Friday, December 15, 2017

December 3rd - December 11th, 2017 #TripReport (Socorro Islands)

Dive Report - Trip N ° 4 (Dec 3rd to Dec 11th)

Hi everyone!!

We had a terrific trip!! We dove El Fondeadero at the beginning to do the check dive. The action begun at The Boiler, the bottle-nose dolphins come to play with the divers, at least 30 dolphins were around us. The Pacific Giant Mantas arrived to the cleaning stations and they circled around the site, 5 to 6 Pacific Giant Mantas in a great visibility of 80 ft / 24m of blue and warm water of 80 ° F° / 24 C. We saw 1 Black Manta and 4 Mantas Chevron during the 4 dives. Wonderful spectacle of Mother Nature! This is why the Boiler is one of he best dives sites in the world to interact with this gentle creatures of the Ocean.

We head to Socorro Island to dive the beautiful reef of Roca O’Neil with the majestic arch at the 100ft which make a contrast of lights, with a moon geography at its reef there were plenty of tropical fish, diamond stingrays, silky shark, silvertips sharks and a Chevron Manta was in the area while the whitetip sharks were around the reef. Punta Tosca with its long bar and beautiful reef was a relaxing dive, specially at the shallow area with plenty of hard coral and tropical fish as parrot fish, Pacific trigger fish, trumpet-fish and with lots of torpedo rays, whitetips sharks resting in the caves, lobsters and even a turtle was around.

Cabo Pearce with its lava flow and several cleaning stations was perfect to watch 2 mantas Chevron and a Black Manta as well. Incredibly amazing to watch the mantas coming from the depth to the surface showing us their belly with plenty of white spots and doing circles.

We left Socorro Island to head to Roca Partida to encounter a rough sea in the morning and a strong current to the east side. During the first dive we found a school of Hammerheads at the 120 ft / 36 m. The first hammerheads were shallower but when we look to the bottom and no less than 40 hammerheads were arriving to spent a good time with us. The second dive was easy and relax to watch the site and the schools of cotton mouth jacks, amber jacks, a big Galapagos shark and the whitetips sharks resting at the edges. The 3rd dive was absolutely amazing! At the western side we found a big silvertip shark and few hammerheads close to us and big schools of Big eyes jacks. We went with the schools and the sharks to return in a blue water dive where we found a solitary silky shark, 3 mobulas rays coming from the blue, a couple of wahoo and finally we saw an amazing migration of Mobulas Rays, 40 to 50 of them, passing right next to us and circling in front of us while the silky was around, every time more curious!!

We came back to San Benedicto Island to dive El Cañon and we found 2 bottle-nose dolphins and lot of life. At the second dive we found a very playful Chevron manta. And near to El Cañon we dove at Dos Hermanos to find more Chevron mantas and a tiger shark of 3 m/ 9 ft.

To say goodbye we came back to El Boiler to have a bottle-nose dolphins everywhere! There were lots of them in all the site! They were very playful and curious and the mantas were arriving to the cleaning stations more and more. A tiger shark stayed at least for 3 dives near the mini Boiler. A hammerhead also passed right in front of us but we then decided to continue to the eastern corner because we had more bottle-nose dolphins to play with. Lots of fun at the Socorro Islands!!! See you soon!

Ignacio Hernan Leyro
Scuba instructor
Solmar V

Cabo San Lucas to San Benedicto Island: 23 hrs
San Benedicto to Socorro Island : 4 hrs
Socorro to Roca Partida : 10 hrs
Water temperature : 80 f|° / 24 C|°
Visibility : 30 ft / 9 m to 80 ft / 24 m depending the sites

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

November 21st - December 1st, 2017 #TripReport (Socorro Islands)

Nov 30th, 2017, Revillagigedo Archipelago.
24 hrs crossing to get to a wonderful place to do lots of diving! An easy check out dive at El Fondeadero, Isla San Benedicto with lots of white tips, lobsters, reef fish, green moray eels, sting rays, flounders, juvenile silver tip, silky sharks during the safety stop was just the beginning of a great extended trip!

