Saturday, December 31, 2011

Hawaii Bed and Breakfast - Hau'oli Makahiki Hou - Happy New Year from Hawaii!

We are sending our Alohas to you and your families and wish you the very best for the New Year. This is the time of the year when we are all coming closer together and are thankful for the wonderful things we have in our lives. We would like to take the opportunity to thank you - our guests, friends and partners for staying at our B&B, your loyalty, patronage and support.

This year we up-graded our Facebook page. Please, take a look and "like" us. On Facebook or through our blog you can follow the latest developments regarding the lava flow, events and activities happening around Hale Moana Bed & Breakfast. There are many new pictures on our website.

BIG NEWS: Since December 9, 2011, the lava is back flowing into the ocean. It had stopped in February and for the most part of the year it was only visible from the helicopter. Breathtaking views and impressions from the boat or by foot can now be part of your vacation experience again.

For our Japanese speaking guests we added a collaboration with Toshi & Shiho Mochizuki, the owners of Aloha Breeze, who can help you with your travel arrangements.

Earlier this year Hale Moana Bed & Breakfast was awarded the Trip Advisor 2011 Certificate of Excellence. This Award is an outstanding achievement and recognizes Hale Moana Bed & Breakfast for its leadership in Quality of Service and Value in 2011. We feel very blessed and would like to express our sincere Mahalos to you - our guests and partners.

Hale Moana Bed and Breakfast is located in the beautiful and tropical area of Puna on the Big Island of Hawaii, 30 minutes from Hilo (International Airport) and the Volcanoes National Park, and 5 minutes from Pahoa. Hale Moana is a licensed, quality, inspected Hawaii B&B surrounded by two acres of tropical gardens in an ambiance of old Hawaii.

Our Big Island Hawaii Bed and Breakfast offers two suites with living room and kitchenette and one studio. All have private bathrooms and separate entrances. Amenities such as free Wi-Fi, laundry facility, BBQ grill, free parking,snorkels and maps, etc. are available to our guests. A gourmet island breakfast is included in our rates. We welcome families!

This last year has brought some health challenges for us, that we were able to overcome. Thank you, for your many prayers, we so much appreciate them. Our kids are getting bigger and we are getting older. We want to thank you again and hope to see you or hear from you in the New Year. Please, stay in touch!

Hau'oli Makahiki Hou -  Happy New Year from Hawaii!

With Alohas,

Petra Wiesenbauer

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Hawaii Kilauea Volcano Eruption - 29 Years

Kilauea Volcano's East Rift Zone Eruption: 
29 Years and Counting

Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park is only 30 Minutes from Hale Moana Bed & Breakfast:

Hawaii National Park, HI – Jan. 3, 2012 marks the 29th anniversary of Kīlauea’s ongoing east rift zone eruption. This eruption, particularly events that occurred during the past year, will be the topic of an “After Dark in the Park” program in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park, Tues., Jan. 3.

Tim Orr, a geologist with the U.S. Geological Survey’s Hawaiian Volcano Observatory, will review the eruption, focusing on highlights from Kīlauea’s 2011 activity. The program begins at 7 p.m. at the park’s Kīlauea Visitor Center Auditorium. Park entrance fees apply.

The eruption began just after midnight on Jan. 3, 1983, with lava erupting to the surface along several fissures. By June 1983, the eruption was focused at a single vent. Over the next three years, lava fountains up to 1,500 feet high roared from the vent 44 times, building a cinder-and-spatter cone named Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō.
In July 1986, the eruption shifted to Kupaianaha, a new vent farther down the east rift zone. Lava poured from this vent nearly continuously for almost six years, burning and burying Kīlauea’s south flank, including the communities of Kapa‘ahu and Kalapana, in 1986 and 1990, respectively.

Early in 1992, the eruption returned to vents on the flanks of Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō. Over the next 18 years, lava flowed down the slopes of Kīlauea, inundating areas within and outside of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National park and often reaching the sea.

During the past year, Kīlauea’s ongoing east rift zone eruption has included two spectacular fissure eruptions, a dramatic outbreak of lava from the west flank of Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō, and, on Dec. 9, 2011, a new ocean entry USGS scientists named West Ka‘ili‘ili—the first ocean entry within the boundaries of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park since 2009.
Since the eruption began in 1983, lava flows have buried 48 square miles of public and private land, destroying vast tracts of native forest, nine miles of highway, and 213 structures, including homes, a church, and the Waha‘ula Visitor Center in the park.
While Kīlauea’s current east rift zone eruption has been its most destructive event in recent history, the eruption has also been constructive. Molten lava flowing into the sea has added about 500 acres of new land to Hawai‘i Island.

