Na Wahi Pana o ka Paemoku (Sacred Sites and Storied Landscapes of Hawai'i)


Na Wahi Pana o ka Paemoku (Sacred Sites and Storied Landscapes of Hawai'i)

A group created for the purpose of discussing wahi pana (sacred sites and storied landscapes) in our community. Focus will be on management and stewardship of cultural resources, volunteer opportunities, and protection efforts.

Members: 153
Latest Activity: Feb 3, 2016

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Started by Iwikuamoʻo Olanāiwi Jul 17, 2010.

Na heiau i ka Wao Akua 9 Replies

Started by ʻOhukaniʻōhiʻa. Last reply by Ka Nāʻo o ka lani -o- Nākoloi Sep 25, 2009.

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Comment by Kekuewa Kikiloi on June 29, 2008 at 1:09am
Does anyone know where the kohe lele is on Kohelepelepe is....?
Comment by ku ching on May 16, 2008 at 8:01am
The "Plan" is to build more telescopes! Mine is to stop them!

While the process describes here - paid for by your taxpayers dollars through the university of hawai'i system, and its agency, Institute for Astronomy - looks like an honest attempt to get the public to give their mana'o - it is really another attempt to build more telescopes on the mountain.

Interestingly, as the "summit" area is filling or filled - the "big" push is to build the "30 meter" telescope that will fill 36 acres - a parcel of land that is not available on the summit - or if it were - would need the leveling of many pu'u. The site for this scope is being planned for a pristine area (no present telescopes and no infrastructure) of the mountain. Such a project would require new roads into presently "roadless" areas, new power lines that will criss-cross the mountain (and be a further drain on Hawai'i island electric capacity - which means possible increased rates for everyone) and a new incursion into a new "level" of the mountain - where many burials are known and expected.

While burials at the summit aren't normally expected because it was "the realm of the gods and goddesses" and very kapu, many burials are expected at lower levels - as "they" (the astronomers) are now planning to encroach upon the "realm of the Kanaka" (the people).

While the "recent" NASA EIS concluded that "from a cumulative perspective, the impact of past, present, and reasonably foreseeable future activities on cultural and biological resources is substantial, adverse and significant," this process is another attempt to build more telescopes on the mountain.


Posted on: Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Management plan urged to educate Mauna Kea visitors

By Kevin Dayton
Advertiser Big Island Bureau

HILO, Hawai'i — Big Island residents urged planners to find ways to teach visitors to Mauna Kea about the deep religious meaning and environmental importance of the mountain before they allow people into the area.

Others at a meeting on plans for a comprehensive management plan for Mauna Kea urged an end to new astronomy development on the mountain.

"When is enough enough?" asked former Office of Hawaiian Affairs trustee Moanikeala Akaka. She and others pointed out the new plan is being prepared while other planners and scientists lay the groundwork for two major new astronomy projects proposed for the mountain.

"We're supposed to close our eyes and allow this process to continue while they're talking about bigger and bigger up there?" Akaka said.

Pablo McLoud, who worked as a ranger on the mountain for more than five years, said public education is the most urgently needed fix.

"I saw a lot of behavior on the mountain that was inappropriate and offensive, and most of that behavior was based on ignorance where people were not aware of the sacredness of the mountain, the beauty of the mountain and the precious resources that it holds," he said.

McLoud, who now works for Subaru Telescope, said the problem for the rangers was "we can only catch one family, one person, one group at a time." He said a more systematic and organized educational effort is needed.

The move to draft the comprehensive management plan was prompted by Hilo Circuit Court Judge Glenn Hara, who in January 2007 ruled the state could not allow any additional development on Mauna Kea until a comprehensive plan is drafted and approved by the state Board of Land and Natural Resources.
summit seen as sacred

In the same court decision, Hara overturned a conservation district use permit issued by the land board to allow construction of the so-called "Outriggers" telescopes in an array around the existing W.M. Keck Observatory.

NASA later canceled funding for the $50 million Outrigger project, and it was never built.

The 13,796-foot summit of Mauna Kea is considered sacred to Hawaiians, and is home to rare plant and insect species. But it is also widely regarded as the best location for astronomy in the world.

There is considerable pressure for continued development of astronomy facilities on the summit.

The University of Hawai'i Institute for Astronomy wants to remove an existing 88-inch UH telescope and replace it with Pan-STARRS, which would be a robotically operated telescope designed to rapidly scan and photograph the night sky to detect asteroids or comets that could threaten Earth.

Planners are working on a federal environmental impact statement for the $100 million project, which is being funded by the Air Force. Pan-STARRS stands for Panoramic Survey Telescope and Rapid Response System.

Mauna Kea is also being considered as a possible site for the Thirty Meter Telescope, a much larger instrument that would be the latest-generation telescope.

Dawn Chang, principal of Ku'iwalu, the consultant working on the project, said a review of public testimony shows there is concern about degradation of the summit area because of the volume of traffic and visitors.

She raised the possibility that access to the mountain should be somehow limited, possibly by establishing a shuttle service to limit the number of rental cars.

Arthur Hoke, a former member of the Mauna Kea Management Board, agreed. "I'm not saying that we stop anybody, but we only allow them to access the mountain under our control," Hoke said.
community review

A second round of meetings is planned for this fall to present a draft of the plan for community review and comment. The plan will then be submitted to the Mauna Kea Management Board for its review before advancing to the Board of Land and Natural Resources for final approval.

* * *

Reach Kevin Dayton at
Comment by ku ching on May 13, 2008 at 5:21am
Largest Telescope in the World Proposed for Sacred Summit of Mauna Kea!

In the face of 30 years of community opposition to new development on Mauna Kea, a massive new telescope is again being proposed. This time it is for last pristine plateau on Mauna Kea. The University of Hawai'i's Institute for Astronomy (IFA) is currently negotiating with the University of California to construct a Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) in 2009. This telescope is the largest ever proposed for Mauna Kea, and once constructed, would be the largest telescope on the planet. Nearly all the telescopes now on the summit could fit inside the TMT's dome.

We already know that this massive construction project will have significant, adverse impacts on the extremely sacred and fragile north slope of Mauna Kea. The Summit, including the north slope, is a sacred landscape and burial ground, a vast conservation area, public trust resource, and Hawai'i Island's primary aquifer. The EIS completed by NASA in 2003 concluded the cummulative impact of astronomy development over the last thirty years has resulted in substantial, significant, and adverse impact to the summit's natural and cultural resources. The TMT therefore, will have a single impact equal to thirty years of astronomy development, there is no rational way to "mitigate" or offset such an impact to an already damaged fragile ecosystem and Wahi Kapu.

To facilitate construction of this new telescope, the IFA has hired Ku'iwalu Consulting to draft the "comprehensive master plan" for all of Mauna Kea. Dawn Ching, on behalf of the consulting firm, is contacting community groups and individuals to help her draft the IFA's plan. The IFA hopes to submit their plan to the State Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR) by
December 2008.

IFA should not be directing the development of the plan for Mauna Kea, even through a consultant:

a.. The IFA and BLNR are both appealing the 3rd Circuit Court decision requiring a comprehensive conservation management plan for the summit. BLNR seeks to have the court overturn its own rules and regulation governing all conservation in Hawai`i including the Mauna Kea's conservation. Can the IFA and BLNR be trusted to do right by the sacred summit, when they are at the same time challenging their obligation to do so under the law?
b.. The IFA has a financial interest in developing the summit, and does not have jurisdiction to develop a comprehensive Management Plan. The 3rd Circuit Court and Hawaii's Supreme Court have already held that it is the responsibility and jurisdiction of BLNR -- NOT the IFA -- to draft and adopt the management plan for the conservation district on the summit of Mauna Kea.
c.. The original 1968 lease for Mauna Kea allowed for the construction of ONE observatory. A 1983 BLNR-initiated Master Plan for the summit limited development to 13 telescopes. Yet, by 1999, IFA had built 24 telescopes and infrastructure for up to 36 telescopes. The IFA's last attempt at a Mauna Kea Management Plan in 2000 allowed a minimum of 40 new telescopes and support structures on the summit, and was REJECTED by the 3rd Circuit Court.
Mauna Kea's significance has been recognized by both the state and federal governments. The entire summmit is designated a conservation district, a National Landmark, and is eligible for listing on the National Historic Register. The purpose of the summit is conservation and water shed protection not development of an astronomical industrial complex.

The UHIFA and UC are seeking to further develop the summit of Mauna Kea, therefore they want a Telescope Development Plan. The court has upheld that a conservaiton plan is what is needed, and Hawai'i's public knows the difference.

What you can do to help the Sacred Summit of Mauna Kea:
First, talk the talk! Tell a friend! Let others know what's going on around the summit, spread the word!
Then, walk the walk! In the next few months, will come the call to action. It will be up to all of us to show our uncompromising support for protecting the sacred summit of Mauna Kea!

To learn more, click here: Message to Supporters from Mauna Kea Anaina Hou. Testimony to BLNR from the plaintiffs.
Comment by Hokuokalani on May 9, 2008 at 11:29am
i just watched the video of Kawa'a and uncle Able Simeona Lui and was very moved by what I saw. I am planing to move to Hawai'i Island in a few months and would like to help anakala, so my question is how do I get there?
Comment by ku ching on May 9, 2008 at 10:05am
Huaka'i I Na 'Aina Mauna '08

Huaka'i I Na 'Aina Mauna is a Kanaka Maoli cultural hiking group organized - and with activities on Hawai'i island - since 2002. Most of our participants are Hawai'i Nationals, many of whom are Kamehameha graduates, and we are pro-independence, anti-akaka and anti Kau Inoa.

This post is mostly to let people know that we do annual super-hikes - that are very cultural in nature, and that we follow Kanaka Maoli cultural protocols, as we walk in the footsteps of ancestors all over Hawai'i island and as we use and keep our ancient trails and roads open for continued future use.

We are quite a small group, usually having no more than 8 to 10 hikers. We are international - as the co-founder of the group is Kawaipuna Sharp, KS '64, who lives in UK and is currently in Kazakhstan. We also have another active participant - Gerry Viliakas - who lives in Athens, Greece.

Although we aren't really seeking participants - we are open to serious inquiries and possible participation by heavy-duty Kanaka Maoli activists and participants. On the other hand, we do encourage serious younger participants - in their 20s and 30s - who will one day take our places in carrying out this most sacred work.

Friday, June 20 - Arrive Hilo (ITO) airport before 5 p.m.
Drive to Honoka'a/Waimea area - where we will spend the night either at Peggy's (Pa'auilo mauka) or Soli's (Waimea).
For those of you who live on island and want to sleep "at home" - no problem.

Saturday, June 21 - We will drive up Saddle Road - to the area at Pu'u Huluhulu - that is near the intersection of Saddle Road and Mauna Kea Access Road (the road that heads up to Mauna Kea).
Hopefully, we will have at least 2 vehicles. We will leave one at Huluhulu - as we hike downhill towards Hilo on Saddle Road and towards the second vehicle. After we get to the second vehicle, we will then
reconnect with the first vehicle and then head "home."

Sunday, June 22 - We will do the next 10 miles of Saddle Road - using the same 2 vehicle strategy. We will start where we leave off the day before.
Then, we'll reconnect and head home.

Monday, June 23 - We will do the last 9 miles of Saddle Road and hike through Hilo - to Hilo Bay.
Then, we'll reconnect and head home.

Option 1 - Instead of doing 3 days of approximately 10 miles per day - we could do about 15 miles per day, and create an extra day for fooling around. We could possibly spend a day down on the beach at Waipi'o Valley, or visit Mauna Kea summit and/or the adze quarry.

