Monday, December 12, 2011

Geology Pictures!

Evelyn, over at Geornys has a wonderful idea (and a good GeoMeme for the week of 12/12). Many of us are putting our heads down and trying to make it through to the end of the semester, leaving little time for serious blogging. I may have time to toss some thoughts out into the ether, but I love the idea of sharing photos.

This morning's photo is of some very sizable shield volcanoes that make up the bulk of the Big Island of Hawaii. From left to right, we have Mauna Loa, Mauna Kea, Mauna Loa (thanks MacLaren), and Kohala Hualalai as seen from the summit observatory on Haleakala. Happy Monday, everybody!


  1. From left to right, we have Mauna Loa, Mauna Kea...

    Ummm......are we sure that's "Mauna Loa" over there on the left? Looking at things rom the direction of Maui, and with the somewhat "lumpy" appearance of the summit, I might suppose that the far left-hand volcano would be Mauna Kea.

    Yeah, I know, picky, picky, picky, but your blog is an excellent one, and most likely there are more people out there than you might suppose that could be taking this piece of information as the gospel truth, so I figured I'd open up my big yap and put the question to you.

    And if I'm wrong, please, oh do, advise me of such, as that will cause me to remember it for all time.

    Otherwise, pretty please keep up the good work, ok?

    A thousand and one thanks.

  2. MacLaren,
    You may be right - I was looking at a standard map and the perspective from the photo might have tricked me. I should double check.

  3. MacLaren,
    I see where I got turned around - I was getting mixed up by having Kohala on the left. I didn't look carefully enough at the map. This satellite image shows how you can get Mauna Kea, Mauna Loa and Kohala in that orientation

    Which, conveniently enough, requires the observer to be somewhere in the vicinity of Haleakala...

  4. Thanks for the input, MacLaren. Although I hope no one ever takes my blog as the gospel truth. The best I ever hope for is correct enough given the data at hand. Subject to revision :)

  5. This satellite image shows how you can get Mauna Kea, Mauna Loa and Kohala...

    And now you've really got me digging here, and I have become suspicious of "Kohala" as being included in your awesome photograph from the summit area of Haleakala.

    Try this image for lining up the various summits on Maui and Hawaii.

    Looks to me as if, viewed from the top of Haleakala, Kohala would line up more or less on the same azimuth as the summit of Mauna Kea. But the third, smallest, shield volcano in your photograph is actually situated to the right of Mauna Loa.

    As viewed from Haleakala, the only candidate for such a location falls to Hualalai.

    Additionally, as per the Wikipedia entries, Kohala is 1,670 meters tall, whereas Hualalai is 2,521 meters tall, which is a substantial difference, and could easily be what allows it to be visible, "floating" above the layer of haze and marine stratocumulus while Kohala remains hidden below.

    Please accept my humble apologies for being so pestiferous.

    By way of explanation of my nitpickery on the alignment of geographical objects, be advised that I am a lifelong (and it's been a long life) surfer, and those surfers who seek to always locate themselves to best advantage for grabbing that next wave, learn to employ the use of "lineups" to precisely fix their position on an otherwise unmarked playing field. As a result, the business of aligning one geographical feature with another, more distant geographical feature, becomes a more or less subconscious process, and most of the time I don't even realize I'm doing it.

    So again, please accept my humble apologies for being such an annoyance.

    And of course, do, oh please, continue with the stellar blogging.

  6. MacLaren,
    You're right again - Hualalai is the only island that really would show up in that position (Kohala is too far north). I posted a new blog entry about it:

  7. Well then, the matter appears to have been settled. Please accept my especial gratitude for the confirmations.

    I'm quite sure I've caused far more than my share of trouble around these parts.

    Therefore I shall now go away and leave you in well-earned peace.

    Your material is excellent, and I thoroughly enjoy reading each post.

    A thousand and one thanks.

  8. No troubles - just well reasoned insight that keeps me on my toes. Thanks for the input!