This presentation is one of many talks, guided hikes, and other programs offered by the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory and Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park as part of Hawai‘i Island’s third annual Volcano Awareness Month in January. For more information about this talk, please call 808-985-6011. For a complete schedule of Volcano Awareness Month events, please visit the HVO Web site at or call (808) 967-8844.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Hawaiian Legend - Lava Rock Curse

Hawaii's Lava Rock Curse

Dear Reader and Fan of Hale Moana Bed & Breakfast,

I just found this post by Jim Winpenny and Bruce Fisher from Hawaii Vacation and wanted to share this with you. It is about the legend that says Madam Pele, the Hawaiian goddess of fire, who commands the volcanic action on Hawaii’s Big Island, lives in the fire pit in Halema’uma’u crater, at the summit caldera of the Kilauea volcano.

You may also have heard that Madam Pele doesn’t like to have lava rocks purloined once they have cooled and settled. It is said that anyone who removes a piece of rock from the Hawaiian Volcanoes National Park will incur her wrath. Bad luck is certain to follow.

In Kalapana on the way to the new black sand beach.
Well, visitors take them anyhow. They’re nice souvenirs and they travel well. But there’s no question about this: Visitors who have taken rocks from Pele’s land have returned them in hopes of ending scary streaks of bad luck. Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and most of the hotels are inundated with packages
containing rocks from guilt-ridden vacationers who are intent upon reversing their sudden spates of misfortune.

Pets die. Jobs are lost. Houses burn down. Sudden and devastating illness strikes loved ones. Marriages break apart.

Seen in Kalapana/Kaimu at the new black sand beach.
These are actual quotes from former Big-Island vacationers:

Please take this rock and put it back somewhere on your island. I have had very bad luck since it came into my life and I am very sorry I took it. Please forgive me and I pray that once I send it back where it comes from, my bad luck will go away.

Ever since we have taken items, we have had nothing but back luck and medical problems. We apologize for taking the items, so we are returning same to Hawaii.

We placed the rock last fall on a cast iron chair in our garden; this spring the chair’s leg had fallen off. That’s the least of the problems we have had since we’ve taken the rock.

Please return these rocks to their rightful spot. I never had so much bad luck as I’ve had since I returned from Hawaii.

I picked up a small piece of lava somewhere, (we are rock and crystal collectors), never dreaming of what might come. Since then we have lost half of our retirement savings to a scam artist and will have to go back
to work. Please work your magic on the enclosed piece of lava and hopefully nothing worse will happen.

There are thousands more like those. The Volcano Post Office, Volcano National Park and lots of hotels find the returned rocks a nuisance (although they faithfully dispose of them by tossing them onto a big pile right behind the Volcano Visitor Center.)

The Volcano Gallery on the Big Island gladly accepts returned rocks. Once they receive the rocks they carefully wrap them in ti leaves and return them to a special location in Volcano close to Pele’s home, along with an offering of orchids to ask for her forgiveness. For the service, the gallery asks for a donation of $15, but will perform the service in any case.

What, you’ve been to Hawaii and have a lava rock? You can still return it.
Here’s the address:

Rainbow Moon Attn: Lava Rock Return P.O. Box 699, Volcano, HI 96785

Here is the link to Bruce Fisher's (Hawaii Vacation) blog with many comments from people who have experienced the "rock curse" first hand.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Lava Flow into the Ocean - Lava Boat Tour

Lava Ocean Boat Tour

Isaac Hale Beach Park, the departure point to go on the Lava Ocean Adventure Lava Boat Tour, is only 10 Minutes from Hale Moana Bed & Breakfast. Many times guests stay with us the night before the boat tour. It is easy for them to drive from our B&B to the boat ramp early in the morning and then after the tour come back to enjoy our Gourmet Island Breakfast.

When we left the house on the morning of December 19, 2011 it was dark and rain was coming down in sheets. We made the 10 minute drive down to the coast and met the crew from Lava Ocean Adventures at the Isaac Hale parking area. The sky cleared up and it was soon time to go on the Lava Kai Boat, a large aluminum catamaran.

We have been out to the lava with the boat before, and each time it is different and very special. This morning, however, everybody was super excited: The lava has not been flowing for over 10 months and it is only since about a week ago, that it is entering the ocean again.

When you go on the morning sunrise tour the boat leaves in the dark from the local Isaac Hale Beach Park boat ramp. The first few minutes when Captain Shane turns the boat to cross the swells are a little bumpy, then under calm ocean conditions it is a smooth ride out to the lava flow. Currently, the lava is flowing into the water past the Volcanoes National Park boundaries. 
As we got closer, lava glow started to be visible from a distance. But then we arrived and the lava was cascading in many areas over the cliffs into the water. It is such an incredible experience to be part of this ancient creation process. Even after all these years of living here and seeing lava many times, it never changes: it is incomprehensible for us to know, that it is molten rock we are witnessing and that this is how our planet was formed. When the lava touches the water, there is steam and hissing sounds and you can smell the steam. It is just so beautiful and amazing. The pictures we took just show a small portion that don't do any justice, the real experience is so much bigger than that and touches us as observer on many levels.

