Category Archives: Activities

Sitting on the dock of the bay

Two fishermen at a dock in Kawaihae Harbor, Hawaii

This particular bay is Kawaihae Harbor and the dock is used by small boats for boarding and deboarding, but in the early morning, fishermen try their luck here. Despite this being the main port for the west side of the island, it’s quite tranquil at this time and also features several palm trees, which soften the otherwise industrial scene.

Posted in response to Becky’s July Squares challenge theme of ‘Trees.’ See more responses here.

Surfing at Pine Trees

Surfers heads out at Pine Trees, Hawaii
A surfer at Pine Trees, Hawaii
A surfers heads towards the shore at Pine Trees, Hawaii

Pine Trees is a popular surf break north of Kailua Kona. In these photos, a pair of surfers head out, another surfer rides a wave, and a surfer coasts back to shore.

Posted in response to Becky’s July Squares challenge theme of ‘Trees.’ See more responses here.

Morning swim

A spotted eagle ray swims in the waters off Hawaii
Spotted eagle ray swimming
A spotted eagle ray hunts in the waters off Hawaii
Spotted eagle ray hunting

On a morning swim with my wife a couple of days ago, we were lucky enough to see a spotted eagle ray cruising around looking for breakfast. It stopped often, to probe the sand and rocks for food, and was successful at least once, since it emerged from its efforts chewing and swallowing. This eagle ray looked a bit battered, with damage to its tail fins and a chunk missing from its right wing, but it didn’t seem to be affected by this at all.

As we continued swimming, I saw the ray heading the same way. For a while it followed us, got ahead, then we followed it. On the way we saw a couple of flowery flounders, a couple of day octopuses, a crowned jellyfish as roughed up as the ray, and an oriental flying gurnard. It’s not a great photo of that, but it’s the first one I’ve seen here.

Near the spot where we planned to turn around and head back, I passed over a hole in the rocks and, glancing down, saw the distinctive shape and colors of a green turtle. I think it must have chosen this spot to take a rest, but my appearance startled it and it clambered out of the hole and swam away.

  • A Green turtle resting in a hole in the waters off Hawaii
  • A Green turtle emerges from a hole in the waters off Hawaii
  • A Green turtle swims in the waters off Hawaii

Shortly after that, the turtle encountered the eagle ray. The two of them crossed paths a couple of times before going their separate ways.

A Green turtle and spotted Eagle Ray in the waters off Hawaii

The great outdoors

A view of Hualalai from the water
Hualalai from the water.
A sailboat enters Kawaihae Harbor
A sailboat returns to harbor.

This week’s Sunday Stills challenge theme is ‘Great Outdoors.’ See more responses here.

In Hawaii, people spend a great deal of time outdoors. It’s common for people to have an outdoor kitchen, sometimes their only kitchen, sometimes a second one where a barbecue is the featured cooking apparatus. Carports often feature chairs and tables with cars parked elsewhere. The lanai, or deck, is as well-used as any room in the house.

Outdoor activities are popular here, too. Many involve the ocean and its inviting water: swimming, snorkeling, paddling, and of course surfing. Plenty of people go fishing and hunting, longtime sources of food for the table.

For me, experiencing the great outdoors primarily involves hiking and snorkeling. Hiking isn’t especially popular here, especially along the coast where it can get quite hot. I get strange looks when I hike the length of popular beaches togged out in hiking gear, including shoes, hat, and fanny pack loaded with water. For most, the beach is a place for stretching out and broiling in the sun, not actively working up a sweat.

The vast majority of photos on this blog are taken in the great outdoors. These photos are a small selection of things I’ve seen while out and about, from sweeping views to birds and bugs.

A view of Kohala Coast from Koai'a Tree Sanctuary
A view of the south Kohala Coast from Koai’a Tree Sanctuary
View of Mauna Kea from Pu'u Wa'awa'a bench
A view of Mauna Kea from Pu’u Wa’awa’a.

Ghost bikes

A Ghost bike near Hawi, Hawaii
A Ghost bike near Hawi, Hawaii

Cycling is a popular activity on the Big Island. The road from Kailua Kona to Hawi is wide with good shoulders, and it’s a favorite with cyclists because it’s the route of the cycling portion of the Ironman race. However, as is the case everywhere, it can be a dangerous activity, sharing the highway with large, fast-moving vehicles.

Ghost bikes serve as memorials for cyclists killed or badly hurt when things go wrong. These are two I see daily on my commute.