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Undersea Hunter
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© copyright by Edwar Herreño

As usual the sun was shining as we departed Puntarenas and made our way to Cocos. We were joined by a group from Germany, led by our loyal dive partner, Sigi Smith. The way to the island was very pleasant, the ocean was completely flat and everyone enjoyed the stunning sunset. The conditions at Cocos were really good, the weather was nice, the water was warm and clear and the divers very excited!

We did the firsts dives at Manueltia and we saw big schools of blue and gold snappers, goat fish, bigeye jacks and white tips. The next day at Punta Maria and Dirty Rock we also had tones of small marine fauna, including a great variety of fish.

At Alcyone and Submerged Rock we also encountered large schools of fish like blue fin trevallies, white mouth jacks and rainbow runners, just to name a few. In the south of the island the conditions were equally as favorable and we saw big schools of fish and even a few eagle rays.

The most exciting day was when we dove Manuelita Outside. It was here that we saw two tiger sharks and three Galapagos at the same time! They were hanging around the same area until they decided to move somewhere else after a few days. Even thought this trip won´t be remembered as the 'enormous schools of hammerheads trip', we enjoyed seeing the many different species of marine life that inhabit Cocos. The diversity and sheer quantity of species is breathtakingly unique.

One of the dive sites in which we’ve seen more marine life has been Dirty Rock, where there is always action! The final thrill of the trip was our hike from Wafer Bay to Chatham Bay followed by a spontaneous disco dance party on Sea Hunter that created the perfect celebratory close to an amazing week of diving! - Jim - Cruise Director
Dive Conditions
Currents  
mild
strong
Visibility   80 ft / 24 m
Water Temp.   84°F / 29°C
Weather
Climate  
sunny
rainy
Sea  
calm
choppy
Crossings
to Cocos Island  
calm
choppy
to Puntarenas  
calm
choppy
© copyright by Herreno

After a fairly quiet crossing, where we enjoyed spectacular sunsets and were joined by a few dolphins riding the bow, we reached the island ready to start our week of diving in paradise. In our checkout dive we observed hundreds of reef fish and whitetip reef sharks. One of the groups even saw a tiger shark!

On our second dive we ventured to Manuelita Island and once again we encountered tiger sharks, as well as Galapagos sharks. In Dirty Rock we also saw a few hammerhead sharks, who swam into the cleaning station. Then in the safety stop we were engulfed in a school of jacks that swirled around us like a giant fish tornado.

Our dives to Punta Maria were full of Galapagos shark encounters and at Dos Amigos we were extremely impressed with the abundance of life. There were marble rays crossing all around us as we made our way around the rock.

The sunny weather made our hike on Cocos Island a wonderful experience and we ended the hike with a dip in the waterfall. Our return voyage was extremely peaceful, allowing us to stop mid ocean and enjoy a swim. We even saw a few dolphins passing by us as we floated in the open ocean.
Dive Conditions
Currents  
mild
strong
Visibility   70 ft / 21 m
Water Temp.   78°F / 26°C
Weather
Climate  
sunny
rainy
Sea  
calm
choppy
Crossings
to Cocos Island  
calm
choppy
to Puntarenas  
calm
choppy
© copyright by Undersea Hunter Group

Expedition to Cocos Island with CIMAR and Conservation International
Forceps, collecting bags, measuring tapes, quadrants, transects, cameras, identification guides and whole lot more equipment were involved in this weeks expedition. Led by Dr. Jorge Cortes, the group was a mix of researchers from CIMAR and Conservation International.

The objective of the trip was to do research on different organisms that inhabit Cocos Island. To conduct the research many different kind of data was taken, such as samples of different marine life. The scientists are trying to assess the health of the reef by taking measurements of the growth rates of different species. Through various other methods, their study hopes to find out about the state of the ecosystem at the island.

The conditions were superb most of the time. On the way to Cocos the ocean was flat like a lake. Once we got there, the sun was shining and the water was very calm and clear; which helped a great deal when trying to conduct research. The third day in the evening it started to rain and it rained the whole fourth day (viz took a hit).

The last day the sun was shining again and the viz also improved. The water temperature was about 82F, except when it rained, then it went down to 78F. There were no currents except when we dived Dirty Rock, even though it wasn't strong. On the way back to Puntarenas we even stopped to swim in the middle of the Pacific ocean. At the end of the trip a group of biologists stepped back on the mainland, full of useful information and very happy with such a successful expedition!!! - Cruise Director - Jim
© copyright by Undersea Hunter Group
© copyright by Undersea Hunter Group

Dive Conditions
Currents  
mild
strong
Visibility   90 ft / 27 m
Water Temp.   82°F / 28°C
Weather
Climate  
sunny
rainy
Sea  
calm
choppy
Crossings
to Cocos Island  
calm
choppy
to Puntarenas  
calm
choppy
© copyright by Andrea Pivari

The crossing to Isla del Coco was fairly quiet, the guests enjoyed the sun deck during the day and at night they watched the stars dazzling in the night's sky.

