ramp --- fish pens --- USCG station.

So why you'd have to swim through a security zone to get to this rockpile isn't making sense to me. I don't see any charted security zones either and normally NOAA is pretty good about demarcating those.
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Re: Ediz Hook, Port Angeles

Post by straitscuba » Fri Jun 06, 2014 1:49 pm

You have to swim directly under the Puget Sound Pilots station to reach the rockpile without entering from the USCG base. There is really no way around the pilot station for a shore entry. The PSP house and dock is located directly west of the boat ramp before the fish pens. You could possibly scooter from shore making a loop out around the pilot station but it is posted that there is no diving around the pilot station. I know a couple of local divers here have approached the USCG about access to dive from the base and have been turned down. I will try to make a little map of the rockpile this afternoon.

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Re: Ediz Hook, Port Angeles

Post by straitscuba » Fri Jun 06, 2014 2:15 pm

Here is an attempt at mapping the area.
Attachments
rockpile.jpg

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Re: Ediz Hook, Port Angeles

Post by CaptnJack » Fri Jun 06, 2014 2:33 pm

Oooh thank you!

I misunderstood the security zone being associated with the Coast Guard docks, not the pilot station.

I will try this rockpile from the boat sometime! Thank you
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Re: Ediz Hook, Port Angeles

Post by Jeff Pack » Fri Jun 06, 2014 2:37 pm

how big is the security zone around the pilot station?
=============================================

- 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: Ediz Hook, Port Angeles

Post by straitscuba » Fri Jun 06, 2014 2:51 pm

I am not sure how large the security zone is, I would assume at least 100yds. I am in the process of putting a charter boat together and my partner in the venture works for the pilots (Pilot boat operator) so I will ask him this evening when I get down to the boat how big the security zone is.

This time of year there is HEAVY boat traffic out of the boat launch plus the pilot boats and fish farm tender boats coming and going frequently. This will continue until the end of October when salmon season ends.

Unfortunately the rockpile may not be around a whole lot longer as the USN has designs on building a sub escort dock at the site starting sometime in 2015

http://peninsuladailynews.com/article/2 ... 9/0/SEARCH

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Re: Ediz Hook, Port Angeles

Post by CaptnJack » Fri Jun 06, 2014 3:14 pm

I don't know of any private docks which have "security zones"... But its possible the pilot's association is "special". There is no charted security zone either so maybe its considered a roving one like around tankers and ferries? Although Pilot vessels were not called out as having security zones in the CFRs that I know of (don't have time to look them up right now).
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Re: Ediz Hook, Port Angeles

Post by straitscuba » Fri Jun 06, 2014 3:28 pm

Even the people I know that work there don't know why it is considered a security zone. All I know is that after Sept 2001 a sign went up and the area was closed to divers entering from the shore. It is not a security zone as far as boat traffic goes. I wish it were still open as it is by far the best shore dive in PA Harbor and it would be nice to be able to take classes out there since so much of the harbor has become a dead zone over the last 10 years or so. Doing 3+ dives a week looking at logs and sea lettuce gets old after awhile :BDub:

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