Sunday, October 18, 2015

The Islands of Hawaii and Maui

 The first island we went to was Hawaii which is home to still active volcanoes -- Mauna Loa and Kilauea.  This was the view looking over one of the active parts of Kilauea although we couldn't see the lava from the land.  Those who took the helicopter ride could.  The landscape was very rugged lava rock.  When approaching Volcanoes National Park, we could see steaming fields and there was steam coming out of the volcano at the top  There were fields covered with orchids growing wild -- it is the biggest of the Hawaiian Islands and  the most recently formed.  Its nickname is the Orchid Island.  We stopped at a Macadamia nut factory on the way up -- and who knew how much I liked this nut!!  I bought a couple of bags of dark chocolate covered nuts to bring home!!
Here you can see the steam from the lava coming up.

This red flower is one of the first that comes up in this volcanic area.  It is called  'Ohi'a lehua.               .

This was the volcanic rock which covered the area where we stopped.  I loved the contrast with the bright colored ferns that were growing.  

This was the steam coming out of a field on our way through the park.  It is a very active island from a volcanic standpoint and probably won't be the most southern most island in a few millenia according to our geologist!  
Our second day was an excursion on Maui to Haliakala -- another volcanic area.  The scenery on Maui looked very different to me than that on Hawaii.  Many more rolling hills and beautiful beaches.  These pictures were taken from the bus window.  It was a curvy ride as well reminiscent of New Zealand.

 Another view from the bus.  
 These were flowers on a cactus plant on Hawaii.  They were huge flowers.

These were Maui Alauahio (I believe) , which I saw on Maui at my lunch stop.
 Unfortunately, Haleakala was totally fogged in at the top, 50 degrees and 30 mph winds with rain and fog.  However, it was just fine down at lower elevations.  We stopped for lunch and sitting out in the parking lot, I spotted several birds.  The above bird is a Spotted Dove and I saw many of these in what the bus driver told me was an Umbrella tree on Maui,  The birds evidently loved these berries.

This was the other dove that I saw frequently on several of the islands.  It is a Zebra Dove.  They were as common as pigeons,  The pigeons I saw were frequently almost all white but definitely pigeons!!

This is a somewhat blurry picture taken from a great distance at Kilauea of a White Tailed Tropicbird with its graceful long tail.  They can be found near cliffs and there were a few of them I spotted by the volcano.  

This is one of the wild orchids that you could see fields of on Hawaii,

This is a Mynah bird which we saw in Fiji as well.  Very noisy bird!!

This was the view at Haleakala.  At least I didn't destroy a camera here!!  It is supposed to be a beautiful view but elusive!

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