On the Island of Hawaiʻi, Kaluapele (the pit of pele or Pele) crowns the summit region of the volcano Kīlauea.

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Kīlauea Update, Tuesday, July 17, 2018, at Kaluapele

Breezy trades have thankfully returned.  When winds are slack up here, these days the air is...hazy.  The noeuahi (volcanic haze) is laden with ultra-fine lehu (ash) and rock dust.  Thankfully, after the ongoing collapses of Kaluapele and the absence of molten pele, the amount of kūkaepele (sulphur) in what we usually experience up here of uahi ʻawa (sulphur smoke or vog) is minimal.  Operative phrase:  Up Here.  Down in Keahialaka, it is, of course a much different story.  PGcam images show plumes of uahi ʻawa, that pungent bitter smoke, rising constantly.  Itʻs more than unpleasant, it can be deadly.  You saw that aerial photo (I think posted yesterday?) of Keahialaka?  It illustrates the contrast between green/brown, clean/not clean air.  If uahi ʻawa does that to plants, just imagine what it can to to your respiratory system.

So, to concerned friends and acquaintances who wonder...up here the air, the majority of the time, is excellent.

The photos below, for a variety of reasons, are informative.  I took the first on January 4, 2018 during one of my walks to Keanakākoʻi.  It was one of those jaw-droppingly pristinely-clear days.  Slope of Maunaloa rises to the left in the background, a little bluish puff of uahi ʻawa rises from Halemaʻumaʻu at the left.  Snow-capped Maunakea on the middle horizon, the dark hump of Kūlani to her right.  Note that little area of blackish on my side of the rim of HMM.  And to the right of the far right whiteness of the walls of HMM is, on the floor and below MKEA, the jagged black spatter rampart of the April 1982 eruption.

Below, a very similar view from July 15, 2018.  The blackish area now hangs on the rim of Halemaʻumaʻu.  The 1982 spatter rampart is now on a kaulu (ledge) below a brand new pali forming during continuing subsidence of the floor of Kaluapele.  And if the floor below looks oddly lower than that in the upper photo...it is.  Another fine example of pūʻiwa, that stupefaction on account of wonder.

And the hazy air below is that un-sulphured (for the most part) noeuahi.

Below is the KIcam view this morning at 8, looking in the opposite direction of the photos above.  We donʻt need an anemometer (wind gauge) to know that itʻs windy.  See the plume of tan lehu (ash) blowing to the right?

And I noted that, for some reason, my link to the Volcano House LIVE cam stopped working.  If that happened to you too, hereʻs a fresh link:

VHouse LIVE camera

And, maybe because of my sometimes-befuddled state, Im thinking/feeling/hoping that ʻōlaʻi (earthquakes) up here are becoming less frequent?  We can always hope...  Below, from this morning, those M3 and higher for the last day.  Hmmmmm

While down at Keahialaka this morning, looks like they had another overflow of the kahawai pele...that pale grey area at the right.  Iʻm recalling looking earlier today and seeing the stream all whitehot.  I think.  Seems that overflows happen whenever...about 2 hours after an exploquake, and other times too.  Just because...exploquakes, a temporary pulse or surge in supply...nothing is constant.

And yes, Iʻd be remiss if I didnʻt at least mention the explosion at the coast yesterday that injured many on a boat tour.

Explosion at ocean entry July 16, 2018

The Video from another boat as it was returning to Hilo, from Big Island Video News.  Screenshot below:

And, Iʻve been saying...what???  I canʻt hear you...  No Get Complacent!!!

Yes, had boat tours for a few years offshore of the park.  Nothing like this happened that we know of or saw.  But.  Ocean floor topography is different.  Lava is different (pāhoehoe there, ʻaʻā here).  Volume is different.  Itʻs all different.  And if and when differences arenʻt noted and respected, and we get complacent, bad things can happen.  I sometimes get accused of being super-cautious.  Especially with active-lava related things.  But when you have a decades-long history of interacting with pele, dealing with people who of course know better than you, know that folks have died over the years because of ignorance, or because people sometimes willfully ignore safety barricades, warnings, and messages and get hurt...What you going do???  Try your best to pick up the pieces, and hope that people learn.  Those who endanger themselves also endanger their rescuers.  Would be good if we could say...Go...Youʻre on your own.  You get hurt, no expect me fo help you.  But what?  Cannot...How you going live with yourself?  Gotta go help.

