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Dive Review of Baja Expeditions/Don Jose in
Mexico (Western)/La Paz

September, 2008, an Instant Reader Report by Greg Oppenhuizen, MI , USA
Reviewer   (3 reports)
Report Number 4542
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
501-1000 dives
Where else diving
Multiple locations in the Carribean, Atlantic, Eastern and Western Pacific,
and Great Lakes.
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

sunny, dry  
Water Temp
84   to 87    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
40   to 80    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
I was left to do whatever I was comfortable doing. I was asked to buddy up
only at El Bajo, which was prudent.  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
1 or 2 
Whale Sharks
> 2 
1 or 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Tropical Fish
4 stars  
Small Critters
  4 stars
Large Fish
3 stars  
Large Pelagics
  4 stars
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
4 stars  
Boat Facilities
3 stars
Overall rating for UWP's  
4 stars  
Shore Facilities  
I used a dual strobe digital SLR with multiple lenses. I was able to work
on an unused berth in my room which made it very easy. It would be tougher
if there were more guests. I had plenty of electric outlets.
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
3 stars
4 stars
Service and Attitude
5 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
Dive Operation
5 stars  
Shore Diving  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
5 stars    
5 stars   
4 stars    
September 1 -6,2008.
The La Paz area is best seen by live aboard since the day boat rides are at
least 2 hrs each way. Air to La Paz is somewhat pricey compared to Cabo San
Jose from the Midwest, but the bus or charter ride from there takes hours -
not worth it to me.

The Don Jose is a nice, somewhat Spartan boat. The crew and dive master
were knowledgeable and let you dive as you saw fit. I had cabin 3 to
myself, but it has bunks for up to five people. There were 12 guests on the
boat which was a good number. It would be very tight with 5 in the cabin. I
shared a shower with the adjacent cabin and the head was just outside my
door. There was AC in my cabin after supper, but not during the day. Food
was Mexican and better than average for a live aboard.

We dove numerous locations at Las Animas and Los Islotes including a very,
very nice macro dive reef a little off shore. We also dove La Reyna, El
Bajo, San Diego Island, and Ferry Salvatierra. I had seen numerous mantas
at La Reyna in 2001, but the crew indicated that they were no longer
around. I did 20 dives including 2 night dives - all the available dives. 

There was an enormous school of Scats and Stripped Barracuda at La Reyna. I
saw most all of the species in the Sea of Cortez Fish book on the boat.
There were Sea Lions on every dive near shore (not El Bajo).

The Sea of Cortez is a dive location that is unique from Caribbean diving
and also different from California. It is most similar to the Pacific coast
of Costa Rica. Over fishing is manifest here, like nearly everywhere. Large
schools of sharks, big fish and mantas are gone. Nevertheless, this is a
place to see at least once.

Photos from my trip can be seen at: http followed by colon

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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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