Saturday, June 26, 2010

I'm gonna steer you towards another blog for a moment...

I was just visiting another blog and noticed this post by Andrew from "A Darker View" which is a great blog largely about astronomy and also has a fair amount of posts about his Big Island diving experiences. He managed to get a shot of an oddball jelly on the reef. We rarely see them on the reef, but a few weeks back there was a 4 day span of strangeness where the viz was well over 200' and there were crown jellyfish, comb jellies and other deep water stuff on the reef for a couple of days. Kinda neat. I took my camera down on one dive that week and saw a few things and realized too late that I'd left my memory card in the computer at home. I'm glad he got a shot of one while they were around. It's something you normally need to a blackwater dive to see.


Kona scuba diving's been good lately...

We've had a pretty good sized south swell lately, but as long as you're at a dive site that faces somewhat north the diving's been pretty darned good. Water temperature is still sitting at 78-79 degrees.

We've got a pretty busy week lined up ahead, it's been kind of slow the last two weeks. Kinda wierd, I get 2 or 3 days off the boat in a row and it feels like I haven't been on in weeks... earlier this year I'd been going out 5-6 days a week pretty much, so one slow period isn't all that bad of a deal. The rest of the summer is shaping up pretty nicely on the pre-bookings. The last two years we had less pre-arranged diving and lots of last minute divers calling in, this year we seem to be back to people arranging dives in advance... I have at least a few days of diving arranged every month through October, nice for us, now we need to continue filling in the empty spots.

Here's a photo of a frogfish some of you may recall from my first year of blogging. It's about 6-7 inches long and just at the stage where it's between the juvenile yellow coloration and turning to whatever color it's gonna be in the future. They tend to take on the corloration of thier surroundings... always possible this one spends it's time in about 30 feet of water hanging out around finger corals, as that's the color it currently is, but it could change some as it gets older. They get so tough to spot once they mature.



Sunday, June 20, 2010

Things to do in Kona Hawaii... Home of some of Hawaii's best snorkeling and scuba diving....

I've been messing with my Wanna Dive website and figured out how to add a simple slideshow to the front page, hopefully it works here too.

Kona and the Big Island have a lot of things to do... hiking, the volcano, para-sailing, dining, shopping, beaches, ziplines, world class golf, horseback riding tours, ATV tours, stargzing, nature tours, waterfalls, rainforests, botanical gardens, biking, kayaking, whale watching, etc.... but if you come here and you don't make it into the water with a mask.... you're missing out!

The Kona side of the Big Island is probably Hawaii's top overall snorkel and dive spot... lots of healthy reefs, very good viz, lots of varieties of fish (some of which you are unlikely to see on the other islands - try to find black longnose butterflyfish and lined butterflyfish elsewhere in the state, they're fairly common here), all day snorkeling and diving (the volcanoes block the tradewinds so it doesn't get crazy choppy in the afternoon most days), the manta dive (considered to be one of the top dives in the world), great snorkeling right in shallow water, generally calm and current free waters, and teriffic shore and boat diving. It's a great spot for both snorkelers and divers. There are beginner level snorkeling sites that are fantastic, and if you like the snorkeling, you can try an intro dive - no experience necessary - and get under the water for a terriffic time. Kona is a great spot for water activities.

Sorry for the commercial hype type of post, but Kona really is a great place... and I really wanted to see if the self made slideshow works and needed something to say.



Friday, June 18, 2010

Sea turtle finds lost camera.... shoots video....

A couple weeks back there was a guy that found a camera in a housing in Key West, the housing looked as though it'd been in the water for quite a while but the camera was fine. He went onto and posted about it with hopes of finding the owner. Eventually he started sharing the photos and then mentioned there waw one wierd video clip dated a couple months after all the photos... apparently a turtle got a hold of the housing and somehow turned it on. This clip has gone viral on youtube. In the end, with help of the internet community, they found the owner of the camera (who lost it in Aruba, over a 1000 miles away). Neat story. Ikelite, the manufacturer of the camera housing, has more info on thier blog.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

What can you see scuba diving in Kona Hawaii?

Here's a wonderful photo of a Longnose Hawkfish we've been watching over time sent to me by one of our customers. These are one of my favorite fish back from my aquarium shop days. I don't happen to have a photo of one, I'm thrilled they got this fantastic shot.

This post will be unlike others I've done. I was looking at their photos and thinking about how much variety of critters and types of diving we typically do over the course of 3-4 days... and thought I'd give you just a taste of it from a customer that was on the boat for 4 charters. We try to mix up the diving when we have people on for several days. The photos here are unedited and posted at a low resolution to save some space.... it's just a few of the many photos they took, don't even have shots of the whaleshark or dolphins they saw underwater on one dive... Thanks for the photos Roman....

There are tons of critters and sites to see when scuba diving, it's easy to pack a lot of variety into a few short dives in Kona.



Saturday, June 12, 2010

Titan Scorpionfish (Scorpaenopsis cacopsis) Hawaii's largest scorpion fish...

We saw this rather huge scorpion fish on a dive at Au-Au Canyon earlier in the year. We actually saw two of them, and both were huge, probably in the 18-20 inches or more range. These fish are one of the "stone" fishes, poisonous spines and all, and are easy to pass right by as they blend in with the surrounding scenery so very well.

I tried to get some decent photos and failed... they came out either blown out or too dull looking. Pat managed to get this cool angle on one of the ones we saw. I really like it.

Business has been really brisk up 'til the last couple of days. Managed to squeeze in a day off, hadn't had one since March ('cept for 2 days I was hit with food poisoning or some kind of bug back in April). Towards the end of last month it was looking like it was going to be quiet, then suddenly I had dives every day for about 12-13 days straight. Looks like it starts up again in a couple of days for us.

Done some very nice diving lately.... Bob led a group down off Naia and they had a trifecta of sorts the other day - a WHALE SHARK, a manta ray, and a pod of dolphins all on the same dive... can't say we have that happen too often.... very cool!



Sunday, June 06, 2010

Our divers saw a Naked Lady while scuba diving Kona, but the highlight of the dive was the submarine....

Today we dove the wreck of the Naked Lady. It's a 48ish foot long ferro-cement hull out in Kailua Bay sitting in 105-109 feet of water. Because of the depth and the fact that you're looking at a deep and short dive, we don't get there all that often. The sinking of the boat occurred long before I arrived here, but from what I understand, a fire occurred out on a sailboat in the bay and a naked woman turned up at Kailua pier screaming "the aliens are coming" or something along those lines. The story's probably morphed over the years to this... but it could've happened that way?

This wreck is a mixed bag, sometimes there's a fair amount of stuff hanging out, sometimes there's very little. Today they found a shrimp or two and a good sized yellow margin moray and not a lot more in the way of critters. During the dive they could hear the Atlantis submarine (yep, there's a tour sub in Kona that actually goes to 104') and then suddenly it came out of the blue and our divers and their passengers all got a good look at each other. The first diver up commented that she'd never had so many people taking pictures of her diving before. It'd be nice to be able to time that dive so the sub comes by, but it's kind of by luck, as it's a nice turn of events if there's not a lot of fish life hanging around at the time.

Cathy led the dive, this is a picture she took of the sub. You can see the tip of the Naked Lady laying on the sand to the left.