We are staying at the Hilton resort in Waikaloa. It is built on the lava flow from 1859 where it spilled into Kiholo bay [The 1859 eruption of Mauna Loa and its human impact].
This is the dry side of the island and the surrounding area is very desert-like. As you can see from the photo I took (below), the resort area is not desert at all. That lush vegetation requires constant watering. (I don't know were the water comes from.) You can also see the parts of the lava flow that have not been transformed. It's very impressive to see it up close.
The photos are from the balcony of our apartment. When we woke up today there was snow on the top of the mountain. The temperature here is about 30°C (or 86°F for the only major country that isn't metric.2)
[Hat Tip: Ms. Sandwalk took the photos of snow-capped Mauna Loa with her telephoto lens.
1. That's where the Hawaiian observatories are located.
2. Liberia and Burma are the other two countries that aren't metric.