Ansell Place – Vancouver, British Columbia

Access: Shore dive. Freedivers at Ansell Place

Location: Head North on the Sea-to-Sky Highway in the general direction of Squamish. After about five minutes you should see an overpass and a signed exit to Ansell Place. Take this exit, turn left to cross the overpass, left again to get onto Ansell Place and then another quick left onto Citrus Wynde. Wynde your way down the hill and under the rail tracks and then turn right. Park in the cul-de-sac. You’ll find the dive site down the wooden stairs. Beware the slippery rocks at the bottom.

What you’ll find: Ansell Place is one of the best wall dives around and is now the main training ground for freedivers in the Vancouver area. This is where Eric Fattah made the first ever world freediving record in Canadian water. The wall is just a few metres from shore and drops straight down to past 30m. On it you will find feather stars, chimney sponges and cloud sponges. There are dense fields of sea peaches on the shelf on top of the wall, as well as sunflower stars, lingcod and the odd wolf eel. This is also a good place to interact with seals.

Hazards: Ansell is just south of the Sunset Marina and north of Sewell’s Marina so keep your eyes and ears open for boat traffic. Be especially wary of people fishing from rented boats. Also beware of red jellyfish in the late summer and early fall.