Hawaii Travel Diary – Day 6: After the Storm

by Alessandro Carpentiero

Hawaii Travel Diary – Day 6: After the Storm

“I do know what a thunderstorms is like”.
Well, that was my thought until today!

Let me remind you where Hawaii islands are:

Hawaii's position

Hawaii’s position

Since they’re the only little things in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, they attract A LOT of clouds. That’s why it’s very easy to have a cloudy day, as well as it’s very easy to have pouring rain.

As you saw in my previous diary page, many clouds were coming my way. They hit very hard during the night.
I could hear strong thunders, heavy rain and alarms for the whole night, and of course no Wi-Fi nor TV signal. You’ll see the effect of the storm later.

The plan for the day was simple: wake up crazy early and go star gazing on the other side of the island, near the (inactive) volcano Haleakala.
After a couple of hours drive, I couldn’t find the “perfect spot” (again, this reminded me how important it is to plan ahead), and the sun was almost arriving. So I just stopped, set my tripod and shoot.

Venus

Venus

One (of the many) thing I love about Maui island, is that basically all the streets don’t have any street lamps; that’s perfect to shoot at stars!

Another thing you have to remember, is that the sun rises and falls way faster than you imagine, that’s why you need to get to the location several time before the sunrise/sunset if you want to explore and find the perfect spot.
I didn’t have time to do that so I had to improvise. “Tree in the shade, clouds and twilights sky“, let’s shoot!

Morning Twilight

Morning Twilight

As it usually happens, the day after the storm brings a super clean and blue sky. I wanted to take advantage of it, So why not follow the road and go to the top of the volcano? 🙂

I was quietly driving in the morning when I saw this:

Results of the Storm

Results of the Storm

Yes, as I told you, the storm hit pretty hard! There was no way to go there, so I drove around for 1 hour to find an alternative route (which I did).

Finally I was driving up to this huge mountain/volcano (it’s just a bit more than 10.000ft – 3.000m).
The view was gorgeous, and the road was perfect and very fun to drive. The sky was also populated by different kind of clouds: amazing!

Perfect asphalt conditions! I wish I'd have had my bike!

Perfect asphalt conditions! I wish I’d have had my bike!

It was just 20 minutes to the top when a ranger’s checkpoint blocked the way. 6 huge trees fell during the night and blocked the only way to the top. So (sadly) no volcano top for today.

When the car was stopped by the rangers, I realized that I was already very high and the view was gorgeous.

West Maui

West Maui

I love when colors define the shapes in my pictures, and this is the perfect example of it; you can clearly see 3 layers: gray clouds, blue sky/ocean, green grass.
Since the view was so gorgeous, I kept stopping the car every hairpin bend, take off, mount the tripod and take a picture; too bad the weather there was incredibly cold and I wasn’t properly dressed for it…but I didn’t care, the view was just too much! (wait for the results of this great idea in the next days :P).
Seriously, I never thought a tropical island could be that cold!

On my way down the volcano I met some local population 😀

Cows

Cows

I was up since 3am (it was almost 11 by then) with no coffee: time to look for a place where to have it!
This was the first human populated thing I found after driving for almost 1h from the top, and gladily it was a very nice one! Very cozy atmosphere and great food!

Breakfast time!

Breakfast time!

Hawaiian omelette

Hawaiian omelette

Coffee and news by the fireplace.

Coffee and news by the fireplace.

After some relax, it was time to hit the road again. There was a lavender farm 1h drive from there, so it was worth checking it.

Lavender farm entrance

Lavender farm entrance

Too bad the place was desert and I couldn’t enter it. The people that worked there weren’t able to go to work because of other fallen trees, so once again no luck.
At least the sky now was complitely clear and a warm sun was shining, enlightening the green grass.

Driving back home I was amazed these huge trees, so of course I took a picture 😀

Ttrees you see while driving in Maui

Ttrees you see while driving in Maui

Yes, this has been shot from inside the car, but thank to the polarizing filter you can’t see any reflections!

I thought the effects of the storm were only visible from inside the forest and up the mountain, but I was wrong. An electricity pole was damaged by the storm!

Results of the storm

Results of the storm

 

I spent the rest of the day editing pictures and sleeping 😀

This wasn’t the luckiest day ever, but still I find the silver lining. I shot some stars, experienced the storm, saw the brutality of the nature, drove up to (almost) the top of a volcano and saw some very wonderful landscapes.
That’s not bad at all 🙂

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