Thursday, December 31, 2015

More dolphins and mantas at Socorro Island!

Hi everybody!
Today we arrived to the beautiful island of Socorro. After the great first day at “El Boiler” at San  Benedicto Island it’s going to be hard to top it, but this place has a lot to offer and the divers are ready to be surprised once more!
The first dive started early in the morning with good weather. There was a mild swell so our captain decided would be better idea to do the dives using the zodiacs, so we carried the equipment to the boats and got ready to help the people to hop on. Once in the water, the current started to pick up and we had to spend most of the dive close to the rocks, where it’s easy to see flounders, octopuses, moray eels, nudebranchs and all kind of different fishes. The max depth for this dive was about 90 feet/30 meters and the conditions got much better for the next dives. The temperature of the water was around the 78 F/ 25 C   with some thermocline in between that made the visibility a bit blurry.
As the day continued, we bumped into many mantas playing around with the divers! They had a great dive and the mantas cooperated a lot, they just kept coming and coming! Once we thought we had seen everything, a group of dolphins show up, with their natural friendly behavior. 5 dolphins kept swimming next to the divers for more than 5 minutes and then they took off but the happy face of the people made once more the day. For the last dive we could see many white tip sharks resting in the sand, next to sting rays and electric rays, of course we cannot forget the clarion fish cleaning the mantas. Another highlight of this dive was a Galapagos shark in the blue and a hammerhead that came to wave our divers from the depth. We encountered great marine life as usual! We hope our next stop will be as good as it has been so far. Roca Partida is waiting for us!
Rodrigo Marroquin 
Solmar V
Dive Instructor.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Dolphins and Mantas at El Boiler!

Hi All!
Dec 29, 2015
We are at El Boiler setting up the back anchor for an easy descent, it is 6:45 am, cloudy morning,
air temp 78F/25.5C, we are about to go diving! 
A really thin line that divides air and water called the surface holds beneath it lots of marine life, lots of things we like and enjoy! El Boiler, a rock that almost breaks the surface, surrounded by lots of fish show the behavior of its inhabitants, lots of Bigeye Trevally in a vertical structure formation facing a mild current from South that constantly rubs the rock. Black Jacks in a constant search for food make the Pacific CreoleFish retract to the rock, the sand patches on the bottom show some of the white tip reef sharks of the area plus a lonely Hammer Head, lobsters of course, Giant Electric rays, we as diver are so happy to see, vis 60ft/18m was a great factor on watching Giant Pacific Mantas coming up from deep water to met divers to place themselves above the stream of bubbles,  air bubbles delivering a constant belly massage, mantas hovering over our heads, 4, 5, 6 of them, we all having a great time! The North side of the rock was witness of it by adding a group of 14 dolphins to our already amazing dive, the constant communication among them made us go from an easy slow dive of mantas into active mode of dolphins, among them that one dolphin we really want to see showed up, it separates from the group to come to us as friendly as no other to get touched by us, 5 trips into the season have gone already, he always show up! The unique experience of interacting with a wild dolphin mean a lot to our guests, we are so happy as a Dive Masters Thiago, Rodrigo and Daniel to deliver such lifetime memory dive, so this male dolphin didn't stop coming back to get rubbed on belly, back side, flippers, head, around the eye area while chirping and clicking to other dolphins, his eye contact to us while being rubbed is really something to notice, he is so accustomed to our hand touch by now, 80 to 100ft/24 to 30m was the depth at which it happened, the nitrox extended our time with them!
    The fascinating world of El Boiler made as go for 3 more dives along the day without more dolphins, in return we had on every other dive even 10 mantas at the same time, chevron, black ones, male and females, all participating in the bubble massage, every where we turned around there was a group of happy divers with mantas above and below them, the water temperature keeps slowly dropping being today 78F/25.5C no thermocline at all, it is not something bad, it just means soon we will be enjoying of Hump Back whale season, jumps, the
singing, tail slapping on the surface etc.
Dive Inst 
Daniel Zapata, Solmar V.

Friday, December 18, 2015

We are in our last stop of this trip and the diving has been great!

Hi everybody!
We are in our last stop of this trip and the diving has been great! We arrived to San Benedicto Island early in the morning to have our last day of diving at the great “Boiler”, so the people is excited willing to see once more the group of dolphins from the last time.
The conditions are much better than the last dive here, approximately 90 feet / 30 meters visibility, with blue clear ocean and mild swell at surface, which let us use the descend line from the stern of the SOLMAR V! There was no current so the divers could easily go down without any effort and as soon we got to 60 feet / 20 meters we could spot a big group of dolphins, including an albino and two baby dolphins next to their mothers. These animals have such a strong bond with each other, they are family members, it remind us of our connection with them in so many ways. We could see the mom petting and almost kissing the calf, taking it straight to the surface to breath and then down again to give a glance to this strange visitors! They stayed with us for about 20 minutes, most of the time quite deep but with such conditions is very easy to see all their interaction.
The place is full of life with all kind of fish, big schools of jacks forming the well-known vertical structures, lots of parrotfishes chasing each other, morrish idols gathering all over the place and we cannot miss the creole fish and the red tail triggerfish. Once the current picked up, we could see lots of white tip sharks swimming close to the pinnacle, with the occasional moray eel swimming out of the holes.
On our last dive we experienced one of the best dives of this season, when we were surrounded by 8 mantas at the same time! 6 chevron with 2 black mantas. It was spectacular. The divers spend more than an hour swimming with them, blowing bubbles at their bellies and feeling so grateful to live this. The mantas kept coming on and on, once and again. They don’t seem to have enough, just like our divers. So the connection is there and actually is quite sad to leave them, but we have to come back to surface and make our way back home.
Rodrigo Marroquin
Dive Instructor.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Excellent conditions at Roca Partida!

