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Climbing Saddle Road

Fri, 15 Mar 2013, 04:56 PM (-06:00) Creative Commons License

The fog was so thick as we climbed up Saddle Road that at times we could barely see the stripes on the side. It blew across the grassland and into woodsy thickets hidden in the gloaming.

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We drove slowly up the slopes following the route between the island’s two massive volcanos. When we came to the state park, the clouds were lifting, giving us a better view of the land, but the flanks of Mauna Kea were still draped in mist.

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There was green here. The slopes were green. Green grass was growing on the ground. And trees and shrubs. But there were periodic reminders that this was not always a pastoral place. The grasslands were punctuated by black flows of cooled lava. In places the land was scraped clear by it with scraggy shrubs poking up here and there and maybe a lone surviving tree standing on high ground in the distance.

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We parked the Jeep and walked a bit. Then we got back in and tested the four wheel drive for the first time, almost getting stuck between 4L and 4H in a low area. And then we resumed our climb up Saddle Road.

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