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Where To Dive In BC If Only 3 Days?

Discussion in 'Western Canada' started by cleung, Aug 17, 2020.

  1. White Chocolate

    White Chocolate Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Bellingham, WA
    30
    68
    18
    I was at Race Rocks this time last year and I'm going through serious withdrawals today after looking though my photos yesterday. We dove the more exposed part (east or northeast race?) on a really low exchange weekend. Even during slack the current was still present but manageable. We were able to swim against it to a wall, then had a mellow drift for a bit, and then found protected areas to explore which worked up to the safety stops. There is too much invertebrate life to be able to hang on to anything in one place so you have to have the skills to be able to move around on your own and find places to hide in between times of finning in place or drifting. Both our dives were close to 70 min and we never had any moments of feeling helpless against the current so for a true advanced diver (not someone with 30 tropical dives and an advanced padi card) it will be fine.

    That being said race rocks charters don't happen all that regularly, so the chances of your trip lining up with one aren't that high to start. If Race isn't in the cards then maybe consider Nanaimo instead. I liked the shore diving up there around Nanoose Bay more than Ogden Pt and there are some great boat dive options with the wrecks and Snake Island Wall.
     
  2. nadwidny

    nadwidny Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Cranbrook, BC
    1,871
    485
    83
    It is under control.
     
  3. wedivebc

    wedivebc CCR Instructor ScubaBoard Supporter

    5,425
    1,192
    113
    The numbers say otherwise Brian. BC has just had a big spike due to a big surge in tourists in the last couple of weeks. Now is not the time to travel, anywhere.
     
  4. cleung

    cleung Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Mississauga, Canada
    764
    74
    28
    Oh if we did come to BC at all this year, it won't be until Nov/Dec
     
  5. decompression

    decompression Instructor...seriously...

    # of Dives: 5,000 - ∞
    Location: Victoria, BC, Canada
    4,126
    1,649
    113
    Slack lasts about 20 minutes.......it’s more of the level of exchange......you can have a small exchange (hi tide to low tide is very small, say 1 foot) or a large one, say 8 feet. The less water the less force moving you. Not sure how Galapagos is for VIS but 10-20’ is average for Race......it was 30’ the other day.

    Anyways, Race Rocks is world class diving, operators will drop you in on slack, you’ll have a nice 20 minute dive or so and see some great life.
     
  6. cleung

    cleung Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Mississauga, Canada
    764
    74
    28
    Galapagos currents are so wild that you need negative entries to get to the bottom as soon as possible then at depth, you literally have to climb from rock to rock or you will be swept away from the group. That's why everyone's gloves got ripped by the end of the week. So that's what I'm trying to get an idea of for Race Rocks if it is like what I experienced down in the Galapagos.
     
  7. nadwidny

    nadwidny Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Cranbrook, BC
    1,871
    485
    83
    I see the same numbers. I see a bit of a rise, you see a big spike. Perception is everything.

    Ask the people who are losing their businesses if they want people to stay home.
     
  8. davehicks

    davehicks ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Seattle
    580
    504
    93
    It's not like Galapagos. In general, you don't do Pacific Northwest cold water diving in steady currents. The currents around the PNW and BC are tidal, so you dive during low tidal exchanges around the slacks. That way the dives have very little current most of the time. Some sites are more current dependent than others, so you can often only dive them for a couple days every two week cycle.

    You should plan on diving mostly in Nanaimo, and perhaps do a day trip down to Victoria if you can book a boat dive to Race Rocks. Nanaimo has everything you want to see. Amazing wrecks, lots of wolf eels and octos, Sea Lions are often found on Snake Island. I've been there many times and it's always great.
     
  9. cleung

    cleung Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Mississauga, Canada
    764
    74
    28
    I got in touch with Nanaimo Dive Outfitters and they told me that they don't start running charters to Hornby Island to see the Stellar seals until late November through to Feb
     
  10. grf88

    grf88 ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Markham, Ontario
    1,964
    1,582
    113

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