Kauai From Above

Kauai, Hawaii, 2 March 2015

These images are from a helicopter while flying over Kauai for about an hour.  The doors were removed, potentially much better for photography.  Because there were no doors I was wearing a fairly heavy coat.  The pilot strapped me in but because of the coat I didn’t feel as though I was strapped in.  That made it a touch eerie, feeling as though I was just perched there with nothing holding me on but logically I knew it was not the case and really it didn’t phase me at all.  Fortunately, though, the pilot didn’t attempt any barrel rolls.

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

This waterfall would be inland from the south coast and not at Waimea Canyon since there appears to be road access (whether private or public).

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

Waterfalls in or close to Waimea Canyon.

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

Waimea Canyon, looking back towards the coast, and the town of Waimea in the distance at the coast (only visible if you click on the image).

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

Waimea Canyon.

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

Waimea Canyon.

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

Waterfall visible from Waimea Canyon Lookout, Waimea Canyon.

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

I presumed this was an observatory.  It took me a while to work out what it is.  It’s a military observatory and tracking station.

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

Na Pali Coast.

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

Na Pali Coast.

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

Na Pali Coast.  Looking straight down.

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

Na Pali Coast.  There’s a huge arch here but I was on the wrong side of the helicopter and even though it pirouetted, I missed the opportunity for a more complete shot of the arch.  But at least I did get this.

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

Na Pali Coast, probably taken from above the arch referred to in the previous image.

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

Na Pali Coast.

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

Na Pali Coast.

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

Na Pali Coast.

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

Waterfall, Na Pali Coast.

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

Na Pali Coast.

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

Ke’e Beach and environs.  You may remember we visited the day before.

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

Waterfalls, Mount Wai’ale’ale.

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

Waterfalls, Mount Wai’ale’ale.

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Hawaii, Helicopter, Kauai, Kawaikini, Landscape, Mount Wai'ale'ale, Na Pali Coast, Photography, Travel, Waimea Canyon

Wailua Falls.

If you click on the image you can see cars on the public access road, just to the left of the falls.  The best views on the ground are probably from the farmer’s land rather than the public viewpoints (which are not that good).  The farmer is ploughing a field at bottom right.  To the right of the falls is a huge ridge of what looks like sand (fertiliser?).  There are two trucks in front of that and what looks like a cherrypicker.  Further down, an excavator is playing with some sand/ fertiliser.

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9 comments on “Kauai From Above

  1. Thom Hickey says:

    Regular visits here have shown me the immense drama of landscape! Thanks for capturing it so intensely. Regards Thom.

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  2. leecleland says:

    The Na Pali coast is amazing, more so from the air with an overview of the terrain and huge drops of the waterfalls. I would imagine well worth the expense of the helicopter for the opportunity of taking shots like these.

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  3. Extraordinary images Murray. Never been to Hawaii. Had seen a few shots of course, usually just partial and fleeting, (typically as backdrop for some movie or TV shot/set there) so knew the landscape was volcanic, mountainous and dramatic, but nothing like to the extent you’ve showed us here. That beach under the huge cliffs, is amazing, and the rock-forms in the cliffs too, which i presume is basically solid lava, (and relatively recent? It hardly looks weathered at all)
    That huge arch is extraordinary too, I know you’re not 100% happy with the angle but it is clearly gargantuan. Never seen anything quite like that. Loved the infrared shots on the subsequent post also, btw. Find them slightly “unsettling” (if that’s not too ridiculous/ hysterical a term) but very interesting. The infrared brings out different qualities in the landscape, obviously. Anyway, amazing stuff, all of it. Thank you.
    regards -Arran.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Murray Foote says:

      Thanks very much Arran.

      Kauai is the oldest of the Hawaiian Islands, about 6 million years old, so it’s not recent, unlike the lava in front of the house I was staying at in Hawaii, for example, which was 15 years old. The cliff is often pretty sheer and what erodes probably just gets washed away.

      It’s a wilderness in the central and western parts of the island, even though much of the north and east coasts are quite urbanised, or given over to unsavoury luxury resorts.

      It’s a very unorthodox composition with the arch but somehow it does work. Your eye is sucked down to the back at the bottom left corner but then it has to go back to the magnificent eroded cliffs above. The scale is extraordinary and also the fact that the inviting beach is completely inaccessible from land.

      The infrared is a challenge to the imagination because there are so many different things you can do with an image and it’s often good for mono conversions. It’s also useful here as it can cut through haze.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. […] Kauai from above […]

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  5. Rebecca Hagberg-Cohen says:

    I’m running out of adjectives! This gallery is spectacular! (I would have to be so highly medicated to fly in a helicopter with no doors that I wouldn’t be able to focus my camera.) The canyon walls, the Nā Pali Coast, the waterfalls…the detail and color is wonderful! Thank you so much.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Murray Foote says:

      Thanks heaps Rebecca! Not having the doors makes all the difference. I knew I was securely strapped in but couldn’t feel it because I had to wear heavy clothing for the cold up there. So it was a touch disconcerting for a while.

      Like

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