Category Archives: Weather

Brush fire

A brush fire on the North Kohala Coast

My homeward commute last evening was extended by this brush fire on Akoni Pule Highway, north of Kawaihae. I heard that the highway was closed before I left work, but thought I’d head that way in the hope that it was a small fire and the road would soon reopen.

When I got closer, I saw a line of flame on the ridge ahead and I knew this wasn’t going to be a short delay. The flames were only on the ocean side of the highway, but the wind, though not strong, was onshore. The road was closed because of the possibility of the flames reaching or even crossing the highway

I couldn’t get much in the way of definitive information. Someone said an hour delay, but this being Hawaii, an hour can easily become three hours. So I bit the bullet, turned around, and headed for Waimea and the Kohala Mountain Road to get home. That was the only alternative. However, it wasn’t that many years ago that the mountain road was the only way in and out of North Kohala, so I can’t complain too much.

I got home around 6 p.m., a good hour later than I would have had the road been open.

A brush fire on the North Kohala Coast

Colorful Beaches

A view of Green sand beach (Papakōlea) on the Big Island, Hawaii

This week’s Sunday Stills challenge theme is ‘Beautiful Beaches.’ See more responses here. Obviously, this was a tricky challenge for me, but I have managed to come up with a few photos!

The top photo shows Green Sand Beach. It’s official name is Papakōlea Beach and the color of the beach is due to an abundance of olivine from the old volcanic cinder cone that borders the beach.

Next we have two black sand beaches. The best known black sand beach on the island is Punaluʻu Beach, which is often referred to simply as Black Sand Beach. However, there are several others. The first of these is Pololu Beach here in North Kohala. The black sand is a result of the breakdown of black lava into smaller pieces. Over time, the grains become as fine as those on white sand beaches.

A view of the black sand beach at Pololu on the Big Island, Hawaii

Pohoiki Beach is the newest such beach on the island, formed by the eruption of 2018. The grains are still a bit coarse, but it’s mind boggling to think that before that eruption, there was basically no beach here at all. Now, as the photo shows, it’s extensive.

A view of the black sand beach at Pohoiki on the Big Island, Hawaii

Finally, some white sand beaches. Anaeho’omalu Bay Beach, at the south end of Waikoloa Beach Resort, is a curve of sand dotted with palms, a quintessential tropical beach.

A view of Anaeho’omalu Bay on the South Kohala coast

Hapuna Beach, farther north, is a regular on lists of best beaches in the U.S.A..

A view of Hapuna beach on the Big Island, Hawaii

The beach at Spencer Beach Park is a current favorite of mine, a place I like to walk in the early morning before going to work. The sheltered waters, shade trees, and picnic areas make it a favorite with families.

A view of the beach at Spencer Beach Park on the Big Island, Hawaii

Skydiver falling

Skydivers jump from a plane in Hawaii

I often see the skydivers operating out of Upolu Airport. I see the plane take off and I see the brightly colored parachutes descending. But I’ve wanted to get a photo of the skydivers jumping out of the plane for some time. This photo isn’t it, but it’s the closest I’ve come.

Here, the skydiver has just jumped, but the main chute hasn’t yet opened. They typically drop for a while before opening the main chute, as this one did a minute or so later.