Ohelo berries near Devil's Throat

A so-called Devil’s Throat is a creepy looking volcanic chasm, but there are so many spectacular holes in the ground around Kilauea Volcano that this one didn’t look all that special. What made it special for us was the abundance of ‘ohelo berries (Vaccinium reticulatum), a Hawaiian cousin of grouseberries hich we like so much here in Utah. In the absence of grouse, local zebra-striped nene geese eat them.

According to the old lore, Goddess Pele may incinerate you on the spot if you don’t share the first picked berries with her. A brave Hawaiian princess once tried eating ‘ohelo without tossing a few over the edge of a crater, and survived to proclaim that Christ is stronger than Pele. We remained unconvinced though. Sharing with Pele feels kind of right!


No comments posted yet.