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How did the Hawaiian Islands Come to Be? October 28 2013

lavaIt’s ironic that the Hawaiian Islands, one of the most beautiful paradises on this Earth, were created by such volatile natural forces. We walk in flip flops on the dazzling beaches, hike the alluring mountains, and enjoy the delicious foods; yet, it’s odd to consider the protracted geological history that culminated in the gorgeous islands. In order to really appreciate the glamor of the Aloha state, it’s appropriate to delve into nature's history book, and examine all the forces that gave the world this little gem in the midst of a vast ocean.

If you've been to Hawaii, talked about Hawaii, or even really read a page on Hawaii, you've probably heard by now that the archipelago is home to three active volcanoes, and several more dormant ones. Feared for their destructive power, volcanoes are one of nature's many paradoxes. In the long-term, volcanoes literally build our planet's surface. They thrust elements buried deep within the earth to the surface as flaming hot magma, and that magma erupts, cools, and eventually lays the foundation for the land. Creative destruction is the essence of a volcano.

So have you ever wondered why the Hawaiian Islands stretch out in an almost linear fashion to the northwest? That isn't merely a coincidence, and once again it has everything to do with volcanoes. Hawaii sits over a hot spot, or an area in the mantle where the rock is significantly hotter than the surrounding rock. As a result, magma slowly oozes out of the surface of the Earth at a given point, and since geologists have discovered that the Earth's crust is constantly in motion over the mantle, a series of islands can be formed over time. As such, we can establish that Hawaii, the largest island in the chain, is also the newest island in the chain. Geologists estimate that it’s roughly 400,000 years old. As you go further northwest, the islands get older; and you are more likely to encounter atolls. An atoll is nothing more than a volcanic island that has eroded back into the sea after millions of years. This effect creates the eye-opening lagoons we have become accustomed to seeing at these atolls.

Now you have a series of islands in the Pacific that differ with age, but how did they become so vibrant with life? Well when the magma finally cools and softens, the soil becomes incredibly fertile. Overtime, plant spores transported by various means find their way to the islands and begin infesting it with plant life. As plant life migrates in, animal life soon follows. Birds migrate, mammals and insects hitch a ride on human vessels, and the animals that arrive on the islands evolve and become an endemic, or exclusive to an area. It should be noted that everything described has taken place on an extraordinary time scale of millions to billions of years. Lush islands don't just spontaneously appear.

Several years of geological and biological history culminate in the islands that we've all come to admire. At Hawaiian Jellys, we demonstrate our pride in the Aloha state by incorporating its magnificent culture and environment right into our products. With Hawaiian wear for men and women, we give you the necessary attire to really bring a piece of Hawaii with you wherever you go.

Perhaps the most gorgeous state in the union, Hawaii has a plethora of characteristics to appreciate. By learning about those characteristics, you can really feel a sense of pride when you wear Hawaiian Jelly’s products that feature the best in Hawaiian culture and design. Share your experiences visiting any of the Hawaiian volcanoes