Mauna Loa erupts

Mauna Loa erupts on the Big Island of Hawaii

Yesterday, my morning commute was enlivened by the sight of Mauna Loa erupting. The eruption started late Sunday night and the report I read, before leaving home, said the eruption was currently confined to the summit crater. That clearly wasn’t the case when I took these photos on the way to work. The quality isn’t great because they’re hand-held, but I think they illustrate the scene reasonably well.

In the top two photos, the red smoke is the glow of the lava, but the white/yellow bits are the lava itself. This was a flow moving down the slope of the volcano.

Mauna Loa erupts on the Big Island of Hawaii

By the time I got to work, the sky was lightening but the lava still stood out. In the bottom photo, Mauna Kea is left center, with a stunning sunrise developing behind it. Mauna Loa is on the right and the activity can clearly be seen on the left (northeast) slope of the volcano, some way down from the summit.

Mauna Loa erupts on the Big Island of Hawaii

When I got home, I read that three vents had opened on the northeast rift zone of the volcano, though only one was still active. Flows from Mauna Loa can reach the ocean in a matter of hours, depending on where they’re coming from and going to. This flow is currently heading towards the saddle between Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa, which is mostly a military training area and undeveloped land. The main current danger is from gasses and Pele’s hair, thin strands of brittle volcanic glass, being carried from the volcano to communities downwind. However, new vents could open farther down the rift, bringing lava closer to human habitation.

Changes in eruptions on Mauna Loa can happen pretty quickly so, as usual, the advice here is be prepared and keep tuned to updates on the situation.

Stop that incessant buzzing

A gecko and a bee on an agave attenuata in Hawaii
A gecko and a bee on an agave attenuata in Hawaii
A gecko on an agave attenuata in Hawaii

I couldn’t resist returning to the Agave Attenuata currently blooming in the yard. On this occasion, I was watching a gecko buried in the flower when one of the bees that have been collecting from the flowers came into the frame.

The gecko looked decidedly unimpressed by the bee’s proximity, and relieved when it disappeared.

Posted for Becky’s Squares theme of “Walking” (See more responses here).

Hawi murals

A colorful mural in Hawi, Hawaii

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

I took the opportunity to revisit the murals surrounding a courtyard in downtown Hawi. I’ve posted a couple of inmages before, here and here, but there are others that certainly can be described as vivid.

A colorful mural in Hawi, Hawaii
A colorful mural in Hawi, Hawaii

The bottom one is one I featured a couple of years ago (here) as a work in progress. I’m still not sure whether this is the finished article. I suspect some of those white areas on the right will get more detail one of these days.

Also posted for Becky’s Squares theme of “Walking” (See more responses here).

A colorful mural in Hawi, Hawaii

And rest

A Bench overlooking Honokane Nui Valley on the Big Island Hawaii

This month’s Becky’s Squares theme is “Walking” (See more responses here). But when you’re out walking, it’s nice to find a place to stop and sit a while. I’ve posted before (here) about this bench overlooking Honokane Nui Valley, but only shown the fabulous view along the coast. This view up the valleys is equally good in my book.

Someone turn it on

A grey francoliin on a roof in Hawaii

On my recent walk along the coast to Hapuna (here), the trail passed through a residential area where there were some structures with a kind of thatched roof. I saw this Gray Francolin resting on one of them and liked how it blended in with the thatch. I thought the sprinkler could offer it a little refreshment, though I suspect if it went off the bird would have taken off like a bat out of hell.

Posted for Becky’s Squares theme of “Walking” (See more responses here).

Halema’uma’u trail and crater

A view of Halemaumau Crater at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

Recently, for this month’s Becky’s Squares theme of “Walking” (See more responses here), I’ve been posting some local walks. Today, I thought I’d revisit Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and one of my current favorite trails there.

The top photo is taken from the Byron Ledge trail which crosses the edge of the Kilauea Caldera to join the Halema’uma’u trail. From this junction, the original Halema’uma’u trail traverses the caldera to the edge of Halema’uma’u Crater. That trail has been closed since 2008 because the volcano has been, and currently still is, erupting there. Kilauea Caldera is large and the eruption is two miles from the trail in the top photo, but I always get a bit of a tingle from walking across the caldera floor so close to volcanic activity.

That’s not the only reason I like this trail though. It arrives at the caldera floor by winding down from the rim though some lovely tropical foliage and a moss-covered cutting through rocks that I always stop and photograph even though it doesn’t change from one visit to the next.

For more information about Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, go to nps.gov/havo/.

Slurp

A gold dust day gecko on and agave attentuata

One of the Agave Attenuatas in my yard is currently blooming, the first one here to do that since I’ve lived here. Because of this, when I walk around the garden, I’ve been paying particular attention to this plant. Bees have been busy in the vicinity, but geckos have been equally drawn to the goodies on offer.

Here, a Gold Dust Day Gecko licks one of the unopened flowers. Not sure if it was after moisture, something sweet, or some of the numerous aphids that have can be seen on the plant.

Posted for Becky’s Squares theme of “Walking” (See more responses here).