Skill Lv: All Divers
Saltwater State Park:
Debris, Tire Reef, Eel Grass Beds
Saltwater State Park installed a new artificial reef in early 2009 made of very large stacked granite boulders and cement pilings. There are three parallel "fingers" to the reef extending away from shore. After a very long, shallow swim over sand flats toward the marker buoys, the bottom will start to drop off at about 25' deep. At the top of each of the three fingers, there is a long stretch of rocks starting about 30' deep that lead to the stacked boulders which extend from 50' down to 80'. The stacks are impressively tall, reaching over 10' from the bottom in the deeper end. There is a trail of blocks connecting the reefs at the 40-50' range in case you end up between the fingers on your way out. There are white buoys marking the boundaries of the reef.
In the sandy flats between the reef expect to see all the local varieties of flat fish, Ratfish, Dogfish, etc.
It is best to dive this are at slack or on mild exchanges. It is a long swim to the reefs (about 15 minutes under water or on the surface to the buoys) and there is no protection from currents in this area. Current shouldn't be as much of an issue once on the reefs because you can dive the lee side if it is moving strong.
It is open in the Summer: 8 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Winter: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
This is a great park for families and outings. There is camping here during the summer.
How to get there:
To get there from I-5, take the 272nd ST exit and head west toward the water. Turn Right on 16th Ave S. then Left on 250th. Follow it until you see the signs to the Park and follow it down to the water.