Nautilus Captains Log
Captain Gordon’s Noon Report. Socorro Island, Mexico. June 26, 2012.

Had a nice overnight transit to Roca Partida last night, arriving 0700. Wx this morning not as nice as was forecast, had 10-15 kts from the north all morning and associated wave height on top of the swell around. Sky has cleared mid morning and a nice sunny day now. First dive we had a small whaleshark for the whole dive, some dolphins, lots of sharks. One diver reported seeing the big school of 100+ silkie sharks. Second dive just as good minus the whaleshark. Everyone is very happy and all is well onboard.

Saw a tuna boat near San Benedicto yesterday. I didn’t get a close enough look at it other than to make out that it was a tuna boat, I’ll report it to navy when we get to Socorro Island. Also saw some lights last night which may have been a fishing boat, around 15 miles north of the rock. We’ll get you full details to pass on to authorities in Mexico City to help them take action.

Captain Gordon

Captain Gordon’s Noon Report. Socorro Island, Mexico. June 19, 2012.

Our third and final day at Roca Partida. Wind is up a bit more, 12 gusting 15 at times from the north so a little more chop from that. Still around 5-8’ long swell from the NW but a little shorter from the wind. Sky overcast today.

Finished two dives so far, diving is still awesome. Teeming with sharks down there. Loads of big yellow fin tuna all over the place. Really really good diving. Planning on departing tonight around 2200 for overnight run to Socorro.

Everything OK onboard.


Captain Gordon

Captains Report. Socorro Island, Mexico. June 15, 2012

Just finished second dive of the day at Roca Partida. Diving continues to be outstanding. Loads of silky sharks, big tuna and other fish/sharks. I don’t think I’ve ever seen it so good. Guests are loving it.

Wx today similar to yesterday, around 10-12 kts from the north and long ocean swell from the NW, partly cloudy today.

Still planning on one more dive day here tomorrow before heading to Socorro Island to check in at the navy base.

Captain Gordon’s Noon Report. Socorro Island, Mexico. June 14, 2012.

Had an easy overnight transit from Socorro last night, arrived Roca Partida 0700 this morning. Seas a little bigger than I was expecting, around 5-8’ at 12 sec from the WNW with 5-10 kts from the NW this morning.

Just finished second dive of the day. Lots and lots of sharks, big school of silky/Galagapos/silver-tips all kinda mixed together. Maybe a hundred sharks.

I could actually see them schooling from the surface on the zodiac for most of the time. Also had a giant manta around on dive 2 for most of the divers. Lots of action here right now.

Had a chopper from a tuna boat buzz overhead but haven’t seen the boat around yet.

Sky is clear and all fine onboard. 


Captain Gordon

Captains Al’s Noon Report. Socorro, Mexico. June 4th, 2012.

Well one good dive can sure change the mood, but that’s what they come here for. First dive at the Canyon, San Benedicto Island. No giant mantas, anticipation, no joy. Second dive anticipation and Mantas everywhere, jumped in with one of the guests who was having problems and saw five mantas at the same time hovering around the cleaning station and circling the divers, great dive, wi. Vis today here was easy 100’/30 metres water temp at depth 73 as warm as 76 at the surface. Really chilly for this time of year.  We have WNW wind 10-15 with 2’wind chop on a 3-5’ westerly swell. 

All else is good.

Captain Al

Captain Gordon’s Noon Report. Socorro Island, Mexico.

Arrived at Clarion Island 0600 this morning. Transit over was pretty good most of the way. Seas did increase around 0400 with wind picking up as well to around 15 kts NNE and gusting. Swell seemed to be up around 10 ft this morning but period was long enough that it didn’t affect our ride much. The wind chop was the biggest culprit, but all things considered it was pretty nice.

Had our inspection around 0800 this morning and all went fine, then moved over to the SE corner of the island. I haven’t dove here before but did dive just around the corner on the NE corner last year which was really good. Today we are diving at Roca Pyramide. We anchored just to the North of the rock. The water is beautiful, 80-100 ft of viz. The dive was really good. A lot of dolphins around the divers for almost the entire dive. One big Tiger shark spotted by half a dozen people, and a small silky shark.

