Blogs from Hawaii, United States, North America


North America » United States » Hawaii » Big Island September 12th 2023

Well, all good things have to come to an end. All bad things do too, but we won’t worry about that. Today was a magnificent THREE hour snorkel at Two-step, which really has such a wide-ranging variety of environments that even today we picked up two NEW FISH. Plus, with our new Scuba Fish Hawaii app, we’ve been realizing that some taken in the past need renaming. So we are concluding that we have found 20 new fish. (and because we found the parrots this afternoon, 10 new birds). After that 3 hours, we had a lovely hour chatting to friend Pam again, and a new friend who also was traveling alone. We all enjoyed the ice creams sold on the corner, and had a few rambutans for lunch. We “saved” a few families from killing ... read more

North America » United States » Hawaii » Big Island September 11th 2023

Miraculously, David’s foot feels good today – still red and a bit swollen, and frankly tender on the top side, but he was able to put his snorkel bootie on, and also his flippers. So we were back in business. Off we went to Two Step again, which is 45 mins to the south. It was amazing, and we stayed out in the water 2 hours and 40 mins. In fact, we chatted to a couple who had been in and out already, and said, well goodbye because you won’t see us again. (And later, when another couple was in this spot, they said – we wondered if you’d gotten lost because the previous people told us they’d met you.) Because the tide was reasonably high, we went in the same way we’d gotten out the ... read more
C Brown surgeonfish NEW
C Chocolate dip chromis NEW
C Finescale triggerfish NEW

North America » United States » Hawaii » Big Island September 10th 2023

Well, evidently David doesn’t like me to have all the excitement with being bitten by a triggerfish. The day started well – we attended the 8:30 service at New Hope again, and the music and prayers and sermon were all wonderful, and we were warmly welcomed as before. We’d taken our swim suits, knowing that the winds always rise by the afternoon so we wanted to get in asap. Drove north about 45 mins from the church, changed in the restrooms, hauled our stuff the ¾ mile across the hot lava trail, and found that the winds were so high there were white caps in the bay! Oh poo. We contemplated what to do, and decided that we should at least enjoy a very early lunch by sharing one of those tender-as-butter calamari steaks as it ... read more

North America » United States » Hawaii » Big Island September 9th 2023

A perfect Saturday. We were at Two Step to snorkel for the second time by 8:45, and in the water by 8:55 – how’s that! 2 hours and 20 mins later, we came over the very shallow reef and into the boat ramp area so that we could bypass the line of folks trying to get in or get out at the steps. We covered every inch of the bay, and it was delightful – warmer than our first time for some reason, and so very clear. Saw all the amazing fish plus 2 NEW EELS and finally a ROCKMOVER. Didn’t see him moving any rocks, but David recognized him as an unknown fish and off he went on the chase. As we went by I could see what he was after and knew right away ... read more
C Another eel
C Black surgeonfish NEW
C Christmas Wrasse

North America » United States » Hawaii » Big Island September 8th 2023

Friday? Yep. After our hearty breakfast of bacon-flavored Spam and eggs we got to the beach inside the Mauna Lani fancy hotel area, where we had to ask for a pass – 3 more spaces only. It was PERFECT – hardly any waves, and excellent visibility. We saw a WHITE TIPPED REEF SHARK (moves too fast for photo). And a rare (though we see them all the time in Aruba) Flying Gunard. What a wonderful way to spend 2 hours. We saw a man coming in with a bag full of golf balls so just for fun we went searching for one – and found it! I sat out for about 20 minutes with an interesting man named Steve from Rochester NY, who says he runs a national TV show on hunting. We’ll have to “hunt” ... read more
B Haleakala in distance
B Lunch at the beach
B Lunch very windy

North America » United States » Hawaii » Big Island September 7th 2023

Up with the birds for oatmeal. We were at the State Park off Pauko Road by 9 for 2 hours of lovely snorkeling. A $20 charge for the day. The beach was sandy, the entrance easy, good visibility. We saw lots of the good old favorites, but not the elusive Rockmover we are seeking. Two turtles, an eel, TONS of scary looking wedge-tailed triggerfish like the one that nipped my calf yesterday – but we all kept our distance. Some possibly new fish. The baby Hawaiian Dascyllus was the most interesting -only about 1” in size – good spotting, David. We drove off to get an ice cream at Scandinavian shave ice, and enjoyed some real Hawaiian hospitality: David went to lock the car and the noise seemed different, plus the door wouldn’t lock. A woman ... read more
B Lots of these cactus flowers
B Lovely beach today
B Lovely beach today2

North America » United States » Hawaii » Big Island September 6th 2023

A dry day for us, and evidently a rare dry day expected in rainy Hilo, which is on the eastern “windward” side of the island. Hopefully it will also give the waves on the western side of the island a bit of time to calm down. I forgot to mention that we gave a nod to Hawaiian culture by buying SPAM. Evidently one can find spam sushi but we haven’t seen it yet. There are 4-5 types, judging from the small market we went in, and we’ve had it fried up with eggs for breakfast twice now. This one had bacon in it – or the flavor thereof? First stop as we were inland? Our favorite golf course yet again, in hopes of seeing the one bird we are missing that should be there. It was ... read more
A Iwii
A Japanese white eye

North America » United States » Hawaii » Big Island September 5th 2023

We were out the door early, as usual, arriving at our snorkeling spot next to the fancy Mauna Kea hotel around 8:30. There seemed to be only 2-3 more parking spots. The beach was lovely – the sand fine and cool. This is where the first fancy developments on the Big Island developed in the 60s, by one of the Rockefellers. Golf course, etc. We found some shade for our chairs and hopped in. Not as cold as usual in this very sheltered bay, perhaps because there was a lot of sand for a good ways out. In fact, at first we didn’t see much (the sand sediment plus the fact that sand attracts pale fish) until we got out to the rocks and reef. Then the fish were plentiful and the water clear, with no ... read more
C a study in urchins
C Arc eye hawkfish
c Christmas wrasse

North America » United States » Hawaii » Big Island » Hilo September 4th 2023

What a varied and lovely day – a dry day. After a speedy breakfast we headed out before 7:30 to cross the “Saddle Road” from West to East again – this time all the way to Hilo. Our first stop, however, was the lovely Kaulana Manu trail where we’d enjoyed a walk yesterday. Getting there early rewarded us with a lovely red I’iwi – he loves the Ohi’o tree’s red puffy flowers too. And the Japanese Whiteeye. Then off to the Rainbow Falls in a park just outside the city of Hilo. Yes, we saw the rainbow colors in the mist. It was a very small park so we only stayed 15 mins – there was an enormous banyan tree there too. Then we drove 5 mins to the Boiling Pots section of the park – ... read more
B Feral cats
B Gecko
B Huge banyans

North America » United States » Hawaii » Big Island September 3rd 2023

Sunday morning so we went to church, and fortunately found a very nice one at New Hope Legacy (evidently part of a larger church on Oahu). About 60 people were there, with a 6 – piece praise band. Nice songs and very warm welcome. That started at 8:30. After a quick stop at the grocery store and checking in with our family on Whatsapp, we did a fast change and headed for the high country of Mauna Kea. The temperature started off at 81 degrees and by the time we got to the Visitor’s Center of Mauna Kea it was 62 degrees. There are wild goats all along the “Saddle Road” that goes from west to east on the island, and when we returned we noticed hundreds of sheep grazing inside the fencing. One can’t ascend ... read more
A Erkels Lonspur NEW BIRD
A Japanese whiteeye
A Nene Goose

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