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desertdiver11

Member Since 13 Mar 2011
Offline Last Active Aug 10 2015 11:36 AM
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Posts I've Made

In Topic: Galapagos Photo Trip discount - Galapagos Master

05 August 2015 - 09:36 AM

Bump
I can tell from the PMs inquiries I'm receiving on this and other web sites this is posted on that I should've posted the final trip price.  $5450 for 10 day trip - $800 off!  

Payment/arrangements will be made directly to Blue Water Photo


In Topic: Liveaboard at Sipadan - MV Celebes Explorer

24 July 2015 - 08:57 AM

My trip on the Celebes Explorer was some time before 2010, I can't remember the exact year, but my experience was similar to Florida Sun's.  We dove Sipadan daily (fantastic!) and the great part of being on the Celebes Explorer was that we were closer to Sipadan than traveling from, for example, Sipadan Water Village (no bouncy boat ride).  That was the ONLY good part of being on the Celebes Explorer. The vessel itself was old, dirty, and infested with bugs.  The "rinse buckets", if you can call it that, were 1/3 filled with dirty water which was never changed.  There were things floating in it..............so needless to say, they weren't used.  The dives were strictly limited to 45 minutes.  After 40 minutes, the dive masters signaled start ascending, and if you didn't start your safety stop right then, they kept ringing and ringing.  IMHO, I would skip the CE and stay at SWV or another resort at Mabul, which is so much more pleasant.  Guides there are friendly, knowledgeable, and treat you like an adult. 


In Topic: Galapagos "naturalist" cruise after liveaboard?

22 July 2015 - 02:51 PM

Harry,

 

Thanks for posting your experience.  Agreed, NatGeo is pricey, but I'm sure you get what you pay for:  first class operation/guides/food, etc with no hiccups. 

 

I've learned that park regs restrict hike sites and times, but do allow tour operators to begin at 6 am, if they chose to.  I've found one 'standard' cruise operator who schedules a 6 am start, rather than the usual 7:30 or 8:00 am landing, to avoid the mid-day sun.  Unlike photographers who prefer to shoot early or late, a majority of Galapagos tourists prefer to enjoy a leisurely breakfast before touring.  Who can blame them, they are on vacation!

 

Did you see the epic 17 day photo trip on Nat Geo?  $12 - 20K!   Yikes


In Topic: Am I missing something? - Galapagos

06 July 2015 - 10:10 AM

Yes, will bring everything (10-17mm/mini-dome & 12-24mm/wide dome) and decide on the spot.  Leaving strobes behind would help reduce the drag, too, since I think the hammers are generally off in a distance...

 

I'm curious, Elmer- what time of year did you go?  Mike was in Nov; I'm going in May, end of the warm season. 

I've seen some predictions that 2016 will be an El Nino year, not sure how this will affect currents (vs temperature).  

Hope this doesn't drive the HHs down too far.


In Topic: Am I missing something? - Galapagos

04 July 2015 - 11:20 AM

Thanks, Elmer

I have a trip booked for next year..... will be pretty disappointed if I can't take the D-SLR on Wolf and Darwin dives, but yes, safety is the priority.  Will probably do a few dives w/o the camera first and see how it goes.........