Overview of Christmas Tree Cove

Christmas Tree Cove

Christmas Tree Cove
California Mid
USA West


Site Review by
 Phil Garner
Date: 11/17/2001


Site Condition
(1=worst, 5=best)

Name:  Phil Garner Entry:    1.00
Email:   Click Here Bottom:    4.00
City:   Torrance Reef:    3.00
State:   California Animal:    3.00
Country:   United States Plant:    2.00
Diving:   30 years Facilities:    1.00
 Dives:   2400 Solitude   5.00
    Roads:    2.00


*Average:    2.70
This is my favorite beach dive site in California. The visibility averages five to ten feet better than other sites on the peninsula. The trail can be a killer, but my wife(5'3")once carried three tanks up the hill in one trip. If you plan to make two dives, I suggest taking tanks for both dives down together rather than making two trips up this trail. You can leave the second tank between some rocks on the shore. If someone wants to steal it and carry it up, more power to them. As you enter the cove, the area immediately to the right has some excellent snorkeling in five to twenty feet of clear water. The best diving begins just outside the center of the cove. There are rocks the size of school buses covered with sea stars, kelp, sponges, anemones and an assortment of fish. There is a high spot outside and to the left of center that breaks the surface at low tide. If you follow this reef offshore you will find beautiful overhangs and hiding places for many critters down to eighty feet, where the rocks give way to a sandy plain. Here you will find seapens, tube anemones, sand dollars and Halibut. The first time I snorkeled at Christmas Tree Cove, I saw a Leopard shark and a large Batray in the shallow spot. My first scuba dive here brought eight Blue Sharks and a very friendly Harbor seal. After getting out of the water once, a Gray whale surfaced right where I had been less than two minutes earlier. When the ocean is flat and you feel adventurous, this is well worth the hike. Photography can be excellent, however hunting is rather poor. There seem to be few large fish and even fewer lobsters here.    

Enjoyment Level

Snorkel:    5.00
Beginner:    1.00
Intermediate:    4.00
Advanced:    4.00
Night diving:    1.00

Seasonal Information

Season:    Winter
Year:    2001
Visibility:    4.00
Current:    3.00
Surf:    3.00

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