American Samoa - June, 2013
Aug 18, 2013Public
Photo: My uncle and I spent a week in American Samoa with the primary goal of climbing Mt Lata (3160 feet).  After lots of stress arranging flights to the island of Ta'u we succeeded!
Photo: Pago Pago, American Samoa - June 17-18, 2013 - [tl] A very important plug in Honolulu airport  [tm] Sky high food prices at Honolulu airport!  [tr] Sunset on our Hawaiian Airlines flight to American Samoa  [bl] Head end of Pago Pago Harbor  [mr] Rainmaker Mountain at Pago Pago Harbor  [br] Fagatele Bay where we went scuba diving
Photo: Pago Pago, AS - June 18, 2013 - My uncle and I scuba diving in Fagatele Bay.  I was surprised at the diversity and health of the corals although there wasn't much fish life.
Photo: Pago Pago, AS - June 18, 2013 - My uncle and I scuba diving in Fagatele Bay.
Video: Pago Pago, AS - June 18, 2013 - My uncle and I scuba diving in Fagatele Bay.
Photo: Pago Pago, AS - June 18, 2013 - My uncle and I scuba diving in Fagatele Bay.
Photo: Pago Pago, AS - June 18, 2013 - My uncle and I scuba diving in Fagatele Bay.
Photo: Pago Pago, AS - June 19, 2013 - [tl] Sunrise from our balcony  [tr] We saw this sign far too many times ;(  [btm] Riding an "aiga" (family bus) is an adventure - pretty similar to St Thomas, USVI.
Photo: Pago Pago, AS - June 20, 2013 - [tl] Many homes have their family cemetery in the front yard  [tr] We pass Flower Pot Rock along the coastal road to town  [bl] The infamous Sadie Thompson Inn  [br] Roger wondering what these palm leaf cuttings are for
Photo: Pago Pago, AS - June 20, 2013 - [top] Panorama of Pago Pago Harbor with the tuna canneries on the right  [bl] The 2009 tsunami devastated the harbor  [br] Rainmaker Mountain looking cloudy ;(
Photo: Pago Pago, AS - June 20, 2013 - [tl] A "fale" (meeting house) where village leaders would meet and talk/gossip  [tr] Many of the churches have twin bell towers  [bl] Old court house  [br] The Lt Governors House looks regal
Photo: Jean P Haydon Museum, Pago Pago, AS - June 20, 2013 - [top] Some of the boat styles used by early Samoans along with their fishing tools  [bl] Tattooing is quite popular with Samoans  [br] Musical instruments
Photo: Jean P Haydon Museum, Pago Pago, AS - June 20, 2013 - [tl] Making tapa - mulberry bark clothing  [tr] Example clothes and drinking kava (fermented/alcoholic kava root)
Photo: Pago Pago, AS - June 20, 2013 - [tl] In the 1960s/1970s there was a cable car which spanned Pago Pago Harbor and gave access to the radio antennas on top of Mt Alava  [tc] Monument to the jet fliers who died when they crashed into the cable  [bl] Church with stone bell tower  [br] A Wyland whaling wall!
Photo: Ta'u, AS - June 21, 2013 - [tl] We finally get on the plane via stand-by  [tr] Pago Pago Harbor  [ml] We never made it to Aunu'u island to see the red quick sand lake ;(  [mr] Ofu and Olosega island  [bl] Northwest shore of Ta'u  [br] Landing at the Fitiuta village on the northest coast of Ta'u
Photo: Ta'u, AS - June 21, 2013 - [tl] Tom unloading the plane  [ml] Even this mad dog knows to stay out of the sun  [bl] Tom and Suimai were great hosts  [tr and mr] A surprisingly large church for such a small village  [br] Walking the village road
Photo: Ta'u, AS - June 21, 2013 - [tl] Lava rock fence  [tr] Legend says the Polynesians migrated from Saua  [bl] Imagining I was one of those ancient explorers  [br] The coast looks pretty rugged
Photo: Ta'u, AS - June 21, 2013 - [tl] Holes left from grinding taro and kava  [tr] A well  [bl] A mass grave for any human remains found while building the road to the southeast point  [br] View of the southern coast from Tufu Point
Photo: Ta'u, AS - June 21, 2013 - Flowers along the way to Saua  [c] Interesting stones on the beaches
Photo: Ta'u, AS - June 21, 2013 - [tl] Bananas and mangos are everywhere  [tr] I saw very few large butterflies - they are mostly small  [btm] Sunset over Ofu and Olosega islands.  A near full moon tonight.
Photo: Ta'u, AS - June 22, 2013 - [tl] 5am sees us walking to the start of the "road"/trail  [tr] Our first rest stop  [bl] Hiking by head lamp  [bc] The bottom part is mostly trees with little undergrowth  [br] Sunrise
Photo: Ta'u, AS - June 22, 2013 - [tl] Judds Crater wasn't very impressive - perhaps because it is overgrown  [tr] Koli and Tom (the guides) resting  [bl] Roger is looking happy as he rests  [br] Looking up toward the summit from Judds Crater
Photo: Ta'u, AS - June 22, 2013 - [bl] The trail was very well marked  [br] As we climb higher there is more trail clearing with the machete
Photo: Ta'u, AS - June 22, 2013 - [tc] About 1/6th of the trail was following this old lava flow  [tr] Parts were quite steep although the rope really wasn't necessary  [bl] About 2/3rds of the way up the "fern cover" arrives and we can see around