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Dive Review of Nautilus Explorer in
Mexico (Western)/Isla Guadalupe

Nautilus Explorer, Sep, 2011,

by Marty Giesecke, TX, US (Reviewer Reviewer 3 reports with 2 Helpful votes). Report 6264.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 501-1000 dives
Where else diving Caribbean, wider Pacific
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm
Water Temp 68 to 70 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 5
Water Visibility 100 to 120 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions The two forty foot deep shark cage dives were scheduled. Diving in the surface and fifteen foot cages was unlimited during daylight hours, so long as there was a hookah rig available.
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? no

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles None Whales None
Corals N/A Tropical Fish N/A
Small Critters N/A Large Fish N/A
Large Pelagics N/A

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments Dedicated two level photo table with one dedicated rinse tank. Battery charge station available nearby.

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

Accommodations N/A Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude N/A Environmental Sensitivity 5 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 5 stars
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments The trip from the Radisson motel near San Diego's airport to Ensenada, Mexico took about three hours. The crossing at the border in Tijuana involved about one hour of the travel time. We boarded the Nautilus Explorer in a marina in Ensenada around 10 p.m. and experienced a relatively smooth crossing to Isla Guadalupe, arriving the next evening. After setting the anchor, we all watched as the dive cages were deployed for the next morning's dives. We saw great whites, all about twelve to sixteen feet long, on all dives but one. We were lucky as each day of diving just kept getting better. One our third and last day, there were as many as six sharks cruising the cages on each dive. One the very last dive of the trip, a California sea lion female showed up at the boat and spent thirty minutes harassing the three or fours sharks, always in full view of the cages. Despite wearing a mil wetsuit with a 3 mil hooded vest underneath, the forty minute deep cage dives and the hour-plus fifteen foot dives left one chilled. Luckily, the hot tub was fully functional and many divers used it to rewarm after the dives. The trip back was quite a bit rougher (due to a storm front) and a few of the passengers developed motion sickness. The return bus trip from Ensenada to San Diego again took about three hours. The border crossing into the U.S. was less challenging than its counterpart.

The crew was professional and attentive. The food was of good to above average quality and was always available in adequate quantities. A reasonable stock of beers, wines and distilled libations were available. Accommodations were clean and the boat was in good repair.

This was truly an amazing trip to see great whites in their native environment.
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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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