Posted by Max Bottomtime on January 02, 2009 at 08:07:27:|
In Reply to: Re: Re: Thanks Don posted by halibug on January 02, 2009 at 01:08:17:
After more than 300 dives at Marineland and 150+ dives in Laguna Beach I can say there is no comparison. The reef off Long Point is, in my not so humble opinion better than anywhere along the frontside shoreline of Catalina. It has nini pinnacles completely covered with invertebrates, color that would please Walt Disney and always a few surprises to find for those willing to slow down and look. Because of the rugged shoreline and difficuly access the reef is thriving and you can make a nearshore dive without having twenty Garibaldis in your face.
Laguna Beach is nice, as the entries and exits are mostly mellow walk ins/outs and with the sandy bottoms, clears up quickly after storms. The only problems I have with Laguna are the restrictions still in place. Believe it or not, some divers actually dive solo or without a snorkel. I know that the Marine Safety Officer said the lifeguards won't enforce those rules any longer, but I know of three divers who have been refused entry because of the no snorkel law by a lifeguard who "hadn't heard" of the new rule. Until they actually remove those silly ordinances from the city's books, I'll stick to L.A. County.
As far as the restrictions getting ominous, it is a working construction site. There have been a couple of times when access to the site has been closed, once for more than ninty days. Part of the agreement with the California Coastal Commission is to allow public access to the cove when construction is not being done in the area of the trail. Turner Construction has been extremely helpful and generous with the access. They have even driven divers and their gear to and from the beach, including me on one occassion. The road to the point has never been open to the public, but at times the construction crew has allowed divers to cut through the site. This doesn't mean we can do it any time we please.
As with anything else, there are always a few who break rules and mess things up for the rest of us. For the rest of us, Marineland is a remarkable dive that takes a bit of effort to reach. It's much easier than most Palos Verdes sites, as there is no cliff climbing involved.