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Thread: Honolulu, Oahu island (Hawaii) with Hawaii Scuba Divers (HSU)

  1. #1
    RBW Member Nicool is on a distinguished road Nicool is on a distinguished road Nicool's Avatar
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    Red face Honolulu, Oahu island (Hawaii) with Hawaii Scuba Divers (HSU)

    Hi folks,

    For the first time Iíve had the chance to squeeze a bit of rebreather diving at the beginning of the business trip, so weíre talking about only 5 dives spread over a weekend, but given the lack of trip reports on Hawaii, I thought Iíd still share my experience here.

    These dives had been arranged over a very short timeframe thanks to Michael Jones (mikecjones on this forum) who was kind enough to put me in contact with cool and customer-driven rebreather-friendly dive charters.

    The dive operators
    Basically Mike teaches rebreather diving (on Poseidon Seven) at the Honolulu Scuba University, which itself dives mostly with the following 2 rebreather-friendly dive operators:
    -Hawaii Scuba Company (HSC), located between Honolulu airport and Waikiki, so quite convenient
    -Island Divers Hawaii (IDH), located east of Waikiki, bit outside (I havenít dived with them)

    Jonathan Zietlow owns and runs these 2 operations, with the help of Mattew Kuderick (service department), both being also rebreather divers. Iíve dived with both Jonathan, Mattew, and other members of the dynamic rebreather community of Oahu.

    Rebreather equipment
    All I needed was there: 797 sorb, hips of 3L steel tanks (with a nice black painting) to rent, and O2 boosted at 200+ bars. They do Helium as well, but I am only MOD1 so havenít tried.

    Dive logistics, schedules, profiles
    HSC offer free pickup at Waikiki hotels (I was staying there), was 7am for me, meeting at dive shop at 7:30am, and then we were lifted to the harbour where the boat left at about 8am.
    Then the dive program depended on which charter you had subscribed to.
    -If thereís a majority of OC divers on the boat then rebreather divers pretty much stick to their schedules, although jumping first in the water. This was the case on Saturday with the 2-dives charter. Given the dive profile (wrecks at 40-25 meters depth), this typically meant dives no longer than 45 minutes, although the second one we did almost an hour.
    -if thereís majority of rebreather divers, then itís more the OC divers who have to wait a bit: on Sunday this was the case with a triple-dive charters, were I think we were 8 rebreathers, with 3 OC divers only. We did 3x 1 hour dive.

    Rebreather-specific charters
    HSC also schedule some regular rebreather-only charters, which are Tuesday and Wednesday night dives, single dive of 1h30-2 hours run time. I wish I could join one, but have heard only great feedbacks on these.
    Thereís also the option to privately charter boats for rebreathers of course.

    Dive sites, whatís there to see?
    As mentioned elsewhere, I dive rebreathers for photography and donít care much about depth, so I cannot comment on trimix dives but they do some here. As a matter of fact, Mike is in frequent contact with Richard Pyle, who himself dives his Poseidon very very deep down there.
    So back to my own diving (MOD1): Iíve tried 3 wrecks sunk on purpose some years ago, and must say Iíve been pleased with diving those.
    First site was house of 2 wrecks (YO-257 and San Pedro), which are just 40 meters apart so you dive both in one dive, deepest part being 35 meters I think.
    Second dive site was the Sea Tiger wreck, quite a pretty wreck decently sized and sitting a bit deeper, but main deck was around 30 meters.
    In all these wrecks you could penetrate rather easily.
    We dove also the Pinnacles (a bit farther from Waikiki), which are sitting in about 30-35 meters for bottom, and a few meters high.
    Then we finished with the shallow (15 meter) ďpipeĒ reef which is very close to the harbour.
    One very pleasant thing to note is that I saw at least one turtle per dive, thereís lots of turtles in Hawaii, and I could almost kiss them! Taking photos was heaven.
    In particular on Sea Tiger wreck there seems to be 2 resident turtles (at least I saw them on 2 separate dives) who like to sit at the bow and get cleaned by lots of colourful fishes. When they swim around the wreck that gives a very pleasant vision of these large animals peacefully wandering around the large metal animal.
    On Sea tiger again, while I was taking turtles photos the dozen of yellow fishes (not the cleaner fishes which I saw on other coral dive destinations) decided to start cleaning my hands and followed me for a while, so fun!
    Same wreck again, 2 reef sharks patrolling inside one of the rooms for a while, pretty cool ambiance, I hope I managed to photograph them well (havenít processed my pictures yet).
    Oh I forgot to mention the viz: it varies but Iíve had as much as 30 meters and I heard itís common. Never worse than 10 meters. We could easily see the bottom at 30+ meters right below the surface when diving the San Pedro.
    All in one Iíd say Honolulu isnít the most fishy coral reef destination which Iíve visited, but it offers a good compromise of many things, the viz is good, the turtles are very present and approachable (at least with a rebreatherÖ), it reminded me of Sipadan (Borneo) in that regards, and fully rebreather-friendly.

    I think thatís it for my report, if any question on my trip, just shoot!

    Oh and i know Jonathan (owner of HSC and IDH) is thinking about organizing some rebreather-specific weeks or something like that. The idea for them is to focus more and more on rebreathers, so youíll be very welcomed there!

    Cheers
    Nicolas

  2. #2
    RBW Member Sebby is an unknown quantity at this point Sebby's Avatar
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    Ray, Poseidon Mk6

    Re: Honolulu, Oahu island (Hawaii) with Hawaii Scuba Divers (HSU)

    Hi Nicool

    As I told you: I wish I could do this kind of biz trips. My business trips are far less exciting...

