Dive Sand Harbor
Sand Harbor is located 5 miles south of Incline Village, NV on Tahoe Blvd. / Highway 28. This is a very popular area for all sorts of beach and water activities, including SCUBA diving. Parking spots fill up quickly here when the weather is nice, so arrive early if you don’t want to haul your gear further than necessary. In this case, “early” means at or before 8 a.m. when the park opens (there’s often a line of waiting cars in the high season).
- Diver’s Cove has rocks to explore in the shallows, a divers’ obstacle course made of PVC pipes to test your buoyancy control, a (small) sunken barge, a Project Baseline station, and some other man-made oddities. This area averages about 30′ deep and sports some fun pass-throughs between boulders. For those who care to venture beyond the swim buoys, a sandy hill slopes quickly into the depths, where you’ll find large sunken trees and the occasional rocky outcrop. Rainbow trout have been known to hang out in the cove, and crawdads abound. Shore diving is easy, thanks to the gently sloping beach. Except in the very dead of winter, you’ll likely encounter open water classes on weekends.
- Sand Point is a fun alternative to Diver’s Cove with plenty of rocks to explore near shore around the point and then further west in smallish retaining walls with stretches of sand in between down to around 50 feet. There’s deep stuff to the west from the point, but it’s all sand and not really worth the effort. A sunken motorcycle lies southwest of the point (somewhere around the “90” on the depth chart below, I think). Entry is at the north end of the beach east of the parking lot. Don your gear and walk (in the water) toward the point, staying to the right. You’ll get to a spot deep enough to drop near the point.
There are also two boat ramps, from which you’ll see boats launching all day, so watch out for boats if you’re diving anywhere outside the buoy-marked area of Diver’s Cove. Dive flags are required in the state of Nevada. See Dive Flag Laws for more information.
- Access: Park opens at 8 a.m. and closes 1 hour after sunset. 150 feet minimum from parking to water, open year round
- Surface swim: A few hundred feet for rocks in the shallows, well over a thousand feet for deeper area
- Parking: $15 ($10 for NV residents) for the day, includes facilities
- Crowds: Get there early. Parking will fill up, and crowds will pack the beach.
- Dive experience level: Beginner to intermediate
- Highlights: Fun rocks to explore in the shallows. Buoyancy course. Drops off reasonably quickly outside the cove and west of Sand Point
- Dive flag: Required