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KirkD

San Diego recommendations

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I heading to Sad Diego the first of May for a conference and will have one day off. I want to go diving on that day. I wanted to know your recommendations. I was thinking of taking a boat over to Coronado Islands. Is this a good location? Any other recommendations would be appreciated. Also, would like to hear what charter services are recommended.

 

This would also be my first dive with my new Nikon D90. What lense i.e. macro vs wide would be good for diving Coronado islands? I have dove California before, Monterey to be specific. As I recall the visibility was < 40 feet and the water had a green color cast to it. Is this true for this area and would one of Alex Mustards filters be a good options for diving this area.

 

Thanks for you input.

 

Kirk

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Check these guys for day & 1/2 day trips.

http://www.gottadive.com/index.html

Coronados would probably have better water conditions than off the coast - usually good vis & warmer than Point Loma (Wreck Alley & kelp bed). For equipment checkout dive I usually just do Wreck Alley. The Yukon (Canadian destroyer) is good for WA (vis permitting) & some macro. Oceanographic tower (its also a wreck) has good macro. A couple of other sites but I prefer these, depending on what I need to shoot or test. Weekdays are less crowded on the boat, so more room for camera stuff. Just depends on what you're looking for & how many dives.

Edited by jcclink

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Check these guys for day & 1/2 day trips.

http://www.gottadive.com/index.html

Coronados would probably have better water conditions than off the coast - usually good vis & warmer than Point Loma (Wreck Alley & kelp bed). For equipment checkout dive I usually just do Wreck Alley. The Yukon (Canadian destroyer) is good for WA (vis permitting) & some macro. Oceanographic tower (its also a wreck) has good macro. A couple of other sites but I prefer these, depending on what I need to shoot or test. Weekdays are less crowded on the boat, so more room for camera stuff. Just depends on what you're looking for & how many dives.

 

 

Thanks for the info. Would you shoot 60mm macro @ Coronados Island or would you shoot the Tokina fisheye.

I've check out the web site. They don't have anythin booked out in May yet, but it looks like they do the Coronodis Island on Sundays, which will be the day I'd be able to dive.

 

Thanks

 

Kirk

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Coronados have GREAT sealions during the winter but I don't know about May. If they sealions are not there then they are pretty boring. If they ARE there then I'd recommend a 10-17 on the D90 for them.

 

Cheers

James

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I would recommend Marissa Dive Charters over DCI. www.marissadivecharters.com

 

You would probably enjoy a 3 tank charter into the point loma kelp/wrecks more than the coronados....

 

spencer

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First and foremost - I would absolutely NOT recommend www.gottadive.com - there have been a number of - um - mishaps lately, and I have heard from a very reliable source that the owners are trying to sell one of the boats.

 

I concur with Spencer, I think Marissa is currently the best dive op in town, and that is who I do all my boat diving with. The Lois Ann is also said to be quite good, and I have also heard nice things about Waterhorse.

 

R.e. dive sites, it depends on your abilities and where you typically dive. If you are not very experienced in cold water, I'd recommend Los Coronados. Los Coronados tends to be clearer water, and you can have nice encounters with sea lions. The vis is always, always hit-or-miss here, but it tends to be better on the whole at the Coronados. I'd bring both lenses and plan on doing at least one WA dive and plan on a switch on the boat to do one or two macro dives.

 

Personally, also like Spencer, I prefer the Point Loma kelp sites, and the wrecks are nice if you are into that, but the vis can be really, really hit-or-miss in both spots, and the conditions can be utter crap - current, surge. Also, the wrecks are deep (you will need to be confident of your diving skills in cold water) and most of the good Point Loma sites are deep, as well.

 

Have a great trip -

 

Allison

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hey Kirk,

 

I hope you have a good time in san diego

 

Everyone has already made a lot of good points. Here's my take, similar to what everyone else said:

 

Coronados - you have sea lions for Wide Angle, vis a little better than local san diego spots; temps are a little warmer.

Diving area is shallower; locals consider the coronados a little "barren"

 

Local wreck alley sites - deeper sites, 70-100ft, nice wrecks, but temp will be 50-51, vis can be so-so

 

Local point loma "deep" spots - 60-90ft, some awesome macro here, temp will be 50-51, vis can be so-so. The marissa boat knows these spots well.

 

For good vis in thick kelp forests, I'd drive up to dana point and take the ferry to the catalina dive park. although you can also get some nice spots & nice vis on a good day in the 30-50ft range in the shallow point loma kelp forest spots like new hope rock

 

On any of these dives, I'd do one dive with the 60mm, and 1 with the tokina 10-17mm, except for the point loma "deep" spots, I'd just use the 60mm or 60mm + 1.4tele

 

hope this helps

 

Scott

Edited by sgietler

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I had dove with Lois Ann many times in the past. They dove Yukon and Ruby consistenly and it's a easy simple 2 tanks 1/2 day deal. If I have one day to dive, I will take 60mm. If you don't care to absolutely must have some good pictures to take home, then take the wide angle. San Diego usualy has better visz than Monterey but not like those islands out there, so the chance of good vis is 1/2 1/2.

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I suddenly find I will be in San Diego in 2 weeks.

Are the sea lions present at Coronados now?

Is this where people would recommend for what will likely be my only diving in San Diego?

 

I would be shooting with a G9 with the OEM housing so no additional wide angle. With the fast sea lions I know camera delay will be painful, but I have never been on a dive with a sea lion and think that would be fun. Two Z240's for flash.

Do you think this rig would work at all?

 

I would have 1 or 2 weekdays to dive potentially, March 26, 27.

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Hi, Dave -

 

I did a few dives just last week at the 'Nados - there are sea lions (and lots of pups) now, and we also saw a huge harbor seal. To put it bluntly, trying to shoot them with a camera with shutter lag is going to be a bitch, but just snap away as much as you can - I have seen beautiful shots of sea lions from PnS cameras. As for what to choose for your only experience, as stated above, it depends what you're into. I think the Coronados are a nice intro to the area because of the sea lions and because the vis there tends to be pretty good, but the wrecks make a nice trip, as does the kelp off of Point Loma.

 

I'd try to join you, but I'm on the Peace that weekend diving the Channel Islands! Hope you have a great trip and nice dives.

 

Allison

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Thanks for the info and good wishes. However, it appears all the dive boats are only going out on weekends since this is the slow season and I can only go on Th and Fri that week.

While there might be some shore diving, I am not willing to solo shore dive in an unfamiliar location.

Sigh. Apparently the sea lions will have do get by without me.

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