As you are out there watching the sun slowly rising over the horizon it starts to dip the island into this golden morning light. Slowly the colors of the land with its blacks and greens are beginning to unfold. The morning time is absolutely beautiful and the ride back along this still pristine and undeveloped coast line is breath taking. Dolphins ride alongside the boat. We know this coast so well, but the beauty never seizes to amaze us.

Thank you, Captain Shane and the Lava Kai crew for another incredible experience! For more information on how to connect with Lava Ocean Adventures you can go to their website.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park - January 2012 Programs

Hawaiian Cultural & After Dark in the Park Programs - January 2012

Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park is only 30 Minutes from Hale Moana Bed & Breakfast:

Hawai‘i National Park, HI – Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park continues its tradition of sharing Hawaiian culture and After Dark in the Park programs with the community and visitors throughout January – which is also Volcano Awareness Month. These programs are free, but park entrance fees apply. Mark your calendars for these upcoming events:

When: Tues., Jan. 3 at 7 p.m.
Where: Kīlauea Visitor Center Auditorium
Kīlauea Volcano’s East Rift Eruption: 29 Years and Counting. Jan. 3, 2012 marks the 29th anniversary of Kīlauea’s ongoing east rift zone eruption. During its first three years, spectacular lava fountains spewed episodically from the Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō vent. Since then, nearly continuous lava effusion has built a vast plain that stretches from the east rift to the sea. This past year has seen many changes, including fissure eruptions and the collapse and refilling of the vent’s lava lake. USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory Geologist Tim Orr will review highlights from the past 29 years and discuss recent developments on Kīlauea’s east rift zone. Part of Hawai‘i Volcanoes’ ongoing After Dark in the Park series. Free.

When: Tues., Jan. 10 at 7 p.m.
Where: Kīlauea Visitor Center Auditorium
What’s Happening in Halema‘uma‘u Crater? In March 2008, a new volcanic vent opened in Halema‘uma‘u, at the summit of Kīlauea. Since then, the eruption has consisted of continuous degassing, occasional explosive events, ongoing ash emissions, and fluctuating lava pond activity in an open vent that has grown to more than 430 feet wide. While the eruption enthralls visitors, it also provides an abundance of data and insights for scientists. USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory geologist Matt Patrick will present an overview of Kīlauea’s summit eruption. Part of Hawai‘i Volcanoes’ ongoing After Dark in the Park series. Free.

When: Tues., Jan. 17 at 7 p.m.
Where: Kīlauea Visitor Center Auditorium
Story of the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory’s First 100 Years. In 2012, the USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) reaches its centennial milestone – 100 years of continuous volcano monitoring in Hawai‘i. Join HVO Scientist-in-Charge Jim Kauahikaua as he talks about Thomas Jaggar’s vision for the observatory, how Frank Perret began the work of monitoring Kīlauea Volcano, and HVO’s accomplishments during the past century. Part of Hawai‘i Volcanoes’ ongoing After Dark in the Park series. Free.

When: Wed., Jan. 18 from 10 a.m. to noon
Where: Kīlauea Visitor Center lānai
Nā Lei with Patricia Kaula. Hawaiians use lei for blessing crops, adornment for hula dancers, in healing and sacred rituals, and to show royal status or rank. Lei are also given to honor guests or as peace offerings, to celebrate a birth, and as expressions of love and expression. Join master lei artist Patricia Kaula as she shares nā lei, the art of traditional and modern lei making. Part of Hawai‘i Volcanoes’ ongoing ‘Ike Hana No‘eau “Experience the Skillful Work” workshops. Free.

When: Wed., Jan. 18 from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Where: Kīlauea Visitor Center Auditorium
Kenneth Makuakāne Live in Concert. Join 12-time Nā Hoku Hanohano award-winning singer, songwriter, and producer Kenneth Makuakāne as he shares songs from his latest albums, The Dash, White Bath Tub, Makuakāne, and other compositions. A prolific songwriter, his songs are performed at the Merrie Monarch Festival and his music is featured on the soundtracks for motion pictures including Honeymoon in Las Vegas and Parent Trap in Paradise. Kenneth is widely recognized as an innovator in Hawaiian music and has more than 100 albums to his producing credit. Part of Hawai‘i Volcanoes’ ongoing Nā Leo Manu “Heavenly Voices” presentations. Free.

