Flowing Hot Lava

For the first time in my long life, I had the chance to view hot flowing lava, when I flew over Mauna Loa during the 2022 eruption. Mauna Loa, on the big island of Hawaii, is the largest active volcano in the world, and it had not erupted for 38 years prior to December 2022. Upon hearing that this eruption and our vacation would overlap, I was first worried that our non-refundable trip was doomed. After checking with a friend who lives on Hawaii Island, we kept our original plans and arrived on December 3. Fortunately, we enjoyed clear skies over the west coast Kona region, and some unique sightings of the lava flow. I even got my friend Dennis, who lives on Hawaii, out on his first helicopter adventure.

Lava flowing from Fissure 3 of Mauna Loa on Hawaii in December 2022, as seen from a helicopter.
Flowing lava finds the path of least resistance as it flows like rivers down Mauna Loa, the “long mountain,” in December 2022, as seen from a helicopter. Hawaii, Big Island.

Ecosystems in Hawaii

On a helicopter flight to fly over the flowing lava from Mauna Loa in early December (2022), we passed over vastly different ecosystems. This lush green area looks like a region that is continuously wet, and it also shows the fissures that belie the base layer of volcanic rock.

hawaii
Rain clouds and verdant green land are two clues that this hilly region of Hawaii receives frequent rain.

I moved quickly to capture this image, because I felt that the lumpy topography, the clouds, shadows, the crevice and the lack of human development gave this scene a mysterious atmosphere.

This image is included with 11 other diverse landscapes in my 2023 calendar, just published. If you haven’t ordered one and want one, email me now at cathykellyphotography@gmail.com.

Kohala Waterfalls

The Kohala Peninsula on the Big Island of Hawaii is drenched by four meters of rain a year, while the dry side of its mountain range looks parched. On the wet side, you can see some pretty spectacular waterfalls after a good rain, especially from a Blue Hawaiian helicopter.

#waterfall, #hawaii, #bluehawaiian, #photomerge, #nature, #rainyside, #wetside, #nikonD800
Two images merged in Photoshop show the Kohala waterfalls from clifftop to base, as seen from a Blue Hawaiian Helicopter.