Saturday, December 13, 2014

Dolphins, lots of fish, schooling hammerheads, and more at Roca!

Hello Hello!
Last night we left San Benedicto island and made it all the way out to Roca Partida. The crossing was 9 hours of very smooth seas and this morning we woke up next to the rock ready to go diving and see what the rock had for us! 

At 7:45 we did our dive briefing and by 8 o'clock we left on the pangas! As soon as we reached the north east side of the rock a pod of dolphins came to play at the front of the panga, every body geared up very quickly and back rolled into the water. As we descended we could hear the dolphins singing but no sign of them in the warm water, 78F/26C. We kept swimming north east and after almost breaking our necks of turning  around over and over looking for them, they finally showed up! A pod of 12 bottle nosed dolphins came up from the blue waters, the good visibility of about 80ft/24m made it easy to spot them from the distance. They came very close to the divers and played for a few minutes, they would go up to the surface catch a breath and come back down to keep us entertained. With that start, we were already spoiled but that was not all for this dive! We drifted with the dolphins and reached the north point of the rock were we found a lot of white tip reef sharks circling close to the rock, we then went around the point to the west side and there we found galapagos and silver tip sharks that were at about 90ft/27m swimming in between schools of jacks, creole, and trigger fish. So we made it all the way to the south end of the rock and after hovering there looking at more galapagos sharks we started heading out into the blue towards our safety stop, but first when we were at 50ft/15m we spotted a silver tip shark and as we turned around there was a hammer head too, but that was not all! There was a whole school of about 80 to 100 hammer heads at about 80ft/24m!!! We kept swimming on top of them for a few minutes before we reached the surface, obviously with a smile on our faces!!!
For the second dive some groups went north and another group south, all looking for the hammerheads, and we all found some, the big school was on the north now and came very close to the divers so they all got quite nice pictures and video! On the south there was little groups of 2,3 and 4 hammer heads at the time. On the north point we also found a lot of galapagos and silver tip sharks swimming in between jacks and creole fish while a single dolphin played belly up, down deep at about 130ft/40m, and around the north west corner again 2 hammer heads came very close kind of checking us out while some galapagos swam around them.
Our third dive of the day was full of fish and a few sharks, with a strong current coming from the east, but no hammer heads this time, till today was another very good day of diving Roca Partida, so guess what? We are staying here for another day of diving so stay tuned to know how the diving goes tomorrow.
Antonio Romero
Dive Instructor

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