Saturday, September 09, 2017

We completed our 50 state highest points project!

We did it!!!  Just a little over a year ago, when we completed 49 out of the 50 highest points in each state, I did a write-up: 49 continental state highest points complete.  We still had the highest point of one last state to attain: Hawai’i!  And, at last, we did it!

Two days ago, we first attained it when the grandson of my now former neighbor, Cathy, drove us nearly to the top, and we all sauntered over to the true summit.  Knowing how this would engender ridicule and scorn from our hiking and climbing buddies, we then went back, yesterday, and hiked the 6-plus miles (9.6km) and 4,800 ft (1463 meters) to the summit from the Visitor Center.  The weather, yesterday, wasn’t as ideal as the previous day, so we couldn’t see as much.  Here are the two “couple” summit photos from each day.  This first one is from September 6th (when we had Mark to take our photo!) – Mauna Loa is the mountain in the distance:
And then this one from September 7th – since we arrived later in the day, we had to change the background, so that the sun’s direction would be more favorable to the photo, so you can see some of the many buildings that litter the summit area (besides, Mauna Loa wasn’t visible, due to the clouds):

And, as many of you know, I’ve been using our state highest point achievements to bring awareness to Juvenile Myositis (a sometimes fatal autoimmune disease affecting children) by taking a photo of a Cure JM banner supplied years ago by a friend whose son had the disease and has since passed away due to it.  Photos with the banner at all of the highpoints can be seen here (this is public, you don’t have to belong to Facebook to see it).  Here is the Hawai’i Cure JM photo:

A fascinating thing about this state high point is the myriad of antennas, arrays of antennas, telescopes, and observatories that are on the top of this mountain.  These buildings are all HUGE.  The mountain is also HUGE!  Note the red color:

From the summit (on the 6th, when it was clearer!), we could see Maui!  (I’m assuming that it’s actually the top of Haleakala’s crater):
The following is typical scenery for the whole top 1000 ft or so of the mountain:
This was near Lake Waiau at 13,020ft, one of the highest lakes in the US – what I found fascinating is that there was still flora up here:

I’m including this photo because it shows some of the trail we took to the summit.  In the distance, you can see the road to the summit:

Almost all of the signs on the mountain have these holes in them – presumably so that the wind doesn’t blow them over:

May you succeed in your long term goals/projects!


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