Today we dove Roca Partida and the conditions were excellent, water temperature of 80f/26C and crystal clear water with 100ft+/30m+ visibility!
Our first and second dive today were very similar, a mild current was hitting the south point of the rock which  brought lots of life to that area at 100ft/30m there were lots of white tip sharks very active and huge schools of trigger fish, and jacks!
The third dive was a bit different, we swam away from the rock passing the big clouds of fish and spotted some hammerheads off in the distance and a small school of tunas passing by with some silky sharks chasing it!
Now we are heading back to Socorro to check out Punta Tosca a dive site we haven't yet visited this season, so we are looking forward to see what mother nature has in store for us!
Thiago Mendonca
Dive Istructor

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Friendly mantas, big schools of tuna, and more at Socorro Island!

Hi everybody!
After leaving San Benedicto Island yesterday, we are now at Socorro Island ready to dive the great site Cabo Pearce where more likely is one of the best places to interact with mantas in all of our itinerary, so our guests are excited to experience such a great opportunity!
As we are arriving to the island, the night changes into an amazing sunrise and the conditions seem to be just perfect. The swell has relaxed compared to the last days and the water looks clear blue inviting everybody to get splashed and descend to find what Cabo Pearce has to show.
The visibility as we are going down is about 60 feet / 20 meters and we could spot some dolphins at the surface, it looks like is going to be a good day! Cabo Pearce is one of the favorite dive sites due the dramatic structure, long walls on the sides that goes deeper than 100 feet / 30 meters with overhangs in the middle part that varies from 30 feet / 10 meters to 130 feet / 40 meters. Sand patches in between make the perfect place to see huge diamond sting rays, white tip sharks sleeping at the bottom or the occasional moray eel leaving the cracks on the rocks. As the day continues the current stays weak and the divers make their own way using the anchor line of the boat nice and easy. During the dives, we could interact gracefully with the mantas, this time there was one smaller that really enjoyed the bubbles and kept coming on and on close to the divers. At one moment we counted more than 6 mantas! Including two black mantas!
The visibility stayed the same until the last dive when the current picked up, the environment became a little bit blurry, about 40 feet visibility / 13 meters but even though we could see dolphins swimming at the surface and the mantas gliding all over the place. Some of our divers could spot Galapagos sharks in the blue meanwhile others could see big schools of tunas passing by during the whole dive. For those who like the smaller stuff there is always a place, so if you look closely you can see lots of flounders, octopuses or even some nudisbranches. This place has is all; don’t miss the opportunity to live this dive site!
At the end of the dive, we could hear some false killer whales but we couldn’t see them under water but our panga driver Luis told us they were very close to us! So the opportunity is always there, is only a matter of luck at the end.
Now we are heading towards Roca Partida, let’s see if this time we can see a whaleshark!
Rodrigo Marroquin
Dive Instructor.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

35-40 chirping dolphins, hundreds of fish, plus mantas all around us!

--Hi All! Dec 14, 2015
The Dolphin schedule was right on time!  Last night while anchored at El Cañon, safe area from wind and swells, we enjoyed of a nice hunting event! Silky sharks started to come up to surface, swim around the boat, soon after dolphins showed up too, Flying fish the menu! This morning a group of about 12 dolphins showed up around the Solmar V close enough that we could hear them breathing, tail slapping on the surface enjoying interrupting the quiet waters of El Cañon, anyway not our dive site this morning! 
After a short boat ride to EL BOILER on board of the Luxury Solmar V, some big swells made us do Zodiac dives instead of stepping off from the swimming platform, wind is here not as strong as we thought! We found ourselves all geared up in the zodiacs ready to roll backwards at the dive site, when we spotted more dolphins! Breaking the surface of the water with our tanks we started to descend, just before we knew it we could hear the harmonious chirping and clicking sound of dolphins that made us put a smile on our faces! Now we can talk about visibility, it wasn't the greatest but we were submerged for about 55 minutes dive time in water infested by hundreds of Pacific CreoleFish, just two minutes into the dive 6 dolphins made themselves visible to us, then 3 more, then another 5, we counted a total if 18 individuals, that were very enthusiastic to spend time with our divers!
We enjoyed playing with them the most by swimming just like they do! The fun went on for the first 27 minutes and included 3 mantas, we didn't know which way to look!? There was no current at all! The dive took place only in the NorthWest side of EL BOILER, our average depth 65ft/19m, water temp 81ºF/26ºC, dolphins were not getting tired
of us yet, repeatedly coming back to check on us, looking at us, their eye contact was imminent, we couldn't do any physical contact with any of them, although we tried hard not to the point of bother, just like if it wasn't enough dolphin fun a second group of 20 of them showed up coming from South! This group seemed guided by a pregnant female which was on the front line of the whole group a bit ahead of every other dolphin, so i will let you picture the scenario! 35 to 40 chiping, clicking whistling dolphins which we are in the middle of, hundreds of fish around
us plus mantas all at the same time! Our safety stop at 15ft/5m was accompanied by a silky shark that kept making circles around us chased by rainbow runners and Big Eye Trevally.
It was time to take a break from those big rollers so we changed dive site for the following two dives, El Cañon offered that quietness on the surface conditions, a mild current from East made all marine life be more active. We can start with lobsters walking out of crevices, octopus as well, juvenile black jacks congregated on the rocks, green moray eels, Big Eye Trevally, 3 silky sharks made our safety stop area below the Solmar V home for two dives which was cool to see and be there to make eye contact with, lots of white tip reef sharks also active swimming circles in a small area at 90ft/27m depth, 40ft/12m vis, 81ºF/26ºC, juvenile silver tip sharks were part also of the experience of diving El Cañon at the end of the day, some of us had the nice experience of drifting in the mild current, gliding while safety stop feeling secure by having the chase boats above us, the experience of our zodiac drivers Luis Godinez and Geronimo is something big here, a big deal!
Dive Inst
Daniel Zapata
Solmar V.

