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If you are making a trip to Rainbow Falls in Hilo, you might want to consider hopping back in the car and driving another five minutes a mile-and-a-half up the road to Pe‘epe‘e Falls (pronounced Peh-eh Peh-eh).
Also known as “Boiling Pots,” Pe‘epe‘e Falls is a section of the 18-mile-long Wailuku River, of which Rainbow Falls is also a part.
(story) about Hina, the Hawaiian goddess of the moon who dwells beneath Rainbow Falls, continues at Boiling Pots.
Maui couldn’t get a good shot at the mo‘o, who was hiding in the potholes.So he called upon Pele, the goddess of fire, who gave Maui hot stones to throw in the river.The second longest river in Hawaiʻi, Wailuku River flows along the line where lava from both Mauna Loa and Mauna Kea meet.The river eroded a gorge in the two lava flows, which were also filled twice by younger lava flows from Mauna Loa.At Boiling Pots, the lava created spaced, nearly vertical columns that formed as the lava cooled in the river bed.
When engorged with storm water, the river rises, and water in the terraced pools or “lava pots” becomes turbulent and appears to be boiling.