4/28/13 – Big Day

Today began with an early breakfast.  Mainly because we have found that neither of us can sleep beyond about 5:30 am although we purposefully stay in bed just due to the principle of the matter.  We did want to get an early start though because we had decided to head down to the south and west part of the island and we had no idea how long it would take to get there.

Along the way we encountered several kinds of drivers, all bad.  An inordinately long email would be required to describe each of them so I will try and sum up as simply as possible.  Of course as on every road trip there were the speed up/slow down drivers who apparently don’t realize how fuel inefficient and hard this is on the engine.  The second kind of driver we encountered was prone to letting off the gas on every downhill section then trying to coast up the other side and of course never making it thereby slowing to almost a complete stop at the crest of each hill.  This obviously caused everyone behind them to have to slow down significantly as well, thus making the trip quite a bit longer than necessary.  The third kind of driver felt the need to tap his brakes every 3 seconds regardless of terrain.  Flat, straight, downhill, uphill, right curve, left curve…  It was never-ending and caused quite a bit of seasickness for those of us behind him. The fourth kind of driver was the kind who just wanted to get somewhere so he could use the bathroom and then proceed to his destination without his wife killing him for being so frustrated with other drivers.

Eventually the fourth kind of driver made it to Waimea Canyon road and proceeded upward.  And upward.  And upward.  The canyon was quite impressive, but honestly it could not hold a candle to how impressive the road was.  The entire trip is only 20 miles, but it takes close to an hour to accomplish because the road is so twisty.  Not even in Colorado had we encountered roads as steep.  A roller coaster would be embarrassed if placed next to the Waimea Canyon road.

The road eventually tops out at 5,140 feet.  Coming from sea level that is quite high.  And Cold!  It was only 59 degrees and raining a cold rain at the top so the viewing was quickly accomplished so we could get back in the car and warm up.  I almost forgot to mention that the viewing was pretty slim this day due to pea soup like fog that began about half way up the road.  Oh well maybe next time.  What we did see of the Canyon was very nice though and very green. 

We both got quite seasick coming down the road due to many factors (driver trying to have too much fun, twists and turns again, etc.)  Eventually we made it to the bottom and were quite glad to see the ocean again where we could get out and recover a bit before heading back to the North Shore.  The trip was also informative in that it showed us that the North shore is definitely much prettier and has nicer water than the Western part of the island.  Somehow we made it home faster than we made it there and we were glad of it.  Apparently it took close to 3 hours to get to the top of the canyon from home and only about 2 hours to get back.  We are both tired, but glad we were able to see some great scenery and explore a different part of the island. 

Hopefully included in today’s photos are some from our hike Friday which are sunny and fairly clear.  The other photos are of the canyon, sort of. Till next time, Aloha