Fish Out of Water

Musings and observations about life from an East Coast native now living on the Left Coast in the California State Capitol since 2004. This fish has made her home in Madison, WI (7 years); Portland, OR (2 years); Las Vegas, NV (7 months); Middlebury, VT (3 summers); Marne-la-Vallee, a small town east of Paris, France (6 months); Middletown, CT (3 years); and Marshfield, MA, the fish's coastal hometown 40 miles south of Boston (17 years).

Location: Sacramento, California, United States


Kaua'i Trip (Day 1)

March 16 - Arrival in Lihue + Helicopter Tour
We had an early flight from Sac to SF with a long layover, so I got a chance to check out one of the Yoga Rooms at SFO while Mr. E relaxed in the United Lounge, where I joined him later and we both enjoyed the breakfast offerings and coffee. Neither of us had remembered that Hawai'i doesn't observe Daylight Savings Time, so we had underestimated the length of the flight from SF to Lihue - oops! We arrived in Kaua'i around 11:15am, picked up our rental car, and drove just a few miles to the Marriott Resort.

Our room wasn't ready yet, so we left our big red bag with the Bell desk and headed to the beachside Kalapaki Grill near the huge outdoor pool for some lunch. We explored the resort a bit, including the nearby Anchor Cove shops (ABC Store, Crazy Shirts, Papalani Gelato, etc.) before going to check in at Jack Harter Helicopters for our 3:15pm "doors off" tour. We also had our first up-close encounter with a few of the many island roosters and chickens:

We were a bit concerned that the windy conditions might cause a cancellation, but everything was still on schedule. And we had been warned ahead of time about how chilly the ride can be, so we had multiple layers and were very comfortable during the 1-hour tour that took us clockwise around almost the entire island.

Mr. E and I were lucky enough to be in the front seats next to the pilot, Ben, in the 4-passenger copter, so we had a panoramic view of everything! We saw amazing views of Waimea Canyon, Waipo'o Falls, Palalau Beach, the Napali Coast, Mt. Wai'ale'ale and its "crater," lots of waterfalls, and beautiful blue ocean with crashing waves and swells. The micro-climate of the island includes extremes of desert areas with less than 25" of average annual rainfall to the top of Mt. Wai'ale'ale, which is considered the wettest place on earth with more than 400" of average annual rainfall.

Below are just a few of the many pictures that Mr. E took of the incredible sights:


Once our unbelievable aerial tour was over, we returned to the hotel and learned that we'd gotten upgraded to a deluxe Ocean View room on the 10th floor - sweet! Our lanai provided a beautiful vista overlooking the pool area, Kalapaki Beach, and Kalapaki Bay. We wrapped up our first day by driving a couple of miles to the Kaua'i Beer Company, where Mr. E had bangers and mash (the latter made with taro, of course), I had a beet salad (with local beets from the farm of our Wailua river guide, as we learned a couple of days later during our kayak paddle and swim tour), and we both enjoyed sampling the beer.

I crashed after dinner, and Mr. E made a short trip to the ABC Store to pick up some supplies (wine, OJ) for the next few days.


Blogger Stephanie Goodner said...

Holy cow--these photos gave me chills!! Thank you for sharing these--I feel like I was in the helicopter with you! :-)

3:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hee views look like the ones on Hawai'i Five O-beautiful!

2:37 PM  

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