Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Dolphins, mantas, sharks, and whales at San Benedicto!

At the surface we had a very clear sky, amazing and bright sunrise, no wind no swells. Underwater the conditions were: vis 10m/30ft water temperature 23˚-24˚C / 73-75˚F with a mild current from the west.
Our first stop was at the corner of the cleaning station at 60' of water looking for hammer heads, on the way we found lobsters, eels, white tips, creole fish, and more! For a second it seemed like everything has stopped in time, the fish were not moving at all for a brief moment! We didn't find any hammerheads at the corner, so we continued swimming west near the bottom, one big hammerhead was heading our way, but we had a feeling something may pass by, andminutes later 11 dolphins came by in the blink of an eye!  They sped past us but not before we could count them.
During our our surface interval we went whale watching to get a closer look at the humpback whales in the area, air temperature 26˚C/80˚F, still no clouds in the sky!
The second dive took place once again at EL CAÑON hopping for hammer heads, which did not show up! The conditions remained the same as the first dive, dolphins eventually showed up once we all were out of the water, another groups went to a lesser known site called "Dos Hermanos"  where they had a successful dive with one Chevron manta for over 35 minutes and had the chance to see 2 groups of whales mom and calf, one of our divers almost got ran over by a mom whale!
A third dive took place at EL BOILER, water temp remained the same, vis was over 30m/100ft and one group had 8 mantas during the dive, it was crazy! 50 minutes diving with 8 giant mantas, is something you can't fully describe it's something you have to experience! Another group, went to the north west side looking for hammer heads, we found a few of them, then 4 Galapagos shark came along swimming along the ridge with 3 silver tips, just when we are ready to come up all sharks came together, at the end of the dive we had a black manta accompanying us for a safety stop!
The fourth dive was the icing on the cake!  It was a relaxed 50 minutes with 5 very friendly giant mantas, both black and chevron!
Dive Inst
Daniel Zapata.

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