Hilina Slump and Hawaii

The Hilina Slump is a massive piece (20 kilometers cubed) of the Big Island of Hawaii that is breaking away and slipping into the ocean. In 1975, part of it cracked and fell 11 feet into the ocean, creating a tsunami 40 feet high.

If it ever went all at once, the estimated tsunami would be 1,000 feet high. The Big Island truly is an ever-changing and ever-moving entity.

We head back to the mainland tomorrow after eight days here. Since we stayed with Sue’s brother and wife, who live here, we got to see it not as most tourists do, but from a local viewpoint. I helped her brother move a wild pig trap and watched a 150 lb. marlin get cut into fillets by the guy who caught it. Then, two hours later, ate some of it at a BBQ on the beach.

Many visitors here just bungee in, stay at an upscale resort area that they practically never leave, then think they’ve been in Hawaii. They don’t even know about the naked hippies dancing around a fire in Puna on weekend nights. Or drive up little twisty roads looking at coffee farms. Why fly 3500 miles from the mainland so you can sit in a hotel swimming pool? I don’t get it. When I travel, I like to meet and talk to the people who live there.

I would not be at all surprised if Sue and I ended up living someday. Even if the islands were created by and exist because of volcanic eruptions.