Posts Tagged ‘Hammerhead shark’

200 foot visibility at Roca Partida ???

Monday, February 17th, 2014

dave burroughs posted feb 16th

This was my second visit to Socorro Island on the Nautilus Explorer.  At the end of our previous adventure we left with the feeling that it was one of our best diving trips ever.  We dove with Giant Mantas and Dolphins for the first time, and saw large numbers of Hammerhead sharks and Galapagos sharks up close.  So this year’s trip had a lot of live up to.  Nautilus Explorer and Socorro sure did deliver!  On our previous trip “Roca Partida” was this hot site with 200+ foot visibility and many shark and dolphin encounters.

This year it was “The Boiler” at San Benedicto that was on fire.  We saw more Mantas on any one dive than we saw all week on our last trip.  Dozens of Dolphins came to visit and play on several dives.  Hammerhead sharks flying in formation buzzed us over the cleaning stations of “Cabo Pierce”.



Every trip is unique with it’s own highlights and character, but the one thing that is guaranteed to remain the same is the excellent service and facilities provided by the crew of the Nautilus Explorer!

-Dave Hicks

Staying low, my heart beating beyond belief, staying patient and a hammerhead shark swam freely right over my head to be cleaned.

Thursday, December 12th, 2013


I never thought the white tipped reef sharks would be so active!  Absolutely amazing!



The Giant Mantas are stunning, and are so friendly!




This boat is just fabulous, and beautiful.  Its only the second day and the diving has blown me away!



Sailing out to the Socorro Islands, never have I been so excited! Man, does it ever feel good to be back on the Explorer.  It was a beautiful 24hour trip, though quivering with anticipation as we approached the volcanic Islands. Getting all the dive gear set up along side of the guests, chatting about simply being unable to imagine what‚s to come.  First off, San Benedicto and the Canyon!  A nice flat sandy bottomed dive site with a rock ridgeline bordering, almost protecting you from the abyss beyond the rock wall.  Peeking over just beyond the ridge into the blue trying as hard as possible not to race around in search of these creatures that come to feed and clean.   But, it pays off. Just laying low, even though your heart beating beyond belief, just staying patient (its a lot harder than it sounds!). And low and behold! A Hammerhead shark swimming freely as he comes to be cleaned.  Oh yeah, and not to mention how warm it is!  Making you that much more confident and comfortable being in the water surrounded by these magnificent yet intimidating creatures.   It has been an absolutely remarkable trip thus far, top side and below, it really makes you think how darned lucky you are to be out hear with such fantastic people, great food, and all on such a lovely ship.

– DM Joel

What was the zodiac inflatable doing underwater at Roca Partida?? Wait a sec. It was a WHALE SHARK!!

Sunday, June 9th, 2013


After the first dive all divers came out of the water with large smiles on their faces. Everybody was talking at the same time about the marine life they saw (how big, how many, what types?). After that, a very good, hot breakfast and another dive, better this time because a manta came around and apparently some hammerheads.  And it went on, and on like this the whole day. Amazing lunch, amazing dinner, I think I didn’t eat this well in years and I’m eating like crazy. Today I really went over the  top because I kept pretending that this is my last meal and then because I survived, THIS is my last meal and so on. The crew is spoiling me rotten, Carmen suggested that I should write a Diver’s wife guide to Socorro and tell other wives how they can have fun on a diving boat. People just watch over me and do all my whims. I’m really having a blast.

– La sua majesta de roca perdida Cristina


The divers just saw a whale shark? They will tell you more about it. Short description of the life on boat: The bed sheets just got changed today, how crazy is this, we’re on a boat; a diving boat for that matter, and we get our sheets changed midweek. Back home this doesn’t happen and the cooking is not this good either. If Juan Carlos ever writes a cookbook I’ll buy it. I love this boat and this trip.

– La sua majesta de roca perdida Cristina

Ciao familie,
Suntem bine, chiar foarte bine. Totu-i foarte frumos si curat, mancarea-i de vis absolut si oameni is foarte simpatici si atenti. Ne simtim amandoi foarte bine. Daca ne-ati vedea fetele acum un ne-ati mai recunoaste asa de tare luminam.

– Ghina si Miai

Day 2 at Roca Partida was quite the ending to our stay at this dive site. I was feeling rather jealous of all the other divers who had seen hammerhead sharks on a number of occasions and some also saw mantas. I felt so left out and unlucky.I suited up for the last dive here hoping and praying that luck would finally come my way. I kept scanning 180 degrees‚ hoping to see SOMETHING. As I looked up towards the surface I noticed one of the zodiacs very near the rocks. But wait, what would the zodiac be doing by the rocks? In fact, what would the zodiac be doing underwater? Then the reality started setting in. I was looking at something really really huge. I tried to signal Stu and Dalia but neither were looking my way. Then I made an executive decision, it would be each diver for him/herself. What turned out to be a whale shark swam very slowly past me, at least it seemed to swim by slowly. The fact is, I had to swim as hard and as fast as I could towards it to get a closeup look. I went through several hundred psi but it was worth it. I was able to catch up to it and managed to get close enough to see its little eye scanning me.

