Thursday, September 10, 2015

Once again, Guadalupe Island demonstrates why it is the best destination in the world to experience the great white shark!

September 9, 2015
Trip 7 Report –Guadalupe Island
We left from the harbor in Ensenada into a rough sea with strong winds, and was a little bit chilly, but after few hours was the seas calmed and we had a smooth crossing from then on out.The next day we arrived to Guadalupe Island in the Eastern Pacific, a sanctuary for the Great White Shark. Immediately the crew set the cages in the water, 2 at the level of the surface and one submersible to the 30 Ft / 9 m. The divers were anxious to enter the cages while we’ve been waiting for the Great Whites to come. It was quiet at first, but around 10 Am the first Great White Shark, "Top Notch" a big male approximately 4 m / 13 Ft in length showed up breaching and swimming with a big dorsal fin out of the water!  Everybody got ready to dive into the cages while Top Notch was very active and breaching and moving around the cages, when another Great White Shark joined us! In this case, it was a little bit smaller but it was very strong and fast! The water temperature was 72 Fº / 22 Cº , and the weather was a very nice temperature 25 C º/ 77 Fº , to 26 º /79 Fº. It was a sunny day, perfect to pass all day along on the Northern side of Guadalupe, where we strategically picked our dive site to (hopefully) provide an unforgettable encounter with the king of the sea!  During the day we can say that we watched 10 different great whites around us, a few of them hung around the submersible cage but most of the them very curious about the cages at the surface! We had sharks coming from every direction and for everybody! It was a lot of action and a lot of fun!  The people at the sundeck were watching and taking pictures of the great whites breaching.  One of these sharks was the number 138 in the Guadalupe Island White Shark Photo Identification book, a huge male about 4 m / 13 Ft in length. Our second day was a full of action with lots of great white sharks around! The water temperature was 68 F º/ 20 Cº to 72 Fº. The temperature on the sundeck was very pleasant 26 Cº /79 Fº. The view of the island was wonderful and along the beach we could see elephant seals and Californian sea lions which attract the great white sharks to this area. We had more and more great whites, one of them called Big, which is a huge male almost 4 m / 13 ft. in length with marks from a fight, with two scratches or bites on one of it's sides! Speaking of fights, we had a big male swimming at the surface when an smaller male, but very active and aggressive attacked the biggest one!  The biggest one went down but immediately returned to the surface and went after the aggressor at depth. During the morning we had more and more sharks arriving and we had at least 4 sharks swimming around us. We had a couple of them splashing the water close to the cages and one of them swam straight to us with an impressive open mouth!  In the afternoon, 5 great whites were circling the submersible cage and we can say that we identified 12 different sharks during the day. They were very active, swimming, breaching, splashing the water, even as the sun went down.Our 3rd day was terrific! The action started very early with a hungry male around the surface cages and more curious sharks were passing right in front of the cages. The Great Whites were passing around the submersible cage at the 20 Ft /6 m at the beginning but they were going down deeper, then we took the submersible cage to the 30 Ft. / 9 m. Once at depth we could see them better and closer, they were passing very close to the submersible cage, we had 4 of them moving from the submersible cage to the surface cages during the morning. One of them was turning around, this big male was a massive Great White Shark! It had a big head a huge body and fat with a big dorsal fin. It was opening its mouth showing plenty of teeth every pass and was circling from the submersible cage to the cages at the surface, and it went straight to one of the cages at the surface showing an open jaws to the divers! What an excellent opportunity for the underwater photographers to take a phenomenal photo from their trip! The water temperature was 72 Fº / 22Cº, the visibility was very clear with clear blue water, 60 ft. /18 m to 80 Ft/24 m visibility. At the 30 Ft / 9 m the water was clear and most of the action was at depth, many times throughout the day we had 4 to 5 great whites around us and from the morning to the afternoon we had 8 to 10 Sharks  .One more time Guadalupe demonstrates that is a top destination to experience the great white shark in the world. Now we are returning to Ensenada in a very calm sea, all our guests are happy, sharing experiences, pictures, and having a great time on board the Solmar V! 
Ignacio h. Leyro
Scuba Diving Instructor

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