Location: Isla Guadalupe, Mexico
If I had to pick one stand-out day this trip, I simply could not. I guess the Orcas we encountered and the smoothest seas for any transit out to the island from Ensanada were a sign of things to come. When we arrived at Guadalupe we had the entire north-east side of the island to ourselves, with not another vessel in sight, something that is a rare treat. Hmmm, more sharks for us??
Breaking this trip down into individual days would be pointless. I can sum up all three days in pretty much the same way: perfect weather and constant shark action! The only downside this week was below average visibility, at around 80 ft. It would occasionally open up to 100 ft and sometimes close in to 50 ft for a short time. The drop in visibility did nothing to hinder our experience in the cages, however. It was, as one guest put it, “a veritable parade of sharks”. We identified as many as 6 individual sharks on a single dive, at times having 4 all within sight of us. And when it wasn’t the sheer numbers of sharks on a dive, it was the intense and close-up action that made the diving phenomenal. Two individuals in particular were with us every day and provided us with some heart hammering, adrenaline inducing moments. A newly arrived 4.5 meter female, as yet unidentified, as well as a smaller male who is known only as #89, dominated the scene with their very curious, unafraid personalities. The big female, with 3 pilot fish still in tow, seemed to prefer being at eye level and slightly higher, circling the submersible cages very slowly and methodically. She made numerous passes only a couple meters away from the cage, keeping us tucked behind the railing on the top of the cage and close to the opening in the top. The male, on the other hand, was just full of spunk and energy, and when he decided to come in real close it was all hands deep inside the cage! We saw him so much this week that we could all pretty much identify him on sight. He was simply not afraid of us, and one dive in particular was intent on showing us who the boss was. It was the first dive this season that everyone spent the entire dive inside the submersible cage, as opposed to sitting on top. He spent 30 minutes circling each cage repeatedly, an arms length away, bumping the cage on several occasions, turning quickly towards us with pectoral fins depressed in the classic pose telling us “I am not happy with your presence”. The only time he left sight of us was to dive deep briefly before rocketing up from the depths, directly towards the bottom of the cages, before veering off moments before impact. What an impressive sight and emotional experience to be in the middle of such a display of power and fearlesness. As the submersible cages ascended to end that dive, our hero decided he would have the last word, and swam over to our underwater camera that we have hooked up to the salon tv, took it in his mouth, ripped it from the cable and swam off with it, before spitting it out into the blue below.
Overall, 3 great days of shark diving. Some other sharks we identified this trip included a big female called Stimpy, Bruce and Jacques.
Hopefully they will all be waiting for us when we return in a couple of days!
Water/Surface: Water temp 72-74f, visibility 50-100ft, seas calm, winds light, clear skies
Location: Isla Guadalupe, Mexico