Monday, January 31, 2011

In Search of the Sunrise: Part II

Alternatively titled Dan and Jon's Continuing Quest to Capture a Sunrise in Hawai‘i.

As you can probably surmise from the title, Jonathan and I got up at 6 again this morning to try our luck at photographing the sunrise. This time we headed for Richardson's Beach, a beach to the east of Hilo jutting out north into the ocean. Unfortunately, the weather itself conspired against us this time, and there were clouds as far as the eye could see to the north and east.

Richardson's Beach is very rocky, with craggy lava rock jutting up at odd angles, making a fascinating and complex series of tide pools and small cliffs. To actually the place where the sun would rise, we had to clamber along the rock face around the north end of the point. As you can see, it's not always an easy hike:

Jonathan demonstrates how to climb while carrying a camera: very carefully.
Luckily, no one dropped anything in the ocean, although Jonathan fell in shortly after this picture was taken. He was crossing a shallow inlet connecting a tide pool and the ocean and slipped. Fortuitously, he fell in only up to his knees, and hardly even got his shorts wet. After he clambered out I asked him if the water was cold, and he said he couldn't tell me -- his brain had gone into "save camera or die" mode, and couldn't be bothered about such trifles as the temperature of the water.

In one of the many large tide pools in the area, we saw this beautiful sea turtle (honu in Hawaiian). I was probably no more than three feet above it when I snapped this photo:

He honu ma ke kai. (There is a turtle in the ocean)
Here's another of the numerous tide pools, resplendent in the morning light, with Hilo in the background:


Apparently we managed to show up right around low tide, as the tide seemed to be coming in while we were there. It's pretty spectacular for a land-lubber such as myself to see the foaming surf swirling around the hard black lava rock, or crashing against it to release high-flying blobs of spray into the air. This picture shows one such wave inundating a small bay near to us. It was immediately followed by us retreating rapidly from the area as it threw up spray in our direction.

This photo is facing east, by the way.
In case you're wondering, yes, Jonathan and I will continue to get up at crazy hours on the weekends and drive around Hilo on a scooter to try to bring you a photo of a Hawaiian sunset! Though I can make no promises as to when the next installment will be.

 Finally, I'd like to apologize for the lack of posts around here recently. I had the misfortune to pick the writing class with almost daily homework assignments, not to mention the other classes I'm taking. It may remain slow this semester, I don't know. Another reason for the slowness is that I simply haven't felt as much inspiration to write recently, since I'm determined to keep this blog from becoming a mere Twitter or Facebook-like stream of everyday events. Although maybe it's time I got around to writing that post about why I'm not on Facebook...

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