Recent Articles

  • Welcome to California Diving News – Your Resource for Diving the Golden State

    Welcome to California Diving News – Your Resource for Diving the Golden State

    Walk into a dive store in Indiana and ask the person behind the counter about diving in Bonaire. Or about the Cayman Islands. They have been there, and can tell you anything that you want to know. Tell them that you are going on a business trip to California and would like to dive there — what can they tell you about it? Odds are, blank stares. California …Read More »

  • A NorCal Coastal Treasure: Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuary By Jennifer Stock 

    A NorCal Coastal Treasure: Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuary By Jennifer Stock 

    It was 1977 when avid diver, career scientist and intrepid explorer Dr. Robert Schmieder spotted Cordell Bank on a nautical chart. One sounding on the chart indicated that it was potentially diveable even though most of the bank was surrounded by deeper water. Schmieder saw an adventure, something to discover, and something very challenging that, to his knowledge, no one …Read More »

  • Sharp and “Spiny Skinned”: California’s Sea Urchins 

    Sharp and “Spiny Skinned”: California’s Sea Urchins 

    My introduction to sea urchins — on my first scuba dive — was a learning experience. I learned how easily their sharp, brittle spines pierce the human body. Most importantly, I learned to avoid contact with sea urchins, which is easy because the animals are sedentary, slow moving and not aggressive. Sea urchins are classified as Echinodermata, which means “spiny …Read More »

  • A New Discovery Off Carmel Bay’s Outer Pinnacle: Exploring the Horseshoe

    A New Discovery Off Carmel Bay’s Outer Pinnacle: Exploring the Horseshoe

    What makes a great dive site? Clear water? Varied topography? Lots of fish? Colorful invertebrates? While most great dive sites have many of these things, few will have them all. One that does have it all is a seldom-dived site in Carmel Bay that divers call Horseshoe. Horseshoe is best described as one of the outer, outer pinnacles and is …Read More »

  • Crowd Control: Now’s a Great Time to Enjoy Catalina’s Cherry Cove 

    Crowd Control: Now’s a Great Time to Enjoy Catalina’s Cherry Cove 

    When the crowds of summer have gone, divers can safely get into nooks, crannies and reefs of Isthmus Cove that are usually jammed with pleasure boaters during summer months. Perhaps the most popular mooring area is Cherry Cove on the west side of Isthmus Cove. There are more than 100 moorings in the cove (controlled by the Isthmus Harbor Patrol) …Read More »

  • Tunicate Tales: “Simple” Sea Squirts are  Surprisingly Complex 

    Tunicate Tales: “Simple” Sea Squirts are  Surprisingly Complex 

    Of all the marine animals in the world, tunicates are vetebrates’ closest relatives and that includes the class Mammalia (us). Both tunicates and mammals are members of the phylum Chordata. Both have a notochord (a cartilaginous skeletal rod) when they are embryos. The notochord is lost as most tunicates grow older but it segments and turns into a backbone in …Read More »

  • After the diving’s Done: An Image Processing Guide for Underwater Photographers 

    After the diving’s Done: An Image Processing Guide for Underwater Photographers 

    Underwater photography involves a lot more than just making a dive and tripping the shutter. In last month’s issue of California Diving News I delved into the things you need to do before you dive to be sure your camera system is set up properly, and how to address the challenges of California diving. Here I’ll discuss some best practices …Read More »

  • Two-for-One Fun at Anacapa: Goldfish Bowl

    Two-for-One Fun at Anacapa: Goldfish Bowl

    Just the name Goldfish Bowl makes you think of a fun, cute dive site. And it is. But there is a deeper, more advanced dive also here that a lot of people don’t know about (more on that later). Goldfish Bowl has long been and remains to this day a favorites site for many dive charter boats out of Ventura …Read More »

  • Big Fun, No Matter How You Define It: Enjoying Aumentos Reef 

    Big Fun, No Matter How You Define It: Enjoying Aumentos Reef 

    On a good day in Monterey many boat divers hope their captains head south to Carmel Bay. While Carmel does offer some of the best dive spots on calm days, some of the more exposed and more interesting Monterey sites should not be overlooked. One of my top Monterey sites has got to be Aumentos Reef. I have heard some …Read More »

  • CA Diving Community Mourns Divers Lost in Boat Blaze 

    CA Diving Community Mourns Divers Lost in Boat Blaze 

    Early on the morning of September 2, 2019 the Truth Aquatics live-aboard dive boat, Conception, caught fire while anchored off Santa Cruz Island, California. Flames prevented five crewmembers who were on the top deck from reaching the stairs or emergency hatch to free those asleep below. Tragically, all 33 passengers and one crewmember who were sleeping in the bunk room …Read More »

  • The Flower Animals of California: All About Stony Corals

    The Flower Animals of California: All About Stony Corals

    It’s a fact stranger than fiction: there are underwater creatures commonly found in the Pacific Ocean off the California coast that are biologically classified as “flower animals.” The class is Anthozoa, formed from two Greek words, anthos, meaning “flower” and zoa, meaning “animals,” and it contains the stony corals. Anthozoa is a class within the photogenic phylum Cnidaria (the “C” …Read More »

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