Thursday, 10 May 2018

Rain reprieve

When we woke up this morning, I looked at the forecast for the day and it read rain - 80% chance.  I looked out of our window and sure enough it was raining again.  We took our time getting ready to go out for breakfast hoping that the rain would slow down and eventually go away.

We enjoyed a nice breakfast at Kim's Pancakes and then decided to go back to a few of the places that we had been the day before.  This time we had a large golf umbrella with us.  We decided yesterday that this might help keep us dry and also protect our camera.

Our first stop was a scenic drive which took us closer to the shoreline.  Unfortunately, we were forced to turn around because there had been mudslides as a result of all the rain.  We were surprised at how many rocks and soil had come down along the side of the highway. It's pretty crazy. There are lots of warnings here regarding rockslides and to be careful while driving.

After the scenic drive we headed to Laupahoehoe Point.  As we were driving the rain stopped and we were able to enjoy about 4 hours of dry weather.  We stopped along the way to take some pictures. There are waterfalls everywhere and in all different sizes.  Unfortunately you can't always stop to enjoy them.
A sea of palm tree's

At Laupahoehoe Point the waves weren't quite as high as they were the day before, but they were still just as amazing to watch.  It's actually pretty scary standing by the shoreline as some of the waves were still quite large and very intimidating and you get the sense that they will sweep you off of your feet.

Fresh coconuts

After enjoying a couple of hours here, we decided to go back to the Rainbow Falls.  It wasn't raining at that point in time but when we arrived it had started back up again.  The umbrella came in very handy.  It would have been nice to have some sun to bring out a rainbow but we're pretty happy with the pictures we got.

On our way back to our hotel we passed a market so we decided to stop.  While we were there we talked with someone who told us where to go to see turtles.  We decided to go have a look.  There were two turtles that we could see. It was quite funny as one was quite far away and we were having so much trouble getting a picture.  We had seen the one below swimming in the water but didn't realize that it had crawled up onto the rocks about 50 feet away from us.  Luckily we spotted it before leaving.

We hope to go back to this area tomorrow morning before heading to the airport.  It's time to go home and get back to reality.  We've had a wonderful vacation.

Wednesday, 9 May 2018

RAIN!!! Enough already

Since we have been in the Hawaiian Islands it has rained every day.  That's two and a half weeks. While in Kauai we were able to avoid most of it by driving to different parts of the island but here on the Big Island - it's like a massive cloud has surrounded the entire island.  It has been pouring rain all day.  Not even a little drizzle but a downpour.  As a result, there have been small rock slides and parts of the road are flooded as we drive.  It's pretty crazy.

Ralph and have been patient but today was a bit frustrating.   We tried our best to enjoy the beautiful views, but with rain dripping down our faces and us becoming soaking wet, it was hard to stay positive.  Thankfully we had a rain cover for our camera but there was a strong wind blowing as well which caused water to get on the lens.  We were constantly wiping to keep the lens clean and dry.

We saw some beautiful areas and the waterfalls were really amazing.  We hope that tomorrow will be dryer and we can revisit them again.  We thought about visiting a Botanical Garden while here but it's just too wet.

Rainbow Falls

Moss everywhere - a result of all the rain

Still smiling

A beautiful stream beside the road
Another beautiful "small" waterfall

The waves were reported as 10-20 feet but we think they were much higher.  

Laupahoehoe Point - amazingly beautiful!!

The trees are huge here!

We finished our day with a really nice dinner at a restaurant called Pineapples.  The fish was amazing and so fresh.

Tuesday, 8 May 2018

The Big Island - Volcano National Park

Today we flew to the Big Island for the final leg of our vacation.  We were up early (4:30) and got ourselves a coffee at Starbucks before heading to the airport.  Checkin went very easy and we were able to relax before flying to Honolulu and then the Big Island..

The flight went well.  We arrived by 10:30.  It was pouring rain and it didn't let up at all today,  We decided not to let the rain stop us.  At our hotel they gave us some information on the volcano and we were advised that the park was open although many of the viewing areas were still closed.

That was enough for us to know and off we went.  We stopped first and enjoyed some lunch and then spent the rest of the day at the park.  I was amazed at how barren some of the areas were.  The highlight of the trip was when the sun went down and we could see the fire from inside the volcano. It was pretty cool.  Another interesting thing that we noticed was that the roads in many of the areas were not wet even though it was pouring rain outside.  We felt the pavement and it was warm to the touch.  We both found this pretty scary.  We also felt tremors while we were in the park. Another frightening thing.

Throughout the park you can see "steam vents" where lava is flowing underground.

Mauna Loa - the worlds largest active volcano
While we were here an event happened that got the rangers really excited.  Triggered by one of the tremors, rocks fell off the side of the wall int the volcano causing a large amount off activity within. 

Beautiful rainbow beside the volcano

Monday, 7 May 2018

Our final day on Kauai

Sadly it's time to say goodbye to Kauai.  We've had an amazing time here exploring the island and enjoying the nature.  We have seen so much and Ralph and I continue to be so amazed at God's majestic glory.

This morning we went for a final time to Shipwreck Beach to photograph the sunrise. I felt bad as I wasn't as mobile as I would have liked to be and as a result we couldn't do the 30-40 minute hike to the point.  Ralph was very gracious about it and instead we stopped at the first outlook.  I've got my ankle pretty wrapped up - but the uneven ground made it pretty painful to walk on.  As a result we also changed our plans for later in the day as we had hoped to go one more time to "Secret Beach" on the North shore but the trail is very steep and uneven and I wouldn't have been able to walk it.

We spent some time at the beach and were blessed with seeing two sea turtles and a monk seal.  I'm so amazed that they are not afraid of the people on the beach.  I just wish at times that people would give the animals more space.  The roosters were quite funny today as they have been on other days. They love to be near people but also seem to have to announce to everyone how happy they are. They crow all day long!!

After some time at the beach we went back to the hotel and packed up our suitcases and got ready for our flight tomorrow.  Afterwards we drove to the North shore and enjoyed lunch on Anini beach where we had fun watching the chickens chasing each other for food.  It was cooler at the beach but not a lot of surf this time.  There were a lot of snorkelers out exploring.  Neither Ralph or I had any desire to go into the water as the air temperature was just too cool.

We made plans to go out and enjoy a nice dinner this evening as our way of finishing up our time here on the island.  We went to Dukes which is at the Marriott Hotel.  They had some live entertainment and we really enjoyed ourselves.

We'll sure miss the beauty of the island but look forward to seeing what adventures are in store for us on the Big Island.

Sunday, 6 May 2018

Winding down

Today we took it easy.  The day was spent at the beach in Poipu.  It such a nice surprise to see a Sea Turtle there,  we were so excited.  I ran down with the camera and accidentally stepped into a hole in the sand and twisted my ankle so I have been hobbling around for most of the day.

We enjoyed an early dinner at The Beach House.  Afterwards we sat by the shoreline and watched the surfers.  What a relaxing time we had.  They were quite good and fun to watch.  We were quite impressed with the girls as we found they were much more aggressive in the water.

Around 6:30 we drove to Spouting Horn to photograph the sunset.   It was a lovely evening although there was alot of mosquitoes.  It's time to start thinking about packing as we prepare to leave for the Big Island.  We'll find out tomorrow if we will be able to go, but it looks like the volcano is far enough away so we should be ok.  Ralph read today that they have experienced over 1,000 earthquakes on this island this week.  That's pretty crazy.