Posts Tagged ‘Kalypso Restaurant in Hanalei’

Kauai’s Epic Rainfall, April 14-15, 2018

February 10, 2019

(January 2019 Kauai Trip – Part 2)

Imagine you are visiting or living on the north shore of Kauai near Hanalei in the middle of April, 2018. You wake up on Friday, April 14, 2018 to a hard rain. Forecast calls for a major storm, so you hunker down inside your residence. The storm hits about 5 am but it’s ever more fierce than you imagined. It’s raining HARD, and continuously, throughout the day and into the night. You just can’t believe the persistent pounding on the roof and surfaces outside. Finally in the middle of the night, Friday night, you go out and capture a video: (take a little time here to listen – the sound of rain (albeit in small doses) can be a bit relaxing …)

Video taken Saturday April 16,3:30 AM by Theriault Brigette

Finally by 5 am Saturday the rain begins to subside. This storm turns out to be epic – dumping an average of 2″ an hour in Hanalei – 48 inches in 24 hours! Residents emerge to discover widespread damage and devastation – washed out roads, upturned vehicles, homes on the verge of collapsing or washed away, people stranded. Landslides.

You venture out, manage to get down along Hanalei Bay and witness the aftermath, maybe capture some respectable photos and video of the devastation. Here’s a video from (what must be) a drone, where one can see that Weke road – which runs between multimillion-dollar houses along Hanalei beach, near the dock, is clearly destroyed. So are several houses…

April 2018 Flood-posted by Aaron Feinberg

Rescue teams disperse in helicopters, rafts and jet skis. 152 people are evacuated by helicopter. Flooding sweeps a herd of buffalo away at a nearby ranch and buffalo are stranded in peoples’ yards and in Hanalei Bay. Buffalo stranded in Hanalei Bay? Yes. Someone captured a video of Hawaii cowboys, “Paniolo” on jet skis catching stray buffalo in Hanalei Bay:

Hawaii Paniolo catching buffalo

30 campers are stranded on the Kalalau Trail along the now-isolated Napali Coast. Bad timing for a backpacking trip! Turns out the Kalalau trail and Napali Coast are cut off because the only road going there, ‘Kuhio Highway’ has sections that are completely washed away.

To give you an idea of where this epic rain occurred, here are a couple of maps of Kauai. This first one is of the whole island –

Island of Kauai

This second map is a closeup of the North Shore where the April flood hit the hardest: Hanalei, and Napali Coast…

North Shore

The section of road in red is the Kuhio Highway that connects you to the Napali Coast – Ke’e Beach, Kalalau trail, Lumaha’i Beach… The road is closed because of extensive April 14-15, 2018 flood damage.

So when David, Eric and I visited a couple of weeks ago (Jan 17-31, 2019) we hung out on Hanalei Beach and then decided to take the Kuhio highway over to our favorite beach of all time, why of course, – Lumaha’i Beach! We weren’t even through Hanalei when … What ??

Kuhio Highway

Wow! Nine months after the flood and the highway is still closed? Is there no way to get to Lumaha’i Beach?

Nope. Not unless you have a permit to go past the barrier – and only as part of a convoy that enters and exits the area every 1 1/2 hours. If you live past the barrier, then you get a pass, but you still have to enter and exit the area with the convoy. Say you are a contractor, building a new house or or something past the barrier. You have to get a new permit every Monday (in Lihue) to enter the area for that week, and exit, with the convoy.

We learned much of this from talking to the locals. The Kuhio Highway had literally been washed away in places off the edges of the slopes of the Napali Coast. After removing debris they have to ‘slope scale, stabilize and reinforce’ the road – it’s a massive construction project. Here’s a link with lots of information about the ‘Project Status’ of the road repair – (for you engineering types who would likely find this fascinating):

Project Status as of 12/28/18

The town of Hanalei is fully alive, however, with businesses open and doing fine. Eric even successfully persuaded David and I to walk with him to the end of Hanalei Beach and then further along the rocky coastline to see if we could get to Lumahai Beach on foot. Sure Eric, why not?

