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Dive Review of Mistral in
Galapagos Islands

Mistral, Sep, 2006,

by Carl Bodenstein, WA, United States . Report 2863.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving 2nd trip to Galapagos. Caribean locations, Hawaii, Fiji, British Columbia
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, dry Seas calm, surge, currents
Water Temp 72 to 74 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 5
Water Visibility 15 to 50 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Asked to dive strick buddy system, hard to do in these conditions. Limited dive times and attempted pick up areas, again hard to do in these conditions.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas Squadrons
Dolphins Schools Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales >2
Corals 1 stars Tropical Fish 5 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish 5 stars
Large Pelagics 5 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 1 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 2 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments The boat could barely accomodate our gear. Useless fresh water rinse "tank" could barely accomodate the smallest of our housings. Not enthusiastic to be cautious with gear. One expensive dome port was scratched badly. Small dingies could not hold gear and divers well.

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 1 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 2 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 1 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 1 stars
Advanced 1 stars
Comments Sorry, Mistral, this was a bad experience. There is no way this boat should accomodate 12 divers despite it's 6 small double cabin accomodations. The toilet and sewage system was horrid, and all the cabins stunk like a cess pool. The air conditioning was inadequate and could not be run while the air compressor was being run to fill tanks. And on a Galapagos trip, the hope is they will have to fill a lot of tanks. Only one tank per diver available and some 6 extras and after adequate surface intervals tanks were usually still not refilled, interfering with our dive schedule and costing several dive opportunities to be passed on. Our itinery was for several days at Darwin and Wolf, but due to a DCS affected diver, we returned to Baltra early, and the boat is overly slow and it took 29 hours to get back south despite relatively calm seas. Our diver's fault entirely, but also note no dive master in the water the dive with the injury. No real pride in the cleanliness of the cabin and there is now way that 12 divers can sit at the single dinner table for meals. AV equipment is of poor quality. What more can I say. Expensive and long to travel to Galapagos to have this poor a dive operation. Sorry for the crew that tried their best. This is not worth the savings over other operators. This diver's opinion at least!
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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