Showing posts from April, 2012

The End of a Blissful Vacation. Mahalo!

Pe'e Pe'e Falls  Day 11: Volcano to Hilo to Denver If I still have your attention: Aloha! (Hello, Goodbye, with Love) The end of our vacation was a day of packing, checking and a few last bits of touring. We rose at 6am on April 9 and arrived at home 6pm (Hawaii time) on April 10th. It's a long trek back. But I won't bore you with the flight details. Rainbow Falls The flight out of Hilo was not until 9pm (PST), so we view the last few things we felt were landmarks of the Big Island. Waterfalls! The morning started with heavy rains, which was evident with the rapid and brown torrents rushing over Rainbow and Pe'e Pe'e Falls (pronounced Pe'eh-Pe'eh). These are 200' drop waterfalls located behind neighborhoods and the hospital in Hilo. Literally, minutes from downtown. To kill a bit more time, we also toured the Lyman Historical and Geological museum ; which has the rarest (and only) mineral in the world Orlymanite and some glow-in-the-dar

The true definition of AWESOME! Volcano National Park!

Everything I am about to highlight can be found at the  Volcano National Park  website. Kilauea at Night Our final Big Day takes us to Volcano National Park. Much like Rocky Mountain N.P. you can lose yourself in hiking trails and 4K ft elevation changes of natural wonder. Unlike RMNP, you see the world on fire, the bluest ocean and a bustling rainforest all in one location. Pu'u Pau'i Cone with Kilauea Steam The trail across the caldera is in the background A must see is Jaggar Observatory at night. This is the best place to view Kilauea Caldera (night or day). During the day, the crater spews visible steam mixed with sulphuric acid. But at night, the deep under ground magma casts an erie glow, reminding everyone that you are standing on an active volcano and are at the will of  Pele's  grace (Goddess of Fire). I have only seen a few things that are truly awesome. Grand Canyon, lambing arctic glaciers and a steaming caldera at night - AWESOME. If a

Refreshing the Senses! Traveling to the End of the US!

Days 9-10: South Tip and Volcano: Canopy Road, Pohoa Bearded Chameleon at Camp Site Lava Tree Tube There is something about mountain air that refreshes the senses. Our camp site at Namakani Paio , Volcano National Park is a really a quaint spot. They do have closed-up A-frame cabins (which are rumored to be sub-leased to a private company for management later this year) for the comfort-seeking camper. But our VW bus nestled under soaring and aromatic eucalyptus trees was a perfectly acceptable shelter from the constant rainy mist. If you squint your eyes and smell the air, it's almost romantic, almost. Over the next two days, our Wood Family Troop explore the natural havens on the south end of the island. Earlier in the trip, we were forewarned (by a cute blonde) about the town Pahoa and the priah that live there. At our current breakfast, the mid-50s waitress told us not to listen to that silliness - it a place worth the people-watch. Ends up it's

Burners and Haoles - How to find your comfort zone.

Day 8: Kailua-Kona to Kilauea Plumeria and Jacaranda Japanese barbie dolls Japanese gameboy Today we venture back into the World of Camping, abandoning showers, beds and basic luxuries. Our biggest fear is that the next beach site Punalu’u Black Sand Beach will be as uninviting as Spencer Beach. We find that The Big Island beyond Kona is full of white “hippie” burnouts and their children. Much like Boulder without the cold weather, so their are many, many, many free-spirits leeching-off society and unnerving us at the same time.  Alternatively, what is nice is that most all the parks, beaches and lava-sites are free of charge, but that goes for the riffraff, too. Notwithstanding, we stop along the way for the tourist sites. Obviously, Kona is famous for one thing: Coffee. Volcanic soil is perfect for the coffee plants due to the pumice stone that is fertile yet porous, much like a cheesecloth. Since KJ and I are not big coffee drinkers, instead of touring a