On the second day of diving it was really hard to leave El Boiler, dive site in San Benedicto, after completing 4 dives! The diving was just spectacular among lots of chevron and black friendly mantas all day long. The current from the South made it more interesting bringing in clear water and making the visibility as good as 30m/100ft. The water temp was around 29℃/85℉ and during one of the surface intervals a 7m/21ft long whale shark came by the Solmar V so we all had the opportunity to jump into the water and snorkel with, but that wasn’t it!!! Dolphins got here early in the morning... about 10 of them! Playful as always, water being so warm and plenty of lobsters! Hammer Heads also made appearance starting with only of them! As the day went on, a school of 25 of them showed up at 15m/50ft, very close to the rock! No swimming was necessary! Thank you, Current! Then, due to it, at the end of the day a mountain of easily 80 hammer heads swam by the same area, from 36m/120ft deep to surface!
Third day of diving we found ourselves at El Cañon, Isla San Benedicto, diving with dolphins and mantas again. Not bad at all for first dive of the morning! Current from the West made us wait at 27m/90ft deep! In front of us an ocean full of fish, we could feel colder water ascending due to current but it was worth the wait... A 2.5m/8ft long tigger shark came up to our depth!! Drifting in the current some hammer heads found us a long the way ending up the
dive with two more than friendly mantas at our safety stop! PERFECT DIVE!!!
Dos Hermanos dive site was also so enjoyable. Vis at least 30m/100ft at 9m/30ft, nice big boulders area with lots of reef fish, the drop off at 18m/60ft was like a big window in front with such big school of striped bonitos surrounding us and a black manta below it. As the dive went on a dusky shark swam by with Galapagos and 4 hammer heads, the shallow rocky area was covered with lots of blue and gold snappers and an octopus trying its best to hide away (wasn’t very successful).
It took us 10 hrs night crossing to get to Roca Partida, the weather treated us very nice, sky partially clouded making sunrise and sunset really spectacular, inside temp 26℃/80℉. Roca was embraced two days with current from West side. Great deal current!! Up-welling!! Cold water 25.5℃/78℉, lots nutrients and fish going crazy in a feast! Cotton Mouth Jacks, Big Eyes Jack, Rainbow Runners, everything in one area!!! Seems the ocean wasn’t big enough for the amount of fish! South West area right where the current turns and takes you in a nice drift dive schooling Hammer Heads showed up several times! 

Roca O’neal Dive Site at Socorro Island next, it took 10 hrs to get there. We had the chance of diving in spectacular in blue water, water temp 27℃/82℉, 4 Giant Pacific Mantas extremely friendly every dive for 40 minutes near the drop off and in the shadow area 15m/50ft, the mild current kept all type of fish swirling right at the edge of drop off, during there second dive current picked up a bit more, with 25 friendly dolphins which made the dive extremely enjoyable, at depth great contrast of 25 hammer heads again white sandy bottom! 

Punta Tosca Die Site in Socorro Island with water temp of 27 ℃/82℉ offered a nice easy dive not so much of a current along the wall dive with lots of fish, white tip sharks and juvenile Galapagos sharks. Visibility 12m/40ft, Cabo Pearce in Socorro Island water temp 27℃/82℉, in the other hand was fantastic during morning dive with 10 very curious dolphins that found us along the drop off, investigating us! Touching us with the beak, swimming circles right around us, making all king of noises! Adding to it... letting us touch them for long minutes! Then they went up for fresh air then came back down finding us for more and more playing with them! 

Of course mantas were there too as friendly as we know mantas are! A few hammer heads made themselves visible to us a few times as well, current picked up along the day making us go in a drift dive escorted by silky sharks while safety stop! At the end of day in low light conditions 12m/40ft deep dive the reef got covered with lots of convict tang fish, rays, white tip sharks, trumpeted fish, octos, green moray eels, etc. 

Returning to El Boiler, San Benedicto Island, took us 6 hrs to get there, water temp 27℃/82℉. The early dive 7:00am was rewarded with about 12 dolphins that stayed with us for about 40 minutes! Making the North West corner of El Boiler not only a cleaning station for mantas but the clarion fish cleaning also dolphins from parasites! The West side of the rock at 40m/120ft about 4 Hammer Heads making a big circle right in the same area, Galapagos and silver tip sharks were also part of our dive making it at end of the day a dive to remember! 
Oh, and we can't forget to mention graceful mantas with their slow swimming making you wanting to be with them, swimming under them to blow some bubbles, making eye contact with them, letting them make circle around you by putting one wing down the other one up! WHAT A TRIP TO REMEMBER!!!

Dive Inst Daniel Zapata, Solmar V

Water Current: 1 to 3 (in scale of 1 to 5)
Vis average: 18m/60ft
Warmest Water Temp 29℃/85℉
Coldest Water Temp 24℃/76℉ (Thermocline)
Traveling Time: Cabo San Lucas to San Benedicto 24 hrs
San Benedicto to Roca Partida 10 hrs
Roca Partida to Socorro Island 10 hrs
Socorro Island to San Benedicto Isl, 5 hrs
Returning to Cabo San Lucas 26 hrs. 

