The pristine waters of Toyon Bay provide the perfect location for snorkeling and studying marine science. At CIMI, students and teachers will dive right in and explore the wonders of the undersea world under the supervision of our Red Cross certified Waterfront Lifeguards. A full-length three-piece wetsuit, hood, mask, snorkel, fins, and booties are all provided.

Our program is designed to safety help students become comfortable in the water and explore the techniques used to study and learn about the ocean environment. Each successive snorkel experience will build on the skills learned previously. Snorkeling will allow students to:

  • Experience different ecosystems with our professional staff
  • See fish, invertebrates, and maybe even a marine mammal in its natural habitat
  • Swim in a kelp forest
  • Learn the use and function of snorkeling gear (provided)
  • Wear a wetsuit for warmth and floatation* (provided)
  • Have fun!

*Because the wetsuit acts as a flotation device, students are not required to be strong swimmers to participate in, or benefit from, the snorkeling program. Even non-swimmers can thoroughly enjoy the experience if they have confidence in themselves.

Orientation Snorkeling at Toyon Bay

  • Identification, use, and function of snorkeling equipment
  • Importance of the buddy system
  • In-water practice of basic snorkeling skills
  • Post-snorkel discussion and review of marine life that was observed
  • 4th Grade: 3a- 5th Grade: 3a

Basic Snorkel

  • Explore different underwater habitats (Kelp Forest, Rocky Intertidal, and Sandy Bottom)
  • Practice fish and invertebrate identification
  • Learn to safely dive below the surface
  • Wear a weight belt (at your instructor’s discretion)
  • Post-dive discussion and review of marine life that was observed
  • 4th Grade: 3a -5th Grade: 3a

Marine Ecology Snorkel

After completing the Basic Snorkel, all subsequent snorkels are focused on exploration and research.

  • Improve your snorkeling ability
  • Observe the relationship between behavior and habitat
  • Post-dive discussion will tie together what has been observed on the dives and learned in the labs
  • 4th Grade: 3a,b
  • 5th Grade: 3a,6a
  • 6th Grade: 7a
  • 8th Grade: 9a
  • 9th-12th Grade: B/LS B/LS 6a; I&E 1a-d,l

Night Snorkel

After completing at least the Orientation Snorkel, students will have the opportunity to experience the marine life in Toyon Bay at night. Please note that there is an additional $5 per student fee for this program.

  • Observe nocturnal marine life, not commonly seen during the day
  • Use an underwater flashlight
  • Experience the magic of Bioluminescence
  • Post-dive discussion and review of marine life that was observed
  • 4th Grade: 3a
  • 5th Grade: 3a
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