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Kohala Hidden Treasure

Growing up here on the Island of Hawaii, you would figure that I would know almost everything about this island (history, culture, towns, etc.), well believe it or not, I didn't know everything about the island I call home. I discovered a hidden gem on the Island of Hawaii back in mid 2013 on helicopter tour of the island.

I discovered that back on the night of February 25, 1941 during a routine training mission. A fairly new B-18 Bolo bomber was flying between Maui and Hawaii Island and declared an emergency and made a emergency landing on top of hill in the Kohala Forest Reserve near Waimanu Valley. Amazingly all personnel on board survived the hard landing that was later to be discovered as just miraculous at that time. Although, it took rescue team a few days to traverse the rough terrain of the Kohala mountain to get to the survivors, air drops were made to the passengers of the B-18 Bolo Bomber hours after the crash was discovered by aerial search team from Hickam Airfield.

Only items that were ever recovered from the B-18 was the avionics and bombsight were the only items that were recovered. B-18 itself was difficult at the time to recover due to the location of the aircraft and left there. 76 years, it remains there as a living treasure for those few individuals aboard a helicopter tour to witness as a living artifact. Recently, Pacific Aviation Museum are making attempts to recover that aircraft to restore and display at the museum. As this aircraft is only 1 of 2 remaining B-18 Bolo Bombers in existences.

To me, this hidden treasure should remain in place as it will detail a better story to tell future generations to show how with will there a way you can survive out in the world around you.

Disclaimer: Recommended to witness this piece of history by helicopter tour. I highly do not suggest hiking to this true living history as it lies on private property and not accessible to general public. Please respect all local laws and preserve this treasure for future generations.


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