29 December 2009

Happy winter times...

visibility: the visibility has been like a Xmas present, about 35 feet
water temperature:
the temperature is still nice for winter: around 73º
hardly any, with wind a bit on the surface, down non to speak off
surface conditions:
in the afternoon an increasing wind and some waves

It's nice to be diving
between Christmas and New Year, winter, but in still summer conditions. Okay, temperature and visibility are both dropping but it is still nice. Strange that in the winter it's raining (and quit strong indeed), but the good thing is that it pushes the waves down. Not too much light though, under water, but great dives anyway.
Highlight yesterday was the interaction of snapper (yellow and yellow tail snapper close to the bottom and the dog snapper in mid water) and a hunting sea lion. The approaching hunter sent a shock wave through the schooling fish and scared them in all directions, mainly in our direction. Beautiful to see them coming at you, being followed by this sea lion, looking for a bite and being surprised with our presence... He hang around a bit more to check us out and then left us for what we are, visitors of the aquarium of the world...
Also we dived with Amy, her second dive on the reef... she loved it, and Deb, who finished an open water diver course and is now certified; congratulations and a lot of diving fun and fun diving in your new life...

24 December 2009

happy Xmas everybody

visibility: dropping to about 30 feet
water temperature: also dropping, yesterday we had 73ºF
currents: with wind surfing conditions, you'll blow out of your bcd
surface conditions: with wind there's waves, but it's still good to go out comfortably

Oh yes, winter is coming.

Rudolph and his buddies are fighting the snow, while we are still nice and warm in shorts and t-shirt. At night maybe a sweater and longer trousers, 'cause the temperature goes under 75º. Temperature is dropping rapidly and also the vis is going shorter, but it is still nice to dive in reasonably warm and clear water; hey, it's December, on land it's winter...
So, another Mexican Christmas; one without too much suffering yet, no cold, dark waters, no snow or ice, not even that much wind... The quality of diving has been great too, with lots and lots of life; all year round, both in clear and in murky waters... We're doing great this year, weather-like that is.
A year that had a lot of changes
has past fast. A year where we left the Cabo Pulmo Beach Resort for Mario's Cabo Pulmo Divers. Later we went free-lancing for Mario and for a new shop in town: Cabo Pulmo Water Sports. We've been diving for fun (again) and were even able to make a living of it. A few times we've been on the verge of leaving this Paradise, where the desert meets the water. But every time, when the going got tough, somewhere another door opened and we walked in. In 2010 we might get our own door, but that's for the wishes and hopes for the new year's eve celebrations. We'll keep you informed, of course.
Now get to the Christmas roasts, the Christmas booze and Christmas presents and celebrate and enjoy, just, stay out of the snow or the wind...

Marry Xmas y'all who, ho, hoooo...

12 December 2009

As we said, winter is coming...

Winter is on it's way; where a few days ago we still dived (or dove???) in water of 79º, yesterday the temperature dropped dramatically to 75º. Okay still nice and comfortable, but in my broken 5 mil I did get cold. The dives were spectacular though. We did 'La Esperanza' (and yes we did see a bull shark, maybe just 15 feet away!) and an enormous amount of dog snapper and grouper. The second dive in 'Los Morros' was beautiful too; the yellow tail snapper everywhere, maybe 6 or 7 'garopas', the 5-6 feet long grouper and as a desert after a long nice dive, the jacks, maybe a million of them circling us, from bottom to surface; they made a very nice safety stop....
But that temperature, the wind and waves... Really, I think summer is over and autumn is kicking in... In two weeks it will be winter... Get the thicker suit from the hangers and put on some extra weights.

09 December 2009

December is wonderfull...

visibility: still over 60 feet
water temperature:
still over 79ºF
varying from strong to mild, changing by the day
surface conditions:
normally good in the morning, some waves in the afternoon

So December starts
off very beautiful too, both above as under water. Summer seems to last into the winter; no temperature loss yet, no strong winds from the north yet, still good diving and snorkel conditions, but no guests either. Tourism still stays slow and low; looking on the bright side, it means we dive small groups and have to share the reef thus with only few divers...
Last week the first whales came in to give birth to their calves, earlier it were the cow nose rays that entered; who knows first signs of an approaching winter? With the life, the temps and visibility as it is this is hard to believe, but for sure, winter will come...

