Log Date: Saturday, Feb 13, 2016
Entry By: Kona Aggressor Crew
Kona Aggressor II
Saturday 13th- 20th February 2016
Water temp 75-77”F
Air temp 75-80F
Wetsuit recommended: 3-5mm full suit.
SATURDAY: Full boat! Picked up our guests at the pier at the usual time, everyone aboard by 5:45, and we were off to our mooring for dinner, introductions and a restless night’s sleep full of anticipation.
SUNDAY: Captain Cliff decided an extended trip south straight away was in order, so we dropped the mooring line at 4am and away we went. Arrived at LAND OF OZ for our check out dive at 8am sharp and were met by calm seas and good visibility, just the thing for a “get wet and get set” first dive. Todd and new recruit Annie led the first dive and reported everyone “checked out” just fine . Saw a few PEACOCK RAZOR WRASSES in the sand and more than a few Crown of Thorn Starfish in the coral areas. Jocelyn looked to be having a ball and captured the moments on her Go Pro. After lunch found us at Manuka Bay for the afternoon/evening dives with hazy voggy skies but light winds and no surge. Leanne and Gino saw a pair of fighting Octopus (on their WEDDING ANNIVERSARY no less!)
MONDAY: Remnants of a winter swell are still evident on west facing shores this morning so we are going south today! First stop, Black Coral Forest, where the Long-Nosed Hawkfish once again eluded everyone but a lucky few. Moved on over to Ladders at South Point (the southern most point of the contiguous U.S you know!) for the afternoon. Ray Sr. scored some nice shots of a Dragon Wrasse. An increasing swell inspired us to move to Rainbow Reef for the evening and overnight mooring. The Reef was a rockin for the night dive and Ray Sr. was the man once again, found a Dragon Moray among the finger coral, a large Triton’s Trumpet was out (literally-of his shell) and about, as well as a couple o’ terrifying Viper Morays to round out the evening.
TUESDAY: You want to know the great thing about mooring at Rainbow Reef last night? We didn’t have to move the boat this morning! Everyone was up and ready to dive at eight sharp and the reef was magnificent in the morning light. Moved on to Stoney Mesas during lunch and had a terrific dive #3 there, with guests getting some great footage of a Green Sea Turtle that decided to come close to see his reflection in the camera lense. Back to Manuka Bay for the afternoon/evening. Eagle eye Bill spied a couple of Octopus on the night dive, and the rest of the guests managed to get a good glimpse of at least one of them
WEDNESDAY:Underway early from Manuka Bay, tied up to a relatively new spot called Pele’s Playground. A dramatic area of “fresh” lava flow with some interesting topography, lots of fish. At lunch we made a move to Au Au Crater, a crowd pleaser. During “siesta” a few observant guests were surprised to see two juvenile Humpbacks surface RIGHT behind the boat and appeared to descend into the crater. Needless to say it was an early 3rd dive as most of them suited up while others were still dozing. Missed the whales but it was an exciting moment anyway. Chadwick and Ray Jr. sighted the ancient anchor,( legend has it, that it belonged to one of Capt’ Cooks boats!) A Spotted Eagle Ray and a Titan Scorpionfish highlighted the night vive.
THURSDAY:Morning dives conducted at Paradise Pinnacle. Near perfect conditions with the new crew; Annie and Brent, trying their hand at guiding our guests. No one got lost! Success for our rookies! After lunch we dove Amphitheater with DM Todd leading the crew first dive and Capt’ Cliff taking everyone for dive four. Wound up at Mantaville at sunset and put the gang in after dinner with two VERY cooperative Manta Rays that hovered around our “campfire” for the entire dive. Headed back to our mooring at Kona for the night.
FRIDAY:After a quick stop at the pier, the Kona Aggressor II made way for Turtle Pinnacle for the group’s last two dives of the trip. As if we hadn’t seen enough wildlife this trip, the Humpbacks made an unprecedented appearance at the harbor entrance. Both guests aboard and those on the first dive got fantastic visuals of not only the whales but a pod of Spinner Dolphins that joined in the fracas. I’ve never seen such a display. What a way to top off a trip! Many Mahalos to : Chadwick and Jamie, Gino and Leahann, Karen and Michael, Audrey, Christine, Bobby, Jocelyn, Peter, and the boys Bill, Ray III (for the log photos also!) and Ray IV.
Until next time…
The crew of the Kona Aggressor II