Location: Prison Beach, Isla Guadalupe, Mexico
Comments: Cage diving day 1 of this Guadalupe Island great white shark diving adventure was a great success with beautiful weather, fairly calm seas with a light chop and – most importantly – excellent shark sightings. We opened the cages up at 6:15 am and it took all of 20 minutes for the first shark to show up!! White sharks were around almost continuously for the rest of the day. Sightings included the ‘old regulars’ as well as Snow White and Bite Face.
Of special interest on this trip were the five kids who wanted to come out and see the white sharks for themselves. Joining us are two girls – 9 years old and 7 years old (my daughter Emily), two 6-year-old boys and my son Charlie who turned 5 two weeks ago. We were all very concerned that the kids not feel any pressure to get in the water and worked out a process in which the kids would practice with scuba regulators in the hot tub, then get familiarized with the cages and finally – gently – allow them the option of getting into the water. That all went out the window when the kids started jumping into the cages right after breakfast!! I couldn’t believe how fearless they were. On 6-year-old Max’s second dive, his Dad said “Go down Max,” at which his son immediately dropped to the bottom of the cage and stared intently out through the bars.
I talked to each kid after their dives, and not one of them had any fear of the great white sharks or thought they were scary. Rather, I heard comments like “they were cool,” “they were beautiful,” “I saw 5 sharks,” “boy are they fat,” and “when do I get to go in the cage again?” I am immensely gratified that my off-the-wall idea of putting kids in cages with great white sharks to see how beautiful they are seems to be working really well. We’ll see how the next two days work out and how the journalists and two film crews make out with the kids.
Weather: Clear skies, winds from the northwest 10-15 knots with much higher gusts for part of the afternoon, 1-2 foot chop, air temperatures mid-70’s
Water: Water temperature 70˚F, visibility 100-125ft in very blue water