Wind is up right now a steady 15 kts easily from the NNE so this is as far north as we can go before we start getting the big seas. We are fully sheltered from the big WNW swell here. Had a good heavy rain shower for around 10 minutes as well during the dive.

All good so far. Hoping for a chance to find that seamount on the northwest side of the island tomorrow but we’ll see what happens with this weather.

Captain Gordon

Captains Al’s Noon Report. Socorro, Mexico. March 16th 2012.

Great conditions today at the Boiler, a little bit of NW swell residual from a storm cell north of San Fransisco. Wind was light and in the water visibility was at least 100’. Imagine stepping off the back of the boat and there in front of you is the underwater rockface of the boiler. Almost immediately when I entered the water today was surrounded by fish and then from around the corner it came the first of several flybys of at least three different mantas. This was followed by a lone dusky shark who has been patrolling the boiler area for the past few trips. No hammerheads for me today at the Boiler but we have been seeing our share lately. Although the Boiler is known for its manta interaction, I like the dive for that, plus all the other smaller stuff you can find if you want to look.

Captain Al

We’ve never seen big galapagos or dusky sharks there like that. Really unafraid of the divers. Captain Gordon’s Summary Report. Socorro, 2012. Mexico.

Weather today is beautiful, a very long 5-7’ swell from the NW with a light breeze from the north and clear skies.

We’re all by ourselves today as the Sea Escape just did one day then headed back to San Ben last night. Dive 1 was slow, viz was down and pretty quiet on the rock. Dive 2 was better, viz improved a bit and a loose school of 12-15 galapagos sharks and some silver tips plus some yellow fin tuna around. A sportfishing boat here today as well, trolling about half mile off the rock, back and forth.

We may end up doing two days here and finish with the last day at San Benedicto. The Canyon was great yesterday, we’ve never seen big galapagos and duskies there like that, really unafraid of the divers just circling for the whole time, really close.

Surprisingly few whales around. Saw a couple groups this morning a littleways off, nothing for the last couple of hours. Unreal compared to how it normally is from January onwards. Hmmm. Lots’ of sharks. Not many whales. Socorro is a changing.


Captain Al’s Noon Report. February 2012. Socorro

Diving is done for the trip, guests are enjoying a very fine meal and the talk is all happy. Christine from Denmark told me he came with very high expectations and we surpassed them all. As he said the problem at the start is like it was some other trip as this trip has been so fantastic.

That seems to be the general mood around the tables, there may be one or two who are not happy but think not. We did have one note on a down side today one of our tech equipment types lost his computer as he was wrestling himself out of his gear on the third dive and broke the strap trying to pull his arm through the web harness. He was mad at first but I think he has settled into the realization it was his problem. Other than that life is good. 

Captain Al

"It’s a wrap at Roca Partida." Jan 2012, Mexico.

It’s a wrap at Roca Partida. Great two days of diving and we even dodged a bullet. Just as we were hauling the boats and getting ready to get underway, a mexican navy frigate steamed up to the rock. Made radio contact with them through Joel. It took some time, as at first they wanted to come on board and inspect us. But the Captain remembered us from seeing us many times in the area and they told us we were free to proceed. The Rocio del Mar was not so fortunate. They became the center of attention after we were let off the hook. Next time I see them will ask how long they had to have the company of the mexican navy.

Everything probably could not have been better for diving out here. Sun today, etc wind laid down for most of the day to less than 10 swell was only issue with NE and NW combining once in a while to make loading and unloading a bit of a challenge. Expect to arrive at the Canyon at San benedicto for 0200. Plan is to stay there for the two morning dives and move to boiler. May not move if the canyon is hot or if the conditions are getting bad on the boiler. Guests and crew are writing some blogs tonight and will send those in the morning.

Captain Al