I went to the "Big Island" of Hawaii in December of 2000 with my cousin Monte and his wife Bo. The following is a collection of pictures, and a little text, of my trip. These pictures were taken on digital cameras, a Canon S-100 Elph (mine) and an Olympus of some kind? (Montes) The Quicktime VR scenes were all done on my Canon. There are also a few pictures I took with my Nikon 6006 and scanned in.
I have divided the pictures into rough "topics" with one mid sized same picture. Click on the sample or the smaller thumbnails to see a larger version of the picture. If you cannot view the Quicktime VR scenes you may need to download Quicktime from Apple.
All opinions are mine.
Todd Fantz email@example.com
|The House||The house where we stayed is owned by one of Montes clients who graciously allowed us to use it. Located on a hill outside the town of Hawi on the north side of the island it had great views of Maui 30 miles to the north. The house itself is really spectacular, kind of like living inside a work of art. It was open, airy and always had interesting lines and views leading you on. Simple materials, muted colors, gorgeous.|
|Quicktime VR of North Kohala|
|Pololu||The first morning we got up at 5:30am local time (yes, you read right) but to my brain that was 10:30a EST so it wasn't so bad. The objective was to see a sunriseon the beach at Pololu valley, the first in a string of stunning valleys on the NorthEast side of the island. The valleys are isolated and usually only accessable by foot. See Waipo below for another example. The hike in and out was pretty steep and strewn with fresh horse or mule dung (can you tell the difference?) Anyway, the sunset was great, very gradual, with good clouds. There was a great campsite near the beach at the entrance to the valley.|
|Waipi'o Valley||Later on we stopped for malasadas, a localized version of a Portugese "hole-less" donught, near Honokaa on the East coast of the island. We then headed up the picturesque, but not very accessable Wiapi'o Valley. It is a violation of your rental car agreement to go down into the valley, but then why would the give you a 4x4? There is a great waterfall at the back of the valley, but we really didn't get very far, the roads had a tendancy to head into creek beds. The locals also had a variety of tactics to "dissuade" tourists from feeling too welcome. At one time the valley was heavily populated, but they were wiped out by a big wave.|
|Quicktime VR of Roadside Falls
(can't remember the name right now)
|Akaka Falls Park||On the West = Wet side of the island there are many lush parks containing waterfalls and pools. One of these is Akaka Falls state park which conatins two sets of falls and a large grove of bamboo that is as big around as your arm. The total walk is less then a mile.|
|Saddle Road||The main road through the middle of the island is called Saddle Road. The road gos through the "saddle" between Mauna Kea (13,796ft) and Mauna Loa (13,679ft). It was built to move military equipment between the sides of the isalnd. It is also the approach to the observatories at Mauna Kea. The east side of the road was very well paved, the west... not so good, but very drivable. Coming up the east side we stopped at Rainbow falls. It is right by the road, and in the morning the sun reportedly produces a consistant rainbow in front of the falls. Furthur up you start driving though a series of lava flows. One flow was covered with a white fungus, we called it "fuzzy lava", the lava fields and the pass were very surreal, like being "on another planet"|
|Beaches||The whole East = dry side of the island was dotted with beaches. We only hit a couple of them where you could actually swim, Kauna'oa Beach, Hapuna Beach and Kahalu'u Beach Park. No real pictures of the latter, since we were snorkling, but highly recommended. Very easy (just float) snorkling and saw several varieties of fish and two turtles. The water was never over 8' deep. $6 for 3hrs of equipment rental. Cheap and easy high impact snorkling. Anyway, back to beaches. Kauna'oa beach is controlled by the Mauna Kea beach Resort. They have a few public parking spaces. This was really spectacular, but the lunch at the snack bar was pricey. Hapuna is very highly rated, but we liked Kauna'oa better.|
|Puako Petroglyphs||About .7 of a mile north of the Mauna Lani Hotel is a set (thousands?) of petroglyphs carved into an outcroping of relatively smooth lava. This site appeared to revolved around fertility, whereas the Puu Loa site near the volcano appeared to be sets of family trees.|
|Queens Bath||There are many spots on the island called "Queens Bath". Basically any fresh water pool that you could swim in would get that name. This probably was more important to the native Hawaiians since the penalty for violating anything connected with the royal family was death. Anyway, us commoners undertook the trek to this particular Queens Bath by following some unspecific directions in the guidebook. It only took about half an hour and a short walk down a windy beach. This spot was very cool, and we now have the QPS coordinates if we want to go back! This is a lava tube that is closed off within 50 feet of the beach (you can see it in the background of several pictures) and is fed by a freshwater spring. Two spots in the roof have collapsed allowing access. If I had to guess the whole "chamber" was 50yds long, 5-8yds wide and ranged between 4'-9' tall. The water was probably half of that. It was very cold, clear and refreshing.|
|The Volcano||On the south side of the island is Hawaii Volcanoes National Park with the Halema'uma'u Crater which contains the famous Kilauea Caldera. It is hard to describe both the landscape and the feeling that you are standing in an active zone. Around the caldera there are "working" steam and sulpher vents. The active lava flows were several miles past the end of the "overrun" Chain of Craters Road. It was not recommended to try and get close, but you could see the steam cloud rising from where the lava flow hit the ocean.|
|Quicktime VRs of Volcano National Park|