Review Date AVG ShoreDiving Site
12/29/2001 2.53 White Point California Mid, USA West
White Point is the only site in Southern California where you can park just steps from your entry/exit point. The quickest entry can be made in the center of the cove. Hide tide is the best time to dive here. The entry is a series of jumbled boulders waiting to trip up the unsuspecting diver. At high tide, you can make your way to knee deep water, then leap forward and start kicking fast! Depths inside the cove are shallow until you reach the open sea, where the bottom drops to twenty feet. Just outside the cove are warm water vents. The sulpher from these vents covers rocks and plants with a white coating. To the East of the cove are small walls about fifteen feet high that can be covered with lobsters at night. If the conditions are calm, you can venture into the shallow surge channels just East of the exposed rocks here. You will find remains of a small train that used to run next to the hotel and pool before World War 2. The wheels are about six inches in diameter. A healthy kelp bed is found just offshore from the East side of White Point. Here you will find Calico Bass, Garibaldi, Batrays and the occasional Smoothhound Shark. Straight out from the center of the cove is a reef system marked by a plaque dedicated to divers and a scientific study by USC marked by floating bleach bottles. Please do not disturb the area. West of the cove near the lifeguard tower are the scattered remains of the ferry Melrose. It was the first ferry used to transport autos. After a long career in the San Francisco Bay it was converted into a fishing barge until a storm beached it here. The best part about diving here during high tide is the exit. There are two concrete slabs about eight feet square that are exposed, but close to the water's edge. Here you can remove your gear, shower with a bottle of water heated by the sun in your car while you were diving. You can then put on dry clothes and pack your gear without getting sand in your car. Diving White Point at night can be very exciting. Since the parking lot closes at dusk, you must park at the top of the fire road South of the baseball field and hike down to the water. Because of the rocky bottom terrain, exits must be made carefully and quickly to avoid incoming waves. Visibility is usually poor, with five feet being average. However several times a year the visibility can reach forty feet. These are the days to explore as much of the area as possible.