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Dive Review of Casion Point Dive Park in
The Continental USA/Avalon, CA

Casion Point Dive Park, Aug, 2008,

by Paul Jacobsen, CA, USA (Reviewer Reviewer 5 reports with 1 Helpful vote). Report 4423.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 501-1000 dives
Where else diving Florida, California, Caribbean, Micronesia
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas no currents
Water Temp 58 to 66 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility 15 to 40 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions None
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins Schools Whale Sharks None
Turtles None Whales None
Corals N/A Tropical Fish N/A
Small Critters 3 stars Large Fish N/A
Large Pelagics N/A

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter N/A Boat Facilities N/A
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments [None]

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations N/A Food N/A
Service and Attitude N/A Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation N/A Shore Diving 4 stars
Snorkeling 3 stars
Value for $$ 3 stars
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 3 stars
Comments Its been 2 year since I went over to the Casino Point dive park. I took the 7 AM Catalina Express over and returned at 6:45 PM with a schedule to allow me to do 3 dives at the park, plus diner in Avalon.

It's been a year since Ive dived my dry suit so I wanted to do a few dives in a controlled area to shake out my set up before I did a local dive boat trip. I didn't want to jump into the blue un-tested. This was a good plan as I had to do adjustments between dives, to adjust from a tropical set up to cold water.

I had forgotten how much fun a day at the dive park is, and how convenient the whole set up is. With easy in and outs with the steps, restrooms, and plenty of other divers to chat with. Catalina Divers Supply has a fill station at the park. So I rented my tank and weights for lighter packing.

The water temps were really nice by southern California standards, 64 to 66 degrees but I still hit a thermalcline at depth that was down to 58 degrees on the first dive, so I retreated to the shallower warmer water. The visibility was not as clear as it usually is and at worst was down to about 15 ft because of the currents that day.

Top side there were a lot of divers and several large classes, but under the water I only encountered divers a couple of times and it didnt feel crowded at all.

There were the usual Southern California endemics fish; Garibaldi, Kelp bass, Senioritis, Opal eye, etc and swimming through the kelp is always serene and interesting. On the first dive I had a very large polarized school (200+) of top smelt following next to me for a long time, they must have thought I was a big predator. They left me when I encountered a couple of other divers going the other direction. On another dive I turned over an old urchin shell to see if there was anything inside. This caught the attention of a big Sheepshead, who decided to follow me around. He probably was expecting me to break open a few urchins for him to eat, which Ive never done. He also had a female following him, but after about 5 minutes he figured out there was no lunch from me.

Around the old swim platform I came upon a large Bat Ray in the sand, I joined him there and watched him for a few minutes. He took off once I moved ahead of him.

All and all it was a fun day with 3 dives and met my objective to get set up for cold water dives in an easy environment. Even on the Catalina Express ride over I had good memories as we encountered a very large school of Dolphins mid channel. The boat slowed down and did a large 360 around them. We had a good show of them riding the bow wave and jumping over the wake, they were all around the boat. There must have been a school of bait fish, after we continued on our coarse you could see them all schooling in one area probably feeding. It looked like a Paraná feeding frenzy.

So get over to the park, you wont be disappointed by the easy diving.

The disappointment is the cost now days. The whole trip ends up being about the price of taking a local day boat out to Catalina. Because of paying for Parking ($12 for the day at san Pedro). Catalina Expresses upped there price because of fuel to $66 Roundtrip. I usually get a cab to haul me from the dock in Avalon to the dive park now $12 each way if you dont find some one to share the cab with. However, I walked back to the Avalon dock so that I could get dinner. Then toss in tank ($13 + 2 fills) and weight rentals ($7).
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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