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

November 11th - November 19th, 2017 #TripReport (Socorro Islands)

Hello all,

On the second trip of the season we had great dives. San Benedicto gave us three days of incredible dives. “Las cuevas”, where we did the check out dive; so our guests had the opportunity to get familiar with the area. “El Cañón” where we did two dives with different types of sharks like white tip, silver tip, Galapagos, hammerhead and silkies. Two more dives in “Dos hermanas” where we saw mantas, hammerheads and a tiger shark. Finally we dove in “El Boiler” where we had 20 minutes encounter with dolphins, plus mantas, a whale shark, two tiger sharks and finally a school of hammerheads in the last two dives, when the current picked up. San Benedicto Island was amazing on this trip.

After being in San Benedicto we went to “Roca Partida” where we dove two days. As usual Roca gave us fantastic bottom time. We saw mantas, tunas, silver tip, Galapagos and hammerheads sharks; but probably the main attraction was the whale shark that we saw on the first dive of the day.
In Socorro Island we dove in “Cabo Pierce” where we saw playful dolphins in two dives. On the second dive some of the divers were able to touch one of the dolphins. That was an amazing experience for our guest! We saw mantas, some big tunas and sharks like hammerheads and silver tips.

After talking with our guest and watching their faces, we can say that this was a successful trip. This was the first face to face with a whale shark for some of them and first time for everybody to have this type of interaction with dolphins!
Revillagigedo’s Archipelago, one of the best places to dive…

Dive Instructor
Solmar V

November 1st – November 9th, 2017 #TripReport (Socorro Islands)

Watch our trip report here:

Monday, October 30, 2017

October 16th – October 20th, 2017 #TripReport (Guadalupe Island)

We had three days of cage diving in Guadalupe island with the great whites. The first day the action started around eleven; with sharks swimming around the surface cages and good action in the deep cage too. We had five or six different sharks during the day.

The second day was the best, sharks all day coming and going. They were very active chasing bait and a couple of times the animals breached going after the chunk. A couple of females were in the area, one of them probably four or five meters long.

The last day the action was more concentrated on the deep cage. We saw five sharks during the day. This day the sharks didn’t approach much to the surface cages. The big female came back a couple of times close to the deep cage.

In general, our guests were happy with the trip. For some of them this was the first encounter with the Great White and they were excited of being here; for some others this was the tenth time doing this onboard Solmar V.

Thank you all!
See you next season!

Dive instructor
Solmar V

October 11th – October 15th, 2017 #TripReport (Guadalupe Island)

We arrived to Guadalupe Island in a sunny day. The crew set the cages in the water and everything was about expectation and wait. The Great White Sharks were in deeper waters and the first ones to surface arrived in the afternoon .A big female of 4 m / 12 ft was around the cages at the surface, when another 2 males of 3 m / 9 ft arrived to do circles around the submersible cage. The next day the action begun early and we saw 5 different sharks during the day. A big male of 3.5 m / 11 ft with few scratches in the face, another male of 3 m / 9 ft with a rope all around its head. A huge female of 4 m / 12 ft , massive volume, with a couple of pilots fish around was giving hard work to the wranglers, swimming from the depth to the cages at the surface biting and pulling the bait, when another male of 4 m / 12 ft showed up. From the submersible cage we watched 3 to 4 Great Whites at the same time. They've been passing close to all the cages, but when they pass close to the submersible cage at the 20 Ft / 6 m and under the cage was absolutely amazing! The conditions were perfect to enjoy this dives , the water temperature 70 fº / 21C º and the visibility 50 ft / 15 m to 80 ft / 24 m. It makes of Guadalupe the best place in the world to interact with Great White Sharks!

The last day the action remain the same, 5 different Sharks, 2 of them arrived in the morning and a female of 4 m / 12 ft comes close to the cages at the surface while a couple of freedivers of the Pelagios Kakunja foundation were tagging the Great whites out of the cages under the supervision of the recognized Biologist Mauricio Hoyos which has the kindness to give a presentation to all our divers, about his studies about the Great white Shark in Guadalupe. A wonderful experience in the Island, meantime we are heading back to Ensenada with nice conditions and waiting for more adventures to tell!!

