Point Panic

Oahu, Hawaiian Islands
Entry Map
Viz (last reported 58524h ago)
Max Depth

Snorkeling and Scuba Diving at Point Panic

This is a popular dive training site located on the south shore, near the Kewalo Marine Laboratory. Once you enter from the staircase, you'll swim south, parallel to the boat channel. Remember that the area between the red and green buoys is a boat channel, so stay to the west! Once you swim south of the 2nd green buoy, you can drop down and choose which spot to visit. To the northwest is Horseshoe Reef (named for the shape of the reef). To the west is the Kewalo pipeline, which you can follow south to pipe discharge. To the north/northeast is Secrets Reef. Be aware that there is a lot of boat traffic going in and out of this area with charters. If you have to approach the surface for any reason, deploy a surface marker or come up near your dive flag buoy. Right next to Magic Island, and Makai Pier near Makapu'u
Feb 15, 2015, 12:00 AM
(No Comment)
Originally posted on shorediving.com
Earl W
Earl W
Feb 3, 2013, 12:00 AM
Dove this dive several times, including a night dive. This can be a great dive for anyone, just check the conditions, as on a calm day it is an easy entry with a good 35+ft viz, but a rough day can make entry awful and viz down to about 5 ft. A calm is good for beginners to get their feet wet with, and yet an intermediate diver would be able to take advantage of seeing the whole of horseshoe reef (it's a decent surface swim out). During the day an advanced diver might be bored, but it's a super easy self guided night dive that you can feel safe doing with just you and one dive buddy due to easy navigation. Details below. Park on the east side of Kaka'aka Park and head over to the stairs that lead down to the secluded area just outside the boat channel. The park has no lifeguards but does have bathrooms and showers. I also feel safe leaving my car there without worries unlike other parks. It's shallow (like waist high) upon entry, and the rocks are slippery so take your time if the water is rough. If it's calm a quick push off and away you go. Once you get out of the secluded stairs area it will drop to 10-15. You could drop down here and follow the edge of the boat channel (dropping into the wall of the channel at like 25ft) if you wanted to. But I advise you to save your air. Surface swim out to the second channel buoy. It's a decent length swim, maybe 150 yards, and if there's surf can be a pain, but too much wreath to waste going under yet. When you near the buoy, drop down to the first reef. Plenty of colorful fish, although small since this is also a popular area for spearing. From the first reef head directly out to sea. When you reach the third buoy you will see the second the reef (on a good day, there will be multiple small dinghy's there diving). Water is deeper here, 40-50 ft, fish are bigger and more abundant. You can explore this area, or at this point if you head a direct 90 degree turn either right or left, you can continue to follow a line of similar reefs in either direction that will go on long after your tank runs out. BONUS TIP FOR NIGHT DIVERS: When you reach the second reef, bank a 90 degree turn (you should be heading at approx 300 degrees) you can follow the reef several hundred yards until you reach a large can't be missed underwater pipe. Turn right at the pipe and follow it all the way into shore. It will take you directly to the secluded area protecting the stairs at Kaka'aka Beach Park. This is the 'horseshoe' dive. You can enter and exit at opposite sides of the park and thanks to the wall of the boat channel, the reefs, and the pipe it is virtually impossible to get lost even for the most inexperienced night diver (though I say it is for advanced just because it is a long enough swim that unless you are just trying to make it and not stop to lookie-loo a beginner diver will likely not have enough air for the whole route). Animal life is more active at night when there is virtually no boat traffic. Look for turtles and eels after dark.
Originally posted on shorediving.com
Sep 18, 2009, 12:00 AM
I have dove this site several times. The dive can be not the best, but it depends on what you are looking for or on what else is/isn't diveable the day you dive there. Here are directions. Park in the public parking lot in Kaka'ako Park at the end of Ahui St and next to John Dominis (can be really crowded for parking on Sunday). Walk to the waterfront, turn to the left and past the showers is a stairs that goes down to the ocean. Scope it out before you suit up! You will be diving below the Kewalo Basin channel so a dive flag is a must! Stay low. Boats can see your flag or your bubbles, but don't depend on it. You will hear the boats, but vis may be bad and you may not see the boats. You will not hear their horns, although they may honk at you. With all the SAFETY FIRST done, here's the scoop on the dive. The dive can be a 10 or a 1 depending on your experience or attitude. Expect poor vis, about 20-30 feet has been the best I've had. Make sure you can always see your buddy or at least 1 other person if you are in a group. My preferred route is to go in toward the boat harbor. Travel with the wall on your left, then turn around and travel out the same way or a little more in the channel on the way back. Timing or looking for a flag or popping up when you think you're back can be the end of the dive. If you pop up, make sure you are very close to the wall or above it, listen for boats before coming up. Depth max I've had is like 23 feet. Okay, so why do I like this dive. Funky stuff. Not too exciting, but I've seen some good 'junk' dropped from boats, interesting fish/critters you might not see elsewhere. Last time I dove this I think we saw 6 lionfish and 1 turkeyfish. This dive is good to get wet, if you love to dive. If you need good vis and an easy dive and are an occasional diver, then you should skip this dive. This location can also be used to go out to Kewalo Pipe if you love to surface swim (but watch for the boats) or if you have a scooter. Good location to find and catch fish for your aquarium. Check if it's still legal to take fish from this area and the limits or if you need a permit. Https://dlnr.ehawaii.gov/cmls-public/app/welcome.html
Originally posted on shorediving.com