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Dive Review of Mauna Kea Divers/Paniolo Greens in
Hawaii/Big Island

Mauna Kea Divers/Paniolo Greens, Oct, 2002,

by Larry & Fawn Lovecchio, Ignacio, USA . Report 340.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 101-250 dives
Where else diving Mexico, Belize, Bonaire, Cayman Is., Bahamas
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy, dry Seas choppy, surge
Water Temp 82 to 0 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 30 to 60 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Shore diving:computer/air usage
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins Schools Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 2 stars
Small Critters 2 stars Large Fish 1 stars
Large Pelagics 3 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter N/A Boat Facilities N/A
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments [None]

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 4 stars Food 1 stars
Service and Attitude 2 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 1 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 2 stars
Advanced 3 stars
Comments In October we shore dived off the Big Island. There was quite a surge in the rough seas due to the consistent winds, thus lowering visibility significantly. Puako, normally a good shore dive location was relatively inaccessible. On one occasion, we did make entry and were rewarded with green sea turtles as curious of us as we were of them. Some fascinating lava tubes are in this area as well. Mahukona, in the northern part of the island is an easy shore dive off an old railroad pier. This site has interesting u/w topography especially south of the mooring buoy. There's an outdoor shower for rinsing off. Probably the best site of all is Place of Refuge, a popular site south of Kailua-Kona in a protected cove. Pods of dolphins frequent the area as well as myriads of small tropicals and a turtle cleaning station with two turtles getting their daily massage. Due to the shallow depths, expect long dives if you go on your own, and this time of year the water temp. was consistently 82 degrees. Kayaking and snorkeling at Kealekekua or Cook Bay was lots of fun. Here the Spinner Dolphins put on quite a show with their acrobatics near our kayak. Even a baby one was trying out the aerial spins. Aloha Kayaks across from the Shell gas station had good rental prices.
A couple of negative points included being there during the Ironman Triathlon and paying grossly inflated car rental prices, not to mention the increased amount of traffic. On a positive note though, the "Aloha" spirit does exist and people are courteous. Unfortunately I cannot recommend Mauna Kea Divers as the shop is rarely open and it's difficult to get tanks and the owner seems like he's lost interest in running his business and had an overall negative attitude.
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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