Overview of Alki Pipeline

Alki Pipeline

USA West


For a change of pace from the other Alki dive sites, try the Pipeline. You may find an octopus in the rubble, as well as most other marine life found in the area!

Directions: Just South of downtown Seattle, take the West Seattle Bridge to hop over to West Seattle. Just before the bridge ends, make a right onto Harbor Ave SW. Drive Northwest until you round the point and find yourself heading Southwest on Alki Ave SW. Travel for a couple of miles until you round another point. Once on Beach Drive, heading Southeast, pull over at the end of the little stretch of beach at the corner of 63rd Ave SW. This is a roundabout way to get here, but it's the most scenic!


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Diver Reviews:    Click here to write a Site Review, and share any new information about this site!

11/04/2009 Anonymous (Avg: 3.62 Review) - We visited this site a few times this last March and it was great! Very good for beginners as you can get out there pretty far and still not be more than 30' deep. The rocks make for a very beautiful reef full of color! Lots of crab, small fish, anenomies, and plants. We even had a seal swimming with us. Just be careful of current if heading out to the large pipeline as it is easy to get off course and end up in the middle of nowhere with a long swim back :)

07/25/2009 Mike W. (Avg: 3.92 Review) - Much better than cove dives. Bottom composition conducive to good vis. and not silty, and pounded like the coves. We had 25-30 ft. in July. Shallow dive for long bottom time: we got over an hour, could have stayed longer but got cold sitting still taking pictures. Easy to navigate, easy to enter. I especially enjoyed the fields and fields of sea pens. Lots of critter filled eel grass covering the pipe. We dove it on the slack before flood and the slight current at the end of our dive took us right back to the entry. I really enjoyed this mellow dive. Great dive for newbies.

06/08/2009 Derek Hermsen (Avg: 3.42 Review) - I've dived here twice this year so far and it is an easy and fun dive. There can be a current when the tide is turning. Tons of plumose anemones toward the end of the pipeline where the 6' diameter opening is located. Lots of different kinds of nudibranchs including Leopard Dorids, Striped Nudis, Nainamo Nudis, Yellow Margine Nudis, Shaggy Mouse, Opalescent, Barnacle Eating Nudis, and more! Eelgrass near by and various algae all over the rocks/pipeline. Ratfish and rockfish. Sunflower stars, Purple stars, various crabs.

07/10/2007 Lynne Flaherty (Avg: 4.33 Review) - I've now done this site twice, once at high tide and once at very low, and I really don't know why I don't do it more often. It's easy to get to, to park, to get into the water, and to navigate, and there is a ton of life in those rocks, and very different from the Coves on the other side of the Alki point.

01/04/2007 EnjoysWater (Avg: 2.44 Review) - I have dove Alki Cove 2 numerous times, and have just recently done Pipeline, the mysterious other site that didn't have huge attractions (word of mouth), for the first time. It was on New Years Eve 2006, and I enjoyed myself thoroughly. The marine life was smaller, but different than other spots. Some good sized skates, stars I had not seen before, and a couple crab and anemones. Multiple little fish buzzing around, and goofballs sinking everywhere…well, we found quite a few. Shallow dive, so be sure you're weighted correctly. The pipe is fun to look into. Our lights didn't penetrate too far, and we could not see the end. It was tempting to swim into, but… This would be a fun dive to do at night. If cove 2 is crowded, drive a little farther, and see a new landscape. It was an entertaining dive number 49 for me.

03/23/2005 Peter Carr (Avg: 4.01 Review) - Hey I dig this site... easy access and stuff to look at. Things I've seen here: Octopus, a huge skate 4' across, and the most fun things: stubby squid.. they are sooo cute! This is a great fun, and safe dive... it's easy to see where you're going, and if you ever get into trouble, it's never more than 20' to the surface. This means you've got a long time to enjoy the critters, too.

05/01/2002 CT (Avg: 4.30 Review) - Best done as a night dive on a calm night. I've seen Rockfish, various Gunnels, Sea Cucumbers (psolas), numerous forms of crab, Sturgeon Poachers and one of the more impressive displays of Plumose anemones I've ever seen at the end of the pipe.

01/02/2002 Jim Morrison (Avg: 4.09 Review) - I call this Alki south and it is an old sewer pipe that has rocks and growth on it going way out into 35' of water. It is at the Charles Richey Sr. viewpoint. Lots of small perch everywhere. Large stars and anemones. Lots of painted greenling. It is out from the intersections of Beach Drive SW, 63rd and also Spokane street comes in there. Nice beach. Take a compass heading while following the pipe out (about 200 degrees magnetic?). You will not see rocks or pipe at between 20 and 25 feet, keep going the best is yet to come. Peek back inside the end of the pipe but I don't think it is safe to swim inside the pipe (6' diameter?). A few more rocks and debris south of the end of the pipe in 38 feet of water. (I dove with a tide of 6.3 feet, so these depths are relative to that.) Weight so you can spend some time in shallow water (10-15')looking around all the rocks when you come back in.

10/08/2001 Brent T (Avg: 3.80 Review) - My favorite site! Every time I dive here (20+ times) I see something different. This site is a very simple site to dive. I recommend not diving during a low tide, as most of the dive would be in less than 15' of water. A great site for photography. Easy to get to and easy in/out of water.


Site Photos

(click photo for a larger version)

 Map     Sat
GPS: WA1101


Parking at Alki Pipeline 

Park along side the road, next to this sign.

Trail Head

 Map     Sat
GPS: WA1102


Trail Head at Alki Pipeline 

The ramp makes for very easy access.


 Map     Sat
GPS: WA1103


Entry at Alki Pipeline 

This small overlook shows the pipeline and the hike to get to the water's edge.




Aerial at Alki Pipeline 
(click photo for details)

The pipeline is clearly visible in the center of this picture.

Last Verification: July, 2001  


Diver Averages for  Alki Pipeline  (1=worst, 5=best)

Average Site Condition

Ease of Shore Entry:  3.78
Bottom Conditions:  4.00
Reef Conditions:  4.11
Animal Life:  3.78
Plant Life:  4.11
Facilities:  2.11
Solitude 3.33
Roads:  4.00
*Site Average:  3.77

Average Enjoyment Level

Snorkel:  3.22
Beginner Scuba:  4.33
Intermediate Scuba:  4.11
Advanced Scuba:  3.44
Night diving Scuba:  4.00

Number of reviews for this site: 9


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