Isla San Benedicto – Day 2….

Dear F&F,
December 18, 2008

It is difficult without exact GPS waypoints to know where a good dive spot is versus a nothing spot. The commercial dive boat, \”Nautilus Explorer\” had showed up in the evening & we dinghied over to say hi & get some local knowledge. Owner of Reefseekers Dive Company (Ken Kurtis), in Los Angeles, had taken a group with this boat last April. We introduced ourselves knew some crews names & could relay his greetings. Everyone working on Nautilus Explorer was very friendly & invited us to follow them to their next dive site. So we did. It was a rough 30 minute ride (due to 3-4 foot swells) in our dinghy to a site called \”The Boiler\”. It was worth it to tag along with this boat that knows the area so well. We tied our dinghy off to their big boat & dove in.

The water temp was 80 & very clear. There is an underwater pinnacle & very interesting terrain of stacked rocks that is home to many fish. We saw our first Mexican sharks! Three white tipped reef sharks. We did not try to scare them away with our shark shields (worn, but turned off) as these are not a dangerous type. Two were resting side by side on the bottom & 1 swimming slowly along the rock. It was so great to be in the water again. The charter boat has about 20 divers onboard. They gave us bread & fruit in the morning & cookies in the afternoon. Very kind & much appreciated. A good first outing.

There are 2 commercial boats that bring new batches of divers to 3 islands of the Revillagegidos every 8 days. They spend 2 days here at San Benedicto, 2 days at Socorro (where we\’ll head in a few weeks) and 2 days at Roca Partida which we will not go to with our boat. It does not have an area we would feel safe to anchor our boat while diving. Although we understand it has a great variety of sharks, whales, and mantas, so a favorite with the commercial boat customers.

This is the first day I\’ve felt like I could read & write & even now it is a bit challenging because the boat is moving a lot. I didn\’t sleep too well again. I have to get used to the motion at anchor again.

Scott will take the video underwater tomorrow. We will go with the other boat to a site just a 5 minute dinghy ride from where \”Beach House\” is anchored called, \”The Canyon\”. They said they saw 2 manta rays there this morning. We are very excited to see the mantas. You have no way of knowing from the surface of the water what is underneath. Last night we turned on our stern (back of boat) underwater lights to see what fish would be attracted – quite a few mid size fish, but no sharks or mantas.

I made banana muffins because all my bananas got ripe at once. I think I could have left the onions & potatoes out of the fridge & should have put in the mangos & tomatoes; still learning. There is another private sailboat planning to come here, but they will not arrive for a week.

Scott & Cindy