August 8, 2006
Small boat operation was the theme of the day today. Chasing loggerhead and Olive Ridley sea turtles and catching few. Let me explain the 3 techniques in catching a free swimming sea turtle, I will call them the Lindsey technique, the Chico technique, and the Mark technique. The Lindsey, turtle biologist, technique is from the small boat - just jump on top of them and grab behind the neck and the bottom of the shell quickly. The Chico, the Bosun, technique is dive underneath the turtle and scare him back to the surface. I never did see a turtle get away from Chico, he is really good. The Mark, that is me, technique is to have the boat pull along side the turtle and I reach over the side grab a flipper and haul the turtle into the boat. I tried the Lindsey, missed grabbing the turtle and went 10 feet under him. I was still able to get him but it was not pretty. I did use the Chico and was pretty effective. I only got to use the Mark technique once so that is why I named it.
We stopped and collected some comb jellyfish; we also collected a couple of Portuguese man-o-wars. I dove about 15 feet to get some jellies, using my snorkeling gear. The amazing thing about snorkeling 100 miles from shore is the strange feeling you start to get after being in the water for awhile. I always get this strong urge to get my back end back into the boat after being in the water for a few minutes.
Later on that day we are cruising for turtles and we come upon a 8 foot 400 pound Hammerhead shark within 3 feet of the boat. I immediately start to wonder - what is really out there?
We saw a lot of spotted and spinner dolphins, I always wonder why aren't the numbers coming back? I love watching them, they are mesmerizing, and time seems to stand still. The sun is setting the country music is blaring and we are now rounding the tip of the Baja. Ernesto, a resident of La Paz, is busy trying to call home on his cell phone. We can see the light glow of the city. What a beautiful country and ocean.