Next Stop: Big Island

Hawaii Forest & Trail, Kahua Ranch, Swimming with Dolphins, Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, Volcano Helicopter Tour, Kona Brewfest



00:00-00:05 JON: Hi, I’m Jon Olson, welcome to Next Stop from the island that doesn’t stop growing.
00:06-00:16 Next Stop Big Island intro rolls
00:17-00:33 JON: Aloha and welcome to the Island of Hawaii, also home to the most active volcano in the world, Mt Kilauea. It’s also called the Big Island, and for good reason, all other 100 plus Hawaiian Islands fit snugly into the Big Island with room to spare, which means there is a lot to see and do, let’s get after it, the fun starts now!
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00:37-01:30 JON: We are in the Kahala Mountains and about to take a combo trail with Hawaii Forest & Trail.
ROB: This is waiawi, it’s strawberry guava actually, and it’s one of our big invasive species. This was once you know, other plants all here and this plant just comes in and takes over.
JON: It looks like it takes over.
ROB: Replaces a whole forest with itself. The ditch was built in 1905, 1906 and the flume was here up until just a few years ago and they are, just last year they replaced this , so lava makes waterfalls but what people don’t realize is that because we have basalt lava it is very condusive to making these big staircases in our streams as the water erodes it away. Loosens up the loose stuff and drops it away, get to the hard stuff, runs down a little way and falls off, so, we’ll go right over here to this rock face and I will show you how the hard and soft is in the lava flow.
01:40-01:46 ROB: This is the hard dense stuff that we are talking about on the rock, but it is old and crumbly, look at that, that’s lava, that’s just rock.
01:57-02:32 JON: Ok, we need you to give a little tour of your vehicle here. What is this thing called, it goes everywhere! I love this thing though.
ROB: This is what we affectionately call ‘The Pinzie but the real name in Pinzgauer, and it is austrian made by * Styer Daimler Push* for the swiss military. Put power to every single wheel and get the traction to where we need it so..
JON: And it’s fun to drive, isn’t it?
ROB: They are fun to drive, they are.
JON: You look like you’re having a good time.
ROB: I have more fun than you guys in the back.
JON: Oh, we’re having fun too.
ROB: Wiakama river, she’s nice and mellow today.
02:59-03:56 JON: Well we definitely had some adventure on the big island today, thanks to Hawaii Forest and Trail, and this man. Rob, how do you know these mountains so incredibly well?
ROB: I don’t know, I just love it. Love it and do it, live it, read it, lots of studying.
JON: How did you get into this?
ROB: I’ve been into nature since I was a kid so, then I came to Hawaii for a job and as a naturalist it just blew me away, I had no clue and I’ve just been in love with the place ever since.
JON: Well tell us about Hawaii Forest and Trail, what are you guys all about?
ROB: Well we are about connecting people to Hawaii, and Hawaii’s nature, and that’s basically it. So we’ve got the access, we’ve made arrangements with landowners to get people through gates, and got the vehicles to get into spots, we’ve made trails and we just want to bring people to Hawaii nei, what’s the best of Hawaii of Hawaii, so Hawaii a lot of people don’t get to see.
JON: I love the vehicle, that was amazing, but your feet. I gotta ask about these, these are not your average hiking shoes.
ROB: These are Vibram five fingers. Once you wear them, after a little bit you are hooked and you just hate wearing shoes after that.
JON: I trust you.
ROB: Its like walking barefoot.
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04:05-04:25 JON: Located just 15 minutes from Kona International Airport, historic Kailua Village is a lively seaside town located in the heart of the Kona coast. Once a sleepy fishing village and retreat for hawaiian royalty, today it’s bustling with affordable accommodations, great restaurants, loads of shopping and much more. It’s also a great place to get a cup of 100% pure Kona coffee.
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04:32-04:36 JON: Coming up, swimming with dolphins in the pacific, and a working ranch.
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04:40-05:25JON: Very few things roust me out of bed at 6 o’clock in the morning, but I’ll you what does. Sunlight on Water’s opportunity to swim with dolphins in the pacific.
