Lava report, Monday.

06:58:  Chopper 1 is returning from the morning lava recon.  Here is a map here updated as of last evening:

The morning report says the lava has advanced ~360 feet since yesterday.  I assume that means from 12:15 pm yesterday which is the time indicated on the 6 October flow map but that’s not stated specifically.

Evening Lava report, Monday, 19:00

Chopper 1 was there three times today.  The last time for over an hour, so the flow must have started a fire.  When I looked, there were pictures:

You can click and enlarge them.  The thermal photo is pretty interesting.  The black spot near the top of it is where the flow stopped last week.  The interesting part is that it isn’t ‘leaking’.  The lava is coming on pretty strongly and it is absolutely possible that if the magma reserve doesn’t go down, it won’t stop. But at this point the front is only about 230 feet wide. That’s not a disaster by any means.  Normal power poles are further apart than that.  The BIG power poles out on the highway are further apart yet.  A temporary bridge like the one up the Hamakua coast could easily span it.  Water is distributed from both sides of Pahoa for people on county water.  The rest of us are on catchment. No cell towers are threatened.  It will be merely an inconvenience for a little while.

At the newest speed calculated by someone, not me, it could cross cemetary road in about two weeks.  It is still possible for it to stop, or to veer off to the northeast…but in THIS picture, there are white-hot spots at the front of the flow.

It won’t stop as long as it is being fed magma that hot.  It has one mile to go to the dump road and about 1.7 to Old Government Road.

Morning Lava report, Monday, 10:30

Good news and bad news.  The flow is speeding up.  It has advanced ~600 yards since last Wednesday and is now moving at about 15 feet per hour. At it’s present speed and direction, it could cut Cemetary Road in just over two weeks.

The deflation is continuing at the vent, so it might well stop again – but you never know for sure. My little red dot yesterday was exactly correct, within feet. That spot has now been covered by the advance.

Helicopters are coming from all over.  I just saw one from Maui and there have been a couple of local flights this morning already.  There is at least one fixed-wing up right now. People are getting interested.

The FAA restriction for non-relief flights over the lava flow area continues.

Chopper 1 is surveying the flow at 13:20.


Just as ebola is being spread widely across the US, the government says that ebola can’t spread widely across the US.

We shouldn’t worry.  We have the vaccine…right?  Not exactly.

“Dr. Thomas Frieden, director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), said Duncan is in critical condition, adding that the patient is not receiving ZMapp – an experimental medicine – because it is “all gone” and is “not going to be available anytime soon.”

So the people who are quarantined in hospitals with ebola are beginning to die from it.  The problem with ebola is that you may have it and be contageous, but not show any symptoms for up to 21 days – or in rare cases, merely be a carrier and never contract the disease.  Regardless what the government says, this is going to get about as close to Captain Trips as I care to imagine.  Once it gets loose in a major county jail, there will be no possible way to even follow the spread which will immediately become exponential.

This is where the phrase “to go viral” comes from.  Just like the flu, at some point everyone will be exposed to it.

So what is the big worry this month?  Sleeper cells of ISIS jihadists.  Before that?  The evils of owning a firearm.  Do you know what the real problem is?

The real problem is that everyone thinks THEIR problem is the most important problem. Their money. Their relationships. Their families. Their lives.  But all of that is transient.  We come and we go; we live and we die. And instead of leaving something good because it’s good, we want to be paid for doing the right thing – because we are worth it.  No. We aren’t. Look at what we have left for all the future generations that will never exist because we had to have it all NOW. Because we cared for nothing but ourselves.

Everyone in the entire world needs to read and understand this.

It is what is ACTUALLY going on, and it is EXACTLY THE SAME THING we are trying to do to Russia via Ukraine and, not coincidentally, to China via Hong Kong.

Try to understand that the US is no longer the country we ‘boomers’ grew up in, or fought for.  It is no longer the bastion of liberty and freedom. We are EIGHT TIMES more likely to be killed by a police officer than by a terrorist and we PROBABLY CALLED THE POLICE OFFICER FOR HELP.

The US has become the bad guy. Dreaming and pretending and watching football or DWTS won’t change it.  WE ARE THE MAJOR EXPORTER OF TERRORISM IN THE WORLD.

I am concentrating on the middle east at the moment, but I’ll get around to demonstrating that the US is arming and supporting a neo-nazi regime in Ukraine.

And here we go:


Lava Prediction, Saturday – or – ‘The Zen of treating life as an adventure – not a disaster’.

The stalled lava front stopped, but fresh breakouts are being fed from Pu‘u ‘Ō‘ō.  They have encompassed the stalled front and are continuing to flow – about 900 feet over the past two days but only about 150 feet since yesterday . Whether or not it will continue to flow, and in what direction, is now conjectural instead of the flat “no” I have been saying to this point, although that is still my opinion.

The reason is this:  The flow has never been voluminous.  It moves faster over steeper ground and slows and widens over flatter ground.  But it is still a ribbon flow, not a mass flow.  As it reached more level ground, it widened and stopped, as one would expect.  The flow has moved around the stoppage into a water runoff and has narrowed and deepened – thus allowing it to move faster, but not increasing the volume.  It is following the terrain; not washing over it as we expect with larger flows.

That is not to say the new vent that created this flow won’t become a larger flow at some point in the future.  It almost certainly will.  But THIS flow, at THIS time, is an outlier and certainly an inconvenience, but it isn’t a disaster.  Living on the side of an active volcano is a little like hunting bears.  Sometimes you get the bear; sometimes the bear gets you. The sun still rises in the East.