26 November 2009

It's been a busy week!

visibility: a bit over 60 feet
water temperature: 79º F
currents: hardly any
surface conditions:
flat calm...

So, in the weekend of 13, 14 and 15 November, we had a club over from Mexico D.F. of 17 divers diving 3 dives a day for 3 days. The week days following we had every day at least two outings and the next weekend (22 and 23) another club from Mexico of 29 divers... We were busy, we are tired, but very happy we pulled it off. In a new center, with staff not even one month working together, without a hick up, smoothly and pleasantly; everybody happy. And the dives? Okay, some more photos to convince you too!!! Here we go...

Yellow tail snapper...

...a sea lion...

...some sea lions, sardines and divers...

...sea lions in love?...

...at the surface...

...and on depth!

Now, enjoyed that? Wouldn't you like to have your picture taken? As long as we are 'under construction' we throw in a photo of you diving, for free. This one is for Rocio...

13 November 2009

Photos tell the story a lot better...

visibility: still around 60 feet
water temperature: a comfortable 79º
currents: just a lazy push
surface conditions: wind and waves in the afternoons

Robust coral
Still the rays are around and the turtles and the sea lions and all the other inhabitants of our beautiful reef. This time not to many words, just let us show you how incredible the dives on the reef are now... Sit back, relax and awe!

Cow nose rays

Dog snapper and pork fish

Eagle ray

balloon fish

Yellow tail snapper and pork fish

As we said: sit back, relax and awe! Or even better: experience it yourself, while the water is still clear, warm and full, fuller, fullest, like an aquarium...

01 November 2009

Changing sites...

visibility: after a drop to 40 feet, back to 60
water temperature: dropped too, but is again at 79º
currents: a few days pretty strong, but also nice and mellow again
surface conditions: still some waves in the afternoon, good in the mornings

The last few months
we've been diving from Mario's Cabo Pulmo Divers. We're changing the site now to be able to see better to the needs of our divers. Not that Mario has a bad dive center, but we couldn't agree in the direction to go and that doesn't work out...
So here we are in the center of Cabo Pulmo Water sports, a brand new center, still not completely finished but already operative. If we're not diving, we are painting, plastering, plumbing and gardening.
It's a completely new center, with lots of potential: of course it's going to be a PADI dive center, holding full insurance, working with PADI certified instructors and dive masters. But it is also a center with top of the bill diving equipment and we're not only talking suits, regs and B,C.D.'s, but trust able oxygen and complete first aid kits on board of very nice pangas and in the center itself, with all staff trained in the use and administering of it.
SERVICE, yes, written in kapitals, not short dives of a few minutes and back fast, but dives of 45 to 50 minutes and at all the available dive sites, not just the closest.
Experienced captains, guides and instructors, good air, all PADI courses, beautiful water, great vibes; old fashioned diving as how it is meant to be.
Don't believe it is possible anymore in this world of hunting for profits and easy money or economic crisis? Better believe us and if you don't, come over and convince yourself... We'll chuck in a few photos, free of charge as long as we are 'under construction'!

28 October 2009

The rays are back...

visibility: up to a very nice 60 feet!
water temperature: dropped a bit to 79º on depth
currents: slowly pushing you trough the reef
surface conditions: every now and then some wind, thus waves, especially in the evenings...

But the diving is great, the reef full of life. Already the cow nose rays are back and crossing El Bajo in groups of say 25 up to over 150!!! Also the sand is covered with the diamond sting rays and even eagle rays are spotted. Add this to the turtles that we see now and of course all the grouper, pork fish, burrito grunt, balloon fish etc. etc. and you've got a dive of a life time.
Rays coming in already this year... This is early, and it might mean that the winter comes early too. Under water, that is; a winter with the colder water and the lower visibility, because of the algae. Lower visibility because of 'ray-food'. Come over now, while the vis is still great and see what we do: wow, we love our job!

