Season Highlights / Plus RARE Open Spots on 2013 New Year's Trip! Act Fast...
As we move toward the close of another Socorro Islands Spring 2013 Season, it's time to acknowledge that this year has been a spectacular one for both the crew and guests onboard the Solmar V.
We've been exploring the Socorro Islands for more than 20 years, and no one on our crew can remember a year with so many amazing encounters in one season!
2013 Season Highlights
8 Spots Open On New Year's Trip
An Underwater VORTEX? We Found One at Roca...
DivEncounters Alliance Update
Across the board, the level and intensity from the whale sharks in November to the baitballs in May and everything in between this year has been off the charts.
We also have some RARE space available on our New Year's trip this December, so please check out our special offer in this month's eNEWS.
2013 Season Highlights- Action, Action, Action
WHALE SHARKS: Whale sharks start off our season in November every year. Activity has been particularly good this season, with noticeably more action than the last few years (which were pretty good to begin with). Then, there was a stunning dive when divers discovered an injured whale shark with a thick mooring line wrapped around it, cutting into her skin and threatening the pregnant female's life. Solmar V dive guide Daniel Zapata ("Danni") freed the whale shark in an unbelievable rescue. Watch Danni free the whale shark.
SHARKS: Silky, Hammerhead, and Galapagos shark action has been intense. The silkies began to school-up early this season in March, and the numbers were incredible. In general, the quantity and size of all sharks seen has been excellent. Roca Partida has been an underwater magnet for sharks for more than two decades, but the last three seasons have been simply amazing; this season being the best yet. Watch the trip report with schooling silkies.
HUMPBACK WHALES: Topside Humpback encounters have been a mainstay of Socorro trips since the beginning. In recent years, underwater encounters have become more common and are increasing in duration. This year topped the charts with multiple encounters including one of the most unusual ones of all time. We dove with a newly born calf and its mom from mid-January till early March - the same two on every trip. Here is the phenomenal video footage shot by our professional videographer, Adil Schindler - check out the video!
BAITBALLS: During the last two years, our crew has been fine tuning our protocol for exploring "baitballs" - tightly bunched schools of small baitfish that stay packed together in open water for protection. We're interested in the sharks and oceanic predators that are also attracted to these baitballs, and we have not been disappointed. Besides tons of sharks hitting the baitballs, we've also had sailfish, marlin, dolphins, and huge yellowfin tuna. Chasing baitballs has become a favorite among guests and crew alike, and the action has been consistent all year long. See the Baitball video.
Giant Mantas, one of Socorro's signature big animal encounters, started off great this year. Exceptionally strong through April, fell off a bit (which concerned our crew), and then back strong again in late May. Onboard biologist Eric Higuera believes a large plankton bloom that occurred at the islands may have been the reason why the mantas were not coming in as strongly to cleaning stations during this bloom - they were off gorging on plankton.
Wild Dolphin Encounters, another signature Socorro diving experience, continue to increase in duration and frequency. Extreme close-ups with these large, strong mammals just leaves you breathless!
So if that wasn't enough to make the entire season a memorable one, our guests and crew had to go all "science fiction" on us and find an underwater Vortex just in time for the new Star Trek Film... read below!
8 Spots Open On 2013 New Year's Trip - RARE OPPORTUNITY TO JOIN US
Please join the crew of the Solmar V on a very special New Year's Cruise to the Socoroo Islands:
Dec. 27, 2013 to Jan. 4, 2014
Giant Mantas, Sharks, Dolphins, and other big critters PLUS:
- Champagne New Year's Dinner with All the Fixins...Included
- Port Fees and National Park Fees - Included
- Fuel Surcharge - Included
- Free Upgrade to Superior Cabin - while they last - Included
- Free Booze - Included
- Free Nitrox - Included
- Free Hotel Night in Cabo - Included
- Free Roundtrip Airport Transfers - Included
Pay only our regular trip price of $ 3199.00 per person, plus tax, and get all of the above as extras!
Plenty of time to get your airfare to Cabo as well IF you act fast. First come, first served.
Please CALL or email us ASAP to book and deposit. The New Year's trip is one of the most popular, if not THE most popular, trip of the year and it is RARE to have cancellations or space open.
Underwater VORTEX Found at Roca Partida
Every once in a great while, something comes along that absolutely no one has ever seen, and that was recently the case at Roca Partida.
Divers on an early May trip noticed a thin line of bubbles extending from point to point on the east side of Roca Partida. As they got closer, they noticed a current, but it was circular! The bubbles and current were moving in a counterclockwise fashion, creating a horizontal vortex about 20 ft (6 m) high... Take a closer look below or in the trip video:
Play VORTEX Video
If you've ever seen a diver exhale a "smoke ring" underwater, you have the idea of a vortex. But this one stretched from one end of Roca Partida to the other. We saw it once, and not since. Have you EVER seen anything like this? Please hit the reply button and share your experience with us if you have!
Alliance Update - When Experience Counts
The Solmar V is a founding member
of the DivEncounters Alliance. First created by Peter
Hughes in 2011, the Alliance is a group of independent
live-aboard operators dedicated to providing you with
superb dive encounters on every vacation. Alliance
partner vessels are located in the "Who's
Who" of top notch diving destinations around the
- M/V Galapagos Sky - Galapagos
- M/V Solmar V - Socorro Islands & Guadalupe
- M/V Orion
- M S/V Waow - Indonesia
- New: M/V Atlantis Azores
- New: M/V Caribbean Pearl II
- Utila, Bay Islands, Honduras - A warm welcome
to the newest member of the Alliance (learn more)
Collectively, these live-aboards
represent more than 125 years of dedicated performance
in finding and delivering
the best diving in the world. Put that experience
to work for you when considering your next live-aboard
As a diver, you may also take advantage
of our Alliance Awards Program simply
by being a guest on any Alliance cruise. If you have been on a cruise with
any of the Alliance vessels (since January, 2010) you have already earned discounts,
free Nitrox, on board cash credits, free hotel rooms, and cabin upgrades, just
to mention a few of the benefits!
Please call or email our office
for more details. For more info on the Alliance, click
Latest Trip Reports - Solmar V
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