This a time of wonder and amazement.  Pele is working in ways none of us have seen before.  Up here, down there... Pūʻiwa!  We must expect the unexpected, and behave appropriately and respectfully.  SHE is in charge.  Always remember that.

As always, with aloha,


Monday, July 16, 2018

Kīlauea Update, Monday, July 16, 2018, Lulled, but not complacent

OK.  Gotta be quick.  Lots of erranding in town today...

Shaking?  No so much.  Slept all night.  This is merely an observation.  We take what we can get when we get it, with gratitude, always.  Or at least we try.


My eyes may deceive, but the deflation line doesnʻt seem quite as precipitous as it has been.  This too is merely an observation:

And another tool is available to us.  I kept forgetting to tell you about the new cam.

LIVE from Volcano House!

Itʻs also a cool way to look at the weathers up here.

At Keahialaka this morning.  I think I figured out that overflows of the stream build the banks or levees higher, so it probably shouldnʻt have been surprising yesterday to think that the stream was lower, though...  

good thing the volcanologists are there (MAHALO PIHA!!!),

being outside and paying attention

We will continue to observe, and observe attentively.  Like when I mentioned, a few times ago, the contrast (was hard to discern in the photo I posted) between windward and leeward.  Here then, very clearly, trades blow from NE (right) to SW (left).  Green to brown.  Verdant to sere.  And all that steam ma uka, likely from ka ua loku (drenching downpours) of pyrocumulus.

Overflows provide great contrast.  Fresh silvery pele, and the slightly older but already weathered blackish grey.  That pointy puʻu to the left is Kaliʻu.  Please see chants for mention of it.

And at the Pacific.  Amazing.  Note steams rising off the skin of the sea, and a pele-caused upwelling at the lower left.  The first bay to the left has been innundated because of coastal subsidence during big ʻōlaʻi years ago.

And just beyond, the little bay at Pohoiki.  A half mile or so from the entry.

Time will tell.

Gotta run.

Till tomorrow, as always, with aloha,


Sunday, July 15, 2018

Kīlauea Update, Sunday, July 15, 2018, GeoMaps and Thermal Images, and...spareribs!

And...a very good, long-time friend turned 60 last Thursday.  I finally remembered to call her yesterday...you know how it is...especially when I rely on handwritten notes on paper calendars (remember those?).  Anyway, and I was ecstatically thrilled to learn that she went Tahiti for two weeks!  Good.  For.  Her.  !!!  And this month in French Polynesia is "Heiva i Tahiti" in Papeʻete, which I think used to be called Tahiti Fete.  Maybe.  All in celebration, originally, of yesterdays Bastille Day.  

And what does Tahiti have to do with anything, you might wonder?  It has everything to do with living our lives to the fullest, despite what-la is going on around us.  Life actually does go on.  No one is indispensable.  Including me.  Kind of a late start writing today.  When we think an exploquake will/might happen when weʻre supposed to be sleeping, slumber is disturbingly irregular.  Like last night.  I slept OK, but the precursor M3ʻs tend to be dreamfelt.  And I awoke during the M5.2 at 326a.  Interestingly, it was .9mi deep.  Most of the others so far have been quite shallow:  .2mi or so... An evolving hmmmmmm

And then Iʻm making spareribs for dinner.  That takes a bit of time.  And...

Here we are.  Oia mau nō-ing.  Pelehonuamea continues working as she has.  Down at Keahialaka, the pele at Fissure 8 seems to be not as constant as it has been.

A couple PGcam shots from today.  The first at 646a maybe shows, if it happened, the tail end of the anticipated surge 2 hours after the exploquake.  That extra brightness at the vent and the upper channel, and the kahawai pele (lava river) appears to be full.

And then, at 11a, maybe the kahawai pele has lowered a little?  Exposing banks?

These are reminders that Pele is, if nothing else, dynamic.  Always changing and often surprising.  As Iʻve said before, we must not become complacent.  We must not allow ourselves to think "What you see is what you get", because when we do, the next minute weʻll see something entirely different.

Like this thermal image of the ma kai flow field from yesterday.  So now the main channel down there is on the ma uka side of Waiapele (Kapoho Crater), and pele heads ever southwest.  Toward Pohoiki.  We can pray, and nonono! all we want, and yes, if Pohoiki goes we will be seriously bummed.  But what you going do?

