Molten rock, glowing in the dark. It was later and dark out very hard to get a picture but it was really amazing to see. I tried to take pictures and finally got a few but the pictures do not do it justice. In fact unless told what it is you wouldn’t know from the picture I don’t have a telephoto lens but I’m still happy I got a picture to remember it.
After getting a picture I just enjoyed the view and kept squealing LAVA, IT’S LAVA!
This is the crater that you can do a hike around. I believe you have to go with a guide. We didn’t have time for the hike on this day but if I go back it’s definitely on my list!
The landscape is so surreal and the steam rising just adds to the atmosphere. I imagine the hike being down wandering through the steam would be well worth it, even in the rain. It rains a lot in Hilo.
At Volcano National Park we go to walk through a lave tube which was pretty cool. The lights in the tube give it a weird red glow and there is silvery moss as well that didn’t come out well in the pictures.
What is a lave tube? Wikipedia explains it better than I can Lave Tube.
It was fun to walk through and I couldn’t decide whether is was very hobbit like or dune like it was a very curious atmosphere.
While inside the museum at Volcano National Park the fog cleared a bit and the sun came through. When we came out we could see the volcano, with steam rising and it is so beautiful. There is a walk you can do down around the volcano crater but we didn’t get to do the hike. One of the problems of doing excursions from a cruise ship is the limited time at each stop.
If I ever go back though I’m definitely spending more time here and doing the hike as the scenery is spectacular!
My first excursion from the cruise ship was a ride down Haleakala!
I was really excited about. Two friends that I work with have ridden UP Haleakala. Months of training and hard work, one raced up and one took a more leisurely pace. Both loved the experience.
Also Canadian cyclist Ryder Hesjedal has the unofficial record for riding up Haleakala in 2009 with a time of 2:32 beating Jonathan Vaughters official time of 2:38 in 1993, very impressive! Yay Ryder! (He was also the first Canadian to win a grand tour, the Giro last year). Jonathan is the manager of Team Garmin Sharp, who Ryder rides for. They have a very strict no doping policy so Ryder will NOT be making any confessions in the future.
Anyway I was excited to see this for myself and although I was riding down I couldn’t help thinking that one day I would like to come back and try riding up. It is beautiful and there was minimal traffic when we were there. The ride up would be worth it for the ride back down! For riding down you just need to be able to ride a bike, it’s really fun and easy. Coasting down, watching the beautiful scenery go by, when it was over I would have been really happy to go back up and do it again!
Wandering around Cotopaxi and the area there are also some beautiful flowers.
With this pink one apparently if you think about the one you love and touch it if it opens then they also love you if it closes, tough luck. I don’t know if it works at this point I don’t have somebody to think of but maybe I’ll go back one day.
The landscape is beautiful and you are actually so high up that you find yourself even with the clouds.
When we caught a small glimpse of Cotopaxi both Carole and I squealed, you could only see a sliver as it was covered in clouds:
As we drove up the mountain road the clouds cleared, Cotopaxi was BEAUTIFUL!
By the time we got to the base of where you can start a climb to go up even further, it was cold and windy. Also at 4300m elevation we did experience the shortness of breath that comes with altitude. It is one of the highest active volcanoes in the world.
On our way down a hawk (I think?) guided us, it would fly, land and then as we approached fly off again.
With one last look back and one more picture, we bid Cotopaxi good bye and were so thankful that after our night in the Stephen King hotel our day was looking up!