Waimea

  • Restricted

    Black and White photograph of a leaning tree in Waimea, Hawaii

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    During a rainy day in Waimea, I decided to drive around some side roads in search of some interesting compositions that were enhanced by the mood of the weather. While driving the paved portion of Mana Road I was excited by this tree hanging over a barbed wire fence with a faded line of trees in the distant background. There were a lot of amazing elements to play with. I went with a low camera angle in order to place the distant trees under the canopy of the foreground tree. This also allowed for an exaggerated fence line to fill up the entire right side of the frame for some added interest. The image just wasn’t complete once I had completed the color edit. Although I still like it I decided to work the image as a black and white which I feel enhances the overall feel I was going for when I first was attracted to this location.

    I titled this piece Restricted because of the contrasting sides of the fence. One side is overgrown and rugged while the other is tended to and open while outlined by a sharp barbed wire fence. The tree feels like it is trying to reach over to the other side, but is rooted on the wrong side. Restricted from crossing over.

    © Christopher Johnson

  • Mud Lane

    Fog rolls through the beautiful tunnel of trees lining Mud Lane

     

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    I find it unusual that a road winds its way through a beautiful grove of trees and at every turn has a magical scene is named Mud Lane. I had actually never known that this road existed until this day. My daughters wanted to go long board skateboarding down this road that they had gone before with their aunt. I didn’t really want to drive all the way to Waimea, but I wanted to do what they wanted to do and so we set off. Halfway there, around Waikoloa, it began to sprinkle rain, fog began to roll in and I thought for sure it was going to be a bust, but we continued anyway. Maybe the storm is localized I thought. We hit Waimea and we were still socked in. I didn’t really know where this mysterious road was I had heard so much about and I was really relying on my 12 year old for directions, but I did know it was on the rainy side of Waimea… and it was.

    A few miles outside of town we made the turn down Mud Lane and parked just off the road. As the girls took off on the skateboards I was in awe with the beautiful scene of trees lining this narrow road that went on for miles. Fog rolled in and out of the canopy creating a dreamy look. I didn’t care it was raining.

    Photographing the trees came with challenges. I used a telephoto lens to zoom down the tunnel. I was dealing with more camera shake than usual while rain drops steadily fell on the camera. I was soaked and so was the equipment, but I didn’t care. I was thoroughly enjoying every part of this location.

    © Christopher Johnson

     

    Art Prints

  • Bamboo And Leaves

    Bamboo and leaves along the Kohala Forest Reserve trail.

    Photography by Christopher Johnson – www.fromhereonin.com

  • The Giving Tree

    15 miles up Mana Road above Waimea this awesome tree began to appear through the dense fog as we navigated the windy road which connects Waimea to Saddle road east of Mauna Kea.

    Photograph by Christopher Johnson – www.fromhereonin.com

     

  • Thin Bamboo Forest Along the Kohala Forest Reserve Trail

    A thin bamboo forest along the Kohala Forest Reserve trail.

    Photo by Christopher Johnson – www.fromhereonin.com

  • Alakahi Falls From The Kohala Forest Reserve Lookout

    From the lack of rainfall Alakahi Falls wasn’t flowing, but the view at the end of White road was awesome. I can’t get over the way this view just opens up. At one moment you are traversing a narrow path through the tropical forest and with one step there is this amazing view as you stand on the edge of a very steep cliff.

    © Christopher Johnson

     

  • Kohala Forest Reserve Waipio Lookout

    For our 11 year anniversary my wife and I decided to go hiking somewhere on the Big Island. Cracking open the “Hawaii – The Big Island Trailblazer” book I found this hike that begins out of Waimea, so off we went.

    The trailhead began with a locked gate and a lot of ‘No Trespassing’ and ‘Do Not Enter’ signs, which we almost heeded, however, we came all this way! After a lot of “what do you want to do?” banter we hopped the fence and began our journey.

    The trail began on a dirt road, winding through the forest. After a structure that looks like its purpose was to ready concrete we began following an irrigation ditch and the trail began to narrow. At this point the hike seemed manufactured, but then the trail began to stray from the manmade structure and into a bamboo forest. From here on in the trail begins to wind up and through the beautiful Kohala Forest Reserve. Ferns, native flowers, and mountain vistas made me stop repeatedly to take pictures. And then the wide path came to an end.

    Standing inches away from the ledge, 2,000 feet above the head of Waipio Valley, my breath had been taken away. Across from us is an unobstructed view of Alakahi Falls, quiet from the lack of rainfall, which falls several tiers to make up the Waipio valley river below. We stood and took in the sight for a while before we hesitated to continue on the extremely narrow path along the cliff face toward the back of the Waipio lookout.

    At first the path seems fine, but then continues to narrow and be covered by the over grown fauna. With the path only wide enough for me, clenching onto the branches of the plants giving me some sense of security, I took it all in. The view was awesome. We continued on navigating the slippery path until reality slipped in. “What the hell are we doing?” “We have kids waiting for us to come home.” Just to think that this was a perfectly good hike before the earthquake and now there are postings to not hike, that the trail along this cliff edge had been damaged, that there had been deaths… Had given us all the reason to not be thrill seekers any more and return to the lookout.

    Back at home that evening I went online to find another hike out of Waimea that goes directly to the head of the Waipio lookout and the Bamboo Altar. Where, if wasn’t damaged, the skinny cliffside trail would have led us to. That will be the next hike we will do.

    © Christopher Johnson