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PCH Scuba Site : Staircase in Malibu, California

Staircase is located in Malibu, CA and is one of our most remote dive sites. Staircase is named after the grueling hike up and down the steep cliff path, thus the local nickname "heart attack hill". The diver who overcomes and survives these challenges can be rewarded with an amazing, beautiful, healthy kelp forest and a vast array of marine life. The action begins right when you hit the water and goes out a moderate distance to depth no greater than 40ft depth. A harbor seal will often visit you on your dives at this location. Dive site difficulty level is 9/10.

 malibu, california


Interests: Giant Kelp Fish, Sheephead, Bat Rays, Sheep Crabs, Rock-fish, Spanish Shawl, and a variety of other Pacific Coast Inshore fish are common here. Lucky divers will see Nudibranchs, Harbor Seals, Spotted Kelp Fish, or Guitar Fish.

Entry & Exits: Sandy beach with small rocks and boulders.

Suggestions: Beginner divers will enter at the bottom of the staircase, and visit the reefs to the left or to the right. The kelp growth is mainly from 18ft - 26ft depth, but reef continues out to depth no greater than 40ft.

Best time to Dive: During small south swells and high tide. Visibility is best from late summer to early winter.

Visibility: 18 - 30ft

Warnings: The climb back to the parking lot is extremely strenuous. Do not enter/exit at low tide unless conditions are completely flat. Use prudent judgement when Beach Diving, perform an environmental assessment of the area before you gear up.

Depth Recommendations: 20 - 40ft is where most of the points of interest are for this site.

Safety: Use of float, flag, anchor and descent line are required for beach diving. Cell Phone, Oxygen Kit and First Aid Kit are always recommended.


Directions: Click on map for GOOGLE MAP directions


Parking is $6, and there are bathrooms available. The view from the parking lot is quite nice, and there are shady areas.

Photos of the Staircase Parking lot, and the path going down to the dive sites.



By Dylan J. Johnson

Tags: Advanced-courses, Best-scuba, Best-dive-sites, Coastal-clean-up-day, Club-meeting, Dive-boats, Santa-monica-pier, Charters, Parking-on-pch, Pch-dive-site, Pch-scuba-sites


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