And just over a week ago, the scene was completely different.

And up here at Kaluapele, Subsidence Happens.  Still.  What Iʻve come to call the Northeast Bay (for the time being) continues to sink.  The cracks on the caldera floor to the left of the new pali are widening.  And the aroma of cooking spareribs wafts upstairs.

Finally, today, if youʻre interested, some extra reading and perusing.  Here are links to the 2003 Geologic Map of the summit region of Kīlauea and an accompanying pamphlet.  Pretty sure Iʻve shared them before, but it does bear repeating...Go Look.  The map, by Tina Neal and Jack Lockwood is chock full of info and geonerd details.  As always, questions are welcome.  And, because of its size, the map is best viewed, of course, on a desktop monitor.

2003 Kīlauea Summit GeoMap Pamphlet

2003 Kīlauea Summit GeoMap #i2759

On with the day!  NOTE that Iʻll be there and here this week, so posts may be erratic.

As always, with aloha,


Saturday, July 14, 2018

Kīlauea Update, Saturday, July 14, 2018, Clamoring for A Name

Ahhhh...It was a good thing to take a brief break from all the hubbub, though I confess that I enjoy the thinking, the research, the writing, and canʻt quite get it out of my mind when Iʻm not doing it.  Kinda like thinking of our daily exploquakes.  NOTE:  To those who didnʻt get The Memo, I withdrew, recanted, took back, and canceled my use of my term [ʻōlaʻi ʻōniu pele] for those events.  Weʻll call them (also my term) exploquakes for the time being, till more thought full conversations are had.  Good?

Anyway, yes, those exploquakes.  Daily.  And Iʻm come (horrors!) to enjoy them.  In an odd way.  Theyʻre friendly and not at all violent.  So far.  In the back, way way way back of my mind, a thought niggles, not persistently, but itʻs there:  What if?  And I acknowledge, however briefly that thought, then put it way.  Because if I dwelt on it, Iʻd go crazy.  No need for that.  Then what would YOU do?  So the What If of The Big One, a big collapse of Kaluapele, is thought about once in a while.  The possibility of it.  Then I wonder what Iʻll make for dinner.

Now, then.  This CLAMOR Iʻve heard and read about.  We Need a Name.  We need a name, a good proper name for Fissure 8.  Now.  Because....  But amidst the clamor, Iʻve yet to hear a cogent reason for the "Because" part.

On May 5, 2018, "Fissure 8 opened at the edge of Luana Street (near Leilani Street) with fountaining and occasional bursts to 100 m heights, and building a spatter cone."  This, from the HVO Chronology.  May 5, 2018.  Last I checked, Pelehonuamea was still busy at Fissure 8 in Keahialaka.  Nine weeks?  Ten Weeks?  71 days.  Seventy-One Days.

Might you clamorers take a deep breath and TryWait (borrowing a phrase from friends in Kona ʻĀkau) for...as long as it takes?  71 days.  Hardly nothing.  

Maunaulu in the Park:  Started erupting May 24, 1969.  Name proposed May 12, 1970.  A year.

Puʻukiaʻi on the East Rift Zone (ERZ), erupted between September 13 and October 1, 1977.  Name proposed November 30, 1987.  Ten years.

Puʻuʻōʻō, and Puʻuhalulu started erupting in early 1983.  Kupaianaha started erupting in 1986.  Names proposed also on November 30, 1987. A few years.

And yes, I will grant you that the dates of Proposal are official dates.  All names mentioned were used informally, and some underwent evolution and revision, before the Official Proposal letters were sent out. 

But 71 days?  She not pau yet.  What if there are changes afoot about which we are clueless?  

I know...these days there are baby naming parties, and there are baby gender reveal parties.  So many people want to know NOW!  Why???  How can you name a child before you meet them?  How can?  TryWait!  Yes.  I know.  Iʻm sounding like a cranky old unko.  And maybe I am.  

But please, wait.  Please?  Names live on long after weʻre gone.  Yes, "Fissure 8" is a name of convenience, but itʻs also part of The Record.  The Chronology.  Itʻs the eighth fissure to open in Keahialaka during the current activity in Puna ma kai.  And in that region there have been numerous eruptions over centuries.  And there are centuries more of eruptions to come.  TryWait.  Named features in lower Puna are numerous.  Many many of them are related to the actions of Pele and her family.  They are old, descriptive, informative names.  Lovely names.  TryWait.  Please?

