Dive Day #3 - Beagle & Happy Birthday USA

Puerto Ayora Travel Blog

 › entry 5 of 10 › view all entries
Typical two tank dive that started the same as the other days.  Up at 7am, taxi across the island to the channel near the airport...onto the boat and off we go.  The difference this time was the hour and half long boat ride out to the island.  So lots of time to take in the scenery and marvel at the fact that I'm in the Galapagos :)

Dive #5: Beagle
Depth: about 60 feet, average 30

This was probably the most boring off all the dives, it was over a lot of sand and all I saw were a billion starfish (about 3 or 4 different species from what I could tell).  I'll just leave this one as uneventful and REALLY cold.

Dive #6: Beagle
Depth: about 80 feet, average 50

This dive is in all of my diving experience the single best dive I've ever been on.  Hands down.  No arguing.  This was it.  If you've ever watched a Galapagos Islands special on the Discovery Channel with huge schools of fish, lots of activity, sharks, the works...I dove in the TV :)

For starters, the dive began with a 8 foot Hammerhead Shark that literally swam right by me.  Fortunately, Hammerheads aren't fond of SCUBA divers!  Check one off the list!  Next, the dive master points out a MASSIVE Manta Ray which was probably about 10 feet across.  I've seen them on TV and in dive videos before, but seeing it for real in the wild is an entirely different experience.  Check another one off the list!  After that, we go swimming through the enourmous schools of fish (tens of thousands of the same specie, BIG schools) to try to maximize the chance of seeing a Galapagos Shark or White Tip...unfortunately we didn't luck out there...but our luck did quickly turn.  The dive master starts ringing his "pay attention to me bell" and it using both of his hands to point.  I look up, and the Manta is back...only thing time with a buddy.  So we've got two enormous Pacific Manta's eating the thick plakton above and being generally curious of the divers below.  Most awesome!

As the dive ended, I saw a group of 15 or so Tuna swim by...too bad I didn't have a harpoon!
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Puerto Ayora
photo by: timbo