March 30th San Miguel 3 Dive Trip on the Vision
San Miguel Island is the westernmost of California’s Channel Islands lying 45 nautical miles (nm) from Santa Barbara and is part of the Channel Islands National Park. San Miguel is the sixth largest of all eight offshore islands at 9,491 acres, including offshore islands and rocks. Prince Island is located 2,300 ft. off the northeastern coast by Cuyler Harbor and measures 35 acres in area. The island at its furthest extent is 8 miles long and 3.7 miles wide. The highest peak is San Miguel Hill, at 831 feet. Because of its location in the open ocean, it is subject to high winds and lots of fog. The cold, nutrient-rich water surrounding the island is home to a diverse array of sea life that is not found on the southern islands.
The island is a tableland of lush grasses and wildflowers, with 27 miles of jagged, rocky coastline dotted with sandy white beaches. The westernmost of these beaches, Point Bennett, is the only place in the world where up to six different species of pinnipeds (seals and sea lions) can be found. Pinnipeds (“fin-feet”, “winged feet”) or fin-footed mammals are a widely distributed and diverse group of semi-aquatic marine mammals comprising the families Odobenidae (walruses), Otariidae (eared seals, including sea lions and fur seals), and Phocidae (earless seals). Scuba diving and kayaking with these creatures is a truly unique experience.