My first Whale Shark. I am still pinching myself. More than feeling very lucky, I feel very humbled by the experience!
– Krys.

we have to post a guest blog describing the Nautilus Explorer as a really great boat with excellent staff :)

Thursday, April 25th, 2013


Nelsoni andres..


Today participated in two dives at Socorro Island. The first was Cabo Pierce, and we went to 90 feet. Due to the current we all went down on a line to the anchor at 65 feet heading east we went to an area of rock formations to watch for    sharks. Hammerhead sharks were seen in addition to Galapagos shark and both white tip and black tip. We also saw several groups of fish including the Clarion Angel, parrott fish, butterfly, and red tailed triggerfish. On the second dive close to shore, we saw several puffer fish, Trumpet fish, and a large lobster, The Nautilus Explorer is a really great dive boat and the staff is excellent. They have corrected a lot of equipment problems and have made our stay extremely pleasant. The food is wonderful. Each day so far we have seen numerous Humpback whales calves, and have seen them breaching. They have been all around us. We went on a whale watch getting great views the the whales and calves and have even seen the calves playing with dolphins.   The weather and seas have been wonderful. It‚s been very smooth sailing so far. We just had the Mexican Navy board our boat (pre-arranged)to check our passport.  Two days on a boat with no phones, no faxes, TV or beepers.  A touch of heaven. Cabo San Lucus is a very pretty area to spend some time. Until next time- Mike


Diving at Socorro, have the place to ourselves for today. Except for the humpback whales who woke everyone up this morning.

Sunday, April 14th, 2013


© Joern Stahn diana eberhart3

Wind is howlin’ today, 20-25 kts from the north steady. Still nice tucked in behind the cliff though, and sunny.

Most of our guests in the lower accommodation staterooms were woken this morning by humpback whale songs reverberating through the ship around 0600.

Dive 1: this morning was great, dolphins, 3 giant mantas, a few hammerhead sharks, and about 8-10 divers saw a few humpbacks from very close. One calf breaching over and over right above them. Dive 2: was quiet.

Not sure what we’re gonna do for tomorrow. Option 1: stay a third day here. Option 2: head to San Benedicto after dinner and dive the Canyon tomorrow.

We’ll see how the rest of today goes and how the weather looks later.

– Captain Gordon

Our annual and very unusual visit to Clarion Island. WOW!!

Friday, April 12th, 2013


We are about a third of the way through our current dive expedition to the Socorro Islands.

This expedition is 13 days total and will include 11 days of diving. One benefit of this extra long trip is the chance to visit Isla Clarion. Clarion is the last of the 4 islands of the Revillagigedo Archipelago and is rarely visited due to it’s distance from the other three islands.

We began our diving for this trip as we usually do at San Benedicto. Upon arrival at the island we were greeted by the pod of resident bottlenose dolphins playing in our bow wake and the spouts of the migratory humpback whales. Diving on the first day started off a little slow but improved on the second dive with a friendly giant manta circling and interacting with almost all our guests.

Taking advantage of the fair weather early in the trip, after our first day at San Benedicto we enjoyed an easy overnight transit to the infamous Roca Partida. At Roca we enjoyed 3 great sharky dives featuring silver tips, galapagos and hammerheads as well as some silky sharks and of course lots of white-tip reef sharks. Other than the sharks we had big schools of black jacks, creole fish, big-eyed jacks and more. In lieu of a fourth dive we opted to try our luck at some humpback snorkeling, with the big mammals cruising by so close to the Nautilus it is hard to resist! No luck getting in the water with them on our first attempts but we all knew we’d have more chances throughout the following days.

After a great day at Roca Partida we began the 155 nautical mile transit to Isla Clarion, again enjoying a beautiful calm sea for the entire transit. In five seasons of diving the Socorro Islands this is only my third time visiting Isla Clarion. Some unique aspects of this island include some beautiful island topography, amazingly clear blue water, and a big pod of resident bottlenose dolphins. The dolphins greeted us as we approached the island, with some very impressive acrobatics at the bow of the vessel. During our two dives on the first day there most of the divers got to enjoy some underwater interaction with the dolphins as well. We also attempted some more humpback snorkeling, and after a few attempts our deckhand Max managed to get a boatload of snorkelers in the water just before a pod of about 4 whales passed slowly beneath them. Another very unique and special experience for us on our first day at Clarion were two big male Orcas!

In my 5 years at these islands I have never encountered Orcas here. We spent about an hour cruising alongside these amazing animals with their menacing looking dorsal fins and distinctive white “eyes”.

A real treat! Today was our second and final day at Clarion and we enjoyed three dives at two different seamounts around the west side of the island. Beautiful clear blue water offering over 100 ft of visibility at both sites and some beautiful fish life including schooling bonitos, black jacks, grunts, butterfly fish, wahoos and more, as well as a couple of silver-tip sharks, hawksbill turtles and of course the resident dolphins.

