GREETINGS SHARK FANS!
The 2007 White Shark season is off to a record
We have just returned from
our fifth of
twenty two trips scheduled for our 2007 Guadalupe
white shark season.
Our first white shark
of 2007 arrived less
minutes after the Solmar V anchor hit the
We had no less than six white sharks on our first
day of the 2007 season and we have had sharks every
day since the season started. Our 100% success rate
is still going
strong now, for nearly 100 trips to Gadalupe island.
We have sighted several new sharks as well as some
of our long time favorite sharks. Patches and Cal
Ripfin have returned right on schedule and they
certainly acted as if they were happy to see us again.
Patches (one of my personal favorite sharks) has
visited us at Guadalupe every season for an amazing
six years now.
|Isla Guadalupe 2007 Trip #1
Our opening day was nothing short of a stellar
experience for everyone on board the
Solmar. We had sharks all day and
Water visibility was 80 feet and water temp was 73
The group was treated to having our first shark arrive
during the very first check out dive. The first shark
remained with us the entire day with several other
sharks joining the party as the day progressed.
Day two began with the first shark arriving only
minutes after we through the first bait out. We had no
less than six sharks with us the rest of the day.
Day three was even better with several larger sharks
in the 12 to 14 foot range taking baits all day.
|The White Sharks are Hungry
There has not
much tuna at Guadalupe so
far this season and the sharks are so hungry that they
are staying with us all day long taking
out, start the music and they arrive almost
We also have observed that there has been a great
shark on shark combat over the last few weeks. Many
of the sharks have been bitten by other sharks. In the
past several seasons we have witnessed many
sharks having moderate to major injuries appear
during the course of the season. However this season
have had 4 sharks with recent wounds in appear in
the first couple of days.
It is not uncommon for
sharks to battle each other over territory or food
sources, however with the absence of tuna and the
population of white sharks at the island numerous, the
sharks seem to be a little more competitive with each
other resulting in violent assaults on several of the
sharks by other sharks.
This is something we will be investigating further
the season progresses. So stay
|White Shark Cage Diving History
Made at Guadalupe Island
White shark cage diving history was made recently
Guadalupe Island, Mexico.
The deepest cage dive with white sharks was
successfully completed on August 22 2007.
The CEO of
Shark Diving International and US
cage diving pioneer Lawrence Groth and dive
Erick Higuera of the Solmar V crew made the
The two intrepid shark divers made a record breaking
cage dive to 100 feet using a specially
cage. The "Cinema Cage" as it is called is
specifically for operating large format cameras such
as IMAX cameras so it has very large
openings. Both divers
equipped with wireless communications to remain in
contact with the
surface crew and both were operating High Definition
cameras during the historical dive.At 100 feet
the divers encountered no less than seven White
sharks at close range. "They were everywhere"
Lawrence Groth as he returned to the surface
awaiting group of excited clients. "We captured
most incredible white shark footage ever
Erick Higuera as he safely stepped back onto the deck
of the luxury live aboard ship Solmar V.
The two divers filmed
the entire experience and recorded some of the most
dramatic white shark footage ever filmed. With several
sharks calmly swimming around the cage for the
"The sharks were really close as if they were much
more comfortable with us at depth, away from the boat
and far from the surface. It was the most incredible
dive of my life" Lawrence said.
The following day the two divers descended again
even deeper to 120 feet with similar results. "We are
exploring with new techniques and successfully
getting the results we are looking for. We want to
observe white sharks in their natural environment and
document it on film so we can share these
magnificent animals with everyone." said Lawrence.
The two divers plan on making more deep dives when
the conditions allow it. The footage will be
available on Shark Diving Internationals Best of
2007 White Shark Season DVD coming out in
August 18 - 25, 2007
Guadalupe Island, Mexico
August 18 - 25, 2007
Great White Shark Cage Diving
I am sitting here trying to put into words what I have
experienced during the last 5 days and finding it
difficult to come up with anything more than "the thrill
of a lifetime!"
Normal life is far from any description given to the last
5 days I have spent aboard the Solmar V in
Guadalupe, Mexico where we came face to face with
the awesome apex predator of the world's oceans -
the Great White Shark.
After diving for 20+ years and never having had the
opportunity to encounter such a beast, I jumped at the
chance to join this charter. I had heard seeing a Great
White Shark in the water was an unbelievable sight
however stories from fellow divers and watching Shark
Week did not come close to preparing me for the
experience that I was about to embark.
After a night in San Diego, the next morning all
passengers are transported across the border to
Ensenada via a comfortable motor coach chartered
bus. Once you arrive at the dock and passengers are
boarded on the Solmar V, the boat departs for
Guadalupe Island some 200 miles SW of Ensenada,
Mexico. The crossing was calm and the captain
spotted several Fin Back whales and much to our
surprise, a Mola Mola. During the crossing, Lawrence
Groth, CEO of Shark Diving International, gave us our
briefing and told us what to expect from our week.
Arriving the next morning at Guadalupe Island we
woke to find ourselves moored next to rock faced cliffs
jutting out of the deep blue water. Within a half hour
we already had our first shark with many more to
follow. The first day brought calm, clear water with
unbelievable action. Once the sharks familiarized
themselves with the cages they continued to come
closer and closer for our viewing pleasure. There is
room for 4 divers at a time in each of the 2 cages.
There are large openings in the front of the cage with
more than enough room to put the camera housing
out of the opening in order to be able to get great close
up shots with an unobstructed view. As the week
progressed, more and more sharks came to give us a
show with very close encounters and some breaching
for the bait right in front of our lenses.
One of the highlights (and there were many) of the trip
was a new submersible cage that is lowered to 30
feet below the surface and accommodates 2 willing
divers and one safety diver. This cage has very large
openings and offers one of the greatest thrills a diver
could ever hope for not to mention the excellent photo
opportunities that the open area offers. However, no
matter how much these great predators are portrayed
as "man eaters", it was clearly evident that they had no
interest in harming the divers in the cage. They often
came in close to inspect us but turned away and
swam off into the blue only to circle back around for
several more passes.
They also seem to love hard rock music! AC DC to be
more specific. There is a speaker lowered into the
water just below the cages that is clearly heard on all
the dives. As soon as the volume is cranked up the
sharks appear. Some actually frequent the speaker
and jaw and bump it with their nose.
Divers rotate in 1 hour intervals for cage time however
if there is an open space(s) you can go back into the
cage at any time. As the week went on and divers got
cold there were more opportunities for repeat visits.
All divers who wish to experience the submersible
cage are rotated as well.
On this particular week, there was no "slack" days and
every day offered lots of action both above and below
the surface. On the last dive of the last day, a sea lion
even showed up as if to say goodbye.
This is a trip not to be missed and is definitely one that
you will not soon forget. It would be the highlight in
anybody's log book and will never think of the Great
White Shark in the same light again!
Many thanks to Lawrence and all the hard working
crew of the Solmar V in providing us an unforgettable
Peter Hughes Diving