Tag Archives: Beaches

Water inlet

Behind the beach at Anaeho’omalu Bay are two fishponds, Kahapapa and Ku’uali’i. These ponds are typical of the kind that form behind a beach, which protects them from the ocean waves. The ponds are connected to the ocean by this channel, which allows was to come and go with the tides. A sluice gate was used to prevent fish using the channel as an escape route.

Where natural ponds weren’t available, they were created by enclosing areas with rock walls. I featured one such fishpond here.

In Hawaiian history, fishponds were very important. In such an isolated community it was important to have reliable food supplies. The ponds provided this, supplementing fish caught in the ocean. Many ponds have disappeared due to development, volcanic activity, tsunami, and the like. But the ones that survive are a bit of living history, used now more for education than for food.

For more information about Hawaiian fishponds go here.

ʻAnaehoʻomalu Bay beach

This week’s Sunday Stills challenge theme is ‘Beautiful Beaches.’ See more offerings here.

ʻAnaehoʻomalu Bay, at Waikoloa Resort, is often referred to as A Bay for reasons that aren’t hard to figure out. In normal times this is a very popular spot. The beach is a long curve of pale sand with palms at either end. It’s popular with sunbathers, swimmers and snorkelers. There’s also a restaurant and bar at one end of the beach, facilities nearby, and shops not far away. And Ocean Sports operates various cruises out of the bay on a catamaran or glass-bottomed boat.

There’s a hike I like to do, which goes south from A Bay, and on previous visits I’ve skirted the crowds which are usually found there. However, these are not normal times. On my last visit I headed north. There was one person in the water, two on the beach. The ocean lapped gently against the shore. An offshore breeze rustled the palm fronds. Usually when I hike places like this, I’m an aberration with shoes and a fanny pack, marching through swathes of bikinis and board shorts and roasting flesh. On this occasion, I was an aberration just by being there.

Search helicopter over Mau’umae Beach

I saw this Hawaii County Fire Department Search and Rescue helicopter flying over Mau’umae Beach, just south of Kawaihae. I think it was just on a training exercise, but we have had a run of missing fishermen and free divers so it might have been associated with one of those searches.

The body of one fisherman was located submerged along the coast, but no trace of the others has been found yet, to my knowledge. The standard practice on the Big Island is to search for three days. If nothing is found by the end of that time, then they call it off.

There are strong currents around the island and if a swimmer or fisherman is injured in the water, it’s easy for them to be swept out to sea, where the chances of finding them diminish rapidly. Sad as it is when a body is recovered, it’s almost harder when nothing is found and there is no sense of closure for families and friends.

Spencer Beach Park

Spencer Beach Park, near Kawaihae, is a popular spot for families. With protected water, sand, shade, and facilities it’s got most everything little kids need. On weekends it can get crowded, but during the week it’s usually possible to find a quite spot.

The park is right next door to Puʻukoholā Heiau National Historic Site so it’s possible to visit both places from one parking spot.

The view from the top of Puʻu Mahana

Puʻu Mahana is an ancient cinder cone near the southern tip of the island. It is best known for Papakōlea beach, the green sand beach, which formed when the ocean cut into one side of the pu’u, creating the bay seen here. The sand’s green color is due to the presence of the mineral olivine. (More photos here.)

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

Signs: You’re going to die

This sign marks the border between Hualalai Resort and one of the public beaches there. It’s the equivalent of prescription drug warnings that taking them might turn you into a four-armed, paranoid psychopath.

Here, the dangers include man-o-wars, sharp coral, slippery rocks, sudden drop-off, dangerous shorebreak, high surf, and strong current. Oh, and there’s no lifeguard on duty. Well, no wonder, they’d have to be crazy to enter the water there.

C-17 plane over Kohanaiki Park

Kohanaiki Park, just north of Kailua Kona, is a popular park which provides a great view of the sunsets, has a good surf break, has protected pools for keiki to paddle in, and has all the facilities needed for a good barbecue.

If there’s a downside to the park, it’s that it’s just south of the airport. It’s not O’Hare, but planes come and go with some regularity. It’s also used by the military and planes, such as this big C-17 transport, practice touch-and-goes with some frequency. So it’s not the most relaxing beach on the island, that’s for sure, but with white sand, blue water, and hot sunshine, it has a lot going for it.