Date: 24 June 2018
Time: 0837 PST
Location: Picnic Beach- Heisler Park- Laguna Beach, CA
Max depth: 35′
Dive Time: 80 minutes
About the dive: Surf entry was about 3′ red sets and 1.5′ green sets. Started entry during green set and got hit by a red set before completing entry. One of us got tumbled in the entry and started laughing so hard it was hard to stand up!
Great dive with Joe, Jake and Ashley. Descended at Island 1 visited Island 2 and 3 as well. Found 6 large California Sea hare on Island 2, and new stuff on Island 3! We found a handful of Spanish Shawl on island 2 (we normally see them on island 3 only) On Island 3, we found Porter’s Chromodoris, California Blue Dorid, and Spanish Shawl! This was the first time we had seen Porter’s Chromodoris and California Blue Doris at this dive site! Also, on island 3 was a crevice filled with a larger California spiny lobster and many shrimp! Pretty sure they were coon-striped shrimp, but not completely certain as they are better known to be in the waters of Northern California to Alaska instead of Southern California.
Photography/videography was tougher than normal here today with the extra surge. Normally there is very little surge at this site – today was 5′ surge with 10-15′ vis.
We also saw many of the normal Southern California natives: Garibalidi, California Sheephead – terminal, initial and juvenile; kelp bass, rock wrasse- terminal and initial, blacksmith, seniorita, sargo, black perch, Zebraperch, Starry rockfish, Coronado sea urchin, purple sea urchin, and Salema. Also, there was Southern Staghorn bryozoan, fluted bryozoan, hydrocoral, California golden gorgonian, brown gorgonian, purple gorgonian, kelp (lots of kelp- easy to catch a fin strap on), saragassum, wavy turban snail, red volcano sponge, gray moon sponge, white finger sponge, and anemone (not sure which one…).
All in all, this is one of our favorite shore dive sites. We didn’t see a Giant kelpfish this time, but normally we see a few. Guess we spent too much time on the rocky reef structure searching for our nudibranch friends and in the crevices. Oh well, the search paid off! Not only did we see 1, but 4 Porter’s Chromodoris!