Ogden Point Breakwater - Victoria, British Columbia

Access: Shore dive. Divers walking out along top of the breakwater

Location: The Ogden Point Breakwater is on Dallas Road between Beacon Hill Park and the Inner Harbour. It is hard to miss if you are on the Victoria waterfront. You can find free street parking on Dallas road or inexpensive parking closer to the breakwater at the dive store.

What you'll find: If the weather is nice, the breakwater can be an excellent site for freedivers and snorkelers of all abilities. The open pacific is not far away so the breakwater gets lots of the cold, nutrient-rich water that passes through the Strait of Juan de Fuca on every incoming tide. The breakwater supports a huge variety of life, including lingcod, wolfeels, octopus, gooseneck barnacles, abalone, lined chitons and a variety of large anemones. During most of the year, the breakwater is fringed with a lush forest of bull kelp. Granite blocks at the base of the breakwater give way to broken rubble at about 20 feet and the kelp gives way to orange burrowing sea cucumbers. Beyond that, lingcod, swimming scallops and plumouse anemones in the 40 to 60 foot range.

Ammenities: The breakwater now has its very own dive store with a coffee shop on the floor above. It is a good place to rent gear and hook up with charters to more remote places. The best part for freedivers is that there are coin-operated showers where you can comfortably exit your wetsuit after a cold dive.

Bull kelp fringing the breakwater Hazards: Like most places in Victoria, the breakwater can get pretty windy. You may have to pick a different site if it's too bad. There can be lots of current as well. It is easiest to drift along with the current so find out which way the water is running first and plan the dive accordingly. Be sure to get out of the water before the current sweeps you out into the strait. There is quite a lot of small and large boat traffic nearby. Tanglement hazards include bull kelp and fishing line.

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Updated 18 January 2002
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