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Back  |  USA: Pacific Northwest   |  Puget Sound - South

The Smelter  |  USA: Pacific Northwest

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Ruston Way
The Old Smelter/Ruston Way
North Ruston Way and North Waterview street, Tacoma, WA

Type: Saltwater-OpenOcean
Access: Moderate Shore Entry
Parking: Good

Ratings (1-5):
Reviews: 1
Enjoyment: 3
Visibility: 3
Current: 0
Aquatic Life: 5

Photo Gallery:

Starry Flounder
Dogfish at Smelter


Structures, Boulder Pile / Shelves


There is a surface swim of about 75 yards out the point of the breakwater which drops down to about 30'. Everything before the breakwater is shallow (about 10') The bottom starts out as a cobble but eventually turns to sand and sea lettuce. There are rocky areas here and there, but nothing substantial besides the breakwater. The main stars were the Dogfish, the Ratfish and Rockfish. There were also an abundance of Staghorn and Buffalo Sculpin, as well as Eel Pouts and Snake Pricklebacks.

Special Restrictions:

Be weary when diving here at night mainly due to the type of people that park around this area to do only Heaven knows what. Also, use care when changing in and out of your gear due to broken glass and other questionable items being scattered intermittently across the ground.

How to get there:

Take I-5 to the City Center exit near the Tacoma Dome, and take the side of the exit that leads off to I-705. Follow I-705 to the north/west and it will fork at the end and you will want to follow it to the left. After the freeway there will be two lanes again. After about 1.5 miles, the road will fork again and you will take it to the LEFT. That will put you on Ruston Way, and you will follow that road for 2.5 - 3 miles. Basically the Smelter is located at the last possible place that you could park before the road veers North away from the water. It is a dirt parking lot next to a construction site.

Thanks to Matt_Tyler for submitting this site!
  Comments Leave Review  
Slobert9/25/2007Rating: 3
I used to free dive this site. Its a big site and if Les Davis is crowded you can find solice here. The breakwater has gunnels and rock fish and goes to about 30 feet deep. Below the breakwater in about 40 to 50 feet is were I saw my first dog fish. All in all not a bad place. Vis is really effected by the Puyallup river though so have a back up plan.


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