Thursday, June 17, 2010

Upcountry

This morning I got up at 3:15 because Jihong wanted to take me to see the sunrise at Haleakala Photos will never capture it; words can't do it. I'm glad I was there. The clouds show as though from an airplane. It's not as high as the Sandias, but I was feeling the lightheadedness and heavy heartbeat sea-level folk have reported at Sandia Peak. I recovered in just a bit.

The people showing here were only about 1/3 of those who were up there. There were some on the other side of the visitor center, and some had hiked up to a higher place. (The hill visible past the people here.)



When the sun breaks, the park ranger chanted in Hawaiian. I don't have the very beginning or the end (a recitation) but it was very cool:


We explored around there a bit, went to the highest-peak building where there are views in all directions, and as the clouds started to dissipate some of the ocean showed, but it's not photographable (not with my camera, anyway), when the sky, water and clouds are so nearly the same, from that distance. There was an observatory, and a view back down toward Wailea.


Seeing the town just below made it seem like going up to the Sandias from Albuquerque, but here's the deal: It take an hour and a half or more to drive there, because it involves going almost back to Kahului, and then winding up a very windy winding road (Dramamine would have been a good idea for me...) It also involved wearing extra clothes and having a blanket or big towel. Then that gets shed as the sun gets higher and sea level comes again.

We stopped at a funky little store, with picnic tables and a flushing porta-potty and a wild chicken. I don't think they "had" a wild chicken, he was just there.

Maybe he was a "feral chicken," but that sounds way too scary. Jihong says a hurricane caused lots of chickens to get loose, and they're living merrily in the wild. (I suppose there aren't coyotes or other kinds of wild dogs or whatever might eat chickens where I'm from.)



We stopped at a lavender farm, which had a funky, evolving garden on the slope below (Holly & Keith: it reminded me of Steve and Beau's back yard over the years). There will be another photo or two of that place in a later post. The top photo had a couple of paragliders, and they were up almost all the time we were there. (One was up, and the other was down and laying his para-thing out, so on average, the whole time.)



ADDED THE NEXT DAY, from Jihong's camera:

4 comments:

sgaissert said...

I'm SO glad you're there and having such a great time.

Sylvia said...

Maui is lovely, and Haleakala is amazing! I've not been to Maui since '97 but it was my first visit to Hawaii so it holds a special place in my memories. I think they have the best beaches in the islands.

Sounds like you're having a great time!

Lori Taylor said...

S/he's not a "feral chicken" - it's obviously a "free range chicken!" People pay good money to eat the eggs they lay ... when you can find where they've laid them.

The Smithdeal Family said...

Wonderful pictures! Thanks for sharing them with us!