Thursday, 16 May 2024
-- Advertisement --
Liberty Club Level3 Divers24

Wojciech Zgola - 'My Hawaii': 'Hawaiian' shark - video

Remembering the atmosphere of Hawaii, one immediately wants to fly there. Such a place, full of lush greenery, the smell of the ocean, paradisiacal landscapes, Hawaiian cuisine combining various flavours of the world and pleasant diving, including those with sharks. I tried to make the most of the short time of only a few days
Published: July 26, 2016 - 19:25
Updated: July 22, 2023 - 13:45
Wojciech Zgola – ‘My Hawaii’: ‘Hawaiian’ shark – video

Remembering the atmosphere of Hawaii, one immediately wants to fly there. Such a place, full of lush greenery, the smell of the ocean, paradisiacal landscapes, Hawaiian cuisine combining various flavours of the world and pleasant diving, including those with sharks.

-- Advertisement --

I tried to make the most of the short time of only a few days I spent in the islands. As every diver knows, you have to be careful about nitrogen saturation, so the number of dives and respecting the depth limits, especially when flying in planes, are very important. However, this gives you time to discover the secrets of the land. Hence, every day, after calculating the number of hours per day, I found out that there are not enough hours. That’s why every morning I would get up sleepy, and precisely because of sleep, or rather lack of it, I would gladly add at least two more hours a day.


On the day I was to dive at night in a shark environment, I had previously done 3 day dives. One of them with a scooter. This was my first time, so I had to do a short dry training, familiarise myself with the construction and technique of using the scooter. The downside was unfortunately that I could not take my underwater photography kit.

On arrival at the beach we pulled out our equipment and discussed the dive, depth limits and highlighted any potential hazards such as the scooter battery wearing out, which thankfully didn’t happen. There were three of us diving. After the briefing, we entered the water up to our waists and this is where the rest of the wet training took place. After a while, we swam on the surface and after about 100 meters, we dived. For me it was a revelation. With a visibility of more than 30 m and a water temperature of 27 C, with a small wave, it looked phenomenal, although somewhere in the back of my mind I was missing my camera. I also knew that in such moments there are usually exceptional situations and encounters. There were chances for sharks.

[dzs_video source=”” config=”skinauroradefault” height=””]

At first I was often watched to see how I was doing, but after 10 minutes we were “walking” in a tyral through the ocean admiring its beauty. The schools of fish, the lay of the land. We were no more than 20m deep and the bottom was moving unevenly just below us. I discovered that you can catch up with a turtle on a scooter and, if you have a camera, you could take a nice photo of it from the face, which is not so easy, because turtles instinctively fear a possible predator, turn their shells towards the diver and try to swim away. Here we met a lot of turtles. At times, we would switch off our scooters, abandon them on the rocks and swim away, interested in, for example, a moray eel that we spotted somewhere in between. The sound of whales accompanied us throughout the dive, and my arms ached later from the scooter.

After a long break, we met at the centre to set off to a place I knew before, the Mala Ramp in Lahaina. Conditions had changed, it was now high tide. Cautiously, though with difficulty, we reached the spot where Mike had tied a switched-on torch underwater to a section of the old ramp. It was waiting for our return.


Meanwhile, we slipped on our fins and put on our masks. The three of us dived, Mike, the head of the centre (he likes night dives) and me. Initially, roughly to a depth of 2 metres, there was archaeological visibility, so down to 1 metre. The tide and the sand give such a mixture. Suddenly, as if we had pierced a thick cloud, the ocean opened up to us for a good 20 metres. The moon from above and our torches. In these lights the turquoise colour of the water encouraged us to go further. At first glance, fewer fish were visible. The place of the diurnal ones was taken by the nocturnal brands. We watched moray eels hunting, which quickly fled in the rays of the torches. We could feel the presence of sharks and the thrill. I had never seen a shark during a night dive before. We flashed their shadows and tails at the limit of visibility. They were penetrating the surroundings. At last they were at home and on top of that at lunchtime. At one point one of them appeared for a few seconds to my right. It was quite large for a whitetip reef shark. It was over a metre and a half long. It swam close to Mike, who didn’t notice it at all and turned right running out of sight. It circled around us. We swam over a fallen and broken ramp as we spotted movement. We hovered about 2 metres apart and waited. After a while, a large conger emerged from one of the bends. He was also hunting and didn’t pay much attention to the two onlookers. We accompanied him for a while to swim away. We did not exceed 10 metres depth. It is interesting that in the place where I counted a dozen or so turtles before, now there was not a single one. Night hunters reigned supreme looking for their prey. Again, a shark appeared, but as quickly as it appeared, it disappeared. Again, I did not hunt for a shark picture at night. In the meantime, we admired the shrimp cleaning and the boldly swimming fish. After nearly an hour we emerged from the water and drove back to base satisfied.


