Famous for the active Kilauea volcano, Hawaii’s Big Island is home to a list of fascinating anomalies.Eleven different climate zones generate everything from lush rain forests to arid deserts, black sand beaches to snow-capped mountaintops. From the torrents of molten magma flowing from Kilauea Volcano to the snow-capped heights of Mauna Kea; from the lush green rainforests of the Hamakua Coast to the jet black sands of Punaluu Beach, Hawaii’s Big Island is an unrivaled expression of the power of nature.
Having been under the constant threat of lava for the past three years, Sleik had resigned himself to the idea that his home would someday be destroyed In March of that year, Kilauea’s main crater, Halemaumau, woke up from 84 years of slumber with a series of steam, ash and rock explosions that prompted two closures of Hawaii's Volcanoes National Park.Instead, it is lava slowly moving down the volcano's flank through a heavily forested area.The forest's thick tangles of vegetation and tall trees make it difficult to see, said Janet Babb, a spokeswoman for the Hawaii Volcano Observatory. Unlike Honolulu, the state's biggest city on the island of Oahu, the Big Island's Puna region still has affordable land and can offer a more rural way of life.'It's got a country-style living that appeals to people and that's somewhat rare in Hawaii,' county spokesman Kevin Dayton said.The islands are the tops of massive volcanoes, the bulk of which lie below the sea surface.Ocean depths are colored from violet (5,750 m or 18,860 ft deep northeast of Maui) and indigo to light gray (shallowest).