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Socorros Liveaboard! What a Trip! (2023)

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Bill P.
Socorros Liveaboard! What a Trip!  (2023)

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The Socorro Islands on a Liveaboard!

JOIN US on a great trip run by a dive operation we call friends, Fun Azul/Baja! Their ship, the M/V Valentina, is an excellent liveaboard with sizable cabins, great food, and plenty of space on multiple decks to relax! The only way to visit these islands is on a liveaboard like this one we've chartered!

OVERVIEW AND IMPORTANT ADDITIONAL INFO

TRIP COST: A non-profit price of $3,750 (includes a $500 national park fee) (excluding airfare) .

PAYMENTS:

  • $750 deposit (plus $23 Paypal fee) due immediately upon RSVPing here.
  • $350 of the deposit is immediately non-refundable. The other 1/2 becomes non-refundable after Nov 1, 2022.
  • Balance is 100% due NLT Jan 15, 2023.
  • Entire payment becomes non-refundable on Jan 30, 2023.
  • If you bail after Jan 15, 2023, and your spot fills, partial refund of balance payment may be rendered at discretion of Power Scuba.
  • (All refunds are subject to a 9% admin fee and a .42 transaction fee.)

Socorros is great for: Large animals, underwater photography, stunning structures, advanced divers
Not good for: Wrecks, small animals, beginner/inexperienced divers, non-diving activities
Depth: 30-101 fsw
Visibility: 50-165'
Currents: Mostly moderate but can be strong at times
Water temperature: 70-80°F
Experience level required: Advanced, both in certification and real experience (no exceptions).
Distance: 240 miles southwest from Cabo San Lucas, Baja California

ITINERARY:

  1. You must be at Los Cabos International Airport (SJD) on May 12 between 10 am-4:30 pm. Shuttles from airport to the ship will be provided according to your arrival.
  2. You must be on the ship by 6 pm, May 12. (Shuttle transport takes ~30 minutes.)
  3. Valentina leaves at 8 pm on May 12. It will not wait for you after this. (~24 hour passage to the islands.)
  4. May 14-May 19: Diving goodness (~20 dives total)!
  5. May 20: Set sail for Cabo. (~24 hour passage to the islands.)
  6. May 21 (7 am): Arrive back at Cabo.
  7. May 21: Disembark ship after breakfast. Provided shuttles take us to airport at ~9 am and at ~12 pm. Choose your air departure times based on this.

INCLUDED: Transfers (via shuttle) between airport and ship (both ways), lodging on ship, bedding, all meals, tanks, weights, air fills/free Nitrox fills (yay!), beer & wine, en-suite bathrooms.

NOT INCLUDED: Airfare to/from Cabo, chamber fee (~$25), scuba gear (except that mentioned above), hard liquor (available for purchase on ship), Possible fuel up-charge, toiletries.

*** Before or after the trip, guests may wish to spend additional time in the Cabo area. Talk it up with your fellow attendees!

THE VALENTINA: 130 feet long. With only 20 guests, it's the most comfortable liveaboard going to Socorros. There are 3 decks for us to spread out and use. Full bar. All 10 cabins are air conditioned and each one has a private bathroom with a shower. Cabin ceilings are high, and the beds are comfortable!

Dives: 5 1/2 - 6 days of 3-4 tanks at the islands. Viz is spectacular and the creatures are LARGE. Prepare your wide angle cameras! Night dives are prohibited at the Socorros due to safety reasons. This is a no-take trip, as the islands became a Biosphere Reserve in 1994. Plan to use nitrox (32%) (included in your trip price)!

Meals: All meals are provided. Beer and wine are also complimentary. There is a full no-host bar. If you have special dietary needs, email Fun-Azul at least 7 days before departure. You can also request that specific alcohol be available.

What to bring:

  • Dive gear - If you are able, bring all of your own dive gear except weights and tanks. (Rental gear is available if arranged with FunAzul at least 7 days before departure.) Safety sausage and whistle mandatory. If you bring a pony tank, they can be filled at no additional cost. Water temperatures ~75-80 degrees, and exposure protection ranges from trunks/bikinis (crazy) to drysuits (a little crazy). Usual recommendation: 5mm wetsuit. Surface intervals are fairly long, so you will most likely be removing your wetsuit between dives and a Lycra skin can make the process much easier. Dive knives and fishing are prohibited, but a small knife mounted on your BCD is okay. Gloves are prohibited. Dive lights not allowed, however camera focus lights, flashes, and strobes are allowed. No support for rebreathers. Bring your own adapters if you have a DIN setup. Included tanks are AL 80s. A few rental AL 100s are available for $90/trip.
  • Cameras - There is a HUGE camera table in the middle of the dive deck, two large rinse tanks, and a charging station to the side, with additional outlets in your cabins and the main common room. The crew does a great job handling cameras. Tell them what you want and they will remember.
  • Luggage - Check with your carrier. There's plenty of room on board to store bags.
  • Clothing - Air temps are expected to be in the 70s. Bring hats, sunglasses, sunscreen, and water bottles that you can refill there. Bring a light jacket in case the evenings cool down.
  • Medications - Ensure you pack all required medications/prescriptions. Also include seasickness and stomach medications if desired.
  • Passport - Required. (Have at least 6 months of validity left on it after the return date. Don't wait until the last minute to attend to this.)
  • Cash - Boat only takes cash (USD) for chamber fee, tips, bar tab, and incidentals. No checks, credit cards, etc.
  • Your Great Attitude - This is going to be a super fun trip! We are spending 10 days together at sea, so bring your high spirits and POSITIVE attitudes!

