Silhouette is back in the U.S.A. We made a safe entry into Kuhio Bay this morning and turned the corner into the small nook known as Radio Bay to facilitate our check-in with Customs. A friendly fellow cruiser took our shore lines as we Med moored against the seawall.
The first I saw of Hawaii was at 10 p.m. last night when I came on watch and could see the lighthouse at Cape Kumukahi on the island's east coast. Upon our landfall in the Marquesas, we could see Hiva Oa from 46 miles away; so I was surprised when we couldn't see the island of Hawaii, with two 13,000-foot volcanoes on it, from 50...40...30 miles away. Although we searched in vain for the Big Island yesterday, it stayed shrouded in rain clouds and/or volcanic smog. At dusk, I looked around---still no island---but we were surrounded by rain squalls in 360 degrees. Patrick caught some wind and showers on his watch, but considering the look of things from the cockpit, it wasn't too rough of a landfall. In fact, once we got into the wind shadow created by the Big Island, the sea was the calmest its been during the entire two week passage.
When I finally could see the island in the light of day, I was amazed at how low the topography is---at least from this approach. Hilo is situated against the base of a shield volcano, Mauna Kea, but we could only see the bottom of its flanks this morning. Its summit remained obscured by clouds. The giant Mauna Loa also remained hidden in a cloak of gray.
We are looking forward to exploring the Big Island after a much needed good night's sleep. Safely arrived in Hilo.
Posted from sea via Ham Radio.