Lloyd's Water Page

This page last updated August 12, 2011 by Lloyd Johnson

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I do a lot of free diving, mostly at Black's Beach, and I take an underwater camera with me. Sometimes I swim with dolphins and sometimes with a seal. I usually find sand dollars and sometimes hermit crabs. On a few occasions, I've seen crabs, lobsters and jellyfish. I see quite a few sting rays and guitar fish too.

Lately, I've been swimming to the reef at Black's Beach, Torrey Pines Reef 2.  It's about 600 yards off-shore and 40' - 50' down.  I only have a few seconds to look around, but I find rock fish, garibaldi, gorgonians and star fish.  I have a short list of swimming buddies, but so far only a few have managed to get down to it.

I also scuba dive to Torrey Pines Reef 2, sometimes from a boat and sometimes from shore.  The shore dive is not recommended.  I think I'm the only one who does it, five times so far.  It's about a half mile hike, with a 300' change in altitude, then the 600 yard surface swim.

I finally dove Torrey Pines Reef 1.  It's further off-shore and deeper, 75'.  A few of the pictures here are from that reef.

A Dive to the Reef



Young garibaldi have these blue specks.

haven't identified
from reef 1

barred sand bass


blue banded goby
at La Jolla Canyon

black eyed goby
at La Jolla Canyon

some kind of flounder
perhaps a starry flounder or a rock sole
It's mostly covered in sand.  It's challenging to find it in the picture.  I have it's eyes centered in this thumbnail pic.  Click on it and the full size pic shows the eyes to right and the dorsal fin in the upper left.  I didn't get the whole fish in the shot.

painted greenling

giant sea bass
It doesn't look big in this thumbnail pic, but it's about 200 pounds.  The full size pic shows a kelp bass ahead of it, for scale.

kelp bass


black surfperch

yellowtail tuna
only around when the water is very warm




black croaker



I'm not sure if these are scorpionfish, sculpin or cabezon.

Morey eel


 California sheep head


sea cucumber

at La Jolla Canyon

sea snails

keyhole limpet

elephant ear


sea pansie


strawberry anemone


Spanish shawl
at La Jolla Canyon


sea lemon


California armina
at La Jolla Shores

California sea hare
at La Jolla Canyon

noble dorid
at La Jolla Canyon

at La Jolla Canyon


We find the reef by noting the position of this tower as seen from above the reef.  The tower can be seen from the parking lot, but not from the beach.   The further you go from shore, the more of the tower you can see.


There are more dolphin pictures and a few video clips on the dolphin page.


Theses are hermit crabs.
I often find these at 
San Onofre

These were at Black's Beach.


These are lobster at Black's Beach


spider crab

spider crab

spider crab

kelp crab

sheep crab

dungeness crab
at La Jolla Shores

decorator crab
at La Jolla Shores

swimming crab


I rescued this squid from a seagull at
Black's Beach.

at Reef 2

octopus video clip

at La Jolla Shores

at La Jolla Canyon


I took these jellyfish photos at
Black's Beach.

purple jellyfish

comb jelly

black sea nettle
bell medusa


These are white sea pens at
Black's Beach.

This is a sand anemone at
Black's Beach.

This is a sand anemone at
Black's Beach.
I found these about 25 feet under.


These are sand dollars at Rincon.


I find sand dollars at every beach.  Sometimes they are easier to find. I found these sand dollars laid out in veins at Black's Beach.  I always find them about 200 meters from shore and about 5 meters down.


I sometimes find starfish at
Black's Beach.

I find the spiney sand stars at depths of about 20 feet.

I only find the spined stars on the reef, 40-50 feet under.

The brittle star washed up with sea weed.

I found the rainbow star on Reef 1, 75' under.

spiney sand star

spined star

brittle star

rainbow star


I find sting rays, bat rays and guitar fish at Black's Beach every day.

guitar fish

a banded guitar fish at 
La Jolla Canyon

bat rays

sting rays


Some sting rays have sharp barbs along their back and all have a spear hidden inside the tail.


This is a horn shark, hiding under some rocks at Torrey Pines Reef 2, at Black's Beach.

Leopard sharks are small, about a 4 foot maximum.
Because of their small size, they are mostly harmless.

I spotted this leopard shark.  It wouldn't pose though..


Sometimes I find empty egg cases.  I'm not sure what hatches, maybe sharks, guitar fish or sting rays.  The lower end resembles an open mouth.  At the upper end is a sea snail, perhaps placed there by the mother, as food for the embryo.


I found these fish at Black's Beach. I think they are corbina.


Sometimes there are a lot of anchovies in the water.


I recognize cormorantsby the way they fly.  I see them swimming with only their neck and head out of the water.  Once in a while I actually see one swimming under water.
They are very fast and difficult to photograph.  These two pictures were taken at La Jolla Cove.


These are elephant seals, near Santa Barbara.
These are a few pictures from Little Beach, Makena, Maui, Hawaii.



manta ray


These are a few pictures I took near Kona, Hawaii.
Longnose Butterfly Fish

Ornate Butterfly Fish

Moorish Idol

Raccoon Butterfly Fish

Sea Turtle

Notice the orange knives near the tail.

I would love to find somebody who would be interested in swimming with me. It's always better to swim with a buddy. Unfortunately they are hard to find. I've only met a few people who will swim that far out. It would be nice to find somebody who can hold their breath long enough to reach the bottom, and withstand the pressure. Please email me if you have a passion for free diving.