19 October 2009

October starts off like September...

visibility: depending the wind and waves
water temperature:
varying between 84 and 79º
currents: practically non
surface conditions: also depending the wind

When the summer is hot, with temperatures over 110ºF, wind and storms keep coming. Some of the storms are getting really close, frightening close, while others turn away from us into the Pacific. Close or far away, the sea does react on them by producing waves, lots of them and high. Some storms provoke days of disturbing work conditions, others just a day or two and not too much either. We're used to them in September, but this year the longer train of storms keeps on riding through October.
It makes our divers life difficult; a lot more work in the boat, in the surface and under water. A lot more things happening in the office; cancellations, late arrivals because of flooded roads, delays in the airport etc. But hey, we're flexible, we have to be and normally you understand the effect of natures moods...
The differences in the weather make the diving also differ from day to day. But mainly it's difficult to let you know if tomorrow we can go out or not, if next week is going to be a good week or not. I'd say take the chance because life under water is spectacular; also for fish storms are a crisis, a reason to come out and get the food while they can, to be able to shelter when the surge hits the reefs...
When we're not diving we're working in the new center, slowly it's taking shape and every day it's looking better. Today we're maybe struggling a bit, but the future looks beautiful.
While we are 'under construction' we'll be taking photos to share with you, you'll get them on a disk, for free. So, see you soon in Pulmo...

30 September 2009

Don't like September, but love it...

visibility: of and on around 40 to 100 feet
water temperature: way too hot 86º
currents: slow and mellow
surface conditions: varying by the day

Ir's always the same with September, the hurricane month. A train of tropical storms and depressions, sometimes developing into a hurricane pass by. Sometimes very close, sometimes on a distance, but rarely without effecting the sea and the diving conditions.
One day we go out and are fighting wind and waves to dive in kinda low visibility and the next day the sea is flat calm, no wind nor currents but with an even lower vis. All predictions go wrong when you expect to get rough seas, because of a strong wind and it has not more than just a slight chop, with a visibility that allows you to see all sides of the reef and all life in all directions on top of it.
It's a gamble, this September month and sometimes you lose, and sometimes you win. Sometimes though, you hit the jackpot and it is beauty everywhere; a dream dive that only happens to you a few times in a lifetime... Don't like September, but have to love it...

03 September 2009

Bad luck, again...

visibility: less than 20 feet
water temperature: unchanged at 83º
currents: very strong
surface conditions: waves and wind

After it took a long time for the warm and clear waters to come in, although already announcing itself very early this year, Jimena came and left the water a mess again. Hurricanes somehow tent to do that. We have to see when we can go diving again, but it looks like the currents will clean and clear up the water fast. That means that we most likely can go diving again in short time, probably after the weekend of 5 and 6 September.
It's September, so low season and thus time to travel. Pilu will be visiting her father is Spain, so Henri is the only guide now. To make sure you can go out, please book and confirm your arrival before at piluyhenri@gmail.com. I'll be waiting for your call...

26 August 2009

Murphy is beaten...

visibility: a good 60 feet,
currents: mild currents, but running the wrong direction,
water temperature: over 83º on the bottom
surface conditions: smooth seas

At last Murphy has been beaten!!! Last week, when Pilu went diving she didn't see the manta ray, of course, because she had the camera with her. No manta, but what to think of this nice shark; not bad either, now isn't it...

Two days after it was Henri's turn and also he had the camera ready; next attack on Murphy!
First dive in Los Morros was great; full of life and in the north part, just next to the reef almost a dozen Goliath grouper, the old fashioned jew fish; huge fish!

Being able to get really close to them (touching distance) gave some nice photos.
Not so big, but in huge schools were the big eyed jacks, the yellow tail snapper and the cabrilla spread out over all the reef, making the visibility go down a lot.
In the second dive, El Bajo, we didn't see too much life in the beginning of it, but after reaching the 'fish market' we knew why we didn't see that much. It was all gathered here, a fish soup with all the kinds, sorts and sizes you can imagine... So we stayed there and didn't move from the spot, until we had to go up. The safety stops very often holds a surprise for you; a whale shark swimming by, the mobulas doing their thing. Today it was the Gigantic Pacific Manta slowly moving through the water, against the current.

Where yesterday I had to 'borrow' a photo, I can show you now what we saw. Width about 10 feet, depth around 20 feet, speed, too fast for me, but managed to get some nice shots, don't you agree?

22 August 2009

Murphy's law...

visibility: a wonderful 60 feet and over...
currents: changing by the day, from strong to very mild,
surface conditions: in the morning perfect, in the afternoon a bit of wind,
water temperature:
on the surface 87º, on depth 83... a warm bath!