Tuesday, June 24 - We will start at Kaloko Mauka - above Kailua-Kona - and hike down to the mauka highway (Palani Road), then over (towards Kailua-Kona town) to Hina Lani Street (that passes the
area where Costco is), then down to the coast highway (Ka'ahumanu Highway headed towards Kailua-Kona town) to the cutoff heading to Honokohau Harbor, then to the harbor.
After picking up the keys to the Hualalai/Ahu A 'Umi area - we will drive to the Pu'u Keanui cabin - where we will set up camp. There is a water tank there - but we will probably not drink out of it. We'll have sufficient supplies of our own. We'll have to especially careful with fires and smokes - as the area is pretty dry. No open camp fires are allowed and I'm not sure about "contained" ones.

Wednesday, June 25 - We will backtrack up to around the "pinetree" campground - or maybe further - then hike towards Ahu A 'Umi, spend some time there doing ceremony, then going further to where
we ended our hike from Pohakula in 2004 - to make a connection.
We will return to the cabin where we spent the previous night to camp - at Keanui cabin.

Thursday, June 26 - We will backtrack further up Hualalai - then hike back to where we started the day before.
We will camp at the Kipahe'e cabin. There is a water tank there also, but we will just drink our own water. If we want to, the cabin will be open for sleeping. I will probably sleep outside in a tent.

Friday, June 27 - We will have to get up very early and hike maybe 4 miles to Kaloko mauka - where we started hiking on Tuesday - to make a connection.
We will have to bifurcate things on this day. While the hike is going on - one vehicle will leave for Miloli'i - with at least 2 persons - with the ukana that will be transported to Kapua - where they will meet Gil Kahele before 9:30 a.m. - who will take the 2 plus ukana over by boat.
After the hike is over - the rest of the party will head for Miloli'i - and hike the 4 miles to Kapua.
We will be camping (on a parcel that used to belong to Gil's ohana many years ago), swimming, fishing, talking, exploring, resting, eating, sight-seeing, etc., at Kapua for part of 3 days and 2 nights. The stepping stone trails and other cultural sites, including a holua slide, through parts of the area are awesome.

Saturday, June 28 - Enjoying Kapua.

Sunday, June 29 - maybe a bit before noon, maybe earlier - Gil will return to pick up our ukana and shuttle it out to Miloli'i. The rest of us will hike back out.
Hopefully, we will stop at Ana Currie's at Kealakekua for showers and rest. We will then head for the Kona (KOA) airport to be there around 4 p.m. - so set your reservations around 5 p.m.

Cost: $150 per person for those coming for the entire time. For those not eating and sleeping with us [in other words driving your own cars and sleeping at home over the first 3 days - cost will be $25 for each total day spent with us (which may include the night before) and $5 for other days]. Basically, the cost will generally take care of gas and food. Additionally, I'd love to provide an honorarium to Gil Kahele with any "extra" money.

Conclusion: On this year's foray - we will complete the entirety of Saddle Road - and make a connection with the ocean at Hilo Bay. We will also be completing the Ahu A 'Umi section - making a second connection with the ocean. And we will go over Hualalai - making a third connection with the ocean. We will also be hiking for a total of around 55 to 60 miles - in the footsteps of our kupuna. We will be following the cultural protocols we started back in 2002 - with Kaho'ola (Baron Ching) in charge. And we will be remembering Lt. Nainoa Hoe who was killed in Iraq - having originally memorialized him and his life with a ceremony at the summit of Mauna Kea about 4 years ago, when we were honored to have Allan Hoe, his father, with us.

Please let me know as early as you can. We will max out at 8 hikers (and we have 5 or 6 committed hikers already).

Comment by david on April 15, 2008 at 5:10pm
In Kau on the Big Island, the people have kept Kawa`a from private ownership, mostly through the efforts of Uncle Able Simeona Lui. Uncle has been living at Kawa`a in the Ahupua`a of Hilea Nui for twenty years now, and has withstood all kinds of trials and tribulations, from the police to the Realtors. Recently the Mayor, Harry Kim has visited Uncle on a few occasions asking him to make a deal to leave. He has refused across the board. Here is a video of Kawa`a and Uncle I made, and he has been asking for all the help he can get. Aloha David

Comment by ku ching on April 11, 2008 at 12:23am
A letter to BLNR Re: Mauna Kea Management Plan

April 10, 2008

Ms Laura Thielen, Chairperson
Board of Land and Natural Resources
1151 Punchbowl St.
Honolulu, Hawaii 96813

Dear Ms Thielen and BLNR Members:

Re: Proposed Mauna Kea Management Plan
April 11, 2008 Hearing and Comments


Thank you for taking up and considering the important matter of the management of Mauna Kea.

