Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Earthquake on the Hawaiian Islands!!

A week of exciting weather here on Maui! Our weather is usually pretty boring... highs in the 80's/lows in the 60's. Well, not this week! Sunday, October 15, I was awakened by a rumbling sound and the whole house shaking. I live in the back of a large house and my place is on stilts. The shaking was quite violent and the sound just as alarming. Jack was as freaked out as I was! This shaking lasted approximately 20-30 seconds, but seemed like a lifetime. Our power was immediately knocked out which made it difficult to find out what was exactly going on or what to expect next. I called my mom who did some research online. It took several minutes before she was able to get any information. There was one radio station on the air in all of Hawaii during this time, an a.m. station on Oahu. Thankfully my beach radio is battery powered! It turns out the actual quake originated about 9 miles off of the west coast of Hawai'i. Maui is the first island north of Hawai'i, and I live on the south western coast of Maui. Our power was restored several hours later and my fears were calmed after many reports assuring that there would be no tsunami! I have never experienced an earthquake before. My first thoughts were to go into my bathroom because that's what you do in VA if there is a hurricane. Thankfully it didn't matter because there was no structural damage to the house. Now I know to go outside away from the house or at the very least to stand in a doorway. It seems kind of obvious now, but at the time it was like, "what is happening?!"

We had a ton of rain this week and now they are warning of flash floods thru Sunday. My poor baby car is so soggy. My back window doesn't close on my convertible, so it's hard to keep the rain out. I haven't gotten it fixed b/c it rarely rains here. (For real, Hagen!) Actually, on the topic of my car.. someone tried to steal it a few weeks ago!! I had to have it towed to a garage and they removed whatever object was broken off in the keyhole of my ignition. Thankfully they didn't steal it or do too much damage!! I live in one of the safest areas on Maui!

Here are a few sites with info about the earthquakes here in Hawaii. All of the major damage is on the island of Hawai'i (the Big Island) so I am lucky to be on Maui! Thanks for all of your concern about my well being. Aloha!




Wednesday, October 04, 2006

The Na Pali Coast- The Kalalau Trail

Flew to Kauai last Friday with a group of friends. Had been planning our big hike on the Kalalau Trail for a few weeks. The trail is on the north shore of Kauai and is famous for its rugged terrain and it's length (11 miles each way). These are not 11 flat miles, that's for sure! Here is a website I found about the trail if you want to check it out: http://www.hawaii.gov/dlnr/dsp/NaPali/na_pali.htm

We arrived in Lihue early in the evening, and checked into the cottage in Kapa'a that we reserved from a posting on craig's list. Cute cottage surrounded by lush rainforest. All of us commented on how much more green Kauai was compared to parts of Maui. Very beautiful all over the island.

We got a late start Saturday a.m. due to a few beers the night before and a few last minute purchases. We really didn't know what we were up against at that point or we would have gone to bed early and started at sunrise. We really goofed by not starting the trail until 10 am! We hiked 8 hours (including about 45 minutes exploring on the first beach we came to 2 miles in). We calculated that we were only moving about a mile an hour due to having to climb and follow continuous switchbacks on narrow trials. Our packs were heavier than they should have been even though we were all careful to pack as lightly as possible. You just have no idea how tough this hike is until you complete it!

We camped out about 8 miles in, and finished the trail Sunday morning. There was a super scary section around the 9 1/2 mile mark that really challenged us psychologically and physically. You had to watch your step on a very narrow trail on a ledge that seemed to go on forever! We finally arrived at our destination at the Kaulalau beach and set up camp. We relaxed for a bit, checked out the scenery which included a really nice waterfall to shower in. We needed it badly!

We hiked a 2 miles to some pools through a beautiful forrest because the 11 miles in weren't enough of a challenge (yeah, right). It was nice even though the water was really cold!!

The next morning a few of us boated out (a new experience with views we wouldn't have seen otherwise) and a few of us hiked out. We took a bunch of weight out of our friends backpacks so that the hike out was much easier.

Dan and I drove around Kauai a bit after we got to shore. I was so looking forward to a fresh bottle of water!! (we had to put iodine pills in the water we drank from the streams on the trail and it was yucky). We check out a lighthouse and bird sanctuary.. the link to this place is:
http://www.hawaiiweb.com/Kauai/html/sites/kilauea_lighthouse.html . I will post pictures soon but just wanted to go ahead and post this since it's been 2 weeks already!! Aloha. :) Susie