Is it Murphy's law or not. A gigantic Pacific Manta is swimming now in the bay of Cabo Pulmo for several days; slowly, relaxed, circling around and minding it's own business, not caring about the ecstasy of divers around her. A beautiful sight, enormously but gracious like a ballerina, maybe 10 feet wide, hundreds of pounds of muscle dancing through the clear water... and no camera around. Then several days in a row we went down with photo and video cameras and no sign of the creature, probably camera shy! Today Pilu went diving again with photo camera, no video and guess what, no sign of the manta... It's not fair and we hate Murphy, but what spectacular dives we had last few days and weeks. With or without the manta, there's life everywhere, up and down, in mid water, under rocks, around corners: there is always something moving and in this clear water it cannot hide...

The picture is not ours, we 'borrowed' it from: www.sheppardsoftware.com

Woooowwwww, life is beautiful!!!!

10 August 2009

At last it’s summer.

The air temperature has been high now for four months, high as in over 100ºF. In the beginning this is okay, but after some weeks it wears you out! Diving in May and June was still very refreshing, with a water temperature of around 73-75º. How nice to be able to really cool down!

Now we cannot hide anymore; the water temperature is on the surface around 88 and on the bottom 85º. It’s nice to go in, you don’t get ‘overheated’, but it doesn’t cool down anymore. After the dive, back in the boat, pulling in the equipment of our guests, is enough to have the thermostat going crazy again; to keep the ‘engine’ within limits, sweat is breaking out. All day wet, if not of the sweating, it’s of the diving, or because you hide under the shower (again). Luckily for life on land every afternoon we have a bit of a breeze, sometimes (early night) it can be more forceful. Unfortunately without any rain and thus with a lot of dust.

So under water it’s better, a lot better and beautiful, very beautiful. The ‘wind’ under water is quit forceful too. The current is strong, takes you through the reef in too short time, floating from school to school. The fish are having trouble with it too and are looking for cover, rocks, walls and overhangs, every bit of cover is taken and nobody wants to leave their shelter. A school of yellow tale snapper, not as big as normal, since the rock doesn’t give enough slack for the whole group, so not four or five big schools of snapper, but maybe fourteen or sixteen, the pork fish, the burrito grunt, the goat fish occupying huge areas, close to the bottom, almost touching the sand. The moray eels not coming out in the open more than necessary, just their heads and a bit of body peeping out of a rock. Only the big fish, the grouper and the dog snapper seem to be able to withstand the water and the flow of it. Slowly moving over the reef, nose into the current, constantly swimming but not moving an inch. And then there is a diver, fining to stay with all this life, trying to take it in and to not miss anything... Wow, men and woman, what a luck to be part of this, to be able to enjoy so much life and to be able to get so close to it... What a great job we’ve got!!!

04 August 2009

visibility: about 60 feet,
still a nice push, arm-chair-diving...
water temperature: at the surface 87º, at the bottom 82
surface conditions: almost flat calm, just some waves on the shore

This week we are having a family over doing their Open Water Diver courses and they are having a good time. Not only because of the good conditions, but also because they have the feeling to do their skills in an aquarium and their dives, well in a fish soup. It's true, the amount of life is huge now, still a lot of winter fish, but it's also the end of spring. Under water, that is, because on land it's already hot, hot, steaming hot for months. The water is simply beautiful, clear blue, embracingly warm and full of fish, ready for the summer to arrive.
On land the wet season started with some rain in the beginning of August, first rain since May (2008, that is!). Took the heat out and cleared up the air a lot, made breathing easier again. Hope the rain doesn't affect the water too much, because I can go diving again. My (dog bite) wounds are licked and healed. Yes, going down again, with camera...
Tomorrow they do their last 2 dives in the course, and we celebrate the arrival off one more family of 4 more divers in the community; welcome Susan, Rex, Geneva and Ian and congratulations...

27 July 2009

At last; clear waters...

visibility: around 50 feet and improving water temperature: around 80º, on the surface boiling
hardly any, just a little push
surface conditions:
flat calm with some swell at the beach

Since I've been fighting a dog and lost (the bully bit me in the bum, so no diving for me this week), I cannot give an update out of first hand. I tell you what I've been told by Pilu and it is promising! She's been diving a lot this week, has done all the work on her own and enjoyed it...

