After doing a dive near the tip of East Point on Saturna Island, I wanted to do a second dive farther in Tumbo Channel. A few years ago I did a dive farther West along Tumbo Channel Road (Acorn Lane). I saw several basket stars during that dive and today (Jan. 21, 2023) I wanted to try another public beach access along Tumbo Channel in a quest for more basket stars. The easiest public right-of-way to access is Access 679. That's what the local sign calls it so that's what I'll name this spot for lack of any other reference. It's between houses 695 and 701. It's just a grassy pull-out with a bench overlooking the water. There's a short path leading down to the water, ending in some semi-awkward stone steps and logs. I was there at high tide and I don't know how much easier or harder it would be to get in the water at lower tides.
        I swam straight out from shore. Visibility was about 20'. The bottom was a very gentle slope of flat sandstone and a few boulders. I don't think I've ever seen so many nudibranchs (mostly alabaster) scattered around everywhere in the shallow 10-15' depths.
        As I continued to swim out, the rocky area ended and then there was just a sandy slope going out into Tumbo Channel. This was a surprise since I expected it to be more rocky. Looking at the sidescan image later, this sandy area seems to be shown with rocky areas on either side.
        Eventually I reached a rocky area covered with urchins. I think this was about 40-50' deep. I continued to follow this slope down deeper. I was diving near the end of a very small flooding tide according to the Tumbo Pass tide table and I didn't feel that much current.
        I gradually reached a depth of 75', which seemed to be the end of the rocky area. Down here, I started to see basket stars. I saw about 5 of them. Due to the dark, rainy weather on the surface and the hazy visibility, it was kind of dark and gloomy underwater. The first things I would see in the distance were the white basket stars.
        I started swimming back up shallower. I saw a basket star at about 60' deep, but I didn't see any shallower than that.
        Back up in the shallows with the nudibranchs, I had to spend some time offgassing all the nitrogen because of a previous dive.
        Except for timing the current and the logistics of the ferry schedule, this is the easiest place to shore dive with basket stars that I know of. I'll probably be back, but first I'll try some of the other public beach accesses in Tumbo Pass.
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