March 2017 Photo Round-Up

As usual, music filled the air in March. The Claremont Concert Orchestra performed Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite and Beethoven’s 5th Piano Concerto. The annual Bach in the Subways allowed for the audience to get up real close and personal.

New stop signs on Harvard Ave. at Harrison show that Claremont thinks of “Safety First”.

The annual Silent Auction at the Folk Music Center ends today. Hurry on down!

With the end of the drought in most of California, everything seems to be in bloom, including allergies. I haven’t heard much complaining, though.


5th Annual Pie Festival

Last year I caught the tail-end of the Pie Festival, so I didn’t get many good photos. This year I went early and found more things to snap with my camera. I missed the pie-eating contest and other things, but I found enough to keep me occupied for a few hours.

Of course, there were many places to buy pie – in all sizes and flavors.


Of course I liked the variety of music.

Various demonstrations. I didn’t realize how complicated coffee-making was.


Lots of booths, some even selling things related to baking.

Claremontographer in Kaua’i: Odds and Ends

Beautiful Beaches

Lots of mud

Feral Chickens everywhere

Delightful walk to the Stone Dam


Cute churches everywhere


The waterfalls seen on the opening of Fantasy Island episodes


Little girls from a wedding who were tired of being photographed


and with this sunset picture, you know the end is here


Claremontographer in Kaua’i: Ancient Ruins

IMG_4230I can’t hike all day, every day. Sometimes I just want to view historical sites, and if there are old rocks and ruins, so much the better. Since the Hawaiian islands formed from volcanoes, many of the rocks found are volcanic.

Near the Wailua River on Kaua’i’s east side stand ancient Hawaiian temples, or heiau, made of these black rocks.


The foundations that remain represent various types of sites. One is a Place of Refuge,  others are a war temple, and a place for future kings to be born (Birthstones).

Above some of these ruins is a cemetery with lots of Japanese names on the tombstones.


On the west side of the island are the remains of Fort Elizabeth (or Elisabeth, I’ve seen both spellings), a Russian outpost from the early 19th century. Notice the red clay dirt. Lots and lots of it all over Kaua’i.

Claremontographer in Kaua’i: Na Pali Coast


Probably more well known than the Waimea Canyon, the Na Pali Coast has offered up great filming locations and great hiking. The coastal trail runs 11 strenuous miles and takes experienced hikers one day from beginning to end (and another day back – so one must acquire a permit and backpack to and fro). Luckily for us moderate hikers, you can hike in for two miles to the lovely Hanakapi’ai Beach (above) and back in a leisurely half day. We chose not to go the additional two miles to the waterfall.

We joined the long never-ending trail of other hikers (some in flip flops which I’m sure resulted in blisters) and headed up (really UP) the beginning of the trail over tree roots and big rocks after reading the warnings.



After a while, we were rewarded with views of not only our starting point, but then what lay ahead.



After 90 minutes or so of mostly up and some downs and a lot of stopping (to take pictures, of course), we arrived at the river just before the beach.

Of course, there was a warning not to go in the water.


Fortunately it had not rained for a few days, so the rocks were available for crossing. Apparently this is not always the case.


The rocky and sandy beach was a perfect place to spend some well-deserved sitting-time.

With lots of stacked rocks to contemplate and photograph

The hike back still required uphill climbing, but it didn’t take quite as long, and we were back in Hanalei for lunch. My calves and hamstrings are still tight, but it was such an amazing hike that I would do it again. I would say this was probably the highlight of our week.



Claremontographer on Kaua’i: Waimea Canyon

Spring break occasionally finds us in exciting locations, and this year we made it to Kaua’i. We’d been to Maui when the girls were teenagers, and then five years ago we took a VW Camper Van around the Big Island at Christmas. Kaua’i was next on our list. Rumor had it that it is the most lush and most remote island with more hiking opportunities than the other islands in Hawai’i.

Kaua’i is known for Waimea Canyon, the Grand Canyon of the Pacific. People say that Mark Twain named it that, but apparently he never set foot on Kaua’i. I guess he named it from all the photos on the internet.


If you stay on the north side of the island, driving to Waimea Canyon is an all-day affair involving lots of driving. Panoramas abound along the road with ample opportunity to get out and enjoy the views.

This waterfall made me think of what water on Mars could look like.

After perusing the various hikes available in the park, we chose one that didn’t seem too long, too short, too much up or down. The Canyon Hike leads to tall, cascading falls, but the book and internet warned that one could not actually see the falls at the end since you are standing above them.

Some kind soul left two walking sticks at the entrance to the hike which we used and returned for the next people in need of walking sticks.

After the hike, we drove to the end of the trail for amazing vistas. These clouds were gone ten minutes after I took this photo.


One of the wettest spots on earth was fairly dry that day.