At this point in time, IF the flow continues, my assessment from yesterday is still valid for flow direction.  There are variables, but lava, like water, takes the easiest path – and the easiest path is where water runoff travels.  If the volume of lava happened to increase and overflow the easiest path, it would continue downhill to the next runoff and follow it until and if it overflowed that.

So you can see the path the lava will likely take simply by correlating the point of the flow to the nearest water runoff.  Those are the lines marked in blue on the topographical map:   and then compare that to the satellite photo: .

Except not always. Because the topo is not a perfect representation of the actual situation on the ground, and lava doesn’t flow exactly like water – more like thick, incandescent concrete.  You can see this a little in the satellite photo because streets have been superimposed on it in black.  For a variety of cartographical reasons, the overlay does not always correspond exactly to the photo.  But it is close enough to show that the lava stays in waterflow areas unless it simply overflows one, and then it goes to the next one.  Gravity always wins.

You can see those areas in the photo because they are darker green in color – indicating that they are more lush because of a more plentiful waterflow.  And you can extrapolate that the lava, at it’s current flow volume, will probably stay within or very near that darker green area.  That puts it across Cemetery Road south of the transfer station and across the Old Government Road south of Apa’a Street. You can follow the vegetation and imagine it crossing Hwy 130 North of the Post Office road.

My FIRST prediction was made when the flow had jumped the stream bed it was following on 6 September and was above Kahoe Homesteads where it sort of puddled and piddled and pancaked and couldn’t decide whether it wanted to go further north or further south and eventually it just stopped.

Now it has a little fresh batter from the vent and it dived right into the stream bed it had been trending toward.  That has allowed it to move again.  It will follow that stream bed very closely if it actually continues to move. If the volume decreases, it will stop. If it increses, it could jump that path and widen to the south.

Earlier in the week I went on a boat and we cruised from Cape Kumakahi to Hilo.  It’s a completely different perspective than an aerial photo.  From the water It looks worse than I think it is.

Anyway… a friend called today and asked if it could reach HPP.  No.  But if this is a precurser to Mauna Loa erupting, like ’83-’84, Mauna Loa can potentially reach HPP, however it’s best path to the sea is through Hilo…or Kona.  🙂

Lava Prediction, Friday, UPDATED 19:30

The lava has started moving again. The map is now current.  I came back in to check when Chopper 1 went over my house this evening.  Looks like we are back to twice-a-day chopper flights.

At this point it really doesn’t make a lot of difference for property values south of …say….HPP.  They are tanking.  Especially since Oprah went on TV a couple of years ago and said that Puna property was a bargain and everyone starting buying homes here.  On the side of two active volcanos.  Oprah lives on Maui.  They have no live volcanos there.

But I can advance my prediction just a bit.  IF the lava continues, which I still believe it won’t….

The little bit of flow that moved has jumped into a stream bed.  If it stays there and continues along the stream bed – which is the most logical route – it will miss or just catch the south edge of the transfer station, cross the old government road between the transfer station road and the post office road, then cross Hwy 130 just NORTH of the Post office road (about where the radar speed sign is) and then meander down toward Kahakai.  If it keeps going it could cut the road about halfway down and again by the elementary school before it turns NE and cuts Railroad and Beach road before going into the ocean.

I doubt it will keep going.  Even if it does, it will be a pretty small flow and we can work around it.

I’ll let you know when to panic:  Never.

Lava Prediction, Thursday, 19:00 – and my weekly rant.

It’s leaking a little but not moving.  I called someone today. “Hey, instead of $5,000 an hour for the county helicopter, why not just ask the police officers you have up there restricting access or one of the HVO observers who are there 24/7 to call in if it breaks out and THEN send the helicopter?”

While you are at it, why not spend a thousand bucks to charter 5 seats on one of the commercial tour helicopters instead of using the county’s at five times the cost?

And I have to ask why the radio stations break in once an hour all day long to play the same Civil Defense message that says nothing is happening?  Wait until something IS happening and THEN tell us.


Seriously…people are all freaked out because a little lava might cross the road eventually.

The fact that we live on the side of two ACTIVE VOLCANOES and there has been an almost continuous eruption FROM THAT EXACT SITE for almost 31 YEARS, since January 3, 1983, or the fact that you really can’t get a good home loan or much in the way of insurance in that area BECAUSE IT IS IN LAVA ZONE 1 AND IN IMMINENT DANGER does not appear to be enough clue to make people understand that the steam and sulphur dioxide they have seen every day for all those years is from the active volcano WE CHOSE TO LIVE ON and that the lava is coming sometime…

But not this time.

The rest of the time everyone is worried that there is an ISIS cell in the neighborhood just waiting to cut off their heads.   But they got rid of, or won’t touch a firearm, because firearms are dangerous.  So although the chance of you being killed accidentally by a local police officer on a SWAT team which is raiding your house because they got the wrong address than from ANY terrorist activity, people are afraid of Muslims and ebola and flu shots and zombies and Democrats and Republicans and LGBT people and everything else that they CHOOSE to be afraid of – and the only way they can protect themselves is by drinking and driving.

You don’t have to hate anyone. You don’t have to afraid of anyone. All you have to do is be willing to defend yourself if negotiation doesn’t work.  That’s it.  If you aren’t willing to fight for your own life it’s not valuable to you. Don’t ask me me to lay down mine to protect something you don’t value.  If you aren’t willing to lay down your life down for freedom, you aren’t free. Don’t ask me to lay down my life for your freedom.  America has become ‘you’ and ‘me’.  It used to be ‘US’.  Together we were a great nation.  Now, not so much.


Before that it was something else and before that it was something else.