‘Dr. Beach’ says powerful Hawaii shoreline is 2021’s best

FILE - This Aug. 30, 2006, file photo, shows Hapuna Beach Park on the Big Island of Hawaii. Stephen Leatherman, a coastal scientist and professor at Florida International University, has been drafting a list of the best beaches in the U.S., under the alias “Dr. Beach” since 1991. He has named Hapuna Beach Park the best beach in the country in his 2021 list. (Michael Darden/West Hawaii Today via AP, File)

HONOLULU — Cruising along the west side of Hawaii’s Big Island, the landscape is dominated by ancient volcanic flows and jagged shorelines. Then you get to Hapuna Beach.