I scored another night dive with sharks near Waikiki Beach in Honolulu. Later in the evening, when it was getting grey, I drove up to the port and parked my rental car. I greeted the group of divers I was about to dive with. We boarded the boat. Our guide was Jonathan, a half-breed Hawaiian. It turned out that he was born in Hawaii. Then as a child he went to the mainland in the States and studied diligently, and when he grew up, finished school, he moved again to Hawaii and is happy about it. Now he was telling us about diving. Apart from me, the group consisted of people finishing their AOWD course. It was their first time at night. Provided with light sources, instructed on signs and behaviour underwater in the presence of reef sharks, we jumped into the water. Here the visibility was worse than on Maui. It oscillated more or less at 10-15 m with visible “dust” in the depths. The maximum depth is 15 m. We swim around the reefs, which grow luxuriantly from time to time out of the sand, like a kind of oasis in the desert. Around these reefs there are rockfish, nudibranchs and trumpetfish. Omnivorous crabs of several species run along the rocks. Some fish can be seen in a state of lethargy. At one point we swim up to the reef, which forms a crevice-grotto. The entrance narrows and entering it is not possible. There are two sharks in it. The opening must be bigger and go into a half-tunnel, because the sharks disappear and reappear after some time. I try to swim closer and switch my camera to film. I manage to catch both predators in the frame. They are a bit smaller than the ones on Maui, about a metre long. They swim at you for a while, and then you can see the clenched jaw and penetrating little eyes. After half an hour the group wants to go back to the ship, which annoys me a bit. After the safety stop and exit I am left with 100 bar left in my cylinder. The site where we dived was called Horseshoe Reef.

After taking off and setting up my dive gear, with a mug of hot tea and the chatter of excited students, I switched off and absorbed the view of Honolulu lit up in the distance from the dive boat bobbing on the waves. The mood had clearly improved. I returned to the hotel and while walking with my camera to the lift I was accosted by a couple from Russia. They asked, pointing the camera, if the diving was cool here. I said yes. They asked if I had seen sharks. I said of course, they are everywhere here. They said they must be far from here. I replied that not really, just a few hundred meters from Waikiki Beach. They made big eyes and said how come it was so close, they were surfing here…

Other posts

About author

Tomasz Andrukajtis
Editor-in-chief of the DIVERS24 portal and magazine. Responsible for obtaining, translating and developing content. He also supervises all publications. Achived his first diving certification – P1 CMAS, in 2000. Has a degree in journalism and social communication. In the diving industry since 2008.
-- Advertisement --
technical diver tuna hastberg mine
-- Advertisement --
Level3 Club CCR Divers24
Recent post
Octopus nursery in the depths of the Pacific Ocean – remarkable discovery made by scientists in Costa Rica
Shearwater Peregrine TX: The Ultimate Diving Companion
Baltictech 2024: Dive into Inspiration - Tickets Now on Sale!
Adriatic Depths: Cultivating Sustainable Tourism through Underwater Heritage
Jared Hires: A Tragic Loss in the Depths of Plura Cave
Opal Mine Unsolved Mystery of Solomon Goldschmidt's Hidden Treasure
Beyond Gear: Liberty Divers Club and Divesoft Team Up
You haven't read yet
Lungfish Orca v6 Rebreather Achieves CE Certification
Shearwater Peregrine TX: The Ultimate Diving Companion
Raid HYPOXIC TRIMIX OC course to 100 metres
Sintzi Cave Exploration: Polish Divers' Double Success in Greece
Baltictech 2024: Dive into Inspiration - Tickets Now on Sale!
Adriatic Depths: Cultivating Sustainable Tourism through Underwater Heritage
More posts in this category


The Divers24 portal is currently the largest online medium treating diving in Poland. Since 2010 we have been providing interesting and important information from Poland and around the world on all forms of diving and related activities.

Contact us: