Disc. Am. National Parks, Hawaii (Blu-ray)


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The Hawaiian Islands are the most remote major island group on earth. Maui Volcanoes / Haleakala National Park: Enjoy stark volcanic landscapes and sub-tropical rain forest. Lindbergh Grave: Aviator, Charles Lindbergh, lived his last days on the lush Hana coast and is laid to rest at Palapalo Ho'omau Church Cemetery. Road to Hana / Hana Belt Road: Maui's Hana Highway is a wonder to behold, complete with 600+ curves and 50+ bridges punctuated by spectacular waterfalls, beaches and rugged surf battered coast.

Volcanoes National Park: Kilauea Volcano is one of nature's most spectacular lava spewing hot spots. Erupting for nearly 30 years, it's added about 500 acres of new land to the Big Islands' southern shore. USS Arizona Memorial / WWII Valor In The Pacific: December 7, 1941, Pearl Harbor was the scene of a massive attack on America. Today the USS Arizona memorial is the anchor for a monument to America's eventual victory in the Pacific and to the many brave servicemen and civilians who lost their lives on that fateful day.

REVIEW: Video Librarian
This new entry in Jim and Kelly Watt's visually stunning series highlights the 50th state, with eye-popping vistas of volcanic landscapes, subtropical rainforests, stunning beaches, and other sites taking a starring role. Kilauea is the main attraction at Volcanoes National Park on the Big Island, where its eruptions over the past 30 years have added about 500 acres of land to the southern shore (the spewing of red-hot magma in high-definition is a powerful image). A stop at the visitor's center finds people exploring 3D displays that illustrate the topography both above and below the water.

On Maui, the film crew goes to Haleakala National Park (a favorite spot for tourists to catch the sunrise) and then travels up the coast-hugging Hana Highway-with its hundreds of curves, 50-plus bridges, and beautiful waterfalls-to see the gravesite of aviator Charles Lindbergh. Also on the itinerary is the sobering tribute to fallen American servicemen and civilians at the USS Arizona Memorial in Pearl Harbor on Oahu. Rounding out the program are segments on popular activities including whale watching, snorkeling, and windsurfing. Sure to appeal to armchair travelers and those planning trips, this is highly recommended. Aud: P. (C. Block)

REVIEW: The Midwest Book Review
Two beautiful new additions to the Discoveries... America National Parks documentary series on DVD are simply captivating to behold. "Alaska's Wrangell-St. Elias: America's Largest National Park" (9781604901641) is a captivating slice of both Alaska's wild lands and its civilization. The viewer receives a wondrous tour of the headwaters country of the Copper and Tanana drainages, the Alaskan practice of subsistence fishing with dip nets or fish wheels, the largest glaciers of North America, the Kennecott Copper Mill (the tallest wooden structure in North America, and the historical location of a past bonanza of mineral wealth), and Kennecott's sister town of McCarthy.

"Hawaii: Volcanoes, Hana Belt Road and USS Arizona Memorial" (9781604901634) explores the beauty and storied history of the most remote major island group on earth. The viewer is guided to the gravesite of famous aviator Charles Lindbergh, who called the Hawaii coast of Hana home in his final days; the Hana Highway of Maui, a winding marvel marked by waterfalls, beaches, and surf-spattered coastline; Volcanoes National Park including the perpetually erupting Kilauea Volcano that has added roughly 500 acres of land to the Big Island in the past 30 years; and the memorial of the USS Arizona, a tribute to all the civilians and servicemen who made the ultimate sacrifice for their nation during the World War II surprise attack on Pearl Harbor. Both documentaries are lush, vivid, informative, and highly recommended especially for armchair travelers and public library DVD collections.