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Escaping to warm water over a long weekend?

Discussion in 'SoCal' started by Esprise Me, Dec 28, 2018.

  1. Esprise Me

    Esprise Me Kelp forest dweller ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Los Angeles, CA
    Newbie here, itching to dive again but not so sure about local diving over the next couple months, given the temperatures. I've been back in LA from my trip to Mexico less than 24 hours and I'm already plotting my return.

    I have a 4-day weekend in February and was thinking about visiting Cabo, but I'm wondering if that's really enough time. Customs was brutal this trip; we were standing in line almost 3 hours. I'm willing to pay for Global Entry, assuming there's even time to get that processed, but if there's a cruise or other option that doesn't involve LAX that would be awesome. I'm open to the idea of driving but that does seem a little crazy. Ideas?
  2. JamesBon92007

    JamesBon92007 Great White

    # of Dives: 2,500 - 4,999
    Location: Southern California...too far from the ocean
    Have you considered Puerto Vallarta instead of/as an alternative to Cabo? Southwest usually sells tickets for the same price as Cabo and it's not much further. Four days is not very long but if you contact PV Ocean Tours Marc or Alun should be able to accommodate you. I find the diving to be very interesting there but the visibility is not usually phenomenal but the amount of marine life usually more that makes up for it. Outside of the taxi fares from the airport, transportation is cheap there and very convenient. You can get a taxi to Playa Mismaloya (where most of the dive boats are) for about $7 US which isn't much considering the distance. Or you can take the green bus for 6 1/2 pesos (35 cents) and walk the last few hundred yards. The only problem with the local bus is taking your gear. Some of the buses have a luggage area in the front and some don't--I've not quite figured out that part yet. If it's not rush hour then just about anything that will fit on your lap should be OK. I'm pretty sure that Marc doesn't charge extra for "rental" gear so that can reduce how much stuff you need to carry around with you. We always have found cheap, decent places to stay via AirBnB or VRBO and sometimes do a time-share exchange at a hotel. PV is a very interesting town and is considered safe--probably safer than Cabo.

    Scuba Diving Tours

    It looks like their prices have gone up a little since last year which is not a huge surprise. I don't think I've ever read less than a "rave" review of them.

    As for avoiding LAX, that would be nice however it's difficult to find a direct flight from Ontario and the ticket prices are much higher. Earlier this month immigration actually opened up some more lines because it was so packed. We did notice that the Global Entry line was empty. Much to our surprise our TSA Pre-Select has saved us some time in Mexico but I still have to take my laptop out of my backpack.

    We tend to book our next trip to Mexico while we are still there :wink:
    Esprise Me likes this.
  3. rhwestfall

    rhwestfall Woof! ScubaBoard Sponsor

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: "La Grande Ile"
    Considering no-fly time, is it really worth it?
  4. muzikbiz22

    muzikbiz22 Manta Ray

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Southern California
    JetBlue Red Eye from Long Beach airport to Fort Lauderdale. From there, you can dive Fort Lauderdale, Palm Beach , the Keys, take a ferry to the Bahamas or Bimini, quick flight to Bahamas, Grand Cayman.
    dead dog likes this.
  5. MaxBottomtime

    MaxBottomtime Divemaster

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Torrance, CA
    Global Entry is cheap and worth more than they charge. You have to go to LAX for an interview but it saves so much time during future travel. BTW, diving in SoCal during the winter is my favorite time. No crowds, often blue water and better vis than spring and summer.
    Esprise Me, JamesBon92007 and Coztick like this.
  6. Coztick

    Coztick Barracuda

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: calgary
    Cold is a relative concept.
    A backroll here will bust your head open, yet some will cut holes in the surface to dive the ice water.
    I've only braved 45'F dry but was quite comfortable in low 50's in some cheap polar fleece and an old $50 7mm drysuit that was surprising dry.
    How cold do your local wares get?
  7. MaxBottomtime

    MaxBottomtime Divemaster

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Torrance, CA
    We had 46° for a couple of weeks in July before, but for the most part, Palos Verdes ranges from 49° in winter to the upper 60s during summer.
    Coztick likes this.
  8. diversteve

    diversteve always tired Rest in Peace ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    Isn't PV still cold in Feb?
  9. diversteve

    diversteve always tired Rest in Peace ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: I'm a Fish!
    What about Maui? It;s always warm.

    There's an 8am American flight out of LAX that gets you there at noon. Possibly enough time to get in a later afternoon shore dive. Make arrangements with one of the Kihei shore dive operations to meet you with tanks around 3PM - it's about 45mins. drive across from the airport. It'd be good if you could carry-on most of your stuff - save time waiting for yur bags. Also pre-book the car. You might be over in Kihei as early as 2pm - we were checking into our condos at Wailea Ekahi about then. They're privately owned so all you need the office for is the key.

    Wailea beach is a shore dive 1/4 mi. down the hill.And there's 4-5 more within a mile. Most of the shore dives in that area are in the 40-80' range so less off-gassing will be needed. You'll even see a lot on boat dives at that depth,

    Next morning the boats all leave the Kihei Ramp around 6am and go to Molokini Crater - then return to dive the south Maui coast. You may have to shore dive in the afternoons though to get in more dives. Some operations also do a night dive. So I would think 10-ish dives is possible over 2.5 days. Maui Dreams Dive Co or Shaka Divers are two shore options. Lot s of boat options, Mike Severns,Ed Robinsons,B&B Scuba etc.

    Flights look iike $393/rt the 1st week of Feb

    Then do two days of dives and there's a 3PM flight back on the 4th day that arrives at LAX at 10pm so you'd have the morning to off-gas/sightsee. No customs hassles either.

    It won't be the cheapest trip but look for a cheap condo on airbnb in Kihei. There's not going to be a lot of hotel deals since that's high season.

    The jet lag that first morning is rough though.
    KathyV and Esprise Me like this.
  10. Eric Sedletzky

    Eric Sedletzky Great White

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Santa Rosa, CA
    I have a better idea.
    Why don’t you drive up to Norcal past SF up to Sonoma or Mendocino Co. and rent a VRBO or stay at a B&B and do some beach dives up here. Once you experience how cold our water is, you’ll realize that Socal water isn’t that bad and you’ll appreciate what you have.
    We go to Socal for our warm water vacations.
    But if you must go somewhere warmer I’d pick Hawaii any day over Mexico. Flights are cheap and no hassles. It looks like Southwest will be starting up service to HI in 2019!

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