Episode 104: “The Emerald Sea”

E104:  “The Emerald Sea”

Scott brings Ellis and the Descending team home to Canada for some cold-water diving off Vancouver Island.  Scott and Ellis make friends with some questionable creatures and then pilot a jet at 80 ft below the surface.  Above the water, the team is put to work preparing a ship for scuttling.

Special thanks to the organizations that helped make our trip possible:

BC Ferries

Browning Pass Hideaway

Destination Nanaimo

49th Parallel Diving

Pinnacle Scuba Adventures

Sooke Harbour House

Sundown Diving

The Artificial Reef Society of British Columbia

Tourism Vancouver Island

Episode  Commentary:

Scott:  A number of local divers had said that this was the best cold water diving in the world.  A bold statement…. but they were on to something and it’s amazing how accessible it can be.

B.C.’s waters are full of life and very few know what is down there to see.  I remember diving with Andre at Whytecliff Park a few years ago and as we got out of the water a family was standing on the shore staring at us amazed that we were diving there.  They were even more amazed when we told them just how much there was to see right off the shore.  

We’ve tried our luck a few times with shore dives at Madrona Point near Parksville and had some good octopus success there too.  It’s a wonderful paradise for a diver when you can just drive up to the end of a road, don your gear and walk right into the ocean and experience awe-inspiring wildlife!

While all the diving off Vancouver Island is incredible, Port Hardy is the jewel of the North Pacific to me.  Thanks to John at The Hideaway, we saw so many magnificent dive sites that we couldn’t show nearly all of them.

 I’m just disappointed that our tight schedule meant there were tons a magic spots we just didn’t get to.  But thankfully this is Canada, so I know I’ll be back.

Ellis:  I froze my butt off on this one – my first real taste of cold water diving – 7 degrees Celsius. I don’t know how many hours I spent with my neoprene dive glove removed – wiggling my bare fingers, as ‘live bait’, in an effort to entice a Giant Pacific Octopus from its den, but it was definitely worth it.

Photos:

Scott and Ellis enjoying a laugh before a dive.

A curious local

Diving the legendary waters off Port Hardy, BC

Scott's wake-up call for Ellis

Time to get rolling