See you soon !
Ignacio Hernan Leyro
Scuba Instructor
Solmar V

Crossing : Ensenada to Guadalupe : 20 hs
water temperature : 70 F º / 21 º C
Visibility : 50 ft / 15 m to 80 ft / 24 m
Weather : sunny -temperature 26 º C / 78 fº

Thursday, October 12, 2017

October 6th – October 10th, 2017 #TripReport (Guadalupe Island)

Hi Al!
Guadalupe Island continue to be a great place for Great White Sharks. Visibility was ranging from 50ft to 80ft/15m to 24m, water temp 71/21℃, air temp under the shade 70/21℃, sunny days toasty 77℉/25℃, current was a bit strong from North, it seemed sharks were happy in it swimming tight circles around submersible at 20ft/7m deep, coming from deep water we were able to see that smile they have, lots of bite on them in a up close view,  eye contact was imminent constantly, in deeper very clear the display of dominance! 

The surface was also interesting, completely flat ocean, we can actually see those sharks right below surface, swimming so slow, going around the boat hiding under it to launch a ambush attack, at times ignoring completely the bait by swimming inches below it, they wouldn't even take it! Mouth semi open swimming showing white teeth, pilot fishes along with them almost rubbing its snout, back in deep water mackerel fish swimming along with sharks taking the rear part of it, using it as cleaning station, the panga ride is also something like “u must do” to see those little sea lions in shallow water, a few female elephant seals, the reef below the panga with lots of Garibaldi fish so orange color, even a few lobsters! We had to return to on board to do more cage diving, up in the sun deck cameras ready for half body breaching, sharks started to gather again counting u to 4 in front of cages, at the end of the day we had counted a total of 7 different ones from 2.5 to 4.5m long sharks, 8ft to 14ft long.
Dive Inst Daniel Zapata
Solmar V. 
Traveling time Ensenada to Isla Guadalupe 19.5 Hrs
Isla Guadalupe to Ensenada 21 Hrs

Saturday, October 7, 2017

October 1st – October 5th, 2017 #TripReport (Guadalupe Island)

Hello all,

Once again the Guadalupe trip report 13; started on Monday October 1st to Thursday 5th.

The first trip of the last month of the season was great! We started our trip with a lot of shark activity. We saw six different sharks during the day, three females and three males. They were passing all the time close to the submersible cage and also going after the bait. The guest in the surface cages saw the sharks breaching a couple of times.

On the second day we had non stop activity starting around eight am until 6:00PM. Seven or eight sharks kept coming, one large pregnant female about 15 feet/5 meters long and also we saw Garmin, the male shark.

The last day was a quiet day, the Great whites were less active, they stayed most of the time in deep water. We saw four or fives sharks chasing bait during the day, two females included. In general our guests were very pleased about the trip, and some of them said that the encounters with the great whites were beyond their expectations.

Pablo Dive Instructor
Solmar V

Weather conditions

Wind 0
Clouds 0
Current 2
Visibility 4
Temp 72F/22C
Crossing 20 hours

September 26th – September 30th, 2017 #TripReport (Guadalupe Island)

Dive Report- Trip N 12 (September 26 -30)

Hi everyone!!

One more fun trip to Guadalupe Island to confirm that the population of great white shark is healthy and growing. The weather temperature was 26 ºC / 80 F, sunny and warm, perfect to go inside the cages and watch this magnificent creature of the ocean.

The first day we set the bait and chum in the water and we've been waiting a long time for the great whites to show up, but finally the first one arrived to say "Hi, here we are!" Then later another one came swimming so fast against the bait. We can say that we saw 3 to 4 different sharks.

The next day we moved to another location and early in the morning we had the first great whites circling near the cages at the surface. The water temperature was 72 F /23 C and the visibility was 80 ft / 24 m, very clean and clear. The action was non-stop. We had great whites all day patrolling the area, circling the submersible cage, splashing the water at the surface, showing us their dorsal fin and showing their skills as hunters within the bait. We saw 7 different sharks during the day, one of them was a big male of 4m / 12 ft and was sad to watch that it has a hook and a long fishing line. We also saw a smaller shark which was darker and he had some marks of a rope around its body. A couple of juveniles were very aggressive biting the bait, showing us their jaws and they had no more than 2 m / 6 ft.

The last day in the Island we watched 4 to 5 different great whites in the area and we had lots of movement of divers getting in and out of the cages. Everyone was very enthusiastic about this amazing opportunity to watch the apex predator of the ocean in a shallow water and safe environment. The cage diving in Guadalupe is because the good visibility and number of individuals! It's the best place in the world to dot this!! Another incredible experience with The Solmar V!! See you soon!!
Ignacio H. Leyro
Scuba Instructor

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

September 21 – September 25, 2017 #TripReport (Guadalupe Island)

