Friday, February 14, 2014

"Wall" of hammerheads on our last day at San Benedicto!

Our last day of scuba diving this trip ended at San Benedicto Island, and the dive site selected for the day was “El Cañon”. At seven o’clock the people were ready to jump in the water and excited to see what this amazing place had to offer to us. The water temperature was 77ºF/25ºC, the visibility around 40ft/12m with strong current coming from east. We used the stern anchor line to get to the rock, and as usually happens when we have current, big animals showed up! When we started to go down, a chevron giant pacific manta came to visit us; she was following us for several minutes, playing with our bubbles. Because of the strong current, we had to stay close to the rocks on the protected side, and looking up to see the manta on our way to the southeast corner; once we got there, the hammerhead sharks were waiting for us and some white tip sharks too. At the beginning we had three swimming out into the blue. We were hanging close to the rocks so we didn’t drift away with the current; my group decided to stay on the same spot and wait if more hammerhead were nearby and we made the right decision because we started to see more and more! Adil  was there too and he pointed at us into the blue where more sharks were swimming around; we counted more than twenty! Everybody came back to the boat very excited after seen the school of hammerhead and the giant manta, now is time for breakfast!
For the second dive we decided to go to the same spot again, with the hope of another encounter with the sharks and for our surprise we had a “wall” of hammerheads! They were everywhere! In one moment we had a group of twelve coming in to our right side, five meters from us. Unfortunately, we had to head back to the surface, our bottom time at eighty feet of water was close to end and because of the strong current, we couldn’t move to shallow water and stay there. When we came back onboard, during the debriefing and talking to each other, we thought they were more than a hundred sharks! Apparently two schools came from different directions, where the food was.
The third dive of the day was full of surprises too, the current quieted down and the sharks were gone, but the mantas showed up. Five giant mantas came on the scene! One of them very friendly stayed with us for a long time playing with the bubbles of the scuba divers; also we had the opportunity to see some white tip sharks. When we were doing the safety stop, a group of dolphins came towards us!
After lunch, we were ready for the last dive of the journey. The current picked up and we had to made and extra effort to get to the rock. It was a short dive because of the water conditions, but full of excitement. Some white tip sharks, one manta and one gray tip shark were on our way.
As you can see, another day full of excitement on the Revillagigedo Archipelago, now the people is enjoying the sunset with some refreshments, talking about how wonderful was the last day of diving and watching some of the videos of the hammerheads, waiting for the delicious dinner that our chef Tony will cook for us “camarones rancheros” with rice and cake for dessert.
Until next time…
DM onboard Solmar V   

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