Underwater Imaging Tutorials and Blog by Brook Peterson
The Cenotes of Mexico
I love traveling and although I have been diving in the Caribbean several times, I could not resist the opportunity to return. This time, our destination was Playa del Carmen, Mexico. With plans to dive Cozumel, Playa del Carmen, the cenotes, and visit the whale sharks off Isla de la Mujeres, it should have been a week of fantastic photographic opportunities. Not so. We arrived late due to mechanical problems in our airplane, to a tropical storm that lasted for the next two days. We ventured in to the water after the storm only to find 5 knot currents and 15 ft. viz. Hmmm. What to do? Well, we decided on a visit to Chac Mool, one of the beautiful cenotes which was not affected by the weather.
I was pleased with the beauty of the cenotes. They were just what I expected. The calm, cool water was beautiful when the light from the surface peaked through and cast beams of light down into the caverns.
The water was fresh and clear and yet in just this one spot, the light coming through had an eerie green cast to it. The water there also had a distinct layer between the hazy salt water on the bottom, and the clear fresh water on top. I have heard that when the two layers have not been disturbed you can see your reflection in the salt water layer while diving in the fresh water layer.
At one time this cavern was not full of water, but was a cave. With time, stalactites formed on the ceiling, and then the ceiling collapsed and the cavern filled with water.
Diving through these caverns is a great experience. It was as if you were exploring a cave by floating through the air. No slipping or climbing involved. Just serene floating and an occasional kick.