There is a good visibility of around 50 feet horizontal, that gives a beautiful view of the reef. It makes the diving easier, because from entering the water you can see bottom and tons of fish covering it.
The grouper are as usual abundantly everywhere and also the snapper and dog snapper are all over the place. With this visibility you don't have to search for them, they are there, everywhere, all around. Still some rays around, although they are going to leave now very soon. Thought they were gone already, for we didn't see them anymore for the last few weeks. The pork fish are schooling with the goat fish and some burrito grunt, to form a bit of a group, sized like the schools of snapper.
It's spring under water, going to summer and the 'spring-activity' can be seen all around. It even effects humans: coming all the way from Austria, Christian asked Melissa under water and she said yes. We say: congratulations and hope to see you again when or before you get married...
Anyway folks, get over here and get wet, it's beautiful out there! Don't forget video or photo cameras, it's that time again...
See you soon in Cabo Pulmo, when I'm diving again!

08 July 2009

It stays as it is, unfortunately...

visibility: still around 30 feet, kinda whitish,
water temperature: in between 75 and 77º F on depth, 80º at the surface,
currents: non to speak of
surface conditions: flat as a pancake, (no wind nor waves) in the morning; in the afternoon wind picks up a bit and the waves do too.

Because of the lack of currents the waters stay a bit cloudy; it doesn't wash clean, the visibility doesn't improve. Don't know if this is still an effect of the hurricane that past by two weeks ago, but it's a bit of a burden... We'll stay in touch...

27 June 2009

We're out of luck...

visibility: in the shallow parts of the reef, non, in deeper water some...
water temperature: has gone down, but not too much; at the surface down to 75º
currents: strong in the surface, less on depth
surface conditions: sea-sickening choppy with white heads but a nice air temperature (dropped at least 15ºF to about 75 - 80

No diving, no photos, no outings.
We're not going anywhere these days as far as diving is concerned. We do some shopping, we're reading some books, have a beer or two and are outside, since the air-temperature is great. We can sleep again at night and we can sleep in a bit...
According to the web-pages that say they know everything about the weather, it's going to last till at least Tuesday. Just keep checking, I'd say...

19 June 2009

Fingers crossed...

visibility: still okay, a bit green...
currents: still nicely pushing
surface conditions: who knows, now good enough with a lot of swell, but...
water temperature:
cold on the bottom, nice in mid-water and warm on the surface

It kept well for some days, though the wind direction and currents changed. Normally these changes do not improve the diving conditions at all, but we're still doing okay; visibility stays up, but temperature dropped, and not just a bit. Thermoclines are everywhere making the diving very interesting but it also makes you shiver, every now and then!
A tropical depression, headed towards the coast of the mainland (direction Mazatlan). Not a threat for us, here in Baja California Sur, but it did influence a bit the sea; the temperature went down a bit (and quite some on the bottom, the vis suffered a bit but not too much, the waves are still long and don't give any problem...
With a bit of luck the tropical storm 'Andres', predicted to pass the south tip of the peninsula next Thursday, doesn't mess up our waters. With a bit of luck, the weather gods let us go out and dive: after the economic crisis, and the swine flu-holidays we want to get wet again.
We'll keep you posted... See you again in cyberspace!

Keep our fingers crossed,
Pilu & Henri

18 June 2009

It seems to be staying...

visibility: The visibility moves a bit between 50 and 100 feet; great...
Are very mild; lazy and nice 'arm chair diving'
surface conditions: The sea is behaving well and the wind is too. The sun regularly hides behind clouds.
water temperature:
The temperature varies between 73º on the bottom, with every now and than a 'cold-spot' of 70º, while at the surface it's a comfortable 80.

It seems to be staying in the bay, the nice and clear waters. When currents or wind direction change, normally the water conditions change with them, but already the waters stay promising and tempting turquoise.The temperature did drop but water stayed clear. In the years before the changing went with ups and downs (in temperature, visibility and currents), but this year we had so far only one drop and further just ups. Of course, it's not summer yet, but we believe we're not far away from it and we don't believe the super-cold, green and dark waters are going to be pushed back in again.
You know what this means; your equipment has to be prepared, serviced and packed! No, a 7 mm is not obligatory anymore, pack your 3 mm, or if your easily cold a 5 mm. Now, get the stuff in the car and get to Cabo Pulmo. The Sea of Cortez is inviting you...

