This was quite a day.  We left Hawaiian Paradise Inn in the morning and headed down to look at the house we
were to buy, the
Seaview House, then back up through Hilo, along the Hamakua Coast to Waimea (white
line), then north into the
Kahala Peninsula to Hawi, and down the coast to Kailua-Kona where we met with
our real estate agent to sign some papers and start the process of buying our new house.
A view of the Hamakua Coast.  Note the
houses on top
Just a pretty little stream flowing from one of
the many valleys into the ocean
Robin looking smug
Robin frolicking on the beach at Laupahoehoe Beach Park on the Hamakua Coast
After that, we headed south and came around and up through Volcano National Park where, since it was night
already, we thought we'd take a ride down
Chain of Craters Road and see if we could see the lava glowing where
it went into the sea.  We got to the bottom where the road was barricaded and walked a half mile or so along the
road in the dark to where lava had covered the road, then walked over the old lava flows along a marked trail.  
The trail marking stopped and so did we, but we were really too far from the lava to see anything.  My best
photograph was a shaky hand-held one taken with the telephoto as we were coming down Chain of Craters
Road.  I tried a number of time-exposed shots on a tripod from the end of the trail but nothing worthwhile came
out.  We finally got back in the car and headed home, exhausted but full of Hawaii.  This is such a wild and
unusual place.  There's nothing like it!  In the whole world, they say!  I couldn't disagree.
A pretty view down the coast on the leeward side, I think.  
Notice the grey sky.  We're still having problems with rain.
Robin keeping in touch
This was the hand-held shot of the lava as
we were coming down Chain of Craters
Road.  I just grabbed the shot, thinking we
were going to do better once we got to the
bottom.  As it was, all I got were a bunch of
black pictures with a barely discernible
orange glow in a few of them.
This was the end of the road.  Asphalt pavement in the foreground,
lava flowing down over it.  This is not liquid lava, it is several years
old.  Off to the right, you can see reflectors that mark the trail off into
the darkness.  We followed that trail for several hundred more yards
until the markers stopped.  Try walking through black lava on a dark
cloudy night, even with a flashlight.  All the blackness just sucks up
the light.  It's definitely not a place you want to go wandering off the
marked trail in the middle of the night.
Yesterday was such an intense day, we took today off.  Our first week in Paradise and this is one hell of a place!  We
were feeling pretty smug about how beyond our expectations things were looking.
We decided to go back up to Kilauea and see it in the daytime!  We came in from the east (white line) on Rt. 11, known
as Volcano Highway east of the town of Volcano and Mamalahoa Highway west of there.  We came in to
where the line changes to green as we circle the caldera.
Steaming Bluff
(top of map)
As you can see, the view into the crater is still obscured by the rain and
overcast conditions.  Looks eerie, though, doesn't it?
This is a map of the recent lava flows from the Kilauea Volcano.  Our house is just off the map to the right.  There will be
much more about Kilauea coming up when we finally get a good day!
Photos 1, Page 4
Sunday, March 12, 2006
Day 6, Circumnavigate the Island
Hamakua Coast
Tuesday, March 14, 2006
Day 8, Crater Rim Drive, Kilauea
Kilauea, Chain of Craters Road at night
Monday, March 13, 2006
Day 7, One Week in Paradise