Overview of Makaha Beach Park (Caverns)

Makaha Beach Park (Caverns)

Makaha Beach Park (Caverns)
Hawaiian Islands


Site Review by
 Frank DeCarvalho
Date: 09/04/2003


Site Condition
(1=worst, 5=best)

Name:  Frank DeCarvalho Entry:    5.00
Email:   Click Here Bottom:    5.00
City:   Springfield Reef:    4.00
State:   VA Animal:    4.00
Country:   USA Plant:    3.00
Diving:   7 years Facilities:    5.00
 Dives:   540 Solitude   3.00
    Roads:    3.00


*Average:    4.08
I found out about Makaha's South Reef's location from a local Surf Kahuna who told the story of riding 30 plus waves in front of his friends house adjacent to Upena Loop. The surf break about 200 yards off the beach along the south part of Makaha Beach Park indicated there was a significant drop off, something that interested me as a diver. Obviously, this drop off was the cause of these monstrous waves breaking well off shore during the winter season. As indicated in the shorediving.com aerial photo of Makaha, you can see the exact location of the South Reef. It was a moonless night in September when my buddies and I first dived the South Reef in hopes of finding some big bugs. Most of the bugs along the more popular North Reef had been plucked years before. We geared up in the parking lot, headed down to the waters edge and made our plunge into the warm water. We surface swam out about 50 yards and by looking down with our lanterns, we soon noticed a sharp transition from sand to rock. We were in 25 feet of water when we descended and shortly after making our way seaward, my dive buddy flickered his light off to our right (away from the reef). I thought he was trying to get my attention to see a lobster on the sand bed, but the angle of his light shooting upward indicated something totally different. At first I couldn't believe my eyes. It was the biggest Tiger Shark I've ever seen outside of television...and it was just feet away from our small group. It was about 12 feet long and its belly was as massive as three 55 gallon drums tied together. Its lazy movements and dark eyes affixed on us told us he was curious, possibly just investigating our strange presence. I really wondered how such a large shark could have effortlessly and silently sneaked up on us only yards from the beach...scary. It eventually moved on, slipping into the dark beyond the shadows of our lights. We held close to the reef and kept a keen eye out, but it never returned. After making our way to the seaward edge and catching a few good size bugs along the way, we turned around and headed back, always watching our sides and rear. Thank God we hadn't decided to spear any uhus that night. We would have had to abort the dive or, as they say in Hawaii, pay the grey suited tax man. After diving the South Reef for another four years, I never had the pleasure of seeing our friend again...maybe that's a good thing. What I like most about Makaha's South Reef are the number of caves along the reefs edge. Some are large enough to squeeze several divers comfortably in, and others hold some large examples of the beautiful Triton's Trumpet. A huge Yellow Margin Moray eel guards the entrance, so don't get any grand ideas about grabbing one for your shelf.    

Enjoyment Level

Snorkel:    3.00
Beginner:    4.00
Intermediate:    5.00
Advanced:    5.00
Night diving:    5.00

Seasonal Information

Season:    Fall
Year:    1997
Visibility:    4.00
Current:    3.00
Surf:    3.00

  Search  About You  |  About Us  |  Contact ShoreDiving.com


Copyright 2000-2019 ShoreDiving.com, LLC. tm All rights reserved.
Please read and understand the
Disclaimer concerning information contained in this site.