The plan was to do more than just the lookout. Joel and I had grand plans of experiencing Kokee via the 9.5-mile long Nualolo-Awaawapuhi Trail. Considered to be the most glorious ridge trail of the collection of trails that make up Kokee State Park. These plans would be scrapped, however, with the vicious rain and flash-flooding that attacked the island during our Spring Break stay. Meh. The mountains will always be there and we’re just an island away. We’ll save it for another trip. Maybe a day trip? We still found our way to Waimea Canyon, though. The drive up and the various lookouts would be our little glimpse into what we will, hopefully, experience in greater detail in the future.
While en route to the Maniniholo dry cave and the Waiakanaloa wet cave, on Kauai’s North Shore, we were treated to some very lush vistas. A recurrent theme that we noticed? Waterfalls. A lot of waterfalls. With so many waterfalls around, we found ourselves making frequent stops to gawk at them and soak in the views. One of the sweet spots was near Hanalei Elementary School. The students of this particular school are indeed very lucky. On any given day, they are able to step out of their classrooms and experience the majestic views of the three peaks that form Hanalei Valley: Hihimanu, Namalokama, and Mamalahoa. On the day that we were there, these mountains were free flowing with waterfalls. On your next visit to Kauai, look mauka (toward the mountain) from Hanalei Elementary, and you might see Waioli Falls, one of Kauai longest flowing waterfall. I didn’t have nearly as great a view from my elementary school in Kalihi.
While most people spent Memorial Day Weekend with family and friends at one of many crowded Hawaii beaches, Exploration: Hawaii decided to get away from it all and headed to a rarely used beach on the North Shore. After parking our car, Joel and I walked about a mile into this abandoned beach and looked for the perfect spot to swim for turtles. We found an area tucked between some coral and set up our beach mats. Almost instantly, we saw a couple of turtles swim near the shore. Joel pointed out the turtles and I quickly grabbed my GoPro HERO3: Black Edition and Bobber by GoPole and gave it to him. He then ran into the water and snapped these photos. These were taken with the first five minutes of setting up our beach mats. We then spent the next few hours swimming with more turtles than we could keep count of. Pretty amazing, indeed.