Camping and Kayaking

Trip Start Oct 22, 2012
Trip End Nov 23, 2012

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Flag of United States  , Hawaii
Saturday, November 3, 2012

We were busy, between the previous blog entry and now...  Two days after the Tsunami Evacuation, we headed back north to Hawi - and beyond - we followed the highway to its end and then hiked the short, albeit steep, Pololu Valley trail to a pretty, black-sand beach where we found some neat sea critters during low tide.  After hiking back uphill in swealtering (30+ degree) heat, we hopped in the car and took a beautiful scenic drive via hwy 250 (the Kohala Mountain Road), where we caught glimpses of moisture-filled clouds, lush, green hillsides, and distant volcano peaks.

The next day Maria and I again returned to North Kohala and Kapa'au to take a tour: "Flumin' da Ditch" with Kohala Ditch Adventures. This interesting, informative and enjoyable excursion saw us board kayaks and paddle 2.5 miles through old irrigation ditches along the sides of the Kohala Mountains.  The route took us through ~6 flumes (above ground, elevated water passages) and 10 ditch-tunnels through the mountainsides.  The kayak adventure concluded with an ATV ride through nearby macadamia nut fields.  Having finished our tour by mid-day, we drove south towards Kona and Mariajose discovered this great local fresh fish market and grill (just north of the airport), where we gorged ourselves on delicious fresh catch of the day.

The next couple days we spent around camp at Spencer Beach Park, lazing on the beach. One of those days we drove up the way to the world renowned Hapuna Beach State Park. While the surf was rather mild compared to my previous visits to the island at Christmas time, there were no crowds and it was a great day, which we followed up with a lu'au at the Marriott.  Here, we immersed ourselves in Hawaiian culture, filled ourselves with delicious food (pig, chicken, beef, salads, purple potatoes, as well as Hawaiian local dishes of poi, poke, and lomilomi) and drank our moneys worth of pina coladas.

Finally, we were ready to depart for a road-trip of sorts, so we began driving south. The last couple days have been spent in and around Kealakekua Bay and the village of Captain Cook.  Yesterday we toured around the Pu'uhonua O' Honaunau National Historical Park at Honaunau and learned about traditional Hawaiian heritage pertaining to the High Chiefs (Ali'i), and their dealings with Kapu breakers (sinners and law breakers).

Today we woke early and joined up with (what turned out to be) our own private kayak tour of Kealekakua Bay and the Captain Cook monument - the site where the famous explorer Capt. James Cook was killed by Hawaiians after some... (we'll call it) misunderstanding (in the effort to not put you to sleep reading this blog).  This nearly 5 hour trip allowed us to paddle across the bay, snorkel some of the best waters I've ever experienced, and learn from a very informative, passionate and funny guide by the name of Tyson.

To date, this was the hi-light of our travels!  And with that... I'd better wrap things up, so I send you a Hawaiian shaka (hang-loose gesture). Aloha!
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