Review Date AVG ShoreDiving Site
10/04/2007 3.86 Lana'i Lookout (Scenic Lookout) Oahu, Hawaiian Islands
Okay, this is my FAVORITE dive on the island, but it has the possibility to turn into the worst dive on the island. That didn't come out right.....Trust me, at some point you will want to find someone to take you here. It is a thrilling dive, but it IS NOT a beginner dive. I am not going to even tell you how to go about doing this dive. You should learn that from your guide. I want no part whatsoever in someone trying this without a guide. This review is only to tell you all the super important considerations that I have learned on this dive. First of all, the most important thing that can be stressed about this dive is.....NEVER, EVER ATTEMPT THIS DIVE WITHOUT FIRST BEING SHOWN THE FEATURES TO LOOK FOR AT THE EXIT. Here is why: Once you jump in the water at the entrance, you can't get out until the exit which is around 40 minutes away. (If you only had one chance in life to operationally check your gear BEFORE hopping in the water, this would be the dive to do it on!) Entry is recommended as a negative buoyancy entry and once you see the surface conditions at the entrance you will know why. HOLD ON TO ALL YOUR GEAR when you walk out to jump in. I have seen a wave knock a mask off someone's face before they were even in the water. Once heading to the exit, if you miss it, the next exit along this coast is Hanauma Bay and you WILL run out of air before you get to that point. Hanauma is around 2-2.5 hours away. The exit cove here has zero visibility when underwater. I've lost track of a guy whose flipper was 3 feet in front of my face. Also, you know how some dives you can tell the waves jacked up a bit while you were in the water? Well, on this dive, the surf is ALWAYS (maybe a handful of exceptions a year) up here due to catching East, South and wind swells. So, if it jacks up while you are in the water, get ready for a eye opening experience at the exit cove. Never ever ever (once you have been guided yourself) act as a guide for someone who you have never dove with. This not the dive to find out a diver is uncomfortable in heavy currents or sucks their air in 30 minutes. Final word of advice, don't sit on the ledge at the exit cove and talk while you catch your breath. Get your flippers off and head to higher ground, then catch your breath. I have been swept off the ledge here and while I was fine, my buddy wound up washed onto the rocks. So, all that being said, this is a breath taking dive. Visibility is usually great until the exit due to the heavy currents sweeping away the suspended particles. I have only took one person here who said that they didn't like it. Find someone to take you. You really should be complete with Advanced Open Water Certification at least and I would recommend doing many shore dives that involve current and surge prior to coming here.
10/02/2007 3.79 Kea'au Beach Oahu, Hawaiian Islands
This site is awesome! But, there are several things that you must realize BEFORE you get yourself into this dive. First is the parking lot….. Yeah, probably goes without saying that your car is DEFINITELY not safe here. My rusty 1972 Nova made it through the dive fine, but at the same time, it was unlocked with nothing in it and I didn't care if it was stolen or not. Second, the necessity of small surf cannot be over emphasized. We went here on a day when it was 1-2 and although I made it in and out okay, my buddy got knocked over by a big wave and he actually hit a rock. If you get hit by a big wave on the way in or out, there is nothing behind you but rock. He wound up okay, but it was testament to the fact that the surf needs to be 0-1 foot (Hawaiian). Straight out from the bathroom, you'll see a nice little cove where you'll exit. We entered from there too. Never tried the giant stride although that sounds much better. If you go in bigger surf than 0-1 feet, prepare for a dangerous entry / exit. It can be done, but I feel more comfortable at the exit cove of Lanai Lookout than here with big swells coming in. The current can get pretty strong out there, too. That all said, follow the shallower uneventful water straight out from the bathroom. When you see it drop off, and you'll know when it drops off, dive and start going from canyon to canyon for some amazing underwater formations. Bring a flashlight! If you are at the big arch referred to in the previous reviews, go out to the tip of the right wall and head right (when looking out to sea) and explore each canyon you get to. They just get cooler and cooler, although the initial dark/huge archway is pretty amazing, too. When we got to 800 pounds, the canyon that we were in had the coolest archway I've seen on Oahu. It is like a spider web or a honey comb over head. Really freaking cool. Make you sure you swim over it, too, to see all the coral on top. Can't wait to do it as a night dive. I can see how this dive could easily be one of the best night diving spots on Oahu. I know Ocean Concepts dives here. Didn't see all the pelagics that everyone's talking about but I did see a spear fisher.....coincidence? Anyways, even if you don't see a big fish, there are turtles and just the features here are worth the dive....enjoy!