The ‘Birdman’ of the Glorieta Sánchez Taboada in Mazatlan

“El Wicho” is one of the brave divers who impresses tourists and locals with their jumps.

Mazatlan, Sin. Since he was a child, Sergio Ernesto Estrada González, better known as “ El Wicho ”, fell in love with the sea, because of its color, its tranquility, and its strength, so it was no surprise to anyone when he decided to practice surfing , and later becomes one of the divers who impress tourists and locals at the Glorieta Sánchez Taboada .

The now 24-year-old remembers that he was in the second year of high school when he decided that he would dedicate himself to being a diver, and he left school to be guided by his life as far as he would let him get; He was 14 when he began to ride waves on a board, to later learn from “La Güera”, a popular Mazatleco diver, the tricks and secrets behind that risky “job.”

I started from the age of 14, I’ve always liked the beach, the sea. Everything that has to do with it caught my attention from a young age. I lived up here, on the east hill that is nearby (refers to the Ovispado Hill) and I started with the sport of surfing, there I met the sea. 

El wicho

Since then “El Wicho” not only dedicated himself to know the technique behind the diving, but never abandoned surfing, where he became one of the nationally selected to participate in competitions. In this way, it intercalates both activities, because unlike school or work, the dives do not impose a schedule.

I had to travel a lot, as I am selected national of surf, I have many competitions and in any job, they do not allow me. Here the shift manager gives us permission if we speak well with him. In addition, you have a good salary, especially in high season and when there is a tourist cruise. 

El wicho

To earn well you cannot be so picky he said, since the divers depend on the voluntary cooperation that the tourist and the local public likes to leave, so it is best to always have a good face in any situation; On good days, he has earned up to five thousand pesos, while at least 300 to 500 pesos.

It’s risky, really, but we do it from the heart. What I earn is variable, but once I won five thousand pesos in one day, when I am doing very well. When it is lower, I earn about 300 or 500 pesos. 

El wicho

Being a diver is not an activity that anyone can do, it is necessary to know the sea, to know when it is appropriate to dive and when there may be a risk to physical integrity; some of his friends have died in the process, he, fortunately, has only scars that the rocks have left him.

These have been because at the exit, there on the shore, you hit your legs on the rocks and are sharp. They are minimal, so to speak, thank God nothing has happened to me in these 10 years that I have been doing this as a diver. There have been partners who unfortunately have lost their lives during a dive. I have only had to get hurt, I have never had to get a dead person. 

Scuba Diver

On the occasions he has had to rescue colleagues, he uses the knowledge acquired in the numerous courses and trainings he has taken, since when he decided to leave school he prepared in the field of first aid and even took English classes, to be able to invite more tourists to come and see his great leap.

He says that an open secret, which is known among divers that in order not to be hurt after a dive, the low tide should be avoided, since that becomes their worst enemy, next to the rain because it becomes more “wild” Sea.

At low tides ‘La Güera’ tells us not to expose ourselves, that he is not willing to see something happen to us. They are 17 meters high or 17 meters and a half, but if the depth is too low then there is danger. Right now the depth is about three meters, it can be said that it is a regular or normal tide, the lows are two meters or one meter and 60 centimeters and apart we fall between two sharp rocks. That is the risk. 

diver

When he climbs to the gazebo of the Glorieta Sánchez Taboada to throw a dive, “El Wicho” thinks only one thing: that everything goes well. The adrenaline and passion he feels in doing the great act that impresses both tourists and locals, make him move on, so he doesn’t make a prayer, he only asks fate for fate.

DATA

11 are the divers who currently jump in the Glorieta Sánchez Taboada.

2 divers have died in the last 10 years after having made a jump.

300 pesos is the minimum that a diver earns in one day.

5 thousand pesos is the maximum gain on a day of high tourist season.

DIVING SCHEDULES IN LA SÁNCHEZ TABOADA

7:00 hours when there is a cruise.

9:00 hours every day.

21:00 to 22:00 hours to train and practice.

Source: el sol de mazatlan

The Mazatlan Post

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