    This location looks interesting. It was on my list for volcano hikes. Definitely not for diving. This seems to be a combination of interests for both divers and non-divers.

    Don't forget to send a few pics

    Cheers
    Seb

  3. #3
    RBW Member MattZimmerman is an unknown quantity at this point MattZimmerman's Avatar
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    Re: Honolulu, Oahu island (Hawaii) with Hawaii Scuba Divers (HSU)

    Nicolas, thanks for an outside opinion on rebreather diving on Oahu. Good to see we are getting some visiting divers. We hope to see more in the future.

    Couple of clarifications.
    Rebreather Instructors that work through the shops:
    Michael Jones mike.jones@hawaiiscubauniversity.com Se7en
    DJ Meacham deloye.meacham@hawaiiscubauniversity.com P2
    Jacob Dodd sjdodd2@gmail.com P2
    John Miller john.miller@hawaiiscubauniversity.com Se7en


    Again Nicolas, thanks for the shout out. Cheers.

  4. #4
    RBW Member Nicool is on a distinguished road Nicool is on a distinguished road Nicool's Avatar
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    Re: Honolulu, Oahu island (Hawaii) with Hawaii Scuba Divers (HSU)

    Quote Originally Posted by MattZimmerman  View Original Post
    Nicolas, thanks for an outside opinion on rebreather diving on Oahu. Good to see we are getting some visiting divers. We hope to see more in the future.

    Couple of clarifications.
    Rebreather Instructors that work through the shops:
    Michael Jones mike.jones@hawaiiscubauniversity.com Se7en
    DJ Meacham deloye.meacham@hawaiiscubauniversity.com P2
    Jacob Dodd sjdodd2@gmail.com P2
    John Miller john.miller@hawaiiscubauniversity.com Se7en


    Again Nicolas, thanks for the shout out. Cheers.
    Lol thanks for clarifying Matt
    You see i should really have stayed much more to understand who does what there

  5. #5
    RBW Member Nicool is on a distinguished road Nicool is on a distinguished road Nicool's Avatar
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    Re: Honolulu, Oahu island (Hawaii) with Hawaii Scuba Divers (HSU)

    Quote Originally Posted by Sebby  View Original Post
    Hi Nicool

    As I told you: I wish I could do this kind of biz trips. My business trips are far less exciting...

    This location looks interesting. It was on my list for volcano hikes. Definitely not for diving. This seems to be a combination of interests for both divers and non-divers.

    Don't forget to send a few pics

    Cheers
    Seb
    Hi Seb,
    I can't complain on this one
    Definitely i think you both would enjoy yourself over there, a bit like la Reunion i guess in that spirit

    Pictures under processing as we speak!

  6. #6
    RBW Member Nicool is on a distinguished road Nicool is on a distinguished road Nicool's Avatar
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    Re: Honolulu, Oahu island (Hawaii) with Hawaii Scuba Divers (HSU)

    And here are the photos
    https://flickr.com/photos/145317586@...57680806851370


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    RBW Member ECho is an unknown quantity at this point ECho's Avatar
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    Meg

    Re: Honolulu, Oahu island (Hawaii) with Hawaii Scuba Divers (HSU)

    Very nice images! Thanks, for sharing!

  8. #8
    rEvoooooo JoeHuaSEALs is an unknown quantity at this point JoeHuaSEALs's Avatar
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    Re: Honolulu, Oahu island (Hawaii) with Hawaii Scuba Divers (HSU)

    Quote Originally Posted by Nicool  View Original Post
    And here are the photos
    https://flickr.com/photos/145317586@...57680806851370


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    the pictures looks amazing ! what kind of camera set up do you use ? ( model, strobes ?)

  9. #9
    RBW Member mikecjones is an unknown quantity at this point mikecjones's Avatar
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    Re: Honolulu, Oahu island (Hawaii) with Hawaii Scuba Divers (HSU)

    Nicool, Thanks for the trip report.

    We will be running a TEC60 course on the Poseidon Se7en starting Saturday through Honolulu Scuba Company. We are a small group on a big boat, so we welcome other CCR divers to join us.

    April 23rd, 7:30am charter 2 dives, 60'-130' and 90'-145', probably double-dip Sea Tiger.


    April 25th, 5:30pm charter 1 long dive, the location and depth will be determined on the boat. This charter is not part of the course, but rather a routine CCR charter Honolulu Scuba Company runs each week.


    April 26th, 5:30pm charter 1 long dive, the location and depth will be determined on the boat. This charter is not part of the course, but rather a routine CCR charter Honolulu Scuba Company runs each week.


    April 28th, 12:00pm charter 2 dives, 145'-180' and 165'-200', probably the Sea Tiger anchor chain followed by the Friendship.


    April 29th, 12:00pm charter 1 dive, 165'-200', probably the Friendship.


    April 30th, 12:00pm charter 1 dive, 165'-200', probably the Friendship.


    Please call Honolulu Scuba Company at 808-220-0577 to sign up.
    Honolulu Scuba Company provides a full range of TEC diving and CCR support. The details are available here: https://www.honoluluscubacompany.com/technical-diving-support-services/

  10. #10
    RBW Member Nicool is on a distinguished road Nicool is on a distinguished road Nicool's Avatar
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    Re: Honolulu, Oahu island (Hawaii) with Hawaii Scuba Divers (HSU)

    Thanks ECho and JoeHuaSeals
    Mike, that's a nice collection of runtimes!


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