Knowledgeable kūpuna of the area must, at some point, meet and discuss The Naming.  Kūpuna are Native Hawaiian elders with special knowledge of certain things.  Fishing, farming, manufacture of various items, naming.  Old People.  Wise People.  People full of thought.  I donʻt know who those kūpuna with knowledge of Keahialaka and Kapoho and environs might be, but Iʻm sure they can found.  THEY are the ones to consider names. 

This is not, I donʻt think, a time for a naming contest like they had in early 1960.  A newspaper and the Park had a contest to name what is now Puʻupuaʻi, the cone built when Kīlauea Iki erupted in late 1959.

We have learned much over recent decades.  ʻŌlelo Hawaiʻi (Hawaiian language) is being revived.  There are many Native Hawaiian cultural practitioners about.  There is absolutely no reason, no reason At All to rush the naming of a feature, or features, whose actions have brought about change, in many cases catastrophic change, to peoples lives.  TryWait.  Please.

Reflect.  Breathe.  Be thoughtful.  Study.  Learn.  Review.  Understand.  Then...

Kūpuna meet and talk.  THEY propose a name when the time is right.  Kūpuna.  Not me, not USGS, not Civil Defense, not the County...Kūpuna.

An Official Form is filled out and submitted to the Hawaiʻi Board on Geographic Names:

That form will have ONE name on it:  The Proposed Hawaiian Name for Fissure 8.
The Board will review, conduct meetings, discuss, ask pertinent questions, and when satisfied, will recommend approval of a new name.

When the Hawaiʻi Board on Geographic Names approves the new name, they will send it to the US Board on Geographic Names in Washington.  The US Board generally concurs with recommendations of the Hawaiʻi Board.

Thatʻs the process.  Itʻs not complicated, but it does take time.  As it should.

Please.  TryWait.  And of course, if you have questions, write me.  Iʻve spent a LOT of time researching place names.  Iʻm not a expert, but have good understanding of the topic.


Time for hoʻopūʻiwa, that stupefaction on account of wonder:

Above, July 13, 2018.  View toward the Pacific.  Ash covered, still growing, Halemaʻumaʻu and surroundings.  Note the sagged, collapsing area to the left of the lua, the pit.  At the bottom, the parking lot and buildings of USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory and NPS Jaggar Museum.  Incomprehensible, stunning...hoʻopūʻiwa...

Below, also yesterday, what I call the "Northeast Bay" from the KEcam in the tower at HVO.  Kinda the same view as above:

And at  Puna ma kai, itʻs oia mau nō, still the same, at Keahialaka and F8.  News is that there are surges of lava from the puʻu about 2 hours after exploquakes at Kaluapele.  Not sure how I feel about that observation.

And just off shore, this...an islet oozing lava, 20 or 30 feet in diameter also photographed on July 13, 2018.  

Sure reminds me of Keaoi offshore of Halapē, my favorite site in the backcountry of the Park.  Below, a quick screen shot of a fantastic photo by friend Andrew Richard Hara. 
Keaoi sits offshore, and Puʻukapukapu rises 1,000 feet above Halapē.

Please visit his site to donate to his ERF or to purchase prints:

And we say aloha to Kua O Ka Lā Public Charter School and Ahalanui Park.  Auē.  The face of Puna ma kai continues to change.

Time for me to get on with my day.  Please contemplate issues related to naming.  I shall.

Till tomorrow, as always, with aloha,


Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Kīlauea Update, Tuesday, July 10, 2018, of Beauty Evanescent and Deleting ʻoʻop Files

Going and going, like that bunny...maybe because I was born in the Year of the Rabbit?  Or not...  Iʻll be taking another few days off to attend to domestic duties, go to appointments, research, visit, etc.  Youʻll next read from me the coming weekend.

Questions may be sent to me directly:  maniniowali@gmail.com

The part about Deleting Files, then, the Beauty Evanescent...

I had a very productive chat yesterday with one of my kumu.  We shared, chuckled, and I trust both of us learned something new.  For me, it was a reminder that Pelehonuamea is molten lava.  Thatʻs her charge.  Flowing, fountaining, sputtering, draining, thatʻs all her energy.  

