Discovered by Eric Minard when he was seeking promising halibut hunting grounds, this Corynactis covered spire and satellite Metridium patch is a staple of the Monterey dive charters. Beginners and hardened verterans alike can appreciate an exceptional diversity of life in a small geographic area. As of early 2005, a number of animals usually associated with warmer waters have gathered at Eric's in large numbers. Blacksmith, halfmoons, opaleye, sheephead, and even calico bass could all be seen on a single dive. This is also an excellent place to visit when "storms" of sea nettles are in abundance. The 20 ft high spot at Eric's and its attendant school of blue rockfish are shallow enough to be surrounded by the clouds of jellyfish. The total scene is quite a sight.
The top of Eric's pinnacle is covered in Corynactus californica. This area is in somewhat pristine shape despite the hoards of divers that come here. I suspect that a misplaced fin here or there isn't much compared to the fury winter storms inflict upon things in such shallow depths. Striped perch (Embiotoca lateralis) such as this one can be found almost anywhere a Monterey diver may venture. "Eric's Pinnacle", Monterey Bay, California February 10, 2007
Striped perch (Embiotoca lateralis) and club-tipped anemones (Corynactus californica). "Eric's Pinnacle", Monterey Bay, California February 10, 2007
When disturbed from rest, thornback rays (Platyrhinoidis triseriata) demonstrate the graceful wing rippling they use for propulsion. "Eric's Pinnacle", Monterey Bay, California January 8, 2005