09 June 2009

And it is still only June...

visibility: Better than great; up to 100 feet / 30 meters...
currents: Hardly mentionable, not more than a little push in the right direction...
surface conditions: Blue, blue and blue, hardly waves, bit of breeze, bit overcast but nice and hot, hot and hot...
water temperature: Talking about bathwater; 77º at depth and 81º at the surface!!!

Every year we seem to gain a month, 2 years ago in August, last year in July and now already in June. Don't know if this is a result of global warming, but it serves us just fine; a water temperature that is rising to a comfortable 83 - 85ºF (30ºC), together with an improvement of the visibility of up to 100 feet...
Great circumstances for diving; no more thick wetsuits, no more heavy weight belts, being able to see the reef from side to side, it becomes a Mecca for under water photographers and videographers. The winter life is still in, but in summer conditions, it's like taking winter shots, without the snow; picturing all the abundant life, also the bad, cow nose and manta rays, the schooling jacks, mating grouper and snapper, while the eels are going crazy eating the 'left-overs'.
I'm going to get the cameras ready again, it's that time, hunting time, hunting for good shots of grouper in el bajo, or sharks in la esperanza, huge schools of dog snapper and jacks in el cantil, maybe a turtle in las casitas and of course, the last rays and the enormous Goliath grouper (formally known as Jew-fish) in los morros. And... and... oh yeah, the wreck with it's schools of balloon fish, but still there's something missing...
Wander what that was, don't believe I forgotten about it... what was it again...

04 June 2009

It's spectacular!!!

visibility: Great (60 feet) on the surface, under 40 feet less, a lot less
water temperature: a nice 77º on the surface, but a severe drop under 40 feet
currents: not worth mentioning
surface conditions: smooth seas and light breezes, every now and than a bit cloudy

When seasons are changing the under water spectacle is incredible; from the surface you can see the reef clearly now, but then, in going down and passing the 40 feet depth line, the viz goes. The, at places, nice and warm water temperatures of almost 80º, accompany the clear and crystal water; the moment the viz goes, the warmth goes with it...
On the 'line of change', the thermocline, is where you want to be, or better, just above it; you're able to look down through a few feet of green water to see the reef and the reef fish. The king angels, the moray eels, the wrasse, parrot fish etc. etc. Going down a bit more is for cooling down purposes only since the horizontal visibility in the cold water is reduced to maybe 20 feet. Just above this green water, just above the shivering, where the water looks like thickening, boiling or even steaming, just in the clears is where all the life concentrates; huge, but really huge schools of yellow tail snapper, hundreds of "cabrilla" (leopard grouper) all pointing their noses the same direction, burrito grunt, pork fish and goat fish mixing into showers of fish, pompanos and jacks, it doesn't stop. It is spectacular, a must see and for sure, the whale sharks must be close, the clouds of krill and plankton are enormous, waiting to be 'spooned' for breakfast, lunch and dinner, it's just a matter of time...

31 May 2009

So, it's really happening....

visibility: 30 - 45 feet
water teperature: 73 - 77ºF
currents: some days some, others none...
surface conditions: smooth seas and a slight breeze

Last week we had some Open Water Diver and a Rescue Diver courses going, so we were busy. Not so many ‘tanks’ or ‘outings’ (let’s call it ‘visible activity’), because there is also theory, tests and exams involved (indoor work). We’ve been reviewing, correcting and sending in the texts and photos for the new web page, so the writing for our (b)log has been a bit neglected!

Back, thus to a week ago when the waters turned green and cold on us. We are happy to inform you that the clarity and temperature have gone back to nicer levels, it’s not summer yet, but we’re on our way... The diving is spectacular; Saturday we did El Cantil and El Bajo. The amount of life is incredible; loads of and loads of (yellow tail and dog) snapper, the cabrilla mating, huge goliath grouper slowly, almost lazy passing bye. Moray eels are everywhere and there are still some rays and guitarfish, the burrito grunt and pork fish are coloring the water yellow and, close to shore a turtle minding his own business. How much luck, to be able to do your first dives in these waters... How distracting to have to interrupt a rescue exercise because of ending up in a school of sierra mackerel; breathtaking, with or without a non-breathing unconscious diver suffering the bends to be taken to the surface. What an underwater world we live in!

Now it’s waiting for the fun-divers again to go out. It seems the pork flu and the ‘don’t travel to Mexico’ warnings are letting in and there are again more people in the street. Let’s go diving again, the waters are tempting and inviting...

