April 2015


As far south as one can easily go…

I would post photos and do other things here, but the Internet access at my current hotel is, in a word, terrible. The next time I expect to have decent Internet access is Saturday evening.

In addition to coming to American Samoa in order to be here, I thought that while here, I would attempt to get to the southern most point of land in the United States at Steps Point.

Unfortunately I did not make it there, but I came within about half a mile and a few hundred feet in elevation. The difference between as far south as I got and the last drop of land on this island was a steep downward journey along a trail that is not at all maintained.

That said, Steps Point is not, technically speaking, the southernmost point of land in a US Territory. That’s at the Rose Atoll, which is an uninhabited island that is part of the national park here in American Samoa (or maybe marine life sanctuary – the exact ownership is unclear to me, now that I think about it). To get there would involve a several day boat ride (practically speaking) and I would guess a lot of permits (the impractical part).

So I’m happy with what I’ve accomplished: From South Point on the Big Island of Hawaii (the southern most point of the 50 States), to Point Barrow (the northern most point of the entire United States), ending with being pretty close to Steps Point (the southern most point of land in the United States with inhabitants reasonably close by).

I might point out that the waters on both sides of the southern most point are marine wildlife sanctuaries (I would Google the exact information, but understand, my Internet here is very slow, like slower than 1997 Internet at the University of Wyoming), but a very nice family owns the land.

The family (well, husband and wife) were kind enough to give me a guided tour of the area, spending a great deal of time with me (far more time than I expected!), talking about what it is like to live and work the land.

One thing that I can safely say – now that I’ve had it on a few Pacific Islands, is that I no longer despise coconut, I actually like it, but with caveats. I must be fresh coconut, fresh from the tree. Anything for sale in Germany (or mainland USA) is probably disgusting and worth of being despised.

Tomorrow is a back to the future kind of day…

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