Hawaii
The Big Island


Maui
The Valley Isle
Oahu
The Gathering Place
Kauai
The Garden Isle
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We took the airport shuttle bus from Eau Claire to the Twin Cities. We left early Saturday morning and flew most of the day with a layover in Seattle.
It was fun to see the sun set from the airplane. The sun rises at about 8:00 am and sets at 8:00 pm every day in Hawaii.
We arrive at the Kona airport late Saturday February 12th, at 9:18pm and then drove to drive to Hilo. It was a long day. Page 50-C1 of the Hawaii Gazetter.l
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We woke up at the "Castle Hilo Hotel" - 71 Banyan Drive in Hilo. Page 54-A5 of the Hawaii Gazetter.



The road to our hotel was lined with these Banyan trees. The branches that hung down and formed new roots making some of these trees were enormous.

This was the view from the balcony. You can see the snow capped volcano Mona Kay.
There was also a fish pond in the front of the hotel .

The pond was full of foot long fish.
Giant cruise ships would pass by.

 

We thought Hawaii was an island with volcanos on it and were suprized to see that the entire Island is a volcano. For miles all we saw was black lava flows. Coming from Wisconsin they looked just like fresh plowed black dirt. People had written word in it with white rocks. They were fun to look at. . Coming

On Suday February 13 we went to Pu'uhonua Ohonaunau
National Historical Park
.
There were open
7:30-8:00pm M-T,
7:30-11:00pm F-S.
Pg 56-C4 of the Hawaii Gazetter.

Hale o Keawe stands prominently in the pu'uhonua, protected by several watchful ki’i (wooden images of the gods), alerting visitors this is a special and important place. Surrounding the pu'uhonua are the royal grounds, the area once exclusively reserved for use by the chiefs and their court.

 

This game of Konane is similar to checkers in the way the game pieces are moved, but is similar to chess in that the person who makes the last move wins the game? Chiefs would sometimes settle disputes by playing this game.

There were several sea turtles spending the afternoon there sunning on the beach. I was hoping to see turtles.

You could just walk right up to them. It was posted that you should stay at least 10 feet away from them.
These were some huts and statues the tribe built.

These big birds were standing near the water.

We walked down this trail in the park and saw the beautiful cliffs.

 

I couldn't resist taking picture of this beautiful Japanese graveyard. It was very beautiful and well maintained.

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Monday February 14th
We spent the day
Hiking down into
Waipio Valley Trial
in Kukihaele.
Page 42-E2 of the Hawaii Gazetter.

This was the view from the top.

 

The road that was about a mile and a half long and took you down about a mile. It was a very steep walk.

These trees were in bloom while we were there. It was cool to see the giant trees covered in orange flowers.

This fuzzy fruit was delicious. You could peal off the fuzz, The fuzz reminded me of velcro, and eat the big grape type fruit inside.

 


 

We polked around on the beach at the bottom of the valley for quite a couple of hours watching these horses. Tourist in cars would drive by and say look at the pretty horses. It was not long afterwards we would here them say "Ouch, they bite" and drive away. It was pretty funny.

This is a photo of all the fruit on and around the beach Bob had to taste test. The drink we carried down. Some were actually pretty good. We could have lived down there for quite a while.

This was the view of the beach from the bottom.




Most of Hawaiis roads looked like this. you can't get anywhere fast
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On Tuesday February 15th, we wanted to start the day at the Suisan Fish Auction at 85 Lihuwai Streetin in Hilo, but they had been closed for the last 3 years. Bummer :-(

We traveled to a shop called Akatsuka Orchid Gardens in Volcano Village. Page 60-A2 of the Hawaii Gazetter. It is located on Highway 11, between the 22 and 23 mile marker

 

They sold unbelieveably beautiful flowers. We ordered plants for our mothers here.


The flower to the right is a stink orchid and yes it really did stink. Smelled like rotting meet.

They were very helpful and friendly.

Next we took a senic drive around the Crater Rim Drive (35mi) Page 59-B11 of the Hawaii Gazetter.
Kilauea Caldera, Petroglyphs, Sea Arch, Abandoned Village. Lava


The road and path to the sea/lava tunnel.

 

 

 

This was a huge firn.
It is about 25 feet high.

After hiking the short trail here is Bob entering the lava tunnel.

That red dot in the center-right is Bob walking through the tunnel.

 

We stopped here for lunch. The resteraunt in the front was a little pricy so we went in the back where it looked like the locals ate. We were plesently suprized by the food. It was priced right and delicious.

 

 


We then drove to the Southern most point in the US. The beach at the end had green sand. It was Very windy.


I love wind farms.
The tide pools these waves left were full of huge beautiful fish.

On we went to
Volcano National Park

Page 59-B11of the Hawaii Gazetter

We wanted to get to the flows just before dark. Everyone said the lava looked much more impressive at night. They were rignt. You can tell by the sweatshirt that it was a bit chilly.


These signs were almost buried in lava. Too funny.

This sign reads, "No Parking"
We started hiking just before dusk. It was about a two mile walk to the flow. There was no trail to speak of and it was very dangerous. The lava was sharp and black. it was hard to navigate as the shadows fell. In spots you could see the lava flowing right under you feet. I'm sure they loose a tourist or two every year. The flow is constantly changing. If you get a chance to try this, be sure to bring a flashlight.
We sat down to have a snack and watch the lava flow. Soon tourist everywhere starting sitting down around us. It was weird and kind of cool at the same time. The lava flowing from a safe distance looked really pretty at night.
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The next morning we walked to Hilo Market. It was just down the road from the Hotel. They have them every wednesday.

We bought breakfast here and ate at the park across the street.

The sign on the palm tree reads,
"watch for falling cocoa nuts",
I bet that would hurt.


More cruise ships. They are huge.

That afternoon we had reservations to take a bus to the top of Mauna Kea, the tallest volcano in the Hawaiian Islands. We went to see the WM Keck Observatory and do some afternoon and evening star gazing. http://www.ifa.hawaii.edu/mko/visiting.htm, http://www2.keck.hawaii.edu/geninfo/about.html Arnott's Hiking Adventure 808-969-7097.

The bus stopped half way up the volcano to help get you aclimated to the hight. We were at about 9000 feet here. These birds came running to us after we dropped our bag of trail mix.
At 14,000 feet all our photos turned out fabulous up here. I can see why the telescops are placed up hear, very little atmosphere.
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The next mornig we toured Hilo, We visited the Tsunami Museum
This was the rainbow waterfalls just outside of town..

We visited this Chocolate factory and store.

Liliuokalani Garden was right next to our Hotel. It is a Japanese garden that covers 30 Acres.


That afternoon we went to the Hawaiian Tropical Botanical gardens,
27-717 Old Mamalahoa Highway on the road between Papaikou to Pepe'ekeo


These were too pretty for words.

These were tombs of kings. People still leave offerings.

A couple from Eau Claire took our picture. Oddly enough we met 3 other couples from Eau Claire.

We had to leave the garden to get to the beach because noone in Hawaii can own the shoreline.

They had a section just for Orchids.

This is Akaka Falls.

The we drove to Niulii, around the North West part of Hawaii.

We watched this guy fly this little plane for about an hour.

We stopped at Samuel M Spencer Beach Park.

We watched the whales swimming around off shore.

These bushes were blooming all over the island.
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