Thursday, May 22, 2014

Honomolino Bay

[Kyle]We left Hilo midday for Honomolino Bay, on the west side of the island. The trip is long and we knew it would be made even longer by having to tack the first twenty miles to get around Cape Kumukahi, on the Big island’s western tip.

It took us from noon until midnight to make it to the Cape. Afterwards, we were expecting to have a nice, fast, downwind ride in the trade winds, but it never materialized. It was the time of night when the cool winds running down the hills slowed the opposing trade winds to a crawl. We spent most of the seventy-mile leg rolling back and forth in the swell. It wasn’t until we passed Ka Lae, Hawaii’s southernmost point, that we finally got to go fast. We also never got to see any lava flowing into the sea. The flows are pretty dormant at the moment.

Rounding the point before sunset in the volcanic fog (also known as VOG)

We made it to Honomolino just as it got dark. Honomolino is a small, unmarked bight along a coast of rugged a’a lava just big enough for three or so boats. We were the second one there, along with a couple from Seattle who had also sailed from Hilo only a few hours ahead of us.

In the morning, we got a real treat. I was making coffee when I spotted dolphins. I tried to focus, but eventually ended up leaving the pot to go cold as we went in for a swim with them. They were Spinner Dolphins. Spinners feed in deep water at night and hang around in shallow bays nearby during the daytime.

Spinner Dolphins hanging out both days at the anchorage - Wow, just wow!

The best part was in the afternoon, when the dolphins started getting energetic. Now we know why they’re called spinners. They love to do crazy, acrobatic leaps out of the water! There was one young one whose favorite move seemed to be a double flip with a triple twist. Maybe it’s fun for them to get dizzy. Maybe they’re showing off for each other. It was sure a lot of fun for us to watch them.

Adam and Rachel, from the other boat, Moments, came over afterwards for dinner. They were going to leave that afternoon, but decided the dolphins were just too good to leave. We had also decided to stay an extra night for the same reason.

Once they left the next morning, a few tourists visited the bay during the middle of the day. By afternoon, we had the whole beautiful remote place to ourselves, where we swam to our heart’s content, sometimes even with the dolphins.

What a treasure of a bay!

1 comment:

Mommy Dearest said...

That spinner dolphin video makes me grin ear to ear and I love hearing you delight in them. I've heard about them, but have never had the pleasure to see them...till now. Thanks!