This is a small, bare-rock island in Baynes Channel between Cadboro Bay and Ten Mile Point. When I've been out in this area on my boat, I've seen noticeable currents swirling around the island. In the channel between Jemmy Jones Island and the "mainland" of Vancouver Island, there can be frighteningly-steep waves when the wind opposes the current. Despite the possibility of colourful, current-washed marine life, I've never really planned on diving here. On the chart, most of the area around the island is relatively flat and shallow. It's also part of the Oak Bay Islands Ecological Reserve. From what I've seen, many ecological reserves are chosen for their lack of marine life. This way, the government can brag that a certain percentage of our oceans are protected, while avoiding hassles from fishermen, who would lobby against closures of richer marine areas. I assume that's why the relatively-lifeless Ten Mile Point Ecological Reserve doesn't include the Ten Mile Point dive site, which is also a popular fishing spot. Anyway, I had a morning free, the currents were looking good and my boat was already on the roof of my car so I sped over from the Cattle Point launch ramp (Jan. 3, 2011). From the Northern tip of the Island, the chart shows a long finger-like reef sticking out towards Ten Mile Point. The end of the reef seems to bottom out at 40-50 feet deep. I anchored my boat in a small, shallow bay near the North tip and swam out along the reef. Visibility was 10-15 feet. The stalked kelp-topped reef was mostly bare except for silt. Every few minutes I saw a seastar, but that's about it. There were a few patches of orange colonial tunicates where the rock was vertical. Eventually I reached the end of the reef at 47 feet deep. There were clusters of urchins, but still no anemones. The reef curved around and I followed it back. So far I hadn't seen a single fish, but up in the stalked kelp on top of the reef (20-30 feet deep), I saw a school of perch. I also saw a few brooding anemones on the kelp. I won't say this dive was a waste of time since it was someplace new for me, but I don't plan on coming back.
anchored at island
eelgrass next to shallow part of reef
silt-covered reef
tunicates on side of rock
kelp stalks on silty reef
sunflower star on reef
sunflower star
urchins at end of reef
urchins at end of reef
urchins at tip of reef
tunicates on side of boulder at tip of reef
stalked kelp on top of reef
school of perch
sunflower star
sunflower star
brooding anemones
seastar near surface
boat in distance
North tip of Island panorama