When: Tues., Jan. 24 at 7 p.m.
Where: Kīlauea Visitor Center Auditorium
Mauna Loa: How Well Do You Know the Volcano in Your Backyard? Mauna Loa, the largest volcano on Earth, comprises more than half of the surface area of Hawai‘i Island. Mapping and dating show that 95 percent of this active volcano is covered with lava flows less than 10,000 years old. Since 1843, it has erupted 33 times. When Mauna Loa erupts, fast-moving, voluminous lava flows can reach the sea in hours, severing roads and utilities, repaving the flanks and building new land. The growth of Mauna Loa is far from complete as this huge volcano will undoubtedly erupt again. Join USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory volcanologist Frank Trusdell as he talks about Mauna Loa’s eruptive history and current status. Part of Hawai‘i Volcanoes’ ongoing After Dark in the Park series. Free.

When: Wed., Jan. 25 from 10 a.m. to noon
Where: Kīlauea Visitor Center lānai
Traditional Lei Making. Join kumu hula Ab Kawainohoikala‘i Valencia and his wife Puamae‘ole O’Mahoney as they share the traditions of lei making for hula. Lei making is a vital and important part of the hula heritage and together, this husband-and-wife team teach the traditions handed down by generations. Part of Hawai‘i Volcanoes’ ongoing ‘Ike Hana No‘eau “Experience the Skillful Work” workshops. Free.

When: Tues., Jan. 31 at 7 p.m.
Where: Kīlauea Visitor Center Auditorium
Kīlauea’s Volcanic Gases and Their Environmental Impact. As magma rises from Earth’s mantle to the surface, volcanic gases expand, driving the spectacular fountains and flows of Hawaiian volcanoes. While Kīlauea’s current eruption produces enough lava to fill a football stadium every week, it also releases huge amounts of volcanic gases. Jeff Sutton and Tamar Elias, USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory geochemists, offer an update about volcanic gases, especially those related to the 2008-2011 activity at Halema‘uma‘u Crater. Learn about volcanic air pollution (vog), how it forms, and what we’ve learned about its effects on our island environment. BYON (Bring Your Own Nose) to the ever-popular “gas tasting” party where you can learn to identify volcanic gases by smell. Part of Hawai‘i Volcanoes’ ongoing After Dark in the Park series. Free.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park - Access to Lava Ocean Entry

Lava Flow  - Access to Ocean Entry Point

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is only 30 Minutes from Hale Moana Bed & Breakfast:

Lava from Kīlauea’s remote Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō vent has again reached the ocean within Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park boundaries, at a spot scientists have named the West Ka‘ili‘ili ocean entry.

The arduous hike to West Ka‘ili‘ili from the bottom of Chain of Craters Road is approximately four miles one-way across an uneven flow field. Currently, several streams of lava are pouring into the ocean, providing dramatic views. Visitors who stay after dark can also see channels of lava flowing down the pali and across the flow field, but conditions can change at any time.

Hikers need to heed all warning signs and ranger advisories, and be aware of earth cracks and crevices, sharp terrain and rain-slick pāhoehoe lava and other hazards. Steam plumes produced by lava entering the sea contain fine lava fragments and acid droplets that can be harmful. Scientists also confirmed that a lava delta is being formed at the base of a sea cliff at West Ka‘ili‘ili, and are monitoring the area closely. Lava deltas can collapse with little warning, produce hot rock falls inland, and generate large local waves.

“While we are thrilled to be able to provide public access to the new ocean entry site, it is imperative that visitors obey park rangers and all warning signs in the area,” said Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park Superintendent Cindy Orlando. “Hikers must be adequately prepared with plenty of drinking water, dressed for rain or sunshine, wear sturdy, closed-toe shoes, carry a flashlight and spare batteries, and be in good physical shape for this hike.”

Once the wet weather subsides, park rangers will stick reflective trail markers along the rough coastal trail that begins shortly after the end of Chain of Craters Road and leads to a viewing area about a quarter of a mile away.

The West Ka‘ili‘ili ocean entry site is located near the park’s eastern border, and is the first time lava has entered the ocean within park boundaries since 2007. Recent ocean entries have occurred outside the park to the east, through private land and areas within County of Hawai‘i jurisdiction.

Visitors who do not want to hike out to the ocean entry can observe the wispy plume of the ocean entry from the end of Chain of Craters Road, near the ranger station. After sunset, flowing lava from Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō has been visible from the turnout on the hairpin curve on Chain of Craters Road, weather permitting.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Hawaii Big Island - The Lava is Back

Lava Flow Visible - Once Again

The lava is back and the official lava viewing area at the end of Hwy. 130 is only 10 Minutes from Hale Moana Bed & Breakfast:

The lava flow into the ocean had stopped at the end of January this year. Since then the lava was mostly pooling in the Pu'u O'o Vent area and has only progressed very slowly and intermittently.

Starting yesterday, the flow has intensified and lava has been pouring over the pali sloping down toward the ocean. Lava is visible again from the official lava viewing area in Kalapana at the end of Hwy. 130.

Here are links to current you tube footage and to the Hawaii New Now news report.

(The pictures were taken from a Blue Hawaiian Helicopter on Monday, December 5, 2011).