McAbee Beach

California North, USA West
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Difficulty
Not ranked yet
Viz (last reported 92166h ago)
Max Depth
40ft (unconfirmed)

Snorkeling and Scuba Diving at McAbee Beach

McAbee Beach can be used by beginners and experts, alike. The easy entry leads to a large kelp bed just a minute off shore. Several old pipelines create an artificial reef, making this a complete site for marine viewers! In Monterey, heading West on Del Monte, bear right onto Lighthouse Ave, then bear right onto Foam St. Make a right onto Hoffman Ave. At the intersection of Cannery Row, you'll see the trail head.

McAbee Beach Tide Chart and Surf Report (Beta)

Saturday
1:42 AM / 0.287ft
Saturday
8:20 AM / 3.914ft
Saturday
1:01 PM / 2.662ft
Saturday
7:01 PM / 5.310ft
Sunday
2:23 AM / 0.308ft
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4.7
(12)
Zentacle
Zentacle
Sep 21, 2021, 1:05 AM
scuba
This is a view just to the right of the above picture. The hike isn't too bad. The entry couldn't be easier. The more interesting diving is just beyond the kelp bed. With the beach to the right, you can tell this is a popular area. If you are faced with a quarter mile hike from available parking, you may want to innocently ignore the No Unloading sign at the trail head.
Chris J
Chris J
Apr 19, 2011, 12:00 AM
scuba
Took a newly certified diver (13yr old son) for a nice, easy dive. Parked in meter area (2hrs max) and had plenty of time. Dove to 30 feet directly in front of El Toritos. Saw lots of ling cod and a sea lion on the way back in. Viz 20 max, light surge.
Originally posted on shorediving.com
David Stanwick
David Stanwick
Jun 14, 2009, 12:00 AM
scuba
After having a lousy experience at The Breakwater, I wasn't expecting much here. Boy, was I wrong! Conditions were great: shallow but plenty to see, good vis, no surge. Seals and otters have been known to gently harass divers here. You will want to bring a light, especially if cloudy or foggy, and good compass skills are essential. Go out on bearing 30 and return on bearing 210. The Mexican restaurant right next to this site lets you use their parking lot all day for $10.00. (This is actually a good deal compared to the other lots in the area, and most parking meters are limited to 4 hours.) A uniformed employee patrols the lot starting around 09:00 AM with a clipboard and will collect your money. You can park before he shows up and give him your money on a break between drives. I've heard from others that on some days no attendant is present and you can park for free. Public restrooms (no showers) are available one block SW, in front of parking structure on Wave St. & Hoffman Ave. NOTE: signs say NO scuba gear in restrooms, NO changing, dry wetsuits OK. So you can't 'go' between dives.
Originally posted on shorediving.com
Jerry Burawski
Jerry Burawski
May 1, 2009, 12:00 AM
scuba
Great beginner dive. Easy sand walk in and out. Today there was no current and no surf. It's usually better here when it's up than in other areas, although the vis was going from 20' to 30'. Often the harbor seals come and play with you at this site and because you're in the middle of town you're often the sight for passerby's. Shallow dive so watch you weight. Fun dive for the 2nd or 3rd.
Originally posted on shorediving.com
Sarah A.
Sarah A.
Oct 28, 2008, 12:00 AM
scuba
This was my shore dive venturing out of Breakwater. Visibility was horrible until about 20 feet down. Once you got down it was GORGEOUS! So many things to look at! We snorkeled out right down the middle, past the kelp, or a little past the cove, and then went down. Apparently, the parking booth at El Torito has been broken for awhile now, so there was no charge to park in their lot. It's a little bit of a walk with the gear but plenty of spots to tuck stuff away in while you dive. Had a great time. Bring a flashlight.
Originally posted on shorediving.com
Brian Xavier
Brian Xavier
Nov 28, 2005, 12:00 AM
scuba
McAbee Beach is a good dive in the heart of Monterey. Park on the street, use the meters, and walk down the path to the beach. Kick out to the kelp (35 ft), and dive back to shore. Some pretty nice fish here, although I can't help but think there should be more fish in Monterey overall. Some of the old-timers have told me there used to be lots more. You can also view the beach through the web cam les jackson.com
Originally posted on shorediving.com
Jeff Bailey
Jeff Bailey
Mar 1, 2005, 12:00 AM
scuba
This is a Monterey "Must" Dive. Cheap parking ($5 at El Torito), good viz on our first dive (25 feet), a couple of Harbor Seals to play with and the remains of the SS Gypsy if you look hard enough. All of the animal and plant life that you dive Monterey for without all the dive classes
Originally posted on shorediving.com
Owen DeLong
Owen DeLong
Feb 13, 2005, 12:00 AM
scuba
McAbee offers a variety of reef, Kelp Forest, and Sandy bottom types. Everything from Hermit Crabs to Kelp Bass to giant Jelly Fish. Rubber Lip Surf Perch, Black Eye Gobies and Sail Fin Sculpins are also common here. Lots of lush kelp and some old cannery pipes provide a rich habitat for a wide variety of fish and invertebrates. This is one of my favorite dive sites.
Originally posted on shorediving.com
Tony Linn
Tony Linn
Jul 26, 2004, 12:00 AM
scuba
It was pretty cool..... Got to swim with seals!!!
Originally posted on shorediving.com
Anonymous
Anonymous
Jan 15, 2003, 12:00 AM
scuba
McAbee is an excellent training beach or a great place for a night dive. Lots of interesting rocks and plenty of fish and invertebrates. Kelp can be an issue in the summer, though. There is a buoy about 100 yards out that is great for divers not comfortable with free ascents and descents yet. McAbee is also a fun place to visit for non-divers. It's right in the heart of tourist Monterey so there's plenty to do without diving.
Originally posted on shorediving.com
A Warren
A Warren
Sep 8, 2002, 12:00 AM
scuba
VERY long walk with all your gear from the parking lot. Fun because it was my first open water dive.
Originally posted on shorediving.com
Chris Talley
Chris Talley
Mar 2, 2002, 12:00 AM
scuba
MacAbee is a hit or miss dive. The first time I went there was 5' of vis and plenty of surge. The second time was a great dive with 30'+ vis. There is a lot of debris from the old cannery days of Monterey and lots of perch and rock fish around. I found 3 huge Cabezon on the second dive there.
Originally posted on shorediving.com