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


by JAMES BURKHART, TX, US ( 1 report). Report 10441.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 5 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 5 stars
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments We booked the trip with over a year in planning through Cindy is a total delight to work with especially considering the detailed preparations and organization needed for such an adventure. For us it was an opportunity to have a reunion with my four boys who range in age from 18 to 40. They have all been certified divers since they were in their early teens and they all jumped at the opportunity to see the apex predator up close and personal.
My only knock on this entire operation was the selection by Nautilus Explorer the boat operator of the Best Western Plus Island Palms on Shelter Island as base for departure and arrival. Reservations were messed up, the property is stung out over quite a distance along the street with no luggage assistance. If you like the exercise component of dragging gear around this is the trip for you. The meeting room at the hotel is off the lobby and up some stairs to store your gear after you check out at 11:30AM and then at 7:00PM lug the gear back down the stairs and out to the bus. When crossing the border by bus into Mexico all the gear comes out again you clear immigrations and customs to scan the bags and then load the gear up again. Same drill upon return to states except the walk is 500 yards up hill to where the bus will pick you up. Arriving back at the hotel after 18 hours at sea and 3 hour bus ride all 20 of us were greeted to no one at the front desk at the Best Western! One Star for the hotel and even the restaurant service was poor.
The memory of that fades when compared with the thrill of three days of standing in a cage filming the great white shark, learning their names and some history of their appearances to lucky divers at Guadalupe. In all we saw 27 names sharks (of 261) and 7 more new unnamed specimens. Martin Graf of is a tremendous resource since he a pioneer of the diving efforts on the island and for that matter worldwide. He shared his own photography and video efforts with all of us. I heartily endorse and recommend his operation. The crew aboard the Under Sea from Nautilus was fantastic and the food was awesome. The boat and the cages were very safe, rooms comfortable, cool and clean. I want to go back in a few years in November to see the big females that arrive about that time. As a diver since 1985 reefs start to look all alike. The same old fish, turtles and rays. There is wonder in God's creations and most certainly nothing like the majestic motion of a menacingly large shark in the water unless of course it is staring you down in open water and heading right for you. The cage is your best friend. There are other operations conducting these cage dives however with Nautilus has earned my trust and respect since they follow the rules and do it the right way. During my 33 years as a scuba diver the facet of our sport that has changed the most is our understanding of sharks and that we have only scratched the surface. Put this on your list.
Websites Nautilus Explorer   

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Worldside since 1985
Closest Airport San Diego, CA Getting There Bus from San Diego to Ensenada. Liveaboard boat to and from the island.

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, cloudy Seas no currents
Water Temp 70-72°F / 21-22°C Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility 100-150 Ft/ 30-46 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile no
Enforced diving restrictions Cage diving alongside the boat for 45 minute sessions on surface fed regulators.
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 5 stars

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 5 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 5 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments [None]
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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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