By Tyler R. Preston, PADI Course Director
I've held off writing this kind of blog for many years as I always knew the West Shore had great diving and without experience in that area, it would not be an accurate representation of the diving off Greater Victoria.
Sometimes it's difficult to make Top Ten lists like this; doing a dive with 100' of vis and having a giant pacific octopus join you out of its den can skew personal experience. Should the next person come along in 5' of vis with little more than a sandy bottom, they may have a completely different dive. My personal opinion is that you need to do a dive many times so you can take the overall sum of all of your experiences in order to properly assess the site.
Take the following with a grain of salt: some divers like wrecks, some like walls, some like the challenge of tech diving. Your opinion may differ from the next divers'........ this is the dive industry after all.
Beechy Head - I haven't done this site enough to experience its potential. It is very subjected to current, but as I was blowing across at a knot or so, the wall was packed with life - the 6 or 7 pacific sea nettles didn't hurt either (I avoided the sting, but they were incredible to see)!
McCurdy Point - a Saanich Inlet favorite, especially when the vis is poor in the inlet. For some reason, McCurdy always seems to have the best visibility when everywhere else is like soup. The boot sponges along this wall are very impressive.
Moon jelly dive - the Saanich Inlet near the mouth of Tod Inlet hosts millions of moon jellies in the summer into late fall. Accessible by shore or boat, diving with countless moon jellies is always good fun.
Lunch at Portland Island - There is nothing like stopping for lunch and a pee break after diving in the Southern Gulf Islands, especially sites including the GB Church, Arbutus Island or Schute reef. I love pulling up on the beach and picking fresh apples for a snack in late summer, and driving home as the sun sets with spectacular colours.
My list is never complete! Really, we could make this the top 20, or even 50, but you have to cap it somewhere. More extensive lists would definitely include:
#RockfishDivers #DiveCharters #Scuba #HopeSpot #SaanichInlet #SouthernGulfIslands #WestShore #RaceRocks #SeaLions #MacroLife #Ocean #Charters #Diving #GreaterVictoria #VancouverIsland #BritishColumbia
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