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Karen Jean Meech -- Personal

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Note -- This is very much a work in progress!

I live on the island of Oahu in Hawaii. Some may get cabin fever, but I travel so much for work that it isn't a problem. I live on the NE Oahu, away from the bustle of Honolulu - a 15 mile commute which is not bad at 4am (and terrible at other times), but the view is worth it! Whenever possible I take my ocean kayak out on the bay for fun and exercise.
My view
I take the kayak out on Kaneohe bay which is across the street from where I live. The kayaking is spectacular - both for good exercise and for the beauty. I've explored most of the reefs all around Coconut island, and even tried my kayak's "parasail". The only problem is braving the guantlet of watchdogs to get to where my kayak is stored!
Kaneohe bay
Coconut Island = #2


  • Ocean kayaking and Diving
  • hiking
  • Gourmet cooking - including my annual medieval feast (which has grown to about 10 courses!)
  • Music - I love to play my digital piano
  • Swimming and weight lifting.
  • New - collecting fossils

Travel & Recreation

My work life is pretty intense, and without any family locally to keep me in moderation, I tend to work 80-90 hours a week trying to keep up, get ahead and stay on top! Unlike many people who take vacation days here and there, I'd rather save them up for something really special. In 1999 I was finally going to take that long, special vacation, and was in a huge quandry as to where to go! There were two difficulties, the first being too many choices! I finally narrowed it down to an African Safari, research on wild dolphin societies in New Zealand, a trek into the Himalayas to study the snow leopard, wild wolf research in India (these latter 3 as EARTHWATCH expeditions), touring the Australian outback or kayaking and diving the Rock Islands of Palau. As I was just about to embark upon a special surrogacy project with my sister, I knew I would not be able to dive for awhile, so Palau won out (narrowly!). The second problem was who to travel with? Believe it or not, all the close friends I asked were too busy to take the time, even though I was paying air!

Below are some photos of this and other memorable experiences. I guess I really love the wilderness -- you will see few photos of cities and people! Click on small pictures for bigger versions.

Rock Islands of Palau Kayaking in Palau Palau reef fish Palau reefs
La Silla, Chile Atacama desert
Atacama desert
Atacama desert
Black bear pass, CO Black bear pass, CO Land Rover expedition Land Rover expedition
Peak District, UK Conwy Castle, Wales Scotland  
High Tatras, Slovakia Slovakia Denali, AK Wolf Encounter
Urubamba River
Valley, Peru
Macchu Picchu Peru Cerro Tololo, Chile Torres del Paine, Chile
Inca trail, Peru Telluride, CO Mauna Kea, HI Mauna Kea, HI
Puuoo active vent - HI Diving companions - HI Mauna Kea from Kileaua HI Halamaumau lava pond
I also very much love cold and snow, and try to make it home for Christmas in Colorado every year! Christmas home address: 6071 S. Detroit St. Centennial CO, 80121

Last modified: March 18, 2001
Karen Meech
Institute for Astronomy
2680 Woodlawn Drive
Honolulu, HI 96822