After making a circuit completely around the skylight to get a good view, we proceeded into the uphill side a second time to find the branching tunnel.
|A picture of the lava flow of 1881 near the mouth of the cave. This is what 130-year-old lava looks like.|
|I actually got a shot of the entrance to the uphill side this time.|
|These are the steps going down into the tube. And my feet.|
|Nice picture from just inside the entrance to the uphill side.|
|Lava ball in the uphill side.|
Also, from the various reading I've done, I think that the mineral coating the walls that makes the white color may be gypsum, as it seems to like to crystallize on the walls of lava tubes.
|A better picture of the numerous lavacicles that cover the roof in place. Watch your head!|
While traversing the cave this time, I noticed the opening seen in the picture on the left and was struck by a memory of my visits to Petra in Jordan. The picture on the right is from my visit in 2008, and shows the end of the wadi (or siq) by which one accesses the city nowadays. Through the gap is visible the famous “Treasury”, probably best known from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. Now that I compare the pictures side by side I guess it's not a great similarity, but it struck me when I saw it.
|Extruded lava on the cave wall.|
|Tubular lava helictite.|
|Yet another example of cooling, extruded lava. This bit looks like a plate of spaghetti or something.|
|Where the cave floor meets the "curb" at the wall.|
|Entrance to small side tunnel.|
On the main tube floor near the other end of the side tunnel, I found some neat pāhoehoe features frozen in the floor.
|It looks like water ripples, doesn't it? And yet it's solid rock.|
|Sulfur deposits in Kaumana Caves.|
|Tiny gutter along the wall.|
Anyway, that's it for this post! Tune in next week when I have pictures of (a section of) the downhill side of Kaumana Caves! Spoiler: there's a lot of even cooler stuff in it.