Totnes Sub Aqua

Plymouth Dive Sites

Plymouth Sound

 

 

Asia Shoal

50:21.5 N
4:9.2 W

Type of dive

Boat dive. Divers enter water approximately 100m east of the North drakes buoy and head NE or NW depending on the tidal flow (ie. a gentle drift dive). Another possibility is to swim SE or SW when wanting a shallow second dive, depth then remains 9m or less

Standard

Novice and above. Viz best on flood tide.

Depth range

5 - 20m (on edge of channel).

Tidal conditions

Dive at any state of the tide. Slack 1 hour after HW. Flood tide goes west, ebb tide east. Fastest current 4 hrs before and after HW.

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Battery Point

50:21.4 N
4:10.1 W

Type of dive

Boat dive. Divers enter near shore and swim SE over shelf onto a cliff face peppered with holes and caves.

Standard

Sports and above. Can drift north or south depending on the tide. Viz can reach 10m, but usually dark. Torch is needed for holes.

Depth range

5 - 40 metres. Staying close to cliff face helps to stop you straying too deep.

Tidal conditions

Dive at high water. Slack period lasts for approximately 0.5 hr before and 0.25 hr after springs, and 0.75 hr before and 0.5 hr after neaps. High water tide turns before HW.

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Devil's Point

50:21.55 N
4:10.0 W

Type of dive

Boat dive. However, divers may enter from steps reached by walking from car park at Western Kings and be picked up by the boat cover. Entering by the landing place, divers follow the cliff face southwards.

Standard

Sports and above. In poor viz this is a very dangerous dive due to large amounts of fishing line. A torch is recommended for all dives. Popular fishing spot for shore anglers.

Depth range

0 - 30m. Stay close to cliff face and beware snagging of SMB line on overhanging rocks.

Tidal conditions

Essential to catch slack water which is even more important than at Battery buoy although slack period is the same.

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Draystone

50:18.8 N
4:11 W

Type of dive

Boat dive. Divers enter west of buoy, so as to keep out of the main shipping channel, and drift with the tide.

Standard

Novice and above. Visability generally good to excellent.

Depth range

15 - 25 metres, gradually shelving bedrock deepening to the East. Main shipping channel to east of buoy.

Tidal conditions

Tide flows and ebbs in a general N-S direction. Slack water periods are 2 hrs before and after HW (Devonport) but currents are never excessive. Obviously faster on springs.

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The Elk

50:18 N
4:10 W

Type of dive

Wreck dive from a boat. Use the marks along with an echo sounder. Wreck is mostly intact, sitting upright, bows pointing NW

Standard

Sports and above. Use a shotline to guide divers to the wreck.

Depth range

30 - 32 m. Deepest area on sand under bows and stern.

Tidal conditions

Can dive at most states of the tide, worst periods at HW and LW (Devonport); especially ideal on neap tides.

The Elk was a 181 ton trawler built in 1902, 108 feet long. It operated as a minesweeper in the 1st World War and again in the 2nd. Hit a mine 27th Nov 1940.

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Mallard

50:21.5 N
4:8.25 W

Type of dive

Boat dive. Divers enter on top of shoal and can either remain on top or swim over the cliff to deeper regions. In the latter case remain close to the cliff to avoid going into the shipping channel.

Standard

Novice (staying on top) to advanced diver and above.

Depth range

10 - 35m (at bottom of cliff).

Tidal conditions

Dive at any state of the tide. Currents gentle on the cliff but can run faster on ebb tide on edge of cliff top.

This sight is very exposed to other water users, especially yachts. It is recommended that divers remain between West and South mallard buoys and that the boat cover keeps between divers and oncoming traffic.

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Mewstone

50:18 N
4:6.5 W

Type of dive

Deep reef dive from a boat. depending on the state of the tide many types of seabed can be seen; from wide sandy patches to steep sided gullies covered in dead man's fingers and seafans.

Standard

Sports and above. Surface marker buoys are essential.

Depth range

10 - 30 metres. deepest areas lie to the SW, tail off quickly approximately 300m SW of the Little Mewstone.

Tidal conditions

Currents run NW-SE. Strongest periods at HW and LW (devonport) up to 1 knot; running SE at HW and NW at LW. Tide turns 2 hrs before and 3 hrs after HW. Strongest tides at springs.

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Tinker's Reef

50:19 N
4:8 W

Type of dive

Boat dive. Divers use Cardinal buoy as reference. Aim for the region up to 500m SW of the buoy and the sea bed is very rocky with patches of clean sand.

Standard

Novice and above

Depth range

10 - 20m. Variable sea bed.

Tidal conditions

Dive at any state of the tide. Tide runs similairly to Knap Shoal. Best viz. at HW. Ebb tides have dramatically lower viz due to outflow from the Sound.

This area, along with the region west to Knap Shoal was used as a Dockyard dumping ground and there is still a lot of lead and brass remaining on the seabed.

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