On our very first dive we only caught a far away glimpse of a tiger shark, but on our second dive we had an amazingly close encounter that left us all in awe (check out the above photo snapped by our guest Andrea). Throughout both dives to Manuelita we were engulfed in schools of snappers and pacific creole fish. Hammerheads were seen on just about every dive to Manuelita and tiger sharks came by for inquisitive passes as well! We also saw tuna hunting and there were quite a few marble rays around as well.

The best dive site of the week was Dirty Rock!!! The hammerheads were coming up from the deep water and passing through the cleaning station in great numbers. As we crossed over to the pinnacle we saw hundreds of hammerheads in the blue and we watched as their silhouettes filled the crystal clear water.

Punta Maria was another one of our favorite spots this week. We gathered in the cleaning station and hung around for 25 minutes as Galapagos sharks passed through the cleaning station.

***Blacktips were seen at Dos Amigos Pequeño and we spotted a cownose ray in Manuelita Channel***

Another beautiful week of diving! We can't wait to head back to Cocos next week - Dive Guides Federico and Mao
© copyright by Benoit
© copyright by Debra
© copyright by Benoit

Dive Conditions
Currents  
mild
strong
Visibility   70 ft / 21 m
Water Temp.   82°F / 28°C
Weather
Climate  
sunny
rainy
Sea  
calm
choppy
Crossings
to Cocos Island  
calm
choppy
to Puntarenas  
calm
choppy
© copyright by Lynn Morton

© copyright by Lynn Morton
© copyright by Lynn Morton

Our first day in Cocos was a bit rainy, but the rest of the week we had beautiful sunny skies, blue seas and just a little bit of current. Our adventure began with our checkout dive to Manuelita Coral Garden. Almost immediately our divers were surrounded by schools of snappers, groupers, whitetips, and even a Galapagos shark and hammerhead came to welcome us. Our good fortune at Manuelita continued and we saw tiger sharks on several occasions.

The week continued with incredible dives to Dirty Rock and Punta Maria, where jacks were schooling in giant tornado sized schools. Schools of hammerheads came from out of the blue and the Galapagos passed so close that we could almost reach out and touch them.

Some interesting sights this week included seeing a tiger shark in the Punta Maria cleaning station (alongside Galapagos sharks), a silvertip at Viking Rock, and blacktips at Dirty Rock and Manuelita Coral Garden.

Near the end of the week it came time to visit the island where a Park Ranger accompanied the group, providing a brief history of the island, as well as a few interesting facts. Our crossing back was quiet and sunny which gave us the perfect opportunity to do an open ocean swim in the crystal clear blue water.
Dive Conditions
Currents  
mild
strong
Visibility   70 ft / 21 m
Water Temp.   79°F / 26°C
Weather
Climate  
sunny
rainy
Sea  
calm
choppy
Crossings
to Cocos Island  
calm
choppy
to Puntarenas  
calm
choppy
© copyright by Shmulik Bloom

What better way to begin 2014 than with a picture perfect crossing to the most beautiful island on the planet. The cool sea breeze and picturesque sunny skies set the stage for the group of dolphins that rode the bow wave of the Sea Hunter.

Upon reaching the island everyone was eager to jump in the water and even with a few rain clouds in the sky, the abundant marine life teeming below the surface was about to make up for it.

One of our favorite dive sites this trip was Manuelita, where we encountered Galapagos sharks, tiger sharks and hammerheads schooling in shallow water. Punta Maria was buzzing with Galapagos sharks, and even they seemed surprised by the school of hammerheads seeking out the cleaning station. Alcyone simply could not be beat, the schools of hammerheads in the blue was breathtaking.

The calm ocean conditions of the summer allowed us to travel to the unprotected far end of Cocos, and dive a site called Shark Fin. While there we encountered eagle rays as well as giant marble rays that were curiously approaching divers.

After a memorable week of diving we returned home, but not before stopping mid crossing to take a swim in the open ocean. Summer is an amazing time to visit Cocos Island, we can't wait to return. Till Next week - Federico and Mao
Dive Conditions
Currents  
mild
strong
Visibility   45 ft / 14 m
Water Temp.   79°F / 26°C
Weather
Climate  
sunny
rainy
Sea  
calm
choppy
Crossings
to Cocos Island  
calm
choppy
to Puntarenas  
calm
choppy
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