Diving Targets


We have had absolutely horrible conditions since Christmas. Between the large swells, wind, rain and resulting run-off, diving has been non-existintent for weeks. I snuck in a couple dives to teach a photogrammetry class, but that is about it until this week.

Dive 1 – 275′ Target (South of Pt Loma)

Tyler found a small target using bathymetry data. Steve Lawson took a look on his sonar a few weeks back and reported that it had some fish and something was there so we decided to go take a look while Scout looked on and supervised.

Since I was alone, I was only going to “bounce” the target to see if anything was worth going back to really investigate. I jumped in and discovered a pretty strong current mid-water and had to fight to get down. We had great surface conditions (it was cold, but sunny and flat ocean) but the water was very murky. It was 5-10 feet of visibility until well below 100 feet. It did clear up but then it was very dark — basically a night dive.

I did find something on the bottom; however, we are not sure what it is. I’m pretty sure it is man-made and it has one area that looks like a cowling from a jet engine, but it is very encrusted. Given the depth and limited visibility, I didn’t spend too much time searching for other debris areas. There also appears to be a wooden post buried in the sand which is even more confusing. We don’t know what this is, but below are some pictures (Note: my camera settings were wrong so I had to boost exposure in post processing — the pitfalls of too little diving recently — and the water had a bunch of particulate matter even at that depth).

The coordinates are in the screen capture above if anybody else has an interest in doing more research. I’d suggest bringing a wire brush to scrub off some of the growth if you want to figure out what it is.

Dive 2 – 140′ Target (Ocean Beach)

Tyler had another target based on bathymetry data which was on our way back home.

After we spent some more time scanning targets in the Pt Loma area and only finding small returns, we headed back to take a look. We both headed down the line and Tyler tied in a reel while I put a strobe on the line. The visibility was pretty bad (and it was about to get worse with Tyler’s shenanigans).

We found an engine that looks like it was an old-style big block V8 that went into some kind of race boat (I’m assuming) and there was also a big battery next to it. There were also a few crabs and few lobster making it their home. After a while, Tyler decided to blow out some of the sand to see if he could find any more information and the visibility went from bad to worse. 🙂


We knocked a couple targets off the list and were successful in at least finding man-made objects and not just rocks. The hunt continues….

Listening to…

“Some will sell their dreams for small desires
Or lose the race to rats
Get caught in ticking traps
And start to dream of somewhere
To relax their restless flight”

— Neal Peart

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