Hi All! 
Back to civilization from a remote area as Guadalupe Island is, great place by the way!
Amazing visibility made every pict fantastic! Even water temp was nice for a 7 mm thickness wet suit, 70℉/21.1℃, 3 days shark action was spectacular, our two type shark cages were constantly in use due to sharks, wind blowing from west, at times from south, but the fun was there! 30ft/9m deep submersible cage sharks circling it! checking us out! so close to cage that we can make eye contact with them! Some how they actually like sort of hide under our boat Solmar V spending time under the shade, but surface cage also was fun! Lucky sundeck customers waiting for that jump! Didn't have to wait long! it actually did happened, this new in the area shark after chasing bait from different angles decided to jump right there just feet away from cage open mouth showing white teeth taking that bait! Back in deep water more sharks wanted to stay there, below submersible cage in a comfortable zone, seeing them to measure one against other surrounded by yellow tail and mackerel fish, break time for some of our customer during lunch time! Air temp from 68 to 74℉/ 20 to 23℃, also good timing for a panga ride, female elephant seals just laying enjoying direct sun temp, lots of pups barely barking, rock formation and back to more cage diving, at times we had 4 to 5 sharks under submersible cage, at the very last day a 6ft/1.8m shark showed up extremely fast swimmer chasing bait, so close from cage, no scars, eye rolling back to cheek us out, splashing lots of water with tail in the effort get the bait which it did several times showing how its done!

Dive Inst:
Daniel Zapata, Solmar V.
Crossing time to Guadalupe island 19.5 Hrs
Crossing time to Ensenada, Mexico 20.5 Hrs

Friday, September 22, 2017

September 16 – September 20, 2017 #TripReport (Guadalupe Island)

Hello everybody!
This is the report for the trip No. 10 to Guadalupe island.

On this trip we had three good days of cage diving with the Great Whites. On the first day the action started early; the first shark showed up around ten minutes after the first group of divers went in. The rest of the day was great, sharks all the time and some times three of them were in the area. The people in the submersible cage had a great time, one of the groups had four sharks swimming around them. Today we had six or seven different sharks, one big female included.

On the second day the shark activity was more concentrated on the surface cages. This was the best day; we had very active sharks breaching and chasing the bait. As always "Crazy Luis" the wrangler gave us a good show, attracting the sharks close to the cages, so the people could take good shots of the animals. This day we had five sharks in the area.
The last day was the quiet day for the surface cages. The sharks stayed in deep water most of the time, so the action was concentrated around the submersible cage. Today we had four sharks in the area; they breached a couple of times going after the bait.

Overall we had a good trip, our guests had a great time in the water with the Great Whites and out of the water eating, drinking and relaxing.
Pablo Dive Instructor
Solmar V

Weather conditions
Wind 2
Clouds 2
Current 3
Visibility 5
Temperature 70F/20C
Crossing 20 hrs

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

September 9 – September 13, 2017 #TripReport (Guadalupe Island)


What can we ask for a better adventure in the Pacific ocean than facing the apex predator? Not much, if we consider the good weather, great company and the best action in the cages for our 9th trip of the Guadalupe season.

This time we had a good variety of sharks coming during the 3 days of cage diving, even since the first moment when we arrive to the island looked that the sharks missed us cause as as soon as we were unloading the cages two sharks were coming around us to welcome the Solmar V. Once we had the cages in place the waiting wasn't too long so the divers hop into the suits and got into the cages to enjoy what they have been waiting for a long time, to have face to face this great specimen.

On the first day we got between 5 to 6 different sharks including some inexperienced juveniles of about 2 and a half meters and a couple of big ones trying to reach the bait at the end of the rope giving the spectacle that the customers were expecting.
On the second day, we got up early to set up the chump so the sharks didn't wait to long to get their breakfast first thing in the morning but we had to wait a couple of hours for this, but when they arrived the action didn't stop. A big female of about 4 meters kept coming toward the lines and coming close to the cages so the divers could get the best shots. This girl had company of about 3 different males around that were quite scared of her due the size of it and never got closer to the bait when she was in the area. At some point we had the quick visit of a well known shark, "Mau" came straight to the chump and surprised our wrangler cutting the rope and getting his meal on a fast breach. During the day the big female kept breaching on and on giving the great show to the divers.
The last day started a little slow due a slight temperature change, there was a thermoclime that kept the divers in the deep areas but not long enough so the sharks started to reach the ends of the ropes to get the bait, a reduce number this time but good quality on breaching and speed coming from one wrangler to the other.

So as usual, as happen in this magnificent island the action is on at the middle of the season and we are waiting for the big girls to come over in the next trips.

Rodrigo Marroquín, dive instructor.

Trip Conditions:

68 F / 20 C

75 feet / 25 mts

In scale 1 to 5

Seas: 1

Current: 2

To Guadalupe: 3

To Ensenada: 2