Woodson K. Woods is a hunter and a rancher, with 100,000 wild pigs and 225 Herefords at his back door. His hunting lodge sits securely in a fold of land 2,400 feet up the slopes of Mauna Kea, the 13,825-foot dormant volcano that dominates the Big Island, Hawaii. In his rolling pastures and forest land are wild pigs, goats and mouflon sheep. Game birds are present in profusion, among them Chinese ringneck and Japanese blue pheasant, quail, dove, partridge and pigeon.
The lodge, designed by Architect Thomas O. Wells of Honolulu, bears little resemblance to the lightly built, lanai-adorned Hawaiian homes of the beach areas. It fits perfectly into its pastoral setting. The roof is painted the soft gray-green of the leaves of the surrounding ohia trees, and the walls, built of local volcanic rock mixed on site with concrete, extend protectively. Inside, the lodge has the warm rustic quality found in mainland ranch houses, with beams and paneling of redwood hung with antlers, rams' horns, spears and outrigger paddles. The price for 1,100 square feet of space was kept to a reasonable $23,000, since the only building material imported was the precut redwood timber.
The odd Hawaiian artifact in the foreground of the picture opposite is a one-cylinder gasoline engine with flywheels, used 50 years ago to drive a coffee mill. The pointing dead tree is an olopua, one of the few left in the world. Hawaiian spears were once made of olopua wood, which was said to be so hard that a nail could not be driven into it. The lodge has only two bedrooms and a living and dining area (right), but it can sleep a dozen hunters. The second bedroom is equipped with bunks for Woods's three sons. A ladder, made of rough ohia wood, leads from the bunkroom to a sleeping loft, where there are six rollaway beds.
Woodson woods (above, at living room fireplace) has kept the decorating and furnishings simple. The window seats are made of polished ohia. The focus of the house is the rock-and-concrete chimney, rising 16 feet to a ridge beam. It has a built-in barbecue, deep raised hearths for wood storage and two fireplaces, the second opening into the master bedroom.
November 8, 1965
Hunting for wild pig with his sons Woody, 11, Christopher, 9½, and Jeffrey, 8, Woods takes the Land-Rover before stalking game on foot, using a 55-pound-test bow. Wild pigs in Hawaii can weigh up to 300 pounds.
The terne metal roof, low-pitched and wide-eaved, is close to ground on the back of the sloping lot, giving an air of protection to a house isolated between mountain and sea.