I had heard a reliable report of lots of cloud sponges about a 45-minute swim North of the popular Christmas Point dive site. On the Juan de Fuca/Haro Strait side of Victoria there were strong winds and currents today (Sept. 19, 2009) so I came to Saanich Inlet and figured I'd have a look for the sponges. I motored to the Christmas Point dive site and then went maybe 500 meters farther North. I tied up to a fallen tree, took some surface pictures and swam straight out and down. Visibility in the shallows was about 10-20 feet and cleared to about 30-40' below 25 feet deep. White, stringy bits of plankton filled the water at all depths. There was a gently-sloping, small-rock bottom going down from the surface to about 50 feet deep, where there was a wall stepping down to below 100 feet. I followed it South at a depth of 110-130 feet. I didn't see any cloud sponges. I saw a couple of boot sponges, but otherwise it was surprisingly empty, even for Saanich Inlet. I didn't see any tiger rockfish or schools of black/yellowtail rockfish. I only saw a few small copper and quillback rockfish. Several lion's mane jellyfish hung around off the wall. I went back up to the crushed-rock slope at the top of the wall. There were clusters of white burrowing cucumbers and a lingcod. I saw a few scattered examples of interesting marine life (a giant nudibranch, a sailfin sculpin), but overall, this is probably the "emptiest" place I've seen so far in the Finlayson Arm part of Saanich Inlet. Maybe I should have swam North. Anyway, somewhere around here is another garden of cloud sponges.