Saturday, January 27, 2007

Mopeds on Maui

After our time on the Big Island, we needed to island hop back over to Maui to catch our flight home. We had booked a red eye flight home, so we had all afternoon to kill back on Maui before our flight. So, why not rent some mopeds to kill the time!! We cruised around the town of Kihei, and south through the lava fields, and stopped a few times for pictures. We were a "gang" called the Wolverines......a very scary moped gang. I'm sure the locals were very afraid :)

Friday, January 26, 2007

10,000 Feet Up

On Maui, we drove 10,000 feet up the mountain to the observatory on top. Quite the change in temperature from the beach, I must say!! The sun set above the clouds in a spectacular array. I should have tried to shoot the stars from there. They were by far the brightest I had ever seen. Perhaps they were so bright and clear because we were so high and there was less atmosphere to look through, or maybe because Hawaii is in the middle of the ocean and doesn't get the polution wafting in from other large cities. Sounds like I need a lesson in science and astronomy.

Octopus Beach and a Shark

We spent a TON of time on many different beaches on Maui and on the Big Island. These shots are from a more remote beach on the west side of the Big Island down a very unmaintained road. (Good thing the car we were driving down that road was a rental!!) I remember this beach as the octopus beach, because we met a local man here who found an octopus just off the shore to take home to his fish tank. He said that he had another octopus at home but it was too big, and whenever it sprayed its ink, the whole tank turned color. The head of the new octopus was about the size of my fist, and then of course had all of its tentacles coming out. Quite the sight to see!! The tidal pools were very active with life here, full of tadpoles, small fish, snails, and some sort of sea creature that we named "sea poop"....yes, that's pretty much what it looked like but it moved on its own.

We camped for 4 nights at Spencer State park right beside the beach. (Not the beach in these pics, but another great one nonetheless). One day the lifeguard at the beach quickly called everyone out of the water, and within seconds, a helicopter was flying overhead. Shark!!!!!! The lifeguard had spotted a shark in the bay and reacted very quickly for the safety of everyone swimming there. I guess there are some reef sharks that hang around there which are pretty safe, but this one wasn't just a friendly reef shark. We weren't in the water at the time, but man, it would have been pretty cool to see the shark......from a safe distance of course!!

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Maui- Bamboo Forest

We spent a good chunk of one day hiking by the Seven Sacred Pools, through the bamboo forest on the Hana side of Maui. Yes, the infamous road to Hana is the queezy one that I talked about in a previous blog. The bamboo was pretty crazy. As the winds picked up, the tops of all of the bamboo trees knocked together like a percussion instrument. It's was sort of an eerie sound, not knowing if one of these trees was going to fall on our heads. The trail ended at a huge waterfall cascading down mountain. What a great spot for a snack and a rest!!

Hawaiian Sunsets

The Hawaiian sun seemed to go down within seconds, but was so beatiful. Above the clouds on top of the mountain on Maui is where we watched the sun go down in the first shot, and the rest were from the "windsurfer's" beach while we were waiting just before we had to go to the airport.