On my last full day on Kauai I went up to Hanalei Bay to see the high seas. Someone tried to go surfing. Paramedics took him away in an ambulance. Locals say it is possible to get swept off the dock by a rouge wave.
These were photographed on the Mahaulepu Trail, at various beaches or in the hills behind Kapaa. I did eat every bite of the delicious Ronald Burger at Joe’s on the Green in Poipu.
This was a food truck festival complete with a band, and I did eat some wonderful Korean Mexican fusion tacos for lunch there. The gate crew was nice enough to let me in as media without having to pay for a ticket. It was hot and steamy. As I pulled out of the parking lot, it started raining. They will be open today.
At the shore of the tony Southland town of La Jolla is a seal rookery. It is inhabited by barking seals, seabirds and a few squirrels. The place stinks to high heaven with the pungent aroma of rotten fish. This makes the rookery controversial with local residents. At night I could smell it while walking past the outdoor dining area of a few restuarants.
One of my favorite pastimes is asking people on the street if I can take their picture. Most say yes.
These are the images of summer which is nearly at its end. People are passionate about these activities, or at a minimum they were looking for a bit of relaxation at the beach. I don’t know how anyone could stand that cold water without a wetsuit. Most of the photos are from Ocean Beach in San Diego with a few from “La Joya” up the coast.
Before I went on this Baltic cruise I was afraid it would be a bust photographically and I would gain a pound per day. I had visions of being herded around in large groups through places so crowded that meaningful photography would be impossible. I did gain weight, but not so much, and I have since worked it off. Sometimes my vision of impossible crowds came true, but not that often. I had completely failed to anticipate just how breathtaking views from the upper decks of the ship would be. Several posts back I published a series of landscapes from the Oslo Fjord where one of the above photographs was made.
I also want to thank everyone for the wonderful comments they made to my last post. Several said they come here because of the travel content. I find that interesting as this is not a travel blog in the usual sense.
Mostly I shoot color because that is the native mode of digital photography. However, I found a few scenes here that looked good in monochrome. These were shot in five different European countries.
Viewers may recognize that several prior water reflection photographs were of this excellent museum. The collection is varied including natural history, design and fine arts. No matter what I do, water is everywhere.
We all love water. Watch children scream with delight when you take them to the beach or a pool. Our bodies are 70% water. Without water life would not be possible. When one spends over 2 weeks on the Baltic Sea, or its ports which are criss crossed by inlets, ponds and canals, the impact of water on one’s vision is undeniable.
Blogger and photographer Malin H. made me aware of this quote: It is life, I think, to watch the water. A man can learn so many things.” (Nicholas Sparks, The Notebook)
This series includes photographs from, Sweden, Denmark, Finland and on the High Seas.
When one journeys by ship the view is mostly of water, either the sea itself or the water’s edge in port. Water reflects light and imparts its own magic because it is not smooth like a mirror and substances like oil float upon it. Looking into water is like looking at clouds. A different reality exists in the gaseous and liquid states. The scene changes rapidly, and is unlike the solid reality we walk upon.
None of these images are composites.
I Hope the People Are Healthier Than the Houses
Here the Sea is Always Nearby
More Glimpses of Life in Belize
South of Kona there are a series of nearby beaches. Place of Refuge is a Pu’uhonua o National Historic Park and it is adjacent to Two Steps Beach, a popular snorkeling and scuba diving spot. Further down the road is Hookena Beach Park where I photographed some locals and their boats.
The Big Island is mostly covered by lava fields and volcanic ash. The beaches are no exception. Few of them are sandy.
While visiting the petroglyphs, I spoke to a lady who said “I don’t do drugs, but there are some trippy looking trees up at the North end of this island. Just drive past Hawi until the road ends.” She forgot to mention the steep trail down to the beach.
It’s about 95 miles from Hilo to Kona over scenic roads, going through Waimea. The day began with a stunning view of Mauna Kea from my hotel room watching light from the sunrise move down from the summit. Akaka falls and its surrounding rain forest are on the way, followed by miles of lava fields. In Kona on the pier both the mood and climate are completely different from Hilo.
This is a magical place where molten lava and poisonous gases spew forth from the ground. Nature is at its peak of fury here. The message is we are nothing. In minutes one passes from desolate inhospitable areas at altitude to lush rain forests and pacific beaches. The landscape is unreal often covered by lava flows.
After a short stop at Rainbow Falls I headed for the Saddle Road to visit Mauna Kea. There is a visitor center about halfway up to the summit from the main road. The road surface then turns to gravel and is steep for 5 miles. My rented Hyundai Elantra barely made it because the minimum speed to produce enough power was also fast enough to overpower the suspension. The final 3 miles is very steep, but paved. The summit is at an oxygen starved 13,796 feet (4,200 Meters). The final photo is one of the spectacular views from my hotel room in Hilo.
These photos were captured at about 6:30 AM local time in the golden light of morning at a game reserve near Mossel Bay, South Africa. Range was about 10 meters and there were no barriers between me and the lions. After seeing Lions up close in their natural environment I have come to believe they are the most beautiful of all wild animals.
Mount Etna is an active Volcano located in a densely populated area on the East side of Sicily. The monster Typhon was believed to be trapped under the mountain by Zeus. It is possible to drive up to about the 3,000 meter level and go higher using a ski lift. Fabulous views are available from nearby Taormina.
Taormina is a lovely resort town in the shadow of Mount Etna. It is built on cliffs overlooking the channel between Sicily and Italy. My hotel was built into one of those cliffs with every room having a view of the sea between Sicily and the mainland of Italy. This town has all sorts of stairs to climb, a beach below, and archeological sites above. The Greek Theater is an excellent ruin with fabulous views. While I was there Etna was venting. It spewed fire the day after I left. There’s lots of variety with the volcano, gardens, old style European town, cliffs, hills and even the tropical Isola Bella.
This is the second part of the Tour of Kauai. Previously, the South and central parts were covered. We pick up at Kapaa in the central area. There is a nice path along the beach where the skater and yoga gal were photographed. Heading North is the Jurassic Ranch and across the road from it I photographed “Tree and a Fence”. There are spectacular overlooks past Princeville. Drive down the hill to Hanalei and walk on a beach which has some of the most expensive real estate in the US. It was featured in the movie “The Descendants”. At the end of the road is Tunnels Beach where I found an abstract composition in a nearby cave,
One of my favorite pastimes is asking people if I can take their picture. Most say yes. Those sessions also include traditional candid street photography. Henri Cartier Bresson is often credited with originating this genre. It is ironic that French law makes street photography impossible today.