CHINA: I have a piece of bamboo, it’s a hawaiian wind instrument that I have made, it’s called a ipu, and it’s made of bamboo, ohei. This is my ipu ohe. I’m going to blow it 4 times. When I start my ceremony, I’ll start facing east. I want to acknowledge our life source kala, the sun. And uh, I blow it 4 times to recognize and honor the 4 directions, just like native americans do.
05:38-06:34 CHINA: These are humpback whales, the ones that are born here in Hawaii, that makes them hawaiian humpbacks. Alright, I’m just going to slow and stop the boat here for now just for a moment, the dolphins are swimming right over to our boat. We’ve been at this for so long, I’ve been in the water swimming with dolphins for over 20 years so I know what works well, what the dolphins are comfortable with, first of all the more comfortable, more relaxed you are in the water, the more comfortable the dolphin will feel coming around you.
JON: Emmulate them basically. Hence the fins.
CHINA: Yeah, yeah, that’s why you have got fins on. When I am in the water I use a double legged dolphin kick as opposed to a straight legged scissor kick, or I’ll switch back and forth.
JON: Let’s go play with some dolphins.
06:58 CHINA: People see the dolphin and they are so excited, and they pick up on that, the happy vibe that the dolphin give off and they just want to be with them, it’s crazy.
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07:26-08:14 JON: We are 3200 feet above sea level and we’re in for a treat, an evening at Kahua Ranch.
JOHN: Well my name is John Richards and on behalf of the Richards family I want to welcome everybody to Kahua Ranch. Well how do we run it? Well we run it under a single principal, and we have for quite some time. That of course really started this all many years ago. The term today unfortunately of course has been co opted and used in a lot of different ways, the term of course is sustainability. Now like I said it’s been used for a million different things, but real simple. What we do today we want to make sure that we can do tomorrow and on into the future without degrading the value, the productivity, and frankly, the beauty of the land. If you look around you its a pretty special place, we are doing what we can to keep it that way.
08:26-09:01 JON: We’re going to brand something here, right?
BRANDER: That’s right.
JON: How do we do this?
BRANDER: OK, so what we are going to do is just going to take one of our red hot brands and you’re going to apply it to a cedar shingle.
JON: Oh yeah, so we made the K, but you have a special treat for us that was designed just for tonight.
BRANDER: Just for tonight, it was made by John Richards, it took about 10 hours to make, it was hand carved and, well would you like to see it?
JON: I would love to man, this is going to be cool.
BRANDER: And then, right up.
JON: That is very cool.
BRANDER: That is cool.
JON: Mahalo.
09:13-10: 23 JON: I have so many questions for you Raymond. My first question, how does a proper gentleman from England find the big island?
RAYMOND: Well I originally arrived her in 1957 on a cruise ship out of London, and fell in love with this beautiful island after seeing many parts of the world, and this island has everything.
JON: All ages come for tonight, tell us about the night.
RAYMOND: Well tonight we have families coming from as you say, from hotels and resorts, some of our local families. We have been able to attract the family people, the children, the parents and the grandparents, the Tutu’s as we call them. And its a wonderful opportunity for them to come and enjoy, they can eat all the food, there is steak and potatoes and chicken
JON: And after dinner you get to dance it off a little bit.
RAYMOND: Oh that’s right, you’ve got the line dancing and we get to kick our heels and absolutely then we of course go around we have the activities, we have got branding, and we got telescope, make some s’mores, of course we put more sugar back in. And of course John here show you how to do roping, we have horse shoes, so a lot of activities for folks to get involved and have fun.
JON: It’s such a pleasant surprise, most of our viewers who think of Hawaii do not thing of a ranch, a working ranch. When you come to the island of Hawaii you gotta  to check out Kahua Ranch, it is amazing.
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10:29-10:34 JON: Coming up, a helicopter tour over the worlds most active volcano, and a truly Hawaiian resort.
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10:39-11:05 JON: Mt Kilauea is the most active volcano in the world, and thankfully and kindly, it decided to become more active this week for us. Sunshine helicopters is going to take us up for a birds eye view.
KIMO: Getting in the aircraft today we have floats on the bottom, in this illustration it’s yellow, but when we do get out to the aircraft they are  gray, please don’t step on those, I will point out to where you can step as you enter and exit the aircraft.
