Thursday, 7 May 2015

An Evening and Night at the Caldera

After our hike we took a drive in another area of the park.  We made our way through a unique forest area where we saw many wild birds and a wild feral pig as well.  The road ended at a different cliff top where we could see the coast again.  We also stopped at a huge lava tube which runs through the mountain.  We were able to walk through this tube which was high above our heads and we couldn't imagine it being full of boiling lava.

After dark we returned back to the Caldera where a different part of the lava lake was in full eruption.  The skies cleared off temporarily and the moon shine was bright and brought a different feeling to the area.  We watched as native Hawaiians performed rituals to Pele, the godess of the volcano.  This also added a different dimmension to the experience.  We watched the eruption until we were too tired to continue and we turned in for one more night in our faithful tent.  At 4:00 am we were awakened by loud bangs and we knew that something was changing at the volcano.  We made the trip to the caldera and th eruption was far more active in yet another place and the bangs and crashes kept happening.  At one point the reuption started to roar and hiss and we were amazed that we could hear it as we were at least a mile away from it.  We stayed and watched the sun come up and then bid the volcano good bye after a quick visit to an old caldera we had visited when we were here 35 years ago.  The volcanic gases from the eruption could be seen from this point and the sky glowed red.

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