Sunday, March 4, 2012

Hawaii Volcanoes - Fire and Ice

Hawaii Volcanoes - Fire & Ice

Stay at Hale Moana Bed & Breakfast and explore Hawaii's Volcanoes and see lava flows from the Kalapana Viewing area (10 minutes from Hale Moana Bed & Breakfast): 

Lava has been erupting from the Pu'u O'o Vent, which is part of Kilauea Volcano on the Big Island of Hawaii, since 1982. Recent flows into the ocean had stopped on January 9, 2012. Since then the lava has been close to the crater and started to progress down the slope a few days ago. For the last two days it has again entered the subdivision of Royal Gardens that had been inundated by lava many times over the last 30 years. The last house standing was infamous Jack Thompson's Bed & Breakfast. According to latest reports, Jack's house has been swallowed by lava yesterday. He evacuated just an hour before a vigorous flow of lava came down the hill and burned his house to the ground. 
It was the final act in the destruction of a vast but sparsely populated neighborhood dating back to the earliest phases of the Pu'u 'O'o-Kupaianaha eruption in 1983. Over the years, flows from Kilauea had burned Jack's neighbors' homes and cut off the roads leading to Royal Gardens. A professional photographer and friend, Leigh Hilbert, happened to be staying at the house and was able to help Thompson evacuate. Hilbert had been documenting the progress of the flow on his blog, Arriving by foot on Thursday, he noticed one threatening branch and told Thompson, who continued to hope it could miss his house, as others have in the past. A detailed report of Jack's last few hours and his evacuation by helicopter are available in today's Hawaii Tribune Herald's article

The lava is now continuing to flow farther down the pali and is visible from the Kalapana Viewing Area at the end of Hwy. 130, which is just about 10 minutes from Hale Moana Bed & Breakfast, close to Pahoa in Leilani Estates.

The Island of Hawaii is a place of contrasts and as lava is flowing down the slopes of one volcano, a winter storm dropped inches of snow on Muana Kea and Mauna Loa this weekend, as an upper low near the islands brought sub-freezing temperatures to Big Island summits.

 A winter storm warning was in effect for most of the weekend into Monday morning. The Mauna Kea Access Road was closed to the public at the Visitor Information Station due to the ice and snow on summit roads. The Mauna Kea Rangers planned to conduct an early morning inspection today. but the road was expected to remain closed due to the pending weather.

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