11:25-12:12 PILOT: The big island of Hawaii has 3 active volcano’s. Along the western edge of the Kilauea caldera wall is about 400 feet deep. Halemaumau crater mountain puts out over 2000 ton or so for the sulphur dioxide.
JON: Well there is a lot of activity, there is a lot of vents.
PILOT: Yeah. Now the trees off to the right side of us is getting burnt down its from the lava flow that is flowing along the tree line that kinda cooled down already.
12:22-12:42 PILOT: Off to the right is front of us inside of the tree lines over here is we have the chain of craters road, chasing down the hill towards the coast line, towards the west end road closure, where the road ends. That comes down into the Hawaiian Volcanoes National Park.
JON: How high are these sea cliffs?
PILOT: Umm, about 1,000 feet.
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12:50-13:08 JON: The Big Island has the most diverse weather of any of the Hawaiian Islands, including tropical, monsoonal, desert and even permafrost. It has 11 of the worlds 13 climazones, creating a beautifully lush environment. From volcanic deserts, to snow capped mountains, to black sand beaches, to this amazing coastline.
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13:19-14:48 JON: Our Island of Hawaii home, the Mauna Kea Resort is truly a special property. It’s not like a lot of hotels you see that just kind of sprawl out, this place looks like it belongs here.
DAN: It is. It’s one of those very special places.You know, it was a vision of Laurence Rockefeller who kind of a very interesting kind of a character. He was truly a venture capitalist,but even more, he was involved with the environment, he was very much on eco tourism, and so when they built this place it was really more about making the property fit the land, it was never the other way around.
JON: You feel that, you really do feel that.
DAN: Yeah, it’s a beautiful place, and his dream was on every great beach there should be a wonderful resort.
JON: You’ve got some beautiful sculptures and pieces of art around this property.
DAN: He was a lover of art, I mean he, his face shined when it came to art work, he truly believed that art should be experienced by everyone around the world, you shouldn’t put it behind glass, there shouldn’t be barriers around it, so he believed that when people came they should experience some of the beautiful arts from around the world.
JON: You have a beautiful golf course.
DAN: Thank you, we want you to go out and experience it.
JON: II want to definitely, but what else can we do here? I see lots of families here, this looks like a great place for families.
DAN: This is, I mean, you know here it is all about the ocean. We try and do everything around the ocean since that is really the reason why he built this hotel. I mean we do all the snorkeling, we do scuba diving here, in the morning you will see people out here paddle boarding. We really do focus on the ocean, that’s our mainstay here.
JON: You’ve got a great staff with some very colorful chefs, check this guy out.
14:51-15:54 JUNIOR: Welcome guys to the Mauna Kea, we’ll do, be doing a few things here using organic product and we’ll do a pasta today. Actually this is a recipe that we developed, ok, there is different ways of making pasta’s or different ingredients. So we run this through the machine, ok, so we roll this up, bigger pastas we do it like this, ok, or you can go thinner, ok, or you can just do a bigger cut. Alright, so we’ll go ahead and cook it, ok, saute this up a little bit.
JON: Do you do the throw it against the refrigerator trick?
JUNIOR: You know what, the funny thing about it is we did that, and believe it or not one of the cooks was like ‘are you crazy I haven’t seen that before’ so its funny because my old chef from actually, Oregon taught me that, so if you go back the the Winchester Inn you’ll have pastas all over the wall and there are like, that is Chef Junior, there is Chef Mark, but here it the Mauna Kea it’s all about the flavor and the food.
JON: And it’s all local, right here.
JUNIOR: Yes, yes, exactly.
JON: You don’t import this from anywhere, it doesn’t get any more fresh than that. A little garnish, voila.
JUNIOR: Garnish right there, and there you are, you got it.
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15:58-16:03 JON: Up next, liquid aloha on the Big Island at the Kona Brewers Festival.
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16:06-16:42 JON: It’s time for some liquid aloha. We are at the Kona Brewer’s Festival, the sun is out, the beer is flowing and the people are ready to party. I’ve got Tracy here all the way from California.
TRACY: We’re pouring a dark IPA today which is a new beer style to the beer community. It’s a dark beer that has a lot of hop flavor to it, about 8% alcohol.
