Scuba Diving: West Side Story on Oahu

coral-caveTwo weeks ago, I did something exceedingly selfish.

For about two hours, I was weightless beneath the warm Pacific seas off the quiet west coast of Oahu vs. the hectic, traffic-clogged southeast coast of Waikiki Beach.

I didn’t think about Presidential politics, my 99-year-old mother’s memory issues, my 22-year-old daughter living in Washington, DC, or about anything else.wreck-dive

I just focused on floating down to about 80 feet to see the Landing Craft Utility (LCU) wreck, sharing bubbles with a spotted eagle ray, a white tip reef shark, several large sea turtles and countless tropical fish. The LCU wreck is surrounded by a large field of artificial reef Z-blocks, which attracts more fish.

archwayOn my next dive about an hour later, I dropped to about 40 feet to swim through coral canyons and under archways to see a rare yellow frogfish, a sleeping sea turtle nestled into a crevice, several Hawaii state fish (humuhumunukunuku’pua’a — a Reef Triggerfish), plus Moorish Idols, Butterfly Tangs, Sergeant Majors, and more tropicals.

The water was about 80 degrees F. on the surface, 76 at the bottom, and we warmed up quickly once we were back on the boat in sunny, windy 85-degree weather.

the-gil-manI thank my dive buddy Eri from Tokyo and Singapore for sharing these great photos and for the companionship of my other dive buddies, John and his wife Trisha from Yuba City.

frogfish

turtleerispotted-moray oahu-dive-buddieswhite-tip-reef-shark

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