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"Lava Tree State Park" Hawaii (State of) Off The Beaten Path Tip by BlueCollar

Hawaii (State of) Off The Beaten Path: 170 reviews and 253 photos

  Looking down into the hollow of a lava tree
by BlueCollar
 
  • Looking down into the hollow of a lava tree - Hawaii (State of)
      Looking down into the hollow of a lava tree
    by BlueCollar
  • Heed that warning! - Hawaii (State of)
      Heed that warning!
    by BlueCollar
  • Sentinels stand guard. - Hawaii (State of)
      Sentinels stand guard.
    by BlueCollar
  • Lava trees, lava trees, lava trees - everywhere - Hawaii (State of)
      Lava trees, lava trees, lava trees - everywhere
    by BlueCollar
  • The entrance along highway 132. - Hawaii (State of)
      The entrance along highway 132.
    by BlueCollar
 

On the Big Island

This little place is on the far east side of the Big Island on Hwy 132 in the Puna district. What's a lava tree? These are the husks of lava that were left standing after the fast flowing pahoehoe lava (sometimes happens with a‘â lava) engulfed the ohia trees and then quickly receeded.

Here's how they form: Visualize the molten lava flowing across the ground. As the molten lava flow spreads accross the ground, it gets deeper and deeper. As the flow of lava intercepts a tree, it climbs the tree's trunk higher and higher. The tree cools the lava it touches and hardens while molten lava continues flowing around it. Then there is an arrest of the flow upstream that diverts or halts the lava flow. The molten lava continues flowing downhill and, as it drains away, it exposes more of the cooled lava that had encrusted the tree. The trees were incinerated but lasted long enough to allow the lava to cool in the shape of the tree and these lavarock sentinels were left standing in their place to tell their story centuries later. It seems that you can still see their bark's impressions on the inside of these hollow tubes. This link: http://www.hawaiiweb.com/hawaii/html/sites/lawa_tree_state_park.html has some better info.

Be sure to look for my video here on VT that captured the cacophony of birds sounding off in the forest along the backside of this park.

Website: http://www.hawaiiweb.com/hawaii/html/sites/lawa_tree_state_park.html

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Jun 15, 2008
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BlueCollar

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