Big Island diving November 2015

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Reaction score
Kona, HI
# of dives
500 - 999
Back to Kona after a few years and the difference in the health of the reefs is stunning. Ho'onaunau's famous cascading plate coral is about 75% bleached. Wow. Across the boat channel I found some plate coral that wasn't so bad, but still under stress.

OK, while that was depressing, I enjoyed a week of great diving; a mixture of shore diving and boat dives with Big Island Divers. Water was around 83˚ every day and vis was 100 ft+. Good times. Off the boat we did Eel Cove, Pawai Bay, Pipe Dreams and Outhouse. I'd only done Pipe Dreams as a drift dive before, but in the absence of current skipper Jeanine put us on the mooring ball and we were able to spend more time inspecting the various pipes. I was on Nitrox so couldn't go to the end of the big pipe and say hi to the residents there, but had a good time snooping around the upper end. We found a massive Titan Scorpionfish in a hole on the way back. DMs Brooke and Tara were very good guides.

I had wanted to do a few shore dives I hadn't done before: Mile Marker 4 and Old Kona Airport. But passed because there was still the remnants of a fairly robust south swell and I was on my own. Will catch those and some others on my next trip.

Also had a good time doing the Kealakekua Bay snorkle trip with some non-divers. Went with Dolphin Discoveries and that was a good choice of operators. Good boat, good captain (Patrick) and small crowd. Hadn't been there since about 1963 and it was fun trying to compare what I saw this trip with what it looked like back then to me as a 17 year-old. Coral looked pretty good in comparison with the reef stress I encountered elsewhere.

As always, it felt like too-short a trip. Malama pono.

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