Overview of Monastery Beach South

Monastery Beach South

Monastery Beach South
California North
USA West


Site Review by
Date: 01/27/2011


Site Condition
(1=worst, 5=best)

Name:  Pettyfogger Entry:    1.00
Email:   Click Here Bottom:    5.00
City:   San Francisco Reef:    5.00
State:   CA Animal:    5.00
Country:   USA Plant:    5.00
Diving:   51 years Facilities:    3.00
 Dives:   3500 Solitude   3.00
    Roads:    4.00


*Average:    4.14
They didn't nickname this place 'Mortuary Beach' for nothing. This dive venue is, IMHO, good only for those capable of advanced rough water beach diving. I've only been able to do a standing-up exit once there, the rest of the time, like everyone else, I had had to do the 'Monastery Crawl' to get out. The sand is STEEP, making for a monster backwash, with beaucoup rip currents in the middle part of the cove. Leave your SCUBA mouthpiece in your mouth at all times until you are standing on dry sand. If you get knocked over or tumbled by the merciless shore break waves, you need to be able to breathe while getting tossed around under the wave. Hold onto your mouthpiece if you're knocked down and sucked under a wave. If you find you can't make it in with your gear, ditch it and swim in with just your fins - then crawl out pronto. Bodysurfing experience is invaluable to mastering this place, and those familiar only to lakes and quiet boat dives in the tropics are taking their lives in their hands going in here without expert instruction and personal professional dive master. On the positive side, the reefs and sea life are the best California has to offer, and it's nice not having the Lobos rangers breathing down your neck.    

Enjoyment Level

Snorkel:    2.00
Beginner:    1.00
Intermediate:    2.00
Advanced:    5.00
Night diving:    1.00

Seasonal Information

Season:    Winter
Year:    2010
Visibility:    5.00
Current:    3.00
Surf:    1.00

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