Exploring San Benitos Island on the Pacific side of Baja California

Location: Horizon Cove, San Benitos Island, Baja California, Mexico.
We arrived at the west island of San Benitos islands at around 11 am. Just before arriving we were welcomed by whitesided dolphins.   Compared with our last expedition exploring the pacific side of Baja California in 2004, the kelp is much thicker than before and our divers couldn’t wait to get in the water.  We parked between two rocks just enough so the divers could get straight in to the kelp bed.  And what a kelp! it streches it self good up to the surface from 70-80 feet of water. Palm kelp at the bottom to sink down in between and to investigate all the cracks and walls littered with langustines that with their antennas bravely went forward instead of backwards to face off with us.   Abalone,  yellowtails outside and lots of garibaldies.  This reminded me very much of the diving we do in the Channel Islands and while I hate to compare, I have to say that San Benitos is just fantastic!!   Everything was awesome  – the higher water temperature, the richness of fish and life that my eyes did not know where to put them.   We penetrated through the kelp and in towards the beach where we were welcomed by curious Guadalupe fur seals and California sealions.   We even met a harbour seal.  No sea elephants this time but did see hornsharks and a guitar ray.  All the day went by and we stayed here without any reason to go with open pool diving.  We lowered the kayaks in the water and guests dove, kayaked, and took sun in a warm sun with no wind and just outside of the bay, a large group of common dolphins chasing after bonitos.  A sailfish was spotted hunting in it’s typical way on it’s side.  Divers heard the dolphins under water.   Just a perfect day!!!   Divemaster Sten.
Weather: Sunny beautiful weather, flat calm seas, 80 degree air temperature.
Water: Water temperature 72 degrees with 70 foot visibility.   Thermocline at 65 fsw with lower water temp 65 degrees.

By Nautilus Staff

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