Lake Crescent

 

Overview

With crystal clear waters and lack of current, Lake Crescent has a variety of easy shore dive sites. there is not much to see in this lake as far as aquatic life, but it is fun to dive and makes for a good gear rinse after diving Sekiu or Neah Bay. We will start on the east end of the lake and go west. The biggest risk associated with diving in Lake Crescent is depth. The lake is so clear and natural light penetrates so deep that it becomes very easy to dive deeper than planned. Pay close attention to your gauges to stay out of trouble. Remember to fly a dive flag as it is unsafe and illegal to dive in Lake Crescent without one and if the rangers catch you they will slap you with a fine.

 

Getting there

Lake Crescent is located approximately 18 miles west of Port Angeles on Highway 101.

 

Lake Crescent Dives

 

 

East Beach Barge

East Beach is closed to diving from Apr 30 thru Sept 30!

  East Beach Barge with diver on it

Here you will find an old wooden barge that sank here some time ago. Penetration is possible but not advised. To get to the barge wreck at East Beach, follow highway 101 to East Beach Road. Turn right, travel about .7 mile till you see a sign that says East Beach. Turn left at the sign and drive down the hill to the parking lot. If you are in the parking lot facing the water, look to your right. You should see some houses. The barge is located in front of these houses with the top of the barge in about 40 ffw.

East Beach Rock Garden

To find the rock garden, follow the directions above to East Beach. Once in the parking lot, look to your left. you will see a point of land on the left side of the cove. The rock garden starts around this corner. Someone has laid guideline here in the past that will guide you through the rock garden. The rock garden came about as a result of an ancient landslide that separated Lake Crescent from Lake Sutherland. Just as anywhere else on the lake, life is scarce but the draw to diving here is some monstrous rocks. Some as big as a house.

 

East Beach Small Wreck

This is a small dory style boat with a single cylinder engine mounted in the center. Nothing special, but worth a look if you have never seen it. To find this wreck, swim out to the large log sticking out of the water, and descend to the bottom of the log. Next follow your compass south until you reach another log beginning in about 60 ffw Follow this log and you will see the boat on your left at about 80 ffw

Sledgehammer

This is a wall dive located at the first lakeside turnout going west(18.3 miles from P.A.)around Lake Crescent on highway 101. This is almost a straight drop off the edge that goes DEEP. Popular with tech classes, this site offers great visibility and easy access to deep water.

Lake Crescent Lodge

Follow highway 101 west around the lake until you come to the sign for Storm King Ranger Station. Turn right onto the road, left at the four way stop, and follow the signs to Lake Crescent Lodge. Park in the lot facing the water. If you swim from the dock to the right there is a good chance of seeing fish. We also found an old chandelier in about 35ffw.

Underwater Forest

This is one of the coolest dives that I have done in this lake. You can swim through trees sixty feet deep. From Lake Crescent lodge you can boat or carry your dive gear to Barnes Point. From Barnes Point, look left. This is Barnes Cove where the u/w forest is located.You can also park at Bovee's Meadow and the walk is shorter. Suit up and swim out to a very large log laying on the water. From the log, descend to 60 ffw and follow this contour in a southerly direction until you find the forest. It took us several dives to actually find the forest so don't give up, it is well worth it when you find it. There is also a good possibility of finding fish here as they seem to gather to feed at the mouth of Barnes Creek.

 

La Poel

La Poel is another area with easy shore access although there is not much here to see. La Poel is a picnic area that is open during the summer from dawn to dusk. Head west(24.1 miles from P.A.)past the Storm King Ranger Station on 101 until you see the sign for La Poel picnic area. turn right and follow the dirt road to the water. Park in one of the picnic areas along the water, jump in and explore!

North Beach Picnic Area

Just after you pass the store at the west end of the lake, you will see a sign for Camp David Junior. Turn right here and follow Camp David Junior Road until you find the sign that says North Beach Picnic Area. You will have to carry your dive gear a short way to the dock from the parking lot. Again, there is not much to see here, but it is a relatively popular picnic area so sometimes it is possible to find TREASURE(e.g. anything cool on the bottom!).

Devil's Punchbowl

Devils Punchbowl is possible to dive from shore but is easier to dive from a boat.

BOAT DIVE: Launch at Storm King. Head for the north shore of the lake. From here head west until you find a small cove in the hillside with an arched metal bridge spanning it. this is Devils Punchbowl.

SHORE DIVE: Drive towards East Beach. Follow the road past East Beach to the Spruce R.R. trail. Follow the trail about two miles to Devils Punchbowl.

THE DIVE: This is a favorite treasure hunting spot because it is a popular spot for people to jump into the water from the rocks and people are always dropping stuff for divers to find. The bottom of the bowl is 74 ffw and slopes to a ledge that drops into blackness. Heading around the corner either direction from the bowl are vertical rock walls that drop DEEP.

All images copyright Strait Scuba 2003-2012
 
 
 

 

 

 

 

 

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