Thursday, November 11, 2010

Cabo San Lucas, August 2010 - Part 3

Reef scene at Cabo Pulmo.
Reef scene at Cabo Pulmo.

This is Part 3 of my photos and dive reports from Cabo San Lucas.

Cabo Pulmo

Cabo Pulmo is the best place to dive near Cabo San Lucas. It is a ~90 minute car ride north from the city, with 6 miles of the drive on a bumpy dirt road. Located within the Cabo Pulmo National Marine Park, the site is safe from fishing and the pollution of the cities and includes the only living reef in western North America. There is a small village that has three restaurants, a couple of dive shops and a small resort, but not much more. We traveled there 2 days in a row - one day of diving and one day of snorkeling.

School of Panamic porkfish (Anisotremus taeniatus) at Cabo Pulmo
School of Panamic porkfish (Anisotremus taeniatus) at Cabo Pulmo

Maps:
http://www.cabopulmopark.com/maps.html

We did two dives inside the park, one was at La Esperanza, looking for large sharks, and the other was a drift dive at El Bajo de los Meros. The diving was done out of a panga, with no shade. To get the boat in the water, they had a rusty, old 4x4 truck that pushed the boat into the small surf. It reminded me of being in Bali, though this location made Bali seemed civilized. On the first dive, we spotted two large bull sharks off in the distance. Unfortunately, they were too far away to get a good photo.

Reef scene at Cabo Pulmo.
Reef scene at Cabo Pulmo.

During the safety stop, we found ourselves surrounded by small jelly fish. I spent the rest of the trip with jelly fish stings on my hands and face. One of the other divers, a young lady from Australia, faired worse with stings all over her legs. As a side note, gloves are not allowed to be worn in Cabo Pulmo in order to protect the reef.

A school of jacks at Cabo Pulmo.
A school of jacks at Cabo Pulmo.

During a short surface interval in the panga, we motored over to the next dive site - El Bajo de los Meros. This dive site offered a beautiful line of reefs that we drifted along. Abundant life, hard corals and gorgonian sea fans adorn the reef. We saw schools of bright yellow panamic porkfish, puffer fish, eels and large schools of jacks. Near the end of the dive, we jumped from one line of reefs to another. El Bajo was my favorite and the richest dive site that I dove while in Cabo.

Freight train of jacks.
Freight train of jacks.

Additional photos from Cabo Pulmo are located at:
http://underpressurephoto.com/Underwater/Cabo-2010/Cabo-San-Lucas-2010/