MORE DETAILS:

  • Inoculations - No special inoculations. Check back here for updates.
  • Insurance - You MUST obtain DAN http://www.diversalertnetwork.org/insurance/ or similar insurance for this trip. It is required to board the boat. The top level "Guardian" DAN is suggested because it covers non-dive related accidents. For example, if you are in a car accident, the hospital will more readily recognize and accept DAN than other types of insurance.
  • Tipping - $250-$400 or more is the usual for this trip. The crew is fantastic and incredibly helpful. Be sure to reward great service.
  • Courtesy - Yes, that's right... bring your courtesy. Power Scuba plans to work with Fun Azul/Baja again in the future. Let's leave them with the same good impression we do on all of our events.
  • Mexican currency is the Mexican peso. US dollars are readily accepted in most places in the area. The boat only accepts cash for all charges. Plan accordingly.
  • Language is Spanish. English is understood in most places and on the boat.
  • Electrical outlets are 120 volts, so no converters are needed. A surge protector for your electronics is a good idea.
  • A dive computer is needed. One that has a nitrox mode is important.

More information can be had at our Questions and Answers page

ADVANCED: You must have an Advanced scuba certification (or better) to go on this trip... or ANY overseas trip. Many of the dives will be over 60' of depth. There is plenty of time between now and then to get your certification. You must also have at least 50 dives under your belt for this trip, and be truly advanced in experience. There will be current on this trip. More than one diver has had their ass handed to them at these islands.

If you're a single, we'll pair you up with another person in your cabin. (Same gender if at all possible.) You may or may not be that person's diving partner. We'll suss it out.

Trip insurance is ALWAYS a good thing.

You are responsible for your flights to and from San Jose del Cabo Airport (SJD). Pay attention to the transfer and flight times. Transfers occur only during specific periods mentioned above in this narrative. Please be careful to find the transfer service by “Fun Baja/Trans Fun/Fun Azul Fleet.”

Your Checklist/forms. Print and send completed forms to Power Scuba:

*_______ Signed on-line Power Scuba Liability Release submitted: http://bit.ly/power-scuba

*_______ Signed MEXICO application, Liability release and Nitrox liability release: https://www.fun-azulfleet.net/application-form-mexico

*_______ Medical Questionnaire (answered & signed): https://www.fun-azulfleet.net/medical-form

_______ Pack-out List: To be posted in our Discussions Board thread: TBD

_______ Read the VALENTINA GUIDE BOOK: Posted soon!

_______ Passport (with at least 6 months validity AFTER your return date).

_______ Fill out and submit Trip Questionnaire (TBD).

_______ Verify the Roommate and Boat Assignment list (TBD).

_______ Read this event page in its entirety.

*To be filled out immediately after RSVPing and mailed to the event host at the payment addressed.

FULL DISCLOSURE:

  • One free spot is provided to the trip organizer by Fun-Azul. This spot is ON TOP OF the discount we garner because of our numbers.
  • A small amount has been added to each person's trip cost for Trip Organizer airfare, administrative needs, incidentals, shuttle tips, etc.
  • The organizer/Power Scuba does not receive any commission or other kick-backs.

MUST READ ADMIN SECTION:

  • If you haven't submitted a liability release for Power Scuba, please follow this link, sign, and submit: http://bit.ly/power-scuba
  • You must also read this: Disclaimer and Clarification (AKA Terms and Conditions): http://www.meetup.com/Scuba-Diving-San-Diego/messages/boards/thread/5914647
  • Anyone with a medical condition possibly counter-indicative to diving must have a doctor's signature on a diving waiver form and submit the signed form to Bill Powers (or an organizer) before they may attend any Power Scuba event. YOU MAY NOT ATTEND AN EVENT WITH AN UNDISCLOSED MEDICAL CONDITION. Doing so is grounds for expulsion from the group. Here is our Medical Statement https://www.facebook.com/groups/PowerScuba/files. Therein you'll find a Doctor Waiver form as well.
  • Attending any scuba event that Power Scuba facilitates constitutes attendee's affirmation they are medically fit to dive, certified to dive by a nationally-recognized agency, have the necessary skill & training level for the dive being offered, have read the Terms and Conditions, and have submitted the on-line signed Liability Release.
  • Important Notes: It is not the Organizer's role to lead your dive. The Power Scuba Organizer does not function as a divemaster. (The boat provides DMs.) He or she merely facilitates the event. Once members arrive at the boat, the Organizer becomes simply another diver and liaison with boat staff.
  • Your participation constitutes your affirmation you agree to these above rules and disclaimers.... and that your buddy, if applicable, has read and agrees to the same.
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