We found a magic forest like we see it in our dreams, trees climbing to the surface, seals watching us from behind the trees, balls of small silverfish. Oct 16 2011 – Islas San Benitos, Baja California, Mexico


copyright 2011 Rob van de Louw

Afternoon dive together with our captain Gordon (not Gecko) at his favorite dive spot the “Enchanted Forest”. After heading into the water we found us in a magic forest like we see it in our dreams; Trees climbing up to the surface, seals watching us from the top out of little wholes between the Kelp and balls of small silverfishes passing us. The sunlight always shines through and turns everything into a surrealistic happening. After a forty-five minutes tour in this other dimension, we suddenly found us back in front of the Nautilus. Awesome!
– Nick & Olivia
UW: 18C (not 19)J
The Enchanted Garden was really like in the story of “Haensel and Gretel”: You dived into the dark forest of kelp with elves and gnomes (seals and sea lions) around you. When you come to a field of green grass you are just waiting to see the ginger bread house. It was wonderful when the sun broke through the leaves. Luckily we found home without the witch following us 😉
Fuer meinen Schatz Stefan (Bolle): Ich wuenschte Du waerst hier
Carmen es fabulosa, dances arial especial.
San Benitos delivers. First dive this morning is overcast, but the water is warm (if you come prepared with a couple centimeters of neoprene) and the critters cooperative. We dive a pinnacle rising from the depths just off shore called Roca Loca, crossing the short distance from the boat to our descent point, quickly dropping to 85‚. Most of the crowd turns right, making the circuit counter clockwise, but a few of us head left. Nudibranchs hide in the kelp and lobster poke their antennae from crevices. Schools of baitfish hang in the blue to our left, parting like lightning as fur seals swoop amongst them. I even manage to see my first horned shark (and second, in between the moray and the small ray). It is with reluctance that we head for the surface and climb into the zodiac for a lift home. The sun shines in the afternoon and we pull into a shallow site named the Enchanted Forest, where in the shallows the surge pulls us like a roller coaster over the kelp covered rocks. We spend nearly an hour within a hundred meters of the boat, playing with a half dozen captivating sea lions that will not leave us alone. The sun tattoos their fur with rippling light as they twist and flip in their dance through the slalom course of towering kelp, performing only for us (or so it seems to the audience). They hang upside down, searching for dinner, and rush towards us before stopping within inches of our faces to stare before turning and vanishing again. It is only as our gauges point towards the red part of the face that we finally decide to dry out onboard, wistfully watching the dance from the surface; still entertaining, but just not quite the same.
– DM Tony
Surface: Overcast with sunny periods, 15-20C
UW: 19C

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