JON: Nice, well lets taste your stuff man.
TRACY: Alright. That’s the alpha red, the other beer we’re offering here today.
JON: Oh that’s nice
TRACY: That’s nice.
JON: It’s really nice.
16:49-17:17 JON: Some amazing costumes here today, but I think I have found the two that exemplify a beer festival the best, what do you guys think? Now you are obviously St Pauli girls, do you know each other? Did you coordinate this?
MAREA: Actually, we do know each but we did not coordinate this.
JON: So where do you get a costume like this, it’s not at the ABC store.
MAREA: This is my halloween costume.
DANIELLE: This was my halloween costume as well actually, and I figured, you know, you only have so many places where you can wear a costume like this and brew fest is one of them.
17:20-18:12 JON: This festival brings out some crazy outfits, check this one out. There is actually a reason behind this outfit Rebecca, tell us about what this is made of and the significance of the trash fashion show at the Brew festival.
REBECCA: The trash fashion show is a phenomenal group of people who are dedicated and start working on their costumes probably 5 months before the event. We do our best to educate the crowd to the small things that we can all do to make sure that all of this didn’t end up in the landfill.
JON: I love your president, Mattson Davis. Today we tried to hook up with him but it is just too busy, but yesterday we did learn a little bit more about Kona Brewing.
18:19-19:32  MATTSON: In 1994 father and son, Cameron Healy and Spoon Khalsa, decided to share their passion for the craft world, felt that Hawaii needed a nice little brewery, and here we are today.
JON: This is really a good gathering place for people here on the island, and for visitors.
MATTSON: Big goal of ours right from the beginning, when Cameron and I got together and started working with each other I said ‘Let’s build a restaurant that is a great gathering place’
JON: Now Kona Brewing has kind of exploded in the last couple of years, tell us what has been happening with you guys.
MATTSON: Well there is further distribution on the mainland, and I think the clear message of paradise, liquid aloha, high quality product, using those aloha series beers that have things like Kona coffee in them or passionfruit on the Wailua wheat.
JON: Before sustainability was even a word, you guys were adopting sustainable practices here, leading the charge not just in Hawaii, but really on the mainland too.
MATTSON: Well thank you. There is a couple of things, it’s the right thing to do, and I think as a leader you want to take a leadership position on things. And so from the menu where we use products that are grown here locally, to the fact that we are one of I think, very very few breweries, I can’t think of any others, that actually produce their beer in multiple locations to minimize their carbon footprint.
19:36-19:56 JON: So this is where it all started thought, right? The main room, this is where all the beer is brewed, I see some longboard over there, my favorite.
MATTSON: For the first 5 years this is where all the beer form Kona Brewing Company came from.
JON: What does the festival mean for you guys?
MATTSON: The festival is really is an opportunity for us to celebrate our birthday, it’s really a chance to get down and celebrate with the people that live right here in Kona.
20:01-20:36 JON: How appropriate and how cool is it that our featured artist on this episode from Kona, is a guy by the name of Kona.
KONA: Yep, yeah.
JON: We couldn’t have planned it any better.
KONA: Aloha, my name is Kona, how you doing?
JON: We’re here at the pub, here at the brewery, you’re the featured band on the stage today, what was it like playing the festival?
KONA: Oh it was awesome, first time here, the people are great, of course there is beer, so you know.
JON: Did you get to partake in any of the beer?
KONA: I did, I try, my thing is, I dunno, unlike other musicians I try not to drink before I play because then I will just get stupid and forget, I have major brain farts and I’ll forget lyrics and stuff.
21:07-21:16 JON: Your music has actually won awards, Na Hoku Hanohano award, the Hawaii’s Grammy.
KONA: Yes, my first Na Hoku Hanohano award, 2010 rock album of the year.
21:28-21:52 JON: Mahalo for tuning in to Next Stop from the Island of Hawaii, or the Big Island, the island that just doesn’t stop growing. It’s a beautiful place with beautiful people. Thanks also to everybody that made our show possible, especially the Mauna Kea resort, we love your property. Thanks also to our title sponsors, Alaska Airlines and the Alaska Airlines Visa signature card for your partnership. We’ll see you next time on Next Stop, where will we take you next? Make good memories everybody.
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