Eco Socorro Recap Dec 2019

Eco Socorro Recap Dec 2019

ECO Socorro recap

By Tim Yeo

Camera gear: Panasonic GH5 with Nauticam housing. Olympus 8mm fisheye lens. Ambient light.

 28 December 2019

After touching down at the airport in Cabo (SJD), we took a shuttle to the marina located in San Jose del Cabo to drop our bags off at our ome for the next 8 nights, the Quino El Guardian. We then and headed to town to get some food and drink. As divers started to arrive to join the initial group, we moved to several different restaurants around town. 

We took a van back to the boat at 8 pm for boarding and to get checked- in. We were underway promptly at 10pm and excited to be diving in the Revillagigedo Archipelago also commonly known as Socorro, soon. 

29 December 2019

Today was travel day. We started the day with breakfast, followed by an and the hour-long boat briefing after that. After the briefing, We then proceeded to set up our camera systems, watch a movie, take a nap, get a tan on the sun deck, and play some card games. 

Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019

30 December 2019

After a 30- hour navigation, we arrived in San Benedicto island at about 5 am and dropped anchor. The plan was to do 4 dives at the Boiler today and head to Roca Partida tomorrow,  since it was projected to will be the calmest day of the week. 

As we all sleepily got up, the Socorro Aggressor anchored off our port side. Thus, we staggered the dive times with the Socorro Aggressor so there weren’t as many divers in the water at one time. We dived in groups of 3 so there were no more than 6 divers per divemaster. We had a manta on our first dive and continued to have decent shark and manta action throughout the day. Overall, the Boiler was quieter than usual.  

Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019

31 December 2019 

We woke up with Roca Partida off the starboard side and some great news. The divemasters announced we could do 3 dives at Roca Partida, even though we were the fifth boat at the dive site. The Socorro Vortex, Valentina, Rocio Del Mar and Nautilus Belle Amie were already at Roca Partida with divers waiting to get in the water. 

Roca Partida didn’t disappoint for divers new to Socorro. Filled with life, we all saw silvertip sharks, silky sharks, dozens of white tip reef sharks stacked in little shark caves, and a sharknado of dozens of white tip reef sharks and silvertip sharks surrounded by large schools of bigeye jack and cottonmouth jack. There was also a large 6-foot yellowfin tuna that stayed with us throughout the day.

Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019

For returning divers, Roca Partida—like the Boiler—was quiet. We didn’t see any mantas, dolphins, or whale sharks, which we did see during the same time a couple of years ago. Overall, doing our last dives of 2019 at Roca Partida was a dream come true. 

Dinner was a wonderful prime rib meal and the New Year’s Eve countdown party started immediately after.

Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019

Food is of utmost importance on the Quino El Guardian and her sister boat the Rocio Del Mar.

All meals are beautifully plated and table served.

1 January 2020

It’s common practice that all divers have to check-in with the Mexican army when they get to Socorro Island. On the first day of 2020, we did just that. The army base on Socorro Island sent out 3 guards to do the inspection. They came out to our liveaboard boat on a panga (small, motorized inflatable dinghy) and checked everyone’s passports, the ship’s manifest, the boat itself, and some of the cabins. 

The winds today picked up significantly from yesterday and it was difficult to find a suitable dive spot. We did an exploratory dive at a new dive site and went to the Aquarium for our second dive. After the army inspection, we went to Cabo Pearce for the third dive, and it was the best dive of the day. Everyone saw mantas, including a black morph manta doing a full breach from underwater. There were also intimate dolphin interactions and a number of silky sharks near the surface. 

Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019

2 January 2020

We were the first boat at Cabo Pearce so we were the first group to get in the water for the day, and it did not disappoint. All 3 groups had excellent dolphin and manta encounters. The good luck from the first dive continued for the remaining 3 dives we did today at Cabo Pearce. 

Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 

3 January 2020

After another crossing, we arrived back at San Benedicto Island to dive Canyon, which has been one of the best dive sites in Socorro since last season. Unfortunately for us, the visibility was between 10-25 feet throughout the day and we had varying luck during the dives. All divers experienced numerous silvertip sharks circling a cleaning station, as well as Galapagos sharks, silky sharks, and the occasional manta. One group even saw a school of about 50 hammerhead sharks. 

Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 

4 January 2020

For our last day of diving, we stayed at the Canyon and were rewarded with an amazing last day of diving. Visibility opened up to over 60 feet and we saw lots of silkies, Galapagos, silvertips, and hammerheads. We also spotted dolphins hunting with their babies and the largest manta we’ve seen all week, with a 22-foot wingspan. When a mama dolphin just gives birth, she is too weak to hunt so she follows schools of Jacks. When a Jack catches a fish, the mama dolphin goes to harass the Jack until the Jack releases the fish and she gets an easy meal. 

Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019

5 January 2020

With the diving over, everyone got up at their own time and hung out. We spent the day going over all our pictures and videos, watching movies, having drinks, taking naps, and chatting about how amazing diving in Socorro is. 

Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019

6 January 2020

After disembarking from the Quino, some of us jumped straight back on a 6-pack boat with the Pelagic Safari from Cabo San Lucas to go out looking for sharks and Mobula rays. After spending some time watching humpback whales breaching and tail slapping on the surface, we got a call that a school of mobula rays was spotted. We immediately left the whales and headed to the mobulas. Eyes on the horizon, we found the school when we saw foot-wide mobula rays jump out of the water. Visibility was pretty good at 40 feet, and we spent over an hour in the water with a school of 300-400 mobula rays. 

Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019

7 January 2020

With everyone having a wonderful time with mobulas the day before, today we decided to go swim with some sharks. We headed the opposite direction out of the Sea of Cortez and headed up 15 miles out into the Pacific Ocean. The boat had picked up a bunch of tuna carcasses from fishermen the night before and started putting out a scent trail to try and draw in mako and blue sharks. After about 3 hours of chumming and waiting, thr captain finally spotted a shark, but to our dismay it was a silky shark. Having spent a lot of time with silky sharks in Socorro, we decided not to get in the water. The silky did not stay long, and left after 15 minutes. Right after the silky disappeared, a 12ft blue shark appeared, exactly what we were waiting for! We were extrememly lucky that the blue shark stayed with us for 1.5 hours and wasn't afraid to approach close to us. What an expereince to be in the water with these graceful creatures. 

Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019

 

A big thanks to the amazing crew of the Quino El Guardian.

This is our 3rd charter to Socorro and she never disappoints!

Abraham – Captain Pollo – Panga driver

Engineer – Ricardo Leo – Panga driver

Chef – Miguel Lino - Divemaster

Steward – Flako Jerson – Divemaster

Andres – Divemaster

 

Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019 Socorro Eco Trip Dec 2019

 

Join us on one of our Socorro trips!

Fly into San José Del Cabo, Mexico for amazing liveaboard diving in the beautiful Socorro Islands. Dive with giant mantas, sharks, dolphins, humpbacks, and more!  


March 18 - 27, 2020

Group Trip | Led by Katie Yonker | Rocio Del Mar

9 nights for $3,895

CALL US AT 310-915-6677 FOR LAST MINUTE PRICE


February 5 - 14, 2021

Big Animal Group Trip | Rocio Del Mar

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