Special Sub-Topic: National Park Tour: Hawai'i Volcanoes
|Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park is located in the island state of Hawai'i, but do you know on which island?|
Big Island (Hawai'i). The largest of the eight main islands, the Big Island's name is actually "Hawai'i", though to avoid confusion most people refer to it as the Big Island. The park is located on its southeastern edge.
|Active volcano Mauna Loa is the most massive mountain on Earth when measured from the seafloor. How high from base to top is Mauna Loa?|
33,000 ft. When measured in this fashion, Mauna Loa exceeds Mount Everest by 4,000 feet. With an area of 10,000 cubic miles, it is considered to be the single most massive mountain on Earth.
|The most recent volcanic activity in Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park occurs in a smaller volcano located within the park boundaries. In fact, the visitor center and the famous Crater Rim Drive are located at its edge. Do you know it?|
Kilauea. The Kilauea Caldera measures about 2 and 1/2 miles across. The Crater Rim Drive is about 11 miles around the caldera, with several places to stop and view the old lava flows. The name "Kilauea" means "spewing, much spreading".
|Within the Kilauea Caldera is the Halema'uma'u Crater, which is a sacred spot for the Hawaiian people, as it is considered the home of the goddess of Hawaiian volcanoes. What is this goddess' name?|
Pele. Some of the natural formations that occur during volcanic activity are named after Pele, including Pele's Tears (teardrop-like bits of volcanic glass) and Pele's Hair (long, hair-like strands of cooled lava).
|Hawaiian lava presents itself in two forms, one of which is ropy and smooth, and the other jagged and stony. What are the names of these two lava forms?|
pahoehoe and 'a'a. The Hawaiian word "pahoehoe" means unbroken or smooth and is also the word for "satin". The word "'a'a" has several meanings, including "challenge" and "burn". Certainly it would be a challenge to walk over hot, jagged 'a'a in bare feet!
|One challenge that the Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park has faced has been the invasion of alien plants and animals that crowd out native species. Which of these mammals has caused considerable damage to plant life within the park?|
wild pigs. Feral pigs, introduced by Polynesians and other settlers, root through forests, destroying ferns and native trees, and their mud wallows encourage mosquito populations that spread avian malaria to native birds.
|One of the most recognized Hawaiian birds is endangered from hunting and recently-introduced alien species. What is the name of the beautiful Hawaiian goose?|
nene. The nene is a relative of the well-known Canada goose. The 'i'iwi is also known as the Hawaiian honeycreeper, and the koa'e kea is a beautiful white-tailed tropicbird.
|Another amazing feature of the Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park is the Thurston Lava Tube. People can walk within this tube created by hot lava flowing out of the cooled shell around it. About how old is the Thurston Lava Tube considered to be?|
350-500 years old. Thurston Lava Tube was named after Lorrin Thurston, a lawyer and newspaper publisher who played a key role in the creation of the national park. Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park was established in 1916.
|Active volcanoes can be very dangerous places. Which of the following can be deadly to the unwary visitor?|
all of them (fumes, spewing lava, coastline collapse). Many foolish visitors to the park have been injured or killed by ignoring signs and warnings about the dangers there. Spewing lava can be as hot as 1200 degrees C, newly formed land is thin and fragile, and volcanic fumes are nearly constant.
|True or False: The Hawaiian islands are no longer being formed.|
f. An underwater volcano called Lo'ihi is an active volcano. It is adding onto itself with every eruption and should break the surface of the water in some 10,000 years.
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