Earthquakes, our ʻōlaʻi, belong in the realm of Kāne.  More precisely, Kānelūhonua.  Kāne of the shaking earth.  Different energy, different deity.  Many parts of these discussions are beyond my ken, but I question, review, question again, often very publicly.  And then I sometimes retract (not retreat, necessarily, but retract).  So it is with "ʻōlaʻi ʻōniu pele".  Please delete that phrasename from your files.  For now, weʻll stick with exploquake to describe that sensation when ash (now rockdust) is exhaled from Halemaʻumaʻu, while we muse mull and consider another more appropriate phenomename.  There is a most excellent candidate, far more appropriate and descriptive than my sincere, but kinda lame, effort.  Please stay tuned for more info....ahhhhh The Suspense...

As is this, not my favorite time, The Suspense anticipating the next exploquake.  House periodically trembles, thankfully at bearable intensities.  For several several hours it continues, then the next exploquake and then respite.

Sharing bits of info:

Please read the latest HVO Volcano Watch column.  This one about Kaluapele (Kīlauea caldera).  And if youʻre so inclined, they have LOTS more of interest.

Below, there I was at Punaluʻu (the pond also known as Queens Bath), March 31, 1987.  Indelible memories of that night.

The ʻōlaʻi for the past 24 hours as of 10a this morning.  I note with a bit of concern, the several M3s and that scatter of quakes SE of the collapsing area on the main floor as seen on the screen shot below...

And given the ongoing subsidence at the summit, damage sustained at both HVO and Jaggar Museum, and and and, I have to wonder how long the Summit Webcams will remain operational.  I hope, when the time comes, they can be relocated.  What a valuable service they provide!  Below, a view from the KEcam:

Down to the Lower East Rift Zone (LERZ):

According to various reports and thermal camera images, the channel feeding muliwai a Pele (the lava delta), is undergoing reorganization.  Itʻs perhaps plugged or obstructed near that 90 degree bend at Waiapele, and plumes at ocean entries were or are diminished.  Active flows are spreading laterally.  And as of yesterday, the official Homes Lost Count stands at 700.  Auē....  Other Facts and Figures on the Map above.

Change.  Be ready for anything.  Do Not Become Complacent.

and that Beauty Evanescent:

Always something different.  In the midst of catastrophic change, this, yesterday, from USGS HVO:

Some may be familiar with that phrase in a favorite song by Alfred Alohikea, "Ka ua loku kaulana aʻo Hanalei" "Like the famous pouring rains of Hanalei (on the island of Kauaʻi)".

Ka Ua Loku

Who can forget the 50 inches of rain on April 14-15, 2018 that drenched and flooded the region between Hanalei and Hāʻena on Kauaʻi? Ka ua loku!

And at Keahialaka, maybe 9 inches in a drenching downpour may not sound like much, but the result is Beauty Evanescent:

The flow field, still obviously hot after a downpour, looks kinda like a winter wonderland.

And then add a puahiohio māhu (whirlwind of steam) for decorative effect.   

We used to often see those whirlwinds hanging from the ocean entry plume when conditions were just right.  Temperature differences between surface and cloud, and winds, and in this case the rising steam from downpours, all combine just right.

Note that the stream of pele is steamless.  Itʻs so hot that rain evaporates before it even reaches peleskin.  While all that steam may look beautiful, itʻs also deadly.  A hot, whiteout fog disorients, can scald skin and lungs, and is one of those rare but potentially deadly volcanic hazards.  All the more reason to Stay Away!

OK...I think thatʻll do it for the time being...Please stay tuned.

As always, with aloha,


Monday, July 9, 2018

Kīlauea Update, Monday, July 9, 2018, Tilting (not at windmills)

slackish winds here there
steamfume lazily moving
tantalizing views

Always changing.  Always.  The winds, the rains, our moods, and that of Pelehonuamea too.

There are many different translations for the full name of the deity.  One is "Pele of the sacred earth".  Sheʻs the one in charge.  Studying her helps us make some sense of whatʻs going on at the moment, both at Kaluapele (lua=pit), and Keahialaka and Kapoho.

There are many specialities in the fields of geology and volcanology.  Some study how the physical pele behaves as she moves across her landscapes, others look at how she moves during ʻōlaʻi (earthquakes), some wonder about her breathing and the gases she emits, her temperature is checked often, and detailed analyses of her blood and body forms provide information too.  We try as best we can to make sense of what some deem extraordinary, and others view as "regular".  Just Pele doing her thing.

For me, all these comparisons to the body and its functioning helps me, and I hope you, make sense of it all.  All those numbers and big scientific terms we hear in a language we donʻt quite grasp can be perplexing.  

A study of great interest too is that of deformation.  Seeing how she swells and deflates, sometimes regularly, sometimes not, gives us another bit of insight to her inner workings.  

Itʻs all charted:
Up down UPPP Down UP downnnn

This is just one of the graphs on the Deformation page on the HVO website:


For the past month, we can see the Tilt, as measured by recorders, in this case the blue line comes from an Electronic Tiltmeter at Uēkahuna, near the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) and the green (look good) line from a machine on the slope of Puʻuʻōʻō on the East Rift Zone.  

And what, you may ask, is this "Tilt"?  Itʻs how her inflation and deflation is measured.  Magma, the liquid pele, rises into Kīlauea from the hotspot (weʻll talk about that in the future.  Or, try google...) and causes the volcano to inflate or swell, just like blowing up a balloon.  Or our ʻōpū (belly) when we eat too much.  When the swelling gets to be too much, magma leaks out, erupts, and Kīlauea deflates.  The air is let out of the balloon.  Up down up down.

The blue line above is punctuated regularly by big sharp jumps.  Those are the collapse/explosion events, marked by the M5.3 (M=magnitude) ʻōlaʻi we feel and youʻve undoubtedly heard about.  Sometimes the tiltmeter is recalibrated and the line seems to get less sensitive, but the overall trend is downward.  Deflation.  Subsidence.  Of the floor of Kaluapele.  And the continued inward collapse of Halemaʻumaʻu.

Deflation, Subsidence, Sinking, Collapse, Decrease in Tilt.  All pretty much the same.  Magma is draining from beneath the floor of Kaluapele, the caldera, and heads down the East Rift Zone, helping feed the erupting pele in Keahialaka, the ahupuaʻa in which lies Leilani Estates.

How do we measure this Tilt?  In microradians.  Itʻs labeled on the left side of the graph above.  Itʻs teenyteeny tiny:  One Microradian = 0.000057295779513082 Degrees.  Really small.  I remember, I think, somebody saying if you have a steel bar 1 kilometer long and put a dime under one end, the angle created is a microradian.  TINY.  But when talking about and trying to understand the enormity of Kīlauea, or the many-times-more-massive Mauna Loa, a microradian may start to make sense.  I think I remember that 1 microradian is equal to 333,000 cubic meters of magma, times 150 microradians lost (at least?) from the chart above...boggling...

Dzurisin Koyanagi English 1984

Every little change in degree of Tilt, up or down, means something is happening inside the mountain.  Each specialist has their speciality, and they meet, talk, and try to understand.  

I really hope this made some sense.

Down on the coast, pele winds past Waiapele (Kapoho Crater).  I note the brown vegetation, but can see, I think, greens at the upper right.  All those gases emanating from pele are carried, most often, with our trade winds in the view above, from right to left.  Gases are not good.  For plants or for people.

And way off to the left is Kua O Ka La Public Charter School, and Ahalanui Pond.

Aerial Video: Kua O Ka La School and Ahalanui Pond

All our thoughts and prayers are with Susie Osborne mā (folks).

Below, the school, just ma uka of the pond.

And, at the lower left, pele slowly approaches..

As we await the next ʻōlaʻi ʻōniu pele resulting from collapse/explosion, Iʻll let you consider all this.

As always, with aloha,


Questions may be sent me directly:  maniniowali@gmail.com

Sunday, July 8, 2018

Kīlauea Update, Sunday, July 8, 2018, Subtle changes, paha...

Hmmm...Sometimes it takes awhile to get going.  Mulling topical topics, wondering what more there might be to say after 60+ posts, poking around, looking here and there, thinking...  Iʻm very visual.  Show me a picture, show me a plant, show me a rock.  Then, more than likely, Iʻll remember.  When I go somewhere, driving or hiking, if I pay attention, as in a favorite phrase quoted many times,

be outside...pay attention       noho i waho...a maliu

Iʻll remember.  A friend took me to a special place in the park, maybe 35 years ago or more.  Walking down, hiking over, take this fork, see this hole by the trail, turn now, see the horizon, see that tree, see how itʻs like your raised hand, fingers spread with wrist crooked sideways, see that?  Weʻre going there.  A decade or more later, the exercise was again successfully repeated.  And again.  Memory of place, landscape, colors, texture, wind, puʻu, pali, shadow, light...indelibly etched.  How that works, I have no idea, but am grateful it does.

Because I live where I do, and because what weʻre experiencing up here is hoʻopūʻiwa (stupefying on account of wonder to the max), much of what I write is focused on happenings in the neighborhood.  And, after 40+ years of associations with the park, places, friends and researchers up here, Iʻve got a lot of orts and leavings tucked away here and there.  How and when and where they surface is invariably and gratefully surprising.  

You know, watching Kaluapele being incrementally transformed, is THE most humbling experience.  Ever.  You think youʻre in charge?  Right.  You think you really really NEED to do that?  Right.  Oh.  And about those plans and that project and those ideas?  Uh huh.  Right....Right...

Iʻm remembering the red epidendrums growing in a little community on the floor.  Airborne seeds had probably been tradeblown from gardens at one or the other Volcano Houses.  Remembering humid-eyeglass-fogging-heat of Postal Rift Cavern.  And lush ferns and mosses and liverworts decorating skylights.  Remembering a little drystacked (I think) stonewalled roofless shelter near the then-rim of Halemaʻumaʻu, maybe erected in the early 1900s and then partly buried by more recent flows.  Like those structures at Kāʻilikiʻi.


And then we see (a poorly lit photo, yes)

and realize that although it may look vaguely like Halemaʻumaʻu did, steep-walled, flat floored, the background doesnʻt quite make sense.  The angle of view is wrong.  And the steam, abundant in crisp morning air is misplaced too.  Turns out, of course, that itʻs an addition-in-progress to the northeast edge of Halemaʻumaʻu.  Of course.

Below are two sets of views for your consideration and comparison.  Theyʻre crude screen shots, but given my lack of high-techability, they work for me, and perhaps for you too.

The first should be smaller in size, and the second full-scale.  Weʻll see how they turn out as blog-viewed.


The original size:

youʻll note, if you can read the headers, that the upper photo is dated June 24, 2018, and the lower, today, July 8, 2018.  Two Weeks Apart.

No wonder all these ʻōlaʻi, Magnitude 5 and greater in the last month.  No wonder.

And yes, I keep showing you the Before and After.  I have to keep looking at them, every day, because if I didnʻt, how would I make sense of it all?

And Pelehonuamea continues her stupefying work.

The thermal camera image below also captures changes, this time on the flow field at Kapoho.  Itʻs a mosaic of different images, thus the background color changes.

You see where the stream makes a ninety-degree turn near Four Corners intersection?  In the crook of that turn is Waiapele (a.k.a. Kapoho Crater).  The ma kai part of the main stream that fed muliwai a pele (her lava delta) seems crusted over, with the two side branches active.  Imagery such as this allows us to visualize the unseeable.  

Weʻll see...  Part of being an attentive observer is being able to pay attention to subtle cues and clues.  And more often than not, stash them somewhere for future reference.  Piecing together the puzzle sometimes takes more time than we have or want to expend at any given moment.

Change is happening in Keahialaka and in Kapoho.  Change is happening in Kaluapele.  For how long and to what extent is, of course, to be determined.

And I just checked again the KEcam (KīlaueaEast).  CLEAR sparkling beautiful...the new Northeast Bay.  Small version on top, full size following.  I hope.

Im headed outside...

The coming week will be hit and miss.  Lots of meetings, errands, etc.  Stay tuned, check your Bookmark.  Iʻll be back sooner rather than later.

As always, with aloha,


Saturday, July 7, 2018

Kīlauea Update, Saturday, July 7, 2018, Moonlight

Sometimes we forget when we are.  Not where, but when.  Whatʻs the moon doing?  Whenʻs the tide high (or low)?  Is it time to pick buds of tiare or white ginger?

susurrant sea sighs
maniniowali moon
memory tender

The sky was bright at 430a.  And on the living room floor, a patch of moonlight.  The crescent hung in the sky.  And for some reason I was transported to early morning on the sands of Maniniʻōwali.  Before sunrise, in that chill breeze from ma uka, puttering in camp, while deciding when to dive into the warm sea.  It always surprised me...how warm the ocean was/is at dawn.
And this has what to do with anything?  At times when itʻs easy be be consumed and obsessed with what-la - quaking earth, fiery flows, I REALLY want to walk to Keanakākoʻi and canʻt...during these times we seek comfort in memory.
And after The Sobering Reports of yesterday, we try, and try and try, to...gain equilibrium.  Or something. Cope? Manage?  But better...Live.  Figure it out and deal with it the best we can.  And remember what we love.  In my case, in no particular order:

Dawn, deserted beaches with clear turquoise water, the scents of white ginger, tiare, maile, freesia and steaming laulau.  Classic Hawaiian (not Jawaiian) music, rain on the roof, loose clothes, skinnydipping, walking barefoot on warm weathered brown pāhoehoe, cooking and eating all sorts of food - homecooking - not anything with complex processes.  Reading, giving presents, the country, camping, cheesecake, the desert, visiting cities, hugs, positive attitudes, civility and politeness, thoughtfulness, pulling weeds, outdoor showers, hanging clothes on a clothesline, sleeping on crisp sundried sheets, scratchy sundried towels, laughter, tears, waterfalls, gentle trades, summer, the smell of kiawe after a rain. 

And friend kb thoughtfully sent this, taken on June 26:  Full Moon at Funchal.  Madeira.  My homeland, along with the Azores...someday, paha...

Meanwhile, here near the summit of Kīlauea, the floor of Kaluapele continues to settle, creak, groan, and quake.  Weʻve seen enough of ʻōlaʻi graphics, perhaps, or perhaps not.  Theyʻre the Main Thing up here now.  For the last day, those greater than M3, scattered across the floor.

And then this extremely cool WorldView-3 satellite image from July 3, 2018, similar view to that above.  The link to the image:

If youʻre into visuals like I am, you gotta look at and zoom in on the original.  Despite the clouds, detail is amazing.  Buildings at top center are at Kīlauea Military Camp.

And another view of the same area, a USGS Geologic Map of Kīlauea, by now Scientist-in-Charge, Tina Neal, and legendary Jack Lockwood, mapped over a period of years, and published in 2003:

Geologic Map Kīlauea Summit

Below is a screen shot of part of the map.  The full map includes a detailed key and explanatory notes.  One sad thing is that kiʻi pōhaku (petroglyphs) on the floor pecked into the 1882-1885 flow (tan, mid-floor), are at risk of disappearing.  Few even know of their existence, but nevertheless...

Above, a closeup of what Iʻm calling the NE Bay, at 6a today.  Most impressive subsidence, especially when we see the view below from June 22, 2018, at 5p.  TWO WEEKS!
I know it might be difficult to compare the images because of the reflections on the tower glass, and lighting, but try...

And down at Keahialaka and Kapoho...auē Kapoho...Looks like all the houses and homes are gone.  Auē.  Read the map below for current stats.  The remaining houses were at the north edge of the flow field, where the red crescent is below.

The vent in Keahialaka is still active, though maybe a little less vigorous?  I note the darkness on the surface of the river, maybe signifying it isnʻt moving as quickly.  And from the HVO Report at 1007a, July 5, 2018:  "The crew on this morning's overflight thought that the fountain and lava level in the upper channel were lower than on past mornings."

In a dynamic system such as this, behavior, volume, speed, etc., are all subject to various and sundry perturbations.

And we still shake our head when we see how Pele took that sharp turn to drink of the waters of Waiapele (Kapoho Crater), below.  Go figure.  Ma uka is at the top.  This is a screen shot from Big Island Video News.  Good stuff.

OK then.  Time to get dressed and go walking.  Another way to try feel good:  Get Exercise.  Raise Endorphin Levels.  Especially after somebody [Yous Knowz Who You Are!] recently looked at me askance and queried "Bobby, how much you weigh???"  I was reminded:  no walking to Keanakākoʻi, lots of sitting and typing, eating too much comfort foods...Auē!

As always, with aloha, 


OH!  Please make some weekend time and read this blog too, by a LONG time acquaintance; a most excellent, accurate, no BS one written by Jan TenBruggencate.  He used to write for the Advertiser.

Raising Islands Blog