Yo-257 and Turtle Canyon

Yesterday we dove with a new company because we had groupon type certificates to use.  We went to Honolulu Scuba Company and they were decent people.  They asked if we wanted to upgrade and try nitrox so we did.  We didn’t have to be certified so what the heck. 

When we reached the harbor we loaded on to their boat which is pretty nice.  I carries a total of 18 people and was well equipt for its purpose.  We go our gear ready to go and I told them that I had a leaking O ring and they said it was no big deal, which is usually isn’t.  Most of the time it’s not enough to make a difference in your air especially when diving deep because it’s more about time and air consumption, for me anyway.  So I closed it back up and we hung around a while waiting for the rest of the divers to get there.  A company called sunshine scuba contracts with Honolulu scuba and they brought a bunch of japanese tourists on. 

The ride out to the site was pretty good.  Some waves but nothing too big.  When we got ready to get in the water I did another pre-dive check and I’m glad I did.  My tank was down to 1500 psi.  So I let them know and they switched it out for one that was at 2600.  The descent was uneventful and John had the camera.  He and I were both excited to be able to take pictures.  When we reached the bottom we were at 99 feet at the bottom of the ship. 

The YO-257 is an artificial reef that is used by Atlantis submarines as it’s destination.  The DM (dive master) we were with told us we may see it come by and if we did he would do the huki-lau etc. 

Unfortunately the picture above is the only one we got.  The camera told us it had dead batteries as soon as it was turned on under water.  Bummer but I wasn’t going to let it ruin my dive by any means.  We swam around a while and then we went over to the San Pedro wreck that sits only 50ft from the YO.  I checked on John and his air was at 1000psi so we put him on the mooring line.  Normal procedure would be for me to ascend with him but since we were in a group I was able to hang out.  There were people on the line to help him.  He was disappointed he only got 16 minutes bottom time.  I got 25 minutes bottom time which was a little bit more than I could have gotten on air.  There was a current running so I did use more air fighting it a bit. 

After John ascended we began to hear the thrusters on the sub and sure enough we saw it come by and we waved at all the people in the windows.  As promised the DM did the huki-lau for the people on board.  We were able to penetrate the YO through very large holes that have been cut in the hull for exactly that purpose.  I found a large Moray eel inside the hull and pointed it out to the DM.  The fish around the YO are amazing.  There are many colorful fish and they hang right with you.  It’s like being one of them.  You can swim right through the middle of the school and it doesn’t phase them a bit. 

We returned to the top and had about a 45 minute surface interval before our shallow dive.  The captain decided our shallow dive site was to be turtle canyon also know as nautilus reef.  John did better on air this time and we had about a 30 minute dive before he ascended and I got 43 minutes but was still left with a half tank.  But the others were ready so I had to be ready too.  The vis at the shallow site wasn’t real good.  It was maybe 30ft or so.  There was a lot of sand kicked up because there was bit of a swell wrapping around to the south.  No current though and we did see too octopus.  John things those are really cool so that made his day.  We saw some large turtles are the turtle cleaning station and then wandered around looking at things.  I found about 3 different fish that were in the hawkfish family.  They were cool to see. 

All in all it was a good day.  My legs were sore and I was tired but I really enjoyed myself.  Don’t know if we’ll dive with that company again at some point.  Maybe maybe not.  We just feel way more at home at Deep Ecology. 

The lesson that was learned on the YO was that nitrox really doesn’t pay for John.  But he’s only had a chance to do half the diving I have.  So as he relaxes more he’ll get better on his air.  I still have to monitor his air and mine because he doesn’t really remember to watch his gauges all the time.  I may look into getting nitrox certified but I’m not really sure.  I mostly prefer the shore sites that aren’t too deep.  I like the fact that I can get a 70 or 80 minute dive or even 2 and not really worry about my NDC.  I like that we don’t have to pay $100 a person and we can go whenever we want.  In shallow water nitrox isn’t worth it.  But on a deep dive like the YO it gives you more bottom time.  So it’s something to think about for the future.  One of my instructors also told me it cuts down on the headaches after diving and that might make it worth doing. 

When we arrived home and began to wash our gear we took a look at the camera and realized the housing had completely flooded.  I bought the camera this week and read all the instructions to make sure I was using it properly before we took it out.  So now my camera is toast and I’m not really happy about that.  I wrote to intova so I’m hoping for a response tomorrow.  Otherwise I guess I have to start over with my camera shopping.


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