Dive report: Malaga Cove 7/30/05

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Posted by Dick J on July 30, 2005 at 16:31:56:

Date: 7/30/05
Dive Site: Malaga Cove
Dive Start Time: 10:00
Air Temp: 70degF
Water Temp at Depth: 67degF
Surf at Entry/Exit: 1.5-2.5ft
Visibility: 5-20ft
Max. Depth: 31ft
Bottom Time: 83min

A chance to do a shore dive on a day this beautiful could not be passed up. By the time the dive began the coastal fog had burned off, revealing a picture-perfect sky. Entry was made at the far end of R.A.T. Beach, where surf averaged 1.5-2.5ft making for a stress-free entry and exit. The dive began at the west end of the kelp bed and proceeded eastward and seaward, parallel to the bedding direction of the exposed rock layers on the sea floor. Visibility was quite variable, ranging from 5ft to 20ft, improving with distance from the shore. The water temperature was very pleasant; even though this was a longer duration dive, there was no discomfort diving without a hood and vest.

In addition to the marine life shown in the photos below, the following fish species were observed: opaleye, sheephead (juvenile only), barred sand bass, calico bass, rubberlip perch, bay blenny, blacksmith, senorita fish (wrasse), rock wrasse, scorpion fish, bat rays (2).

This was the first outing in quite a while for what is now the “beach cam” and after getting re-acquainted with our old friend Mr. Shutter Lag, the camera did quite well.

Enjoy the photos!

View through gazebo overlooking Malaga Cove, toward R.A.T. beach.

Pathway to the sea.

Looking back toward entry/exit point at end of R.A.T. Beach; notice the lack of significant swells.

View from drop-in point at edge of kelp bed; gazebo is visible at top of small bluff.

Welcoming party; this guy/gal? was waiting on the bottom at the drop-in point.

Juvenile garibaldi.

Swirling vortex of salema grunts; at times they were so thick they blocked the sunlight.

Golden gorgonian soft coral, just beginning to develop.

Tube anemone.

Black eye goby in cozy grotto.

Blood star.

Hermit crab on red soft coral.

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