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Dive Review of Nautilus Explorer in
Mexico (Western)/Socorro

Nautilus Explorer, Jan, 2014,

by Michael J. Millet, CA, US (Top Contributor Top Contributor 88 reports with 54 Helpful votes). Report 7523 has 1 Helpful vote.

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 2 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments This was my 7th trip to the Socorro Islands aboard the Nautilus Explorer. Due to exercises by the Mexican Navy (perhaps a few chin-ups), we were unable to dive at Socorro Island. A bit of a disappointment since Cabo Pearce is a very nice dive site.

Nevertheless, we had 5 good days of diving with 2 days at San Benedicto and 3 days at Roca Partida. We encountered the usual low visibility at the Canyon dive site at SB although the hammerhead sharks were at the cleaning station at about 90'-100'. Moving over to the Boiler, we had some nice dives with mantas although the viz was a bit low for this dive site. This dive site has a western exposure so it can encounter some swells, which made it a bit challenging getting back on the boat after a dive. It's probably safer just to get picked up by the rubber skiff.

After a day at SB, we headed to Roca Partida where we spent 3 days. The weather was quite cooperative at this sea mount in the open ocean with fairly flat water until the 3rd day when we encountered a bit of chop. At RP, we had encounters with silky, white-tip, Galapagos, hammerhead and silver-tip sharks. The manta rays also were present for the 2nd year in a row after a 2-3 year absence. On this trip, the yellowfin tuna were quite numerous with many encounters near the surface. It was just a bit early for the humpback whales. We did not encounter any mother whales with calves so the whales that we did see at the surface would dive when approached by the skiff.

Returning to San Benedicto Island for our 4 last dives, we found the visibility a bit better and encountered mantas on all dives with about 6-7 mantas on one dive. Very nice.

As usual, the Nautilus Explorer provided first-class service with a friendly, helpful crew. The trip had 25 divers but we separated into 2 dive groups so neither the dive deck nor the dive sites were crowded. Joel and Juan took great care of us underwater. The food is very plentiful and quite savory.

An excellent indicator of a good live-aboard operation is its repeat business. This was my 7th trip to these islands on the NE, and I have booked my 8th trip for January, 2015.
Websites Nautilus Explorer   

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving All over the Caribbean; Galapagos, Socorro, Fiji, Solomons, GBR, Vanuatu,
PNG, Philippines, Indonesia, Palau, Yap, Kosrae
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas choppy, surge, currents
Water Temp 73-75°F / 23-24°C Wetsuit Thickness 5
Water Visibility 25-100 Ft/ 8-30 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions No deco; no blue-water diving; topography must be visible
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas Squadrons
Dolphins 1 or 2 Whale Sharks None
Turtles None Whales > 2
Corals 2 stars Tropical Fish 3 stars
Small Critters 2 stars Large Fish 5 stars
Large Pelagics 5 stars

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 The Revillagigedo Archipelago is a Mecca for large pelagics such as manta rays and several species of sharks. Definitely a wide-angle playground.

The boat facilities can be improved with a larger battery charging station and a bit larger camera table.
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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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