Monday, December 14, 2015

We are back at Revillagigedo, this time our checkout dive was at El Cañon!

We are back at Revillagigedo, this time we start the trip at San Benedicto Island at el Cañon! There was a big swell the past couple of days witch stirred up the water a bit, lifting the fine sand around the island which makes the visibility drop, so we only had 20ft/8m visibility. The good thing is that the water is still warm 80f/26C and even if you need to get a bit closer all the life is still here! On our check out dive we had lots of lobsters, moray eels, white tip sharks and a silky shark. The swell is starting to die down so the water should clear up giving us opportunity for another amazing trip out here, keep tuned to see what happens next!
Thiago Mendonca

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Mantas all over the cleaning station at Cabo Pearce

--Hi All!
Dec, 08, 2015
Cabo Pearce is a unique clarion fish cleaning station for mantas! Our day started with some small rollers filling in, caused by wind from the north.
It is 6:20 am, clouds barely let the moon be seen, but we can hear dolphins breaking the surface taking breaths, just an instant of moon light shines on the back of some dolphins.
At 7:00 am first diver jumps into the water followed by many others, visibility was 40ft/12m due to swells, we all were capable to manage the surge in shallow water, it was actually a fun ride back and forward! Deeper water had not so much of it, so we headed toward East, visibility was changing in a funny way here. North side we had low vis, on the  South side we found blue water 80ft/24m visibility, it seems mantas don't want to play.  This morning, they are here, its just that they prefer to be shallower. We think they need time to get used to us. In the mean time we enjoyed finding green moray eels, flounders, octos, in general reef fish! Now we got mantas attention! Although it was almost at the end of the dive! Things completely changed throughout the day! A very good visibility covered the whole reef, water temperature did not change during every single dive we did today 80F/26.6C. One of the cleaning stations had 4 mantas coming back around taking turns to be cleaned by clarion fish, we did a good job playing with neutral buoyancy at 30ft/9m, lay back relax enjoying mother nature at her finest! Observing how slowly mantas glide coming in and those 30 to 40 orange color clarion fish swim out to encounter mantas then some take the belly area while many other take the upper side, all working together, two ways benefit! A second cleaning station was as busy as the first one, at 70ft/21m of water having about 5 chevron and black mantas, the no current at all made it possible to explore from beginning to end the whole reef, it was a beautiful contrast between brown color of the rocks and white sandy patches with white tip reef sharks resting on the bottom. As far as the end of the reef mantas the mantas didn't leave us alone! They kept swimming over our heads trapping the bubbles in the belly area by aching wings downwards, marine life over here is gorgeous and abundant, we are at 100ft/30m deep, a world of Pacific Creolefish find or feel secure being around pinnacles, scorpion fish blended in, not moving at, all waiting for a fish to swim by to make it a good meal!
Just one lonely and curious silky shark chased by jacks accompanied us while we were doing safety stop some times. The timing wasn't very accurate talking about dolphins since every time we enjoyed our surface interval they showed up increasing the hope to see them underwater.
Some unique features of Socorro Island can only be seen on Zodiac rides, like volcanic wall, arches, frozen lava bubbles, birds identification, lots of pictures were taken which our guests enjoyed a lot, zodiac ride courtesy from
At the end of the day and last dive, every one doing a body system enjoyed of the freedom of exploring on their own the safe area from 40ft/12m to 80ft/24m in a controlled conditions, sunset will soon happen, marine life is starting to
congregate in different areas, mantas again catching our bubbles did not waste any time while we are looking at little things on the rocks, crown of thorns,orange starfish, octos, zebra eels, jewel eels, green morays, etc.
Dive Inst
Daniel Zapata, Solmar V.