Wednesday, January 14, 2015

What a last day we had at San Benedicto Island!

Hola amigos!
Last night we left Roca Partida and crossed back to San Benedicto island, it took us about 9 hours, it was a little bumpy but not too bad. This morning we woke up next to the great volcano and at 6:45 am we were all ready on the dive deck, suited up and before we started the dive briefing we took a minute to look at the great sunrise we had!
It was windy and we were expecting some swell so the dive site we picked was “El Cañón”, as it is the most protected site on the island, and it actually was very calm there behind that lava flow. By 7am we were in the water ready to enjoy the last day of diving of the trip, and what a last day we had!
For our first dive we got in the water we noticed it was a little cooler, 76F/24C, not great visibility, but still OK at  about 40ft/12m. We also noticed a little south east current so we swam out into the current to the edge of the wall and when we got there we went down to hold on to the rocks, and waited for a few minutes in between hundreds of creole fish, white tip reef sharks, jacks and the big prize was the hammer heads, but there was no sign of them. Instead, we found a female bottled nosed dolphin with her little calf showing up from the blue waters and coming to the dive site in between a school of jacks, they only checked us out from the distance and kept going. We stayed there and kept waiting and finally and a school of about 12 hammerheads passed by, nice and slow, posing for the cameras and leaving everybody excited! As we were about to leave the rocks and start heading towards the ascent line, we had 2 chevron mantas visiting us! They played for a while with us and actually followed us all the way back to the boat! It was mantastic! I think there is no better way to start a day of diving!
For our second dive of the day we had a little bit more current, still coming from the south east and this time we headed to the south east corner of the dive site, on the way out there we found a big hammer head just cruising on top of the sandy bottom by itself, after checking it out we kept going and this time not many hammer heads were there, only 4 showed up, but what we did have was mantas! 2 chevron mantas came to play again, they would come and practically sit on top of us to feel our bubbles on their bellies and they just kept coming and coming and coming! Some divers got to get underneath them and blow some bubbles at them for a while, then they left and we went back to the anchor where we found more mantas and played with them, while a huge female hammerhead with a tiny little hammerhead came to check out the rocks by the anchor!
For the third dive we decided to make it a manta dive, so we went down the descent line and stayed a few feet/meters away from it and waited patiently for the mantas to come, and they showed up! We had 2 chevron and a black mantas that stayed with us for the entire dive!  It was great! They would come, get their bubble bath, swim away a few feet/meters and come back and come back and come back and yes! They will come back again and again! We had about 40 minutes of this! It was just awesome!
The last dive of the trip was probably one of the best dives of the trip, current was not so strong, still coming from the south east, so we took the pangas and got dropped by the south east cleaning station, a quick back roll and down to the rocks! We were at 90ft/27m holding on top of the rocks, surrounded by 8 white tip reef sharks laying on the sandy bottom, a lot of creole and trigger fish, schools of jacks, and sea bass, green morays in between the rocks, then 2 juvenile silver tip sharks showed up and to make it even better a school of 35 hammer heads passed about 3m/10ft right in front of us so slow that it almost looked like somebody press the slow motion button. They swam into the sandy bottom, on top of other rocks and then back out into the blue, they where quite big sharks but that was not all!  As we turned around to start heading back towards the boat 2 chevron mantas showed up, one was almost on top of us for a bout 3 minutes just enjoying our bubbles, silver tips came passing and passing in front of us, and on the way back to the anchor the mantas followed us like saying please don't go! What an end for this great trip!
Stay tuned guys because there is more to come on our next trip to the Socorro islands!
Hasta la vista!
Antonio Romero
Dive Instructor

No comments:

Post a Comment