Monday, April 08, 2013

March 18 - Kohala Coast

At the northwestern tip of the Big Island, we drove down the Old Coast Guard Road, aiming for the old Mo‘okini Heiau. This area of Kohala has short trees sparse among the grass and rocks.

Down to the Sea

Instead, we wound up at a rocky beach called Honoipu. The wind was at our back, for a change, as we stared out to sea.


It was nice not to have to worry about salt-water spray as I took photographs of the crashing waves.

From Hawai‘i to Maui

Turquoise water, Maui just off shore. Chunlin spotted whales breaching. Look at that one! It’s completely out of the water! Oh wait, that’s a bird.

Chunlin at Honoipu

Back up the hill, we found the turn-off toward the heiau, but a locked gate with a “no trespassing” sign dissuaded us from proceeding further.

Down the coast, we stopped at Mahukona Beach. It’s an old harbor from the sugar cane days, I believe, but now in ruins. Snorkelers floated on the shallow water. Little yellow fish hid from them.

Snorkelers at Mahukona

On the road again, we stopped at Spencer Beach and visited Pu‘ukohola Heiau, built by King Kamehameha. We sat in the small visitors center and watched a video and enjoyed the breeze.

Pu‘ukohola Flags

Pu‘ukohola and the Sea

Lovely piles of rocks.

The Heiau on the Hill

Our next stop was Puako, which isn't really a town. It's just a long dead-end road with many houses on it, paralleling the ocean. There are a few gaps for public access to the rocky shore.

Across to Holoholokai

Lava tidepools. A‘a and rope lava and smooth pahoehoe. Small waves, but they felt big for the tight gaps.

Chunlin on the Rocks

We saw sea urchins, sea cucumbers, tiny fish, three sea turtles, and a pair of eels.

Growing New

Life is hard on the dry side of the island...

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