Steward, Jessy and Andy: congratulations with your Scuba Diver and Open Water Diver certification and Ronnie, in becoming a rescue diver.

21 May 2009

What is happening here?

visibility: only 3 - 10 feet, depending on depth and site
water temperature: dropped dramatically too, on surface still 73ºF, on depth only 65º...
currents: hardly any
surface conditions: the air temperature is extremely high for May, the humidity too, you'd almost be longing for cold water... (but not that cold, please!).

Winter is on its return and summer is arriving. Well sure it is, but the transition from winter to summer is always at least 'challenging'.
Two years ago this happened in August, last year in July, so very early this year, in May, the water turned cold and green. This is a result of changes in the main currents in the Sea of Cortez and the Pacific Ocean. Water is pressed up from depth (under water canyons go down to 12.000 feet deep!) and is cold and green (algae).
In the transition time (as we know it from earlier years, a short 'spring' of around 2 - 4 weeks) water will become clear to turn green again and vice versa until it is clear to stay. When the clear waters comes in to stay, also the temperature is going to be up...
How about a visibility of 100 feet and a temperature of up to 84º? Niiiice, but for now, we still put on a 7 mm suit to keep from cold.
Ideal waters to spot big life though, we saw yesterday again a whale shark, a female of about 30 feet... Maybe she is going to stay around a bit, because of the grouper mating, producing a lot of food in their reproduction process.
No photos due to low visibility, sorry...

17 May 2009

Where the desert meets the water

visibility: 45 feet / 15 meters
currents: low current north to south
surface: slight breeze, hardly any waves
: 74ºF / 23ºC

In Cabo Pulmo the desert meets the Sea of Cortez and where the desert meets the water life is spectacular. Not only the wild life, the birds and bugs on land, but especially the under water life.
Changing with the seasons the diving changes; in winter we have 'cold' 70º F water with low visibility from 20 to 40 feet, but with whales, big schools of cownose rays and thousands of mobulas (the flying mantas). The big eyed jacks are schooling and filling the water from the bottom to the surface, like stormy clouds. The yellow tail snapper are abundantly covering the reef under the shelter of their bigger brothers, the dog snapper.
In summer the water turns crystal clear and warm, showing off the reef, full of healthy and live coral. The reef is filled with grouper (1 in a thousand is a golden grouper and you can see on half a mile of reef between 6 to 12 golden ones!), several jew fish, the tiger shark and bull shark minding their own business. At least as spectacular are the schools of pork fish and burrito grunt, the muray eels swimming around even during day. The sardine track turns the water into a dense fish soup, killing visibility.
But it's not summer yet, we're in the transition. A few days ago we were surprised with the biggest of all, coming out of a cloud of jacks; a baby whale shark of about 20 feet. The first one this season and the anouncement of summer. The first one of 2009, but certainly not the last one; it's going to be a great summer for diving...
An update: while I was writing the blog post, the divers were out with Pilu. After their return the happy faces reveiled good dives and after hearing them out it seemed to be spectacular dives: a whale shark of about 30 feet in El Cantil, a dive site close to the beach, depth around 45 feet AND a 20-foot whale shark in El Bajo, about 10 minutes boatride further away at 50 feet.
Yes, it's going to be a great summer...

13 May 2009

One month later...

We've managed the first month in 'our' new dive center; Cabo Pulmo Divers. A booming start as we didn't have any electricity, means of comunication, reservations or anything. We just had the support of almost all home owners and rental agencies in Cabo Pulmo and it showed. We've been going out every day, despite the world wide economic crisis, the mexican flu and the following boycott of Mexican tourism.
We hoped to be able to have time to write a web-page and to get it fast up-loaded, full of useful information and photos, lots of photos. But still, nothing really happening there because of the lack of time.
We hoped to have been able to create a little garden and some shades in front of the center, but we didn't manage more than half a shade and some plants.
We did get some electricity though, solar powered for there's lots of sun in the desert and we did get an internet satelite system up and running, so we are now able to communicate with the world. We use e-mail and Skype; telephone, both land lines and cell cover is still miles (literally) away.
We would like to thank everybody for 'making our lives difficult'; home owners and rentals for sending us their guests, divers for choosing to dive with us and the weather gods for all the sun, flat seas and lack of wind...