Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Kilohana Crater

Kilohana Crater
9 x 11 soft pastels on Art Spectrum Colourfix
Miki Willa
The Kilohana Crater is all that is left of Mt. Kilohana on Kaua'i. Kilohana is one of the newer of the extinct volcanoes on that island being between 3.65 and .65 million years old. You can't get there unless you are on a backroads tour of the island, but it is worth the very bumpy ride along old cane haul roads. During the gradual climb to the rim of the crater, you leave the cane fields to find a wide variety of interesting plants. It was all very green with occasional wild orchids dotting the sides of the road. Tall trees with very wide canopies could be seen dotting the slopes. The most amazing sight for me was when we rounded the last curve and came out on the crater rim. The bottom of the crater will a vast sea of purple. I have since learned that it is a highly invasive species, the malabar melastome, that has destroyed all the native growth at the bottom of the crater. The environmentalist in me wants to help destroy it, but the artist in me was very glad for the vision.

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