The Mauna Kea Anaina Hou, the Sierra Club (Hawaii Island chapter), Royal Order of Kamehameha I, and Mr. Clarence Ching object to the University of Hawai`i Institute for Astronomy (“UH/IFA”) presentation and public comment period before the Board of Land and Natural Resources (“BLNR”). There are a number of reasons this briefing as currently structured is not appropriate.

First, the BLNR is repeating the same mistake on which the Third Circuit Court ruled against UH/IFA and the Board of Land and Natural Resources in January 2008. On January 28, 2008, Judge Hara entered a final judgment in favor of Mauna Kea Anaina Hou et al., and against the UH/IFA and BLNR for the failure of the BLNR to prepare its own Comprehensive Master Plan as required by the BLNR’s own rules. Mauna Kea et al v. BLNR, Third Circuit Court, Civil No. 4-1-397. The BLNR may not delegate the adoption of a comprehensive master plan for Mauna Kea to the UH/IFA and its agents (the Office of Mauna Kea Management and Ku`iwalu Consulting, LLC).

Second, Judge Hara’s Order was clear. BLNR has a duty to protect the conservation resources of the entire summit area of Mauna Kea. Under the BLNR’s rules, the DLNR must prepare and the BLNR must approve a comprehensive management plan for the summit of Mauna Kea. This duty may not be delegated to a third party.

Third, on February 26, 2008, the BLNR and UH/IFA both appealed Judge Hara’s decision and order to the Intermediate Court of Appeals. By again contracting for UH to prepare a plan, neither the BLNR nor UH/IFA are complying with the Court’s Order. Both seek to reverse the Third Circuit decision, calling for the protection and conservation of Mauna Kea.

Fourth, BLNR may not transfer its fiduciary duty to a conflicted third party like the UH/IFA, its agents (or foreign governments) using Mauna Kea. The Hawaii Supreme Court has repeatedly held that the delegation of the State’s fiduciary duty to other parties is unlawful.

Fifth, the State may not use the lack of funds to justify delegating their fiduciary duty to protect the public resources on behalf of the Native Hawaiians and People of Hawai`i.

Sixth, Judge Hara’s decision called for a conservation plan not a development plan for construction of another observatory. The UH/IFA and University of California are moving to build the world’s largest telescope, known as the TMT atop Mauna Kea. The TMT is so big nearly every telescope on the summit could fit inside its dome. The TMT’s stadium size dome cannot fit on the summit, so the UH/IFA is proposing to build it on the north summit plateau, that is the last undeveloped view plane, comprised of pristine land, sacred landscape and one of the largest burial complexes. The construction timeline for the TMT is set to begin in 2009.The construction of the TMT will have cumulative impacts way beyond those already found in NASA EIS, which were considered adverse, significant and substantial.

Finally, we do not think it is appropriate to simultaneously claim that BLNR is complying with the Court’s Order while at the same time appealing the very same decision.

The below signed parties in the litigation are constrained by the fact of the appeal from formally participating in this discussion. We believe this violates our due process rights and is fundamentally unfair to us as well as the public whose rights and resources you have a duty to protect.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

In Aloha we remain,

Kealoha Pisciotta, Mauna Kea Anaina Hou,
Debbie Ward, Sierra Club (Hawaii Island chapter)
Clarence Ching, Individual Practitioner
Ali`i Sir Paul K. Neves, Royal Order of Kamehameha I.
Comment by Ipolani Vaughan on April 9, 2008 at 1:34pm
Welina mai e Nä Lala o këia hui nei... What a wonderful resource for those of us who want to keep up with what is happening with our wahi pana like'ole. Also a wonder way to share those treasured mo'olelo of these very special places which are so much a part of hula and a great asset to those who haku mele.....Keu wale!

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