McPhail Point is on the West side of Saanich Inlet between the Mill Bay B.C. Ferry terminal and Bamberton Park. It's sort-of across from Henderson Point. This area is mostly sandy underwater, but the sidescan image shows a few areas of rock here and there. There is a public right-of-way at the end of Inlet Drive that has been developed into a beach access path. One of the underwater rocky areas is about 120 meters out and a bit South of this access point. I drove over the Malahat from Victoria on Nov. 12, 2021 to see if I could find it.
I parked at the end of the road and walked down the pretty-short and not-too-steep path to the water.
Visibility was about 20' in the shallows. Past the sargassum seaweed and small rocks in the top 15', the bottom was a slope of sand. As I went deeper, the visibility steadily cleared until it was about 40-50'. I followed my compass out and a bit South to where I estimated the rocky reef was.
I reached a depth of 80' and realized I had probably missed the reef since comparing the sidescan image to the marine chart made me think that the reef should be shallower than that. I swam up a bit shallower and headed South along the slope. I soon saw a large rocky area in the distance. The side facing away from shore dropped down in a wall that met the sand at about 70' deep at high tide. There wasn't a whole lot of marine life here, but there were some orange plumose anemones, patches of zoanthids, yellow boring sponge and a few California cucumbers. For fish, there were a few rockfish (all copper), a group of perch, a kelp greenling and a grunt sculpin in a barnacle shell.
I swam up to the top of the reef. This area was about 20-40' deep. There were lots of orange plumose anemones up here.
I had circled all around the reef and ended up back where I started on the North side of the reef. In the sand nearby were lots of tiny sea pens. There was also a tangle of tubing from some kind of geothermal heat exchanger system.
I had a bit of air left so I had a quick look under the dock for the nearby private marina. Depths here were about 20-25'.
I had an interesting time exploring somewhere new, but I don't think it's interesting enough to make me want to dive here again anytime soon.