After Work Dive – Aug 11 – Metridium Fields – 6PM

Thank you,, for the details and description! 

General Guidelines for After Work & Night Dives: To participate in after work dives or night must carry a minimum of two lights, one main light and one marker light (usually attached to valve). The dive must be terminated if a person experiences a malfunction of his/her light(s). Carrying three lights is strongly recommended so that the dive team can continue the dive if one ceases to function. For everyone’s diving pleasure, the club would like to thank all participants for RSVP by email to or call/text the dive coordinator at 530-867-3255.

Quick Info

Metridium Fields
Coordinates 36.61274, -121.89378[1]
Depth 45ft
Skill Level Beginner – Intermediate
Access Method Surface swim + submerged swim, kayak

Attractions & Wildlife

The eponymous metridium are members of a genus of cold water anemones that are brilliant white and almost seem to glow through the haze. As with all wildlife, do not touch these delicate animals but enjoy their ghostly white appearance at this fascinating spot. Nudibranchs, wolf eels, rockfish and swell sharks hiding in the rocks have been reported at this site[2].


Typical routes for Metridium Fields and Breakwater

The principle navigational aid on this dive is a large, 30 inch diameter steel pipe running straight out from the gray pump house near the bathrooms at a roughly 30° bearing[2]; -121.89633, 36.61086 towards -121.89447, 36.61207[1]). When visibility is good, you can follow the pipe from the surface while swimming out and descend directly on top of it at your pleasure. When visibility is not as good, you might choose to surface swim out a little farther south from the pipe (towards the Breakwater), descend and then swim north along the bottom until you hit the pipe. Once you’ve located the pipe, follow it along the bottom until it ends.

From the end of the pipe, follow a 345° heading[3] across the sand for about 10 yards[2] and arrive at the Metridium Fields. Typical wisdom suggests a due-north heading; this heads towards the far west end of the fields which you may miss if a current is present[3]

“On one dive when I was swimming north along the bottom hoping to find the pipe, I realized pretty quickly that I had overshot it somehow. Rather than scrub the dive and try again, I kept going north and then tacked right to the east. It turns out there are enough metridium rocks in this area that they’re not too difficult to find by dead reckoning. They might not be THE Metridium Fields but you’ll find some.” -Andrew Middleton

Skill Level & Hazards

Air conservation and monitoring is essential for the long swim out so divers should spend time on their dive plan and try to descend directly on top of the pipe either by following it all the way out from shore (visibility permitting) or eyeballing from the shore. Surfacing early this far from shore can pose a boat traffic hazard, so bring a surface marker buoy. Beyond the difficulty of access, this is a relatively good site for beginners, although good buoyancy control is vital so as not to disturb or descend onto the anemones.

As with all compass navigation, ensure you have a fix on shore/your return path before descending.

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