The Hawaiian Archipelago - Six Months Among The Palm Groves, Coral Reefs, And Volcanoes Of The Sandwich Islands By Isabella L. Bird
















































































































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The valleys of Kauai are long, and widen to the sea, and their dark
rich soil is often ten feet - Page 280
The Hawaiian Archipelago - Six Months Among The Palm Groves, Coral Reefs, And Volcanoes Of The Sandwich Islands By Isabella L. Bird - Page 280 of 466 - First - Home

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The Valleys Of Kauai Are Long, And Widen To The Sea, And Their Dark Rich Soil Is Often Ten Feet Deep.

On the windward side the rivers are very numerous and picturesque.

Between the strong winds and the lightness of the soil, I should think that like some parts of the Highlands, "it would take a shower every day." The leeward side, quite close to the sea, is flushed and nearly barren, but there is very little of this desert region. Kauai is less legible in its formation than the other islands. Its mountains, from their impenetrable forests, dangerous breaks, and swampiness, are difficult of access, and its ridges are said to be more utterly irregular, its lavas more decomposed, and its natural sections more completely smothered under a profuse vegetation than those of any other island in the tropical Pacific. Geologists suppose, from the degradation of its ridges, and the absence of any recent volcanic products, that it is the oldest of the group, but so far as I have read, none of them venture to conjecture how many ages it has taken to convert its hard basalt into the rich soil which now sustains trees of enormous size. If this theory be correct, the volcanoes must have gone on dying out from west to east, from north to south, till only Kilauea remains, and its energies appear to be declining. The central mountain of this island is built of a heavy ferruginous basalt, but the shore ridges contain less iron, are more porous, and vary in their structure from a compact phonolite, to a ponderous basalt.

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