SUMMARY: Despite being right next to one of the best dives in town, this site still manages to attract divers. LOCATION: At the end of Tudor Ave. in the Cadboro Bay / University of Victoria area. -Next to Ten Mile Point. WHAT TO SEE: Not a huge amount of life compared to Ten Mile Point, but still a decent little dive. This bay is popular with dive classes and new divers. If you swim left, there is a reef and boulder-scattered bottom that goes down to about 60-70 feet. There are lots of purple urchins, orange burrowing cucumbers, california cucumbers and sunflower stars all over the place. You can see swarms of shrimp, hermit crabs, tunicates, nudibranchs and giant barnacles. Fish life includes copper and quillback rockfish, small lingcod, kelp greenlings and and assortment of small, hard to spot sculpins, gunnels, etc. There are a few octopus dens. The shallow areas are covered with bottom kelp in the warmer months. If you swim straight out, there is a mostly sandy bottom with a few scattered boulders. If you swim right, you get to Ten Mile Point. There is a bit of a transition zone here where the life starts to increase slowly and then before you know it you're on the wall at Ten Mile. CONDITIONS: This site is fairly well protected from current. If you swim out far in any direction, you may feel a bit of current when it's running. - Especially if you reach the Ten Mile Point area. Visibility is probably similar to Ten Mile Point, but maybe a bit less because it's shallower. I haven't been here enough to know for sure.
Even though this isn't what I would usually consider to be a "good" dive site, I came back in Early June, 2007 because I haven't been here in awhile. Visibility was half-decent for Spring Bay (15-20 feet) and I had a few unusual sightings. I saw a group of copper rockfish in a circle with a ruby octopus in the middle. When I approached, the rockfish pretended to look innocent while the octopus jetted off squirting clouds of ink. About 2 feet away was a pacific octopus under a boulder. I also saw a flounder sitting on a boulder (usually they are on sand). It didn't move when I came close so I took my picture with it (I probably could have picked it up). I also saw a red rock crab with a group of hoodlum copper rockfish following it. There was also a sunflower star chasing a buffalo sculpin over a pile of urchins. The sea star actually caught it, but the sculpin flailed around and finally broke free. -Definitely a weird day underwater.
I wanted to try out a closer-up kind of lens (Canon 50mm), so I came here because I didn't want to dive where there was a chance of seeing something great enough to make me regret not having a wide-angle lens. Visibility was the usual Spring Bay 10-15 feet. I did see another small octopus being hassled by some copper rockfish again.