It's whale season in Maui & we witnessed the humbacks up close and personal this weekend only 400 yards from the Lahaina shores!
My friend and I just completed a 90 foot dive of the sunken whale ship, the Carthaginian. Ironically my grandfather helped get this old whaling ship from England over to Maui. His organization, The Lahaina Restoration Foundation, turned it into a whale museum that was docked at Lahaina harbor for several decades. As a kid, I toured the old whaling ship that had black and white photos of the old Lahaina whaling days and incredible recordings of whale songs played through old headsets. About 5 years ago, they sunk the Carthaginian because they couldn't afford to restore the ailing ship. Now thirty years later, I'm diving the iconic whale ship from my childhoood at Lahaina harbor in 90 feet of water with a tourist submarine crusing by. What a trip! My grandfather would've turned in his grave! Check out this article and youtube clip of them sinking this historic ship.
On our way back to Lahaina, in our little dingy we discovered a pod of whales — a mom, calf, and male. The mom and calf were resting near our mooring, so we cut the engine to give them space. Suddenly the mom started pushing the calf straight towards our dingy. Between her pushing the calf and the currents pushing our dingy, we were literally one foot away from the whales. The male popped to the surface and checked us out. We could see the outlines of their big beautiful bodies under our little dingy. It was incredible and a bit scary having such huge marine mammals so close to us — not to mention a protective mom with her calf and aggressive male.
We only had a camera phone to capture the action, so it's not quality footage, but you'll get a glimpse of what we saw Saturday morning. What an amazing Maui day…dove to a sunken whale ship & cruised with a family of humpback whales…as we say here: "Maui No Ka Oi" (Maui is the best!)
Check it out: