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Thread: Pua Po'o, Hawai'i (the Big Island)

  1. #1

    Pua Po'o, Hawai'i (the Big Island)

    Pua Po'o is a lava tube in Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park. This lava tube is only available to a small group of 12 every Wednesday led by a Ranger. You have to call one week prior to your trip to secure a spot, and it's very difficult to play the phone game to get in. Although I really dislike guided stuff, I can't recommend this enough. We were lucky enough to get a Ranger who was a expert in local biology, which added to the experience immensely.

    Find out more, including how to sign up for this hike: http://www.bigislandhikes.com/pua-poo-lava-tube/

    The entrance:
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    A long exposure of our group
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    Deep in the tube
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    Lava tube stalagtites:
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    The white, reflective stuff is bacteria that has some promise for cancer research
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    Exit into lush rainforest
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    "Powder snow skiing is not fun. It is life, fully lived, life lived in a blaze of reality. What we experience in powder is the original human self, which lies deeply inside each of us, still undamaged in spite of what our present culture tries to do to us. Once experienced, this kind of living is recognized as the only way to live

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  4. #2

  5. #3
    That exit looks like it's been used in film a lot, more recently the latest Pirates movie?

  6. #4
    We wanted to do this one our last trip and ran into the same booking problems you did but couldnt get on board. Hopefully this april's trip.

  7. #5
    Heading to the big island in april. Any suggestions for hikes, beaches, adventures off of the beaten path?

    Thanks

  8. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Sombeech View Post
    That exit looks like it's been used in film a lot, more recently the latest Pirates movie?
    Possibly. The Big Island is criss-crossed by hundreds of lava tubes like this, so it could have been several other places.
    "Powder snow skiing is not fun. It is life, fully lived, life lived in a blaze of reality. What we experience in powder is the original human self, which lies deeply inside each of us, still undamaged in spite of what our present culture tries to do to us. Once experienced, this kind of living is recognized as the only way to live

  9. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by dhaler View Post
    Heading to the big island in april. Any suggestions for hikes, beaches, adventures off of the beaten path?

    Thanks
    Where are you staying? I've been all over the Big Island over several trips. Absolute highlights include Mauna Kea and/or Mauna Loa, Hawaii Volcanoes Nat'l Park, Waipio and/or Pololu Valley, A Bay, a day in Puna, etc. You probably have lodging lined up, but I always spend half my trip just outside HVNP in Volcano Village and then the rest in Waimea (Kamuela) because it's a nice town and it's very centrally located between lots of stuff to cut down on driving. If you let me know where you're staying I can give a bunch of suggestions.
    "Powder snow skiing is not fun. It is life, fully lived, life lived in a blaze of reality. What we experience in powder is the original human self, which lies deeply inside each of us, still undamaged in spite of what our present culture tries to do to us. Once experienced, this kind of living is recognized as the only way to live

  10. #8
    We are staying 3 days in kona for scuba and snorkling and 5 days near pahola. Any suggestions for hikes to beaches off the beaten path or to beautiful locations.
    Thanks

  11. #9
    Moderator jman's Avatar
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    Dhaler, you should ask this in General Discussion as you would get more replies, and with my limited mod abilities I can't move it.

    I really like exploring in Hilo.

    And be sure to explore the neighborhood where the lava sures over the road and homes there! Now that's awesome to see nature that close and personal!
    ●Canyoneering 'Canyon Conditions' @ www.candition.com
    ●Subscribe to my friend Jeff's Youtube Channel - you can watch our adventures there.
    ●Hiking Treks (my younger brother's website): hiking guides at www.thetrekplanner.com
    "There are two ways to die in the desert - dehydration and drowning." -overhearing a Park Ranger at Capitol Reef N.P.
    "He who walks on the edge, will eventually fall."

  12. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by dhaler View Post
    We are staying 3 days in kona for scuba and snorkling and 5 days near pahola. Any suggestions for hikes to beaches off the beaten path or to beautiful locations.
    Thanks
    Do you mean Pahoa? In Puna?

    Kona Ideas:
    - Pololu Valley to Honokane Nui (along the northern coast)
    - A Bay (between Kona and Kohala) petroglyphs, gorgeous coastline, great sunsets

    Pahoa:
    - Find the Kahena Black Sand Beach (clothes-optional and the surf is very intense here)
    - East Point - easternmost point of the island. Just park anywhere and hike in either direction along sea cliffs
    - Mauna Kea / Mauna Loa - climbing one of these is always on our agenda. Otherwordly. Mauan Kea has an ancient basalt quarry you can visit if you can find it.
    - Hawaii Volcanoes Natl Park - I always spend at least 3 days here. Do the touristy crap first because it's actually worth it. Try for the lava tube hike described above. Make sure you head toward Jaggar's museum for night lava viewing in Halema'uma'u crater. Or, if you hit the jackpot, do real night lava viewing if Pu'u O'o is going off.

    Here are some general suggestions for "off the beaten path:"

    - Anything on Mauna Loa or Mauna Kea
    - Waimanu Valley - steep, long hike to an amazing valley, usually a backpack
    - Pololu Valley to Honokane Nui
    - Green Sand Beach - near south point
    - A Bay (more of a locals spot)
    - There are lots of petroglyphs around the mega-resorts in Kona. It's annoying to visit because they are on golf courses and resorts, but some amazing stuff to be found.
    - Mo'okini Heaiu: well-preserved human sacrifice temple. Near Opulu airport. Extremely creepy spot, go late afternoon for good sun.
    - Kau Desert - In HVNP, but seldom visited is this acid-rain created lava desert.

    The best beach I've ever seen in my life is Hapuna Beach. Find the "Hapuna Beach Prince" (I think) and park in their public parking. Every beach in Hawaii is state land, and hotels almost always have to give to access.

    Get the "Blue Book" guidebook from Andrew Doughty. It's not perfect, but it's pretty good.
    "Powder snow skiing is not fun. It is life, fully lived, life lived in a blaze of reality. What we experience in powder is the original human self, which lies deeply inside each of us, still undamaged in spite of what our present culture tries to do to us. Once experienced, this kind of living is recognized as the only way to live

  13. #11
    Thanks to so many of you for great suggestions. I really appreciate your help

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