Washington Park, Anacortes, WA
Access: Easy Shore Entry
Aquatic Life: 5
Wall, Boulder Pile / Shelves, Kelp Forest
From the entry point, swim southwest toward the point of a relatively barren sandy bottom which turns to eel grass as you approach the point. Drop down when you reach the beginning of the point (just past the house with the bulkhead and where the steep cliff is on the shore) and follow the contour down and west as the slope becomes more prominent and turns into a series of ledges and then develops into a cascading wall covered in life. During summer months there will be kelp marking the wall so you can descend when you reach the barrier of kelp. The wall cascades down to about 85’ and is comprised of a series of steep shelves, overhangs and large rocks. Life covers nearly every surface of the wall and ledges LOTS of cucumbers and Giant Barnacles cover everything, huge urchins, sponges, GPOs, Puget Sound King Crab, Kelp Greenling, Lingcod, all sorts of perch and rockfish, etc. As you continue west it will become less gradual and you round the point. Come up over 40’ and ride the current back. The shallow section is just as interesting and dynamic as the deeper portions of the wall. Below the bottom of the wall the rock structure gives way to a steep sandy bottom.
Beware of heavy currents. ONLY dive this site on slack before an ebb current (slack at high tide) or you will be fighting current both directions. Hop into the water about 30 minutes before slack and drift along the wall staying below 45’ on your way out. When you hit the end of the wall (it will start to turn into a slope and not so rocky) or when you are ready to turnaround, head up above 40’ and the current will bring you back toward the entry point.
How to get there:
From I-5 take exit 230 onto Highway 20 West toward Anacortes. Go all the way through Anacortes toward the Washington State Ferry Terminal. Hwy 20 will turn into Commercial Ave, then 12th, then Oaks just before the terminal. Take a left on Sunset Ave, then left onto Skyline Way, then right onto Cabana Way. Park at the end of the street past the marina on the beach side of the road. There is beach access just before the gate at the end of the road that leads to a house that sits on the water.
Thanks to SwimmerTodd for submitting this site!