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Photos 3, page 23
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Solo Hike to Pu'u O'o vent (continued)
April 28, 2007
Looking back.  That's Mauna Loa.
And Mauna Kea
A look ahead.  That's A'a lava.  Nasty
stuff.
The vent with a helicopter over it.  The
place is buzzing with helicopters - 3 or
4 at a time.  I was in one once, on my
birthday.
Well, they mark the "trail", but there
ain't no damned trail!  This is really
dangerous walking:  the rocks are
loose and sharp and slip out from
under your feet so that balance is
precarious.  If you fall on this shit,
you're going to be bloody!
Mauna Loa
Mauna Kea
I don't know what this stuff is.  It looks
like paste, but it's hard.
If you look really close, you can see what looks to be fine wire or hair.  It's known as "Pele's
Hair" and is a result of volcanic activity which spins this stuff out like thread, only it's made of
lava.  
Pele, by the way, is the Hawaiian goddess of volcanoes and we are always very nice to
her!
This is looking east toward home
A look up ahead.  I don't know if you
can tell from the photo, but it's really
steep!
A gizmo for measuring something
Looking east but looking more at the
foreground.
One last look up before turning back.
More Pele's hair
Looking back down the hill
More views of the "trail" back to the edge of the woods.
A lonely ohia
Squirrel tracks?  No squirrels here,
must be a mongoose...
Back in the rain forest...
Google gives a pretty good view right down into the vent here.  The vent is composed of the main crater with several
vents or lava ponds within it.  See also
my photos from the helicopter flight of 9/2.  On this hike, the trail kept getting
steeper and steeper and I got tireder and tireder.  Finally, 300 very vertical feet from the top, I decided to turn back.  It
was 12:30 and I had been hiking for 4 1/2 hours and needed another 4 1/2 to 5 hours to get back.  Besides, I was
pushing my luck, hiking alone past all those warning signs...  In addition, I had come prepared to spend the night, in
case of emergency, so I was packing roughly 35 pounds on my back and I was definitely feeling it!
Look at this trail!
This is interesting:  a tree had fallen
across the trail...
And there was another full-sized tree
growing out of it!
An interesting lava formation
in the trail
By now, I was really getting sick of this trail.  I was really tired and stumbling a lot.
 There was never anyplace I could just WALK!  It was so humid in the rain forest,
the sweat was literally dripping off me - therefore not doing a very good job of
cooling...
I'm taking more pictures now because
I'm tired and it's a good excuse to stop!