Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Aloha, World

  Copyright 2009 by Barry Fackler

Aloha and welcome to my humble blog. I plan to post often about what it is like living on the Kona Coast of Hawaii's Big Island and SCUBA diving every weekend (almost). Along the way I'll keep you updated about general diving conditions and weather, local diving news, anecdotes from ten years of diving in Kona, and maybe some thoughts on life in general. I also hope to share my attempts at underwater photography, modest as they may be. It may take me some time to get the hang of blogging but I will give it my best shot!

Above is my first photo download to this blog. I'm pleased! This is a photo of a manta ray taken earlier this summer in Keauhou Bay. Kona is well known for it's manta night dives. These are somewhat orchestrated events where dive operators set up powerful lights on the seafloor. The lights attract zooplankton (just like lights on land attract bugs), which brings in the mantas which feed on the plankton. Divers sit on the bottom and get treated to a very close encounter with the giant rays. Occasionally they get shut out but not very often. Some nights over twenty mantas show up. I've been on plenty of manta night dives and they are worth the money, especially if you're on vacation. Personally, I prefer to go to Keauhou during the day where you have a pretty good chance of seeing mantas as they cruise around cleaning stations where small wrasse rid them of parasites and loose tissue. The advantages are: viewing and photographing in daylight as well as saving a lot of money by not taking a boat ride. The disadvantages are: climbing over jagged lava rock to make a shore entry and not having divemasters and boat crew to bail you out if you encounter trouble. I suppose if you're visiting, going out with a dive operator is the safest option and the one with the greatest chance of success. But if you live here, the shore entry is a nice way to have a big animal encounter with minimal cost.


  1. Aloha Barry. I just found your blog. You have a really great site, full of information and great photos. I'll bookmark it and check in now and again. Thanks for the link, Aloha, Dave Kearnes

  2. Aloha Dave. Thanks for the kind words and for reading my blog!