Diving in Campbell River
Vancouver Island is home to some of the best coldwater diving in the world. There’s way too much to tell you about the Campbell River dive experience so we decided to simplify it down to all the REAL stuff you need to know.
EXPLORE & HAVE FUN
EXPLORE & HAVE FUN
Local Dive Sites
The waters around Campbell River teem with marine life due to the large nutrient tidal exchanges here. Thinking about joining us in the watery depths? Be sure to check with a local dive shop for advice and details. Here are the top places to explore the underwater ecosystems surrounding Campbell River.
In the cold coastal waters, these cliffs drop to over 30M (100’) below the surface of Discovery Passage. This site has been written about in dozens of diving magazines around the world due to the dramatic drops, massive boulders and colourful soft sponges and corals. Here you will also see huge lingcod and rockfish, and the occasional wolf eel or giant Pacific octopus.
Scuttled in 1996 as an artificial reef, the former 112M (366’) long Naval Destroyer Escort HMCS Columbia now lies on the bottom of Maude Bay, attracting a wide array of interesting marine life that now call her home. Her decks are adorned with brittle starfish and swimming scallops, while inside you might catch a glimpse of the large Cabezons that call this ship home.
Close to downtown Campbell River, on the Tyee Spit, this is a very popular shore diving site with local divers; the pilings of this ore loading facility are encrusted with barnacles and huge plumose anemones from the bottom at 20M (65’) all the way back to the surface. At night you are almost guaranteed to see more than one Giant Pacific Octopus. These nocturnal hunters are often sighted perched on a piling waiting for an unsuspecting crab to happen by.
Steep is one of the most unique diving sites in British Columbia. Cascading walls down to over 30M (100’) with a large wall of tube worms. The kelp greenling fish here are so tame that they will follow divers around the dive site. This site is a prime example of why British Columbia waters have been rated as the top temperate diving in the world.
One of the most well-known shore diving sites in British Columbia, fields upon fields of small strawberry anemones cover the floor of this dive site. Any exposed rock that isn’t covered in bright red has one of a plethora of other soft coral or sponge. Make sure to check the currents and only dive at slack tide as this site is quite close to the Quadra Island ferry terminal.
Snorkelling with the Salmon
The Campbell River is the ideal location to get up close and personal with the salmon for a river adventure. Prime snorkelling season begins in August. The river moves quickly and gets shallow in some places, so this activity is best pursued with a guide to spot hazards to ensure the most thrilling adventure – becoming one with the river!