Saturday, April 28, 2012

A couple more views of the Island

Yep, it's a waterfall.....

Actually, quite a beautiful waterfall, we didn't want to pay the fees to walk down and see it up close.

We stopped at a pretty scenic view of Hilo and the bay out front, this side of the Island is really green and like a tropical jungle.  Would've like to spend more time here.......

This tree was in the scenic pull out parking lot, amazing1
The Saddle Road goes up 6,700 feet and this mountain is even higher at an elevation of 13,796.  It's the biggest mountain in the world.  Mauna Kea.

We got a little closer and I tried to capture the top with the Onizuka Center of International Astronomy, but liked the photo

here is the observatory.  The drive is a challenge and some rental car companies won't let you take your car up there.  Also, because of the elevation, you have to be very healthy to go up!!

The rest of the road is sparse, but there are many interesting ferns, lichens, etc. growing on the lava rock.

Some more of the plant life at 6,700 feet!

This road has about 15 miles left to repair, it's a good highway otherwise, but not someplace you want to be after dark.  There is a huge military training area on the left-very dangerous and you are not allowed to stop unless it's an emergency.  The sky was nice, but it was chilly and windy up here....perhaps in the 60's:)

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Getting gas & walking the neighborhood

Today we had a bit of shopping to do, finally shopped at the KTA store off Pulani Drive - it's the only place I'll grocery shop from now on...totally local and the fish is fresh.  They also get local beef and pork, veggies and fruits.....picked up 3 small types of fish for the grill.
We needed to fill up the rental and stopped at the Tesoro on the way home because it had "El-tesoro" hanging above the pumps....yep, and the gas is 4.91 for regular!! WooHoo!!

On our way home we pass this guy, and didn't know the entire story...

His name is "Spider Pig", and all you Simpson fans out there should appreciate the name:)  This guy is the neighborhood icon and quite friendly in a snorting sort of way.

Leftovers are always welcome:)

My yard has never been so colorful...,
or interesting......

                                            or almost blooming unique!

Some of the other neighbors contribute to neighbors refrigerators.  Just leave your money in the box beside the driveway....

There are fruit trees everywhere on this street(mango's)

And beautiful belladonna trees in many different colors
This looked like a form of lobelia.... 

  ......and this plant was just thick with blue star flowers, I really need to invest in a flower book don't I?
Not sure what this guy will bring, but it looks like it is full of seeds-how pretty!  Great neighborhood but the walk in 83 degrees down a 9% grade and back up again was a challenge!  A very cool shower felt so wonderful after the walk.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Scenes & Flowers

We took a drive south and found the black sand beach.  The adorable little girls were just having a blast in the rock pools finding little critters.......

       Same view of the beach looking further north.....

and further north.......although there are not a lot of palm trees in the north.

This end of the island is covered with green grasses on top of the lava, the "hills" in the back are lava tubes.
A very nice scenic view off one of the south island pull-offs.There just seems to be lots and lots of water around this island.

Ok, here is where I messed up and put my flower shots in too early.  There are more scenic south island photo's at the end of all these flowers and trees. 

This double blossom hybiscus flower was just too pretty to pass up.  We stopped at the Kona Community Garden walk path, built beside the old airport runway.  The path turned out to be an incredible place to walk and view gorgeous plants.  I got carried away taking pictures and oohing and ahhing. Paul had to move the car to keep up with me as I followed the paths throughout the place.

A lone sunflower amongst the pineapples.
Twas another of my IPhoto moments:)

                                            Ok....., yes this is a terrible shot of a lone orchid, so I enhanced the picture with an antique look:)  I really was not focusing on the poor flower as I hurried onto the next one, but it was the only orchid I found in that park.

Yummy Plumeria's

I think this is a date palm, it just has tons of berries under the leaves.

I love these flowers-there are so many colors of hybiscus on the island and they always capture me.

Yepper, it's a bloomin' cactus.

A spectacular mix of plants and colors.....
A pretty spider lily......

These plants Paul found intriguing, but then we discovered it has the strangest bloom, sometimes you'll see them hanging over streets they are so tall...

                                                 A white bird of paradise.

A unusual cactus, smooth leaves.
Who could pass these guys up, it was a desert dream:)


                 I love trees-this was a beauty.
Too pretty to pass up this sweetie of color....

No idea what kind of cactus, it was two plants and they just looked like no body was going to mess with them!

         Yes, there are lots of interesting cactus in a large part of this garden, however, I just decided to "IPhoto tweek" this one a bit,  just for fun.

This area was under construction as a dedication to a Japanese group.
How do they get these plants to be so perfect?

This guy was ridiculous scary.  I zoomed in to capture all the babies it was having, not wanting to get too close for fear it would shoot me with something, cactus can do that!

Here is a shot of it with it's round prickly buddy-not a couple of plants you really want to get close and personal with.

A lone red stunning plant-surrounded by white rock.


                          Who let the dog out?!!

These rose formed succulents were everywhere.

NOW we are back to the south end of the Island again, told ya! and had stopped at a special local fruit stand with lots of yummy fruits for sale.  After purchasing some stuff we can't pronounce, but had to try, some apple banana's, red papayas, tomatoes and more chocolate covered mac nuts,  we walked around the incredible sitting area and enjoyed this plant life.......

Not quite ready for picking......

     A riot of avocado and pomegranate trees.

Solid yellow hybiscus

A parking lot display of color....

Who wouldn't take this picture? Stunning flower!

                               A delicate center.

Brilliant pink with stars in the middle:)

                               This bush was brilliant,

More messing with IPhoto....antiquing of a banana tree(so much fun to do)

                Same tree, different look, and yes these "apple" banana's are the sweetest best banana's I've ever eaten!
(once they ripen, of course)

Did you say pomegranate trees?  The birds were enjoying them very much....

Yepper!  The yummy yummy papaya!
Remember the plant I said Paul liked, earlier?  Here it is without it's tall bloom.

These huge trees with purple blooms are a so amazing to see, people stop on the roadside to take their pictures.  I am totally in love with these trees!!!

Does the wind ever quit blowing here, it's really really hard to stand still and focus the camera!

Are we there yet?  I'm hungry, I have to go potty...why do I smell antifreeze?

We are on our way back home from the south end of the island and stopped at yet another beautiful scenic view.

This time we noticed something flying in the air and it turned out to be....

this guy, and some of his buddies had been flying their RC gliders on this beautiful scenic view point.

You can go from this.......

to this in a matter of seconds.....volcanic eruptions do that to the country here.
And over the southern most point of the United States!!

Will leave you with the voggy view of the southern most point - and the volcanic rock we stood on to see it!    I just can't take anymore cliffs today, we have to start driving around this island the other direction!!!!