As I write this we are heading back to Roca Partida for some more world class pelagic action first thing tomorrow morning. The weather continues to be on our side so far and tonight will be another easy transit (knocking on wood).

Lots more diving to come so check back in soon!


Captain Gordon Kipp


Surface conditions: mostly sunny, temps 26-30C, light winds and calm seas Underwater conditions: water temp 23-24C, visibility 80-100ft, current mild to moderate

Roca Partida fish soup.

Saturday, April 6th, 2013

-Roca partidaRoca partida-20121123-IMG_1643November 23, 2012Joel Ibarra-2

Today’s diving at Roca Partida was full of fish soup with the main ingredients tuna, Galapagos Shark, Silver Tip Shark, Hammerhead Shark and a Giant Manta. Another dive dream came true.


First dive: a divers dream!!! Two dozens hammerheads, 4 dolphins and 3 interacting mantas.

Monday, February 25th, 2013

©Frederic Danset_001

Waking up at Socorro Island and looking out of the window there was the first whale of the day just 20 meters away. I would have never imagined that there are so many of them. J

First dive at Cabo Pierce: strong current, we saw one manta ray, but only passing by. The other group spotted three. Time for some macro shots of cute blennies in barnacles. J

Die Crew ist aufmerksam wie jeden Tag.

Another day at Cabo Pierce. First dive: a divers dream!!! Two dozens hammerheads, 4 dolphins and 3 interacting mantas. Cant wait to go in again J

Da bin ich sprachlos und das Grinsen geht gar nicht mehr weg.

Ich erfuhr hoechste Taucherehren, stand mit einem 5 m-Manta an der Waschstrasse, und wurde prompt nach ihm von einem putzwuetigen Haufen Clarion-Kaiserfischen barbiert. J I received highest divers honours waiting in line with a 5 mtr manta ray and got cleaned after him by a pack of hungry Clarion angelfish. J

Zitat Thomas R.: Da wird sich WIRODIVE schwer tun, das zu toppen! ++ Quote: WIRODIVE will have a hard time to top that!

Nachtschnorcheln mit 2 Tuemmlern und 2, 3 Seidenhaien. Ein Delfin beisst einen Hai in die Schwanzflosse! J Night snorkeling with 2 Bottlenose dolphins and 2 or 3 Silky sharks. One dolphin bit the sharks tail! J

Nach koeniglichem Beginn noch der kroenender Abschluss dieses Tages Nachtschnorcheln mit Seidenhaien und Delfinen, die als unsere Bodygards fungiert haben, wahnsinn !!

I’ve dove Roca Partida hundreds of times, does that make it any less special? Absolutely not. If anything, I am more and more appreciative

Thursday, February 21st, 2013


Ya vuelvo a Mexico por fiiiiiin! It’s really good to be back. After spending the last 2 years exploring other parts of the big wide world (hello, Philippines and Indonesia! I’ll be back!) I’m very stoked to have come back to la vida loca del Nautilus Explorer. I’m very happy to have seen some old faces and old friends, beginning at the airport by getting picked up by the one and only Miguel of Faronuevo fame, all the way to exchanging malas palabras in the galley with Enrique the chef/hero. And who can forget the rock stars of the diving world, the very animals we’ve all come so far to see?! The breaching bulls, frolicking calves and tranquil mother humpback whales (who deigned once again to grace us all with a spectacular underwater show today, here at Roca Partida), the graceful and eerie mantas, the happy-go-lucky dolphins, the stately Galapagos and hammerhead sharks, and the delicious-looking yellowfin tuna (hey, we’re not allowed to touch but we can imagine!).

As a returning crew member from a long absence from the Nautilus Explorer (and, hopefully, a future new crew member of the sister ship Nautilus Swell) I am thrilled and very fortunate to have the chance to see these spectacular places and be involved with such a unique operation as this once again. To quote the fearsome Michael Corleone:

“every time I get out, they pull me back in”. Well, something about this boat, and the amazing above- and under-water experiences I get to share with the great people I know and meet, keeps me coming back to the job again and again. I’ve dove Roca Partida hundreds of times, and today’s dive was just one more thrown on the pile. Does that make it any less special? Absolutely not. If anything, I am more and more appreciative of the beautiful things I’ve seen on this boat. And to quote an old song, I ain’t seen nothing yet.

Sandy Curtis, Chief Mate

Socorro: Diving the Revillagigedo Archipelago

Tuesday, February 12th, 2013

 ©kohki otsukaDSC_5009

Amazing footage from a guest on our January 26th – February 3rd Socorro Island expedition. We’re always excited to receive feedback about our trips and what better way than with a great video of guest experiences… check out the link below!

“Here is my video from my trip with you the last week of January. Thanks for the unbelievable experience and great memories!”

Socorro: Diving the Revillagigedo Archipelago