The source of the entire Hawaiian chain, it is almost twice as large as all of the other islands combined.  Its dimensions approximate those of Connecticut  Hawaii is also home to Mauna Kea, the tallest mountain mass in the world.
This is the view looking out of my hotel room on Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, the Big Island. 

Here is a view looking a bit more to the right as you look out my back patio of my hotel room.

My prime mission on this island was to fly in a helicopter and check out an active volcano.  I thought I might be a bit frightened to ride in a helicopter.  I was pleasantly surprised to learn that the ride was comfortable and nothing to worry about.

The view from the helicopter was fantastic.  The ride was very smooth.  Due to the noise, we had to wear headsets.  It helped us to hear the pilot as he told us about the area.  When he wasn't talking, we had nice, relaxing Hawaiian music to listen to.

Here is a view of a fairly recent lava flow.  You can see where it devoured the trees and roads.

Here is a view from the top of the volcano area looking down to the sea.  This is a huge area.  There used to be a town down there, complete with a gas station and convenience store.  The volcano cleaned house.
If you look closely, you can see cars on the road.  The size of this wasteland is huge.
The current lava flow is running under ground in lava tubes.  The lava tubes form when the outer sides cool and the interior is still hot and is liquid.  The lava then flows down to the shoreline and falls into the sea.  The very hot lava hits the cooler water causing steam.  The water also turns green instead of the surrounding blue.  If you look closely, you might see a shot of orange-red lava.  This is some of the newest real estate in the world.

There is nothing to see at the top of the volcano since everything flows through lava tubes under the surface.  We were lucky enough to find a break in a lava tube.  There is where a piece of the ceiling or roof of the tube feel in.  When I took this picture, it seemed to be quite larger.  The glowing orange-red molten lava was impressive.
Here is a zoomed-in shot of the break in the lava tube ceiling.  The pilot referred to this as a "ceiling lite".

Unfortunately, I did not get to make it to Black Sands Beach in time to see the sand.  I found that the Big Island of Hawaii was bigger than I thought.  I arrived at the Black Sands Beach at 8:30pm on a pitch black night.  I guess  it was black.  Oh well.  Here is a post card.
 

This page was last enhanced on Saturday, January 03, 2004