May 2007 Archives

Epic Memorial Day Weekend

This weekend was great. Saturday Ray, Olivia and I climbed the Butte out in Matsu with those little dogs. Sorry, no pictures of that shorty hike. Sunday, Ray and I summited Matanuska Peak also in the valley. That was 10 miles and 5,600 feet of sleety butt busting.
Monday, Olivia, Jason, Allen, and I biked the 26 mile Eklutna lake loop. Here are some pictures of Matanuska Peak and Eklutna Lake

Kauai Vacation Wrap Up


Hawaii is a wonderful place. Kauai in particular is a lot like southeast Alaska. It has an active outdoor lifestyle. It is a smallish community. The ocean and mountain cultures meet. Cost of living is different. There are a lot of seasonal workers. They are excluded from free shipping promotions because they are not in the continental US :)

We spent ten lovely days hiking, biking, snorkeling, touring, diving, driving, zip lining, dining, boating, and just relaxing. Probably one of the best vacations ever.

Here's a wrap up of the blog posts

Here is a selection of our favorite pictures and movies

Kauai Vacation Day 10

Today's Pics Last full day on the island. Today was Jim's grueling hike day. I hiked the grueling Kalalau trail along the Napali coast. Our guide book had this one completely screwed up. So, I kind of missed the mark, but had some good hiking and adventure anyway.

The hiking is really straight forward when it is dry. The lava rock is easy terrain, but the washouts can be bad and streams can flood. The trail traverses steep run-off valleys with lots of ups and downs. There are tons of run-off streams and warnings about Lepto Spirosis which is an unfriendly bacteria in snail eggs that transmits via mammal urine and water. Between the goats and feral cats, there is a lot of mammal urine.

I heard the voices and smelled the cigarettes from some dopes all cabellos'd out for goat hunting. I can't believe they didn't get one because I saw tons of them. Plus, some kind of grousey-stupid-chicken bird.

I also encountered some people from Jackson Hole, WY who were out for a camp. She had broken her ankle and they were waiting for a heli evac. I asked if they needed anything. She said, "Do you have a cigarette?" They didn't take my offered victory cigar. Though it turns out they did need some of the things from my first aid kit including pain killers and an ace bandage.

Long story short. The trail was longer than I planned for. I did 12 miles round trip. Missed the sexxy waterfalls at the end. Came back 4 hours late while my loving wife waited in the car. Ran out of water and had to drink the "snail water." I was later treated for lepto spirosis back in Anchorage.

It was a great hike!

Kauai Vacation Day 9

Today's photos We booked a "booze cruise" with Blue Dolphin tours. They take you around the Napali Coast, stop for a snorkel, booze you up, and then head back. They have a Dolphin sighting gaurantee (or you get another trip) and offer a short scuba for $35 bucks. It sucked! This was the low point of a great trip. The camera got saltwater on the lense. Olivia got very sea sick. They never called me back for my scuba lesson. So, I didn't get to dive. The place we went snorkeling was like a graveyard compared to the tunnels. Beautiful country and I had a nice nap back on the bow getting splashed. Should have done the dive lessons with the dive shop that had the cute Alaskan girl working there.

In counter point, we ate ate the best Thai restaurant ever, The King and I. The host was SO FUNNY. He was the first person ever wearing a tie. Kauai is so layed back, even with its formal where which means a nice island shirt. Anyway, he had a tie. I commented that that was the first tie I'd seen. He said, "Well it is a Thai restaurant." I laughed for 20 minutes. They did a cool spring roll thing where you break open the roll, stuff in mint and basil, pour in the sweet chili sauche and then wrap the whole thing in lettuce. Good stuff!

Kauai Vacation Day 8

Today's photosI started the day with an early morning ride up the trail next to our B&B. I encountered some boar hunters with a four wheeler. I think I scared the crap out of them. Notice the lifted Toyota trucks at the trail head. Lifted trucks seems to be the thing here in Kauai.

Check out the spider the size of my hand!

We spent today on the beach with a stop at Kauai orchids where Olivia bought some eye candy. The people there were very nice and knowledgeable.

The beach was fun and relaxing. We snorkeled our butts off and took lots of pictures of critters, fishes and turtles. We found a spot under a nice big ol' tree which shaded our favorite red head from the tropical sun. I fed the birds and gradually lured them closer to where they almost ate out of my hand.

Kauai Vacation Day 7

Today's photos Today was a planned activity day. Olivia lined us up an inner tube float through one of the plantations with Kauai Country Adventures. Trivia: the plantation is owned by Steve Case of AOL fame. The float was a lot of fun. They gear you up with a helmet and head lamp so you can see while you float through roughly two miles of tunnels. We bought one of those re-usable water proof cameras. The poor Caribbeans who were used to 80 degree water were freezing their butts off in the 60 degree irrigation canal. Roughly the same gig as the zip lining. They take you through the activity. Then you go to a water hole to have lunch.

Then we went to "The Tunnels" which is a coral reef on the north shore. The water proof camera came in handy for that. We used snorkel gear borrowed from the B&B and only had a short stint before the sun went down.