Frequently Asked Questions
- What is the water temperature?
- January through early May: ~ 74 degrees, which means a 5mm wetsuit and the hot shower onboard is good.
- May through October: ~ 78 degrees is the trigger for the coral spawn in May. Then the temperature typically lowers several degrees after that affair for several weeks before rebounding back up to a summer high of 79 – 81 degrees, which means 1-5mm suits are fine.
- October through December: The temperature slowly falls to a comfortable temp for the humpback whales and depends on local north winds, ~75 degrees – back to the 5mm suit.
- When is the best time to dive here?
Well, it depends on who you would like to swim with underwater! We really like every month, so we dive year-round.
- January through April: We have so many humpback whales around it’s sometimes hard to drive the boat! And they sing and sing! The first crustacean spawn is usually the third week of January, and it is intense! Yellow frogfish the size of your fingernails are settling out, munching on this crustacean spawn. Oh, and there are so many unmated shrimp who take you on and clean up your act! Manta rays mate in February and congregate in schools at several of our dive locations.
- May through October: We rock underwater! Major coral spawn triggers everything in May. The monk seals return to Lehua Crater, and the fights over territory ensue! Horizontal migration occurs from Papahanoumokuakea, bringing forth large jacks, spotted knifejaws, and the extremely rare and the weird wildlife. Large sharks/killer whales are following the humpbacks. Yes, we see humpies as late as the second week in June. Go home, humpies; you need to eat!
- November and December: The return of the humpbacks! Gee, now it must seem like this is a big deal. Well, it is! Humpies come right up to dive groups and sometimes hang out with them. Last year, there was one that hung out with the group for an hour. Several years ago on a dive charter to Ni’ihau, divers saw nine different humpback whales underwater! Can we guarantee this? Of course not. However, there are more humpbacks now. It is estimated that the NW population that frequents our waters numbers around 17,000. Every year we seem to have more encounters. This year, the Federal government is considering removing them from the endangered species list due to their increase in numbers.
- Can I book a special private event?
Yes! Special charters can be designed specifically for encounters. Please inquire. As seasons change, so can the opportunities!
You can easily charter a boat with captain and crew for your family to have private humpback whale watches and dolphin encounters. Want a short trip because the kids get tired? We can go by the hour and still have exciting encounters with whales, dolphins, and turtles! Want to snorkel or fish for a bit? No problem! Call and ask about availability and pricing.
Bubbles Below is a family. We have dealt with our own joys, accomplishments, failures, marriages, broken hearts, and deaths, and we can help you commemorate all of life’s events however you see fit. We offer services with the vessels for wedding parties to and from beaches, as well as marriages underwater and on the boat. We offer ordained ministers for blessings for renewals of vows or anniversary parties. Got a reason for a blessing? We want to celebrate with you! High or low emotions we can walk through it with you….
Vessels are also rendered for memorial services. We can obtain the permits for ash spreading and flower lei drops. On several occasions, after the family remembers their loved ones and spreads the ash into the ocean, everyone swims together. Very often, the dolphins show up!
Please inquire about pricing. We are family and believe in celebrating life!
- Is there paperwork that I need to sign before my scuba tour?
Yes! All divers must sign this medical waiver form.
- Why should I dive with Bubbles Below?
- Expect to be treated with respect as to your diving and ability
- With our experienced eye, we can stop a problem long before it becomes a larger one
- We enjoy sharing the marine ecology information with you and do so while sharing smiles and jokes
- Small, personalized dive charters with the marine naturalist diving with you
- No harassment policy, including a no ink policy with octopus
- Our dive masters/underwater tour guides find the best of the best for you in a safe, educational, and fun way!
- Can I dive while pregnant?
PREGNANCY AND DIVING
Diving while pregnant is not recommended at all. The fetus is not protected from decompression problems and is at risk of malformation and gas embolism after decompression disease.
Scuba divers must decompress as they return to the surface of the water. Developing babies may have difficulty decompressing. Some studies report a higher incidence of birth defects and preterm birth among women who dive during pregnancy. Those women who unwittingly dive during the first few weeks of their pregnancy should not panic — the general consensus is that diving at this early stage should have no serious ramifications on the developing fetus.
It is thought that the potential negative effects of scuba diving while pregnant mainly affect fetuses in the first and third trimester. In the first trimester, the effects of oxygen concentrated by pressure could trigger defects in the developing fetus, including reduced weight, abnormal skull development, malformed limbs and the abnormal development of the heart.
And at any time, but particularly in the third trimester, decompression sickness in the mother could cause major problems for the fetus due to its inability to filter out nitrogen bubbles through the lungs, as an unborn baby’s blood bypasses the lungs and oxygenates via the placenta instead.
And Frequently Asked Questions We Can’t Answer with Straight Faces...
- Yes, the water does go completely around the island.
- No, it does not go underneath the island.
- Yes, it is all the Pacific Ocean.
- No, the waterfalls are not salt water.
- Yes, we speak English, er, sort of….
- No, the other land you are seeing across the ocean on the west side is not the Mainland.
- Yes, some of us who have read Fluke actually call our NW migratory visitors “humpies!” Please consider reading Christopher Moore’s book Fluke.
- No, it’s never rained here before! This is new! No wonder we are called the wettest place on Earth!