Today’s Photo 101 is all about landscapes, and Maui is a godsend for nature photographers. There are so many places, I actually had trouble choosing one photo! I ultimately settled on this shot from Pailoa Bay, near the end of the Road To Hana. And no, those colors were not photoshopped or filtered. Those brilliant green plants, sparkling blue ocean, and black beaches are exactly what Pailoa Bay looks like. I actually teared up a bit when I first saw it; this niche of unspoiled nature still remains one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen.
It took me a little while to come up with something for this week’s challenge about dialogue between pictures. I sorted through hundreds of photos before finding a commonality – and difference – between the subjects. The first photo was taken at Yerba Buena Gardens in downtown San Francisco, California. The second was taken at Pua’a Ka’a State Park in Maui, Hawaii. Both depict waterfalls, but one is man-made, while the other is natural. Which do you prefer? Can you appreciate both equally? Think about it.
You want to talk zigzags? Try the legendary Road To Hana in Maui. This photo doesn’t do it nearly enough justice. Over 50 miles long with 620 curves and 59 bridges (many of which are one-lane)…and pavement just big enough for a two-lane road. This incredible feat of engineering allows people to drive along one of the most beautiful places on Earth. Where else can you see unspoiled jungle from your car? I was speechless when I saw it. If the Road To Hana isn’t on your bucket list, you need to add it.
Malama Keanae is an absolutely stunning detour along the Road To Hana. Dazzling blue waters, ancient lava flows, and dense vegetation everywhere. If you bring your lunch along for the ride, this is a great place to stop. If you park right by the entrance to area, you’ll probably notice an old dock amidst the natural splendor…along with this rusty relic of a bygone era.
As you reach the outskirts of Hana, you might notice a sign pointing toward the Hana Lava Tube. To get into the cavern, you have to climb down a curved set of stairs built into a hill. It’s teeming with vegetation and moisture; you’d never think something so beautiful and lush was hiding right under your feet! It reminded me of the Metroid series, for some reason…
There are several waterfalls along the Road To Hana. This spectacular view is set behind a narrow bridge; if you stop to take photos, you’ll cause a traffic jam! You have to drive past it, go up a hill, find a parking spot, and walk back down. So worth the effort.
Pailoa Bay is a stunning contrast of colors. Brilliant blue water, bright and lush green flora…and sheer black beaches. I’ll never forget it.
Because nothing says room quite like a 1,000 year-old quarter-mile underground tube made from lava. This is just one part of a short, but sweet tour. Just as a frame of reference, the tip of that rocky outcropping at the bottom is nearly 5 feet tall.
Humanity has produced some incredible art throughout its history. However, Mother Nature trumps them all in raw beauty and spectacle. This was taken last week at Pailoa Bay, along the legendary Road To Hana. I thought places like this only existed in postcards. But that’s exactly what it looks like, no color filters or tweaking at all! If you love nature photography at all, put this – and the Road To Hana entirely – on your bucket list.
I seriously didn’t want to leave.