Current at power station creek lengthens diving season

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The accompanying video is a compilation of dives at the Coteau Creek power station. It is at the base of the Gardner dam at Lake Diefenbaker in Saskatchewan, about 100 kilometres south of Saskatoon.

This dive involves a current, which requires some diving experience for safety. It also enables year-round access because the current keeps the water free of ice. The current may increase without warning. The site is at the bottom of the dam at the outflow of the power station.

The dive is accessible by entering from the west shore and completing a short swim, so access is fairly easy. Visibility ranges from 1.5 to 9.14 metres. The bottom is mud and clay with large rocks spread throughout. The depth ranges from 1.8 to 9.14 metres. While riding along in the current you will see groups of white fish, brown trout and burbot. On occasion, we have also come across rainbow trout and even a small sturgeon once.

About 400 metres from the start point there is a formed pit that you can drop into to get out of the current and explore a little. As you move alone and out of the “pit” you can sometimes catch a light back eddy current that will bring you back to within 50 metres of where you started.

There are a few hazards that divers need to locate. While in the current you need to watch out for the larger rocks and there are some old pipes with rebar sticking out of them in the southwest section and along the concrete wall near the entry point.

Author: Justin Rings is the director of publications for the Saskatchewan Underwater Council.

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