We didn’t get too far till we had to turn back!

The end of the beach at Hanalei Bay

Directly parallel to us, off to our left is where the convoy begins. David counted 60 cars that lined up to go through at about 12:45 in the afternoon, January 26, 2019.

Here’s a couple more photos I took of Hanalei Bay as it looks now:

Hanalei Bay

The dock

And a couple of the houses on Weke Road along the beach near the dock that were severely damaged on April 15 and still standing, as if they haven’t even been touched since the flood (insurance settlement issues?? Too unsafe???):

Now dear reader, if you have any time, energy or inclination to look at another April 15, 2018 Kauai flood you-tube video – this last one is really quite interesting. It was posted by a local woman – obviously someone who lives or has lived on or close to the beach here where the flood took out these houses. Anyway, she provides close-up coverage of the flooding around the houses on the beach and interesting commentary about the building of these (multi-million dollar?) houses in this unfortunate location:

Weke Road Flood update Hanalei 5-2-18- Felicia Alongi Cowden

And lastly, wouldn’t you still like to get to the fabulous Lumaha’i Beach? Dang! Well, you’re in luck because I can take you there. Here is a video of the beach I took on a previous trip to Kauai, way before the flood – posted in one of my previous Kauai blogs – link here.

Although my video doesn’t hold a candle to a video I found on You tube of the same spot: click on this video by Cyndi Totti – taken on January 20, 2016, during record high surf with an added bonus of lots of girls in bikinis diving into the crashing waves (You’re welcome).

Aloha! Now you understand why my brother Eric was coaxing David and I to walk with him along the treacherous rocky coastline beyond the barrier to get to Lumaha’i Beach!

Meanwhile, back at home in Idaho at the moment …

Sunday, Feb 10, 2019

Yeah. Nature pretty much gets her way.

No worries. We’ve hired a crew to shovel us out. They’ve just pulled up in front of our house

Sweet!

Young strapping males

Feb 10- 5 PM – Yes!!

Oh, BTW- After every hike on the beach at Hanalei we do have the option of refreshing ourselves with a round of Iniki Mai Tais at the Kalypso Restaurant in Hanalei.

Kalypso, Jan 21, 2019 3:15 pm

And feed off of my brother Eric’s infectious energy.

Although look at those eyes. What new mischief is he up to? Devising another lawless scheme to get us past that barrier over to Lumaha’i Beach? Hmmm. Seems likely. What do you think?

Oh, and by the way, click on this link if you’d like to give to the Kauai Relief and Recovery Fund through the Hawai’i Community Foundation.

Kauai’s North Shore: Princeville, ‘Puff’, Starfruit, Giant Surf, and a … Mermaid?

February 4, 2018

When we visit Kauai, we stay in Princeville on the north shore. It is the rainier part of the island, but on most rainy days showers give way to mists and rainbows, and sun again. Below is a (admittedly rather crappy) visual of the Island. Locate Princeville on the northern edge and you can see that to get to sites on the western side of the island you have to drive around the perimeter of the island.

Island of Kauai

Kauai is small enough, though, that you can reach any area of the island by car in an hour or so. Just for fun, here you see a topographical map of Kauai. It is very mountainous, which explains why you can’t drive across the island.

Our favorite places around Princeville include Hanalei Bay, Lumaha’i Beach, and the Queen’s Bath, all of which we visited this last trip. Hanalei Bay is about a 10-minute drive west of Princeville on the North shore, home of “Puff the Magic Dragon” made famous in a song in 1963 by Peter, Paul and Mary. (OMG! 55 years ago?)

We walk to the end of the dock and then down the beach along Hanalei Bay

Steph and Vic walking the beach at Hanalei Bay

Here’s a picture of David on the beach. Do you see the girls in bikinis?

Nothing wrong with David’s vision


No?

David does. Wading in the water by the dock …

By now, being so very hungry and thirsty after our walk on the beach, we head to the Kalypso in Hanalei for lunch and libations. When my drink arrives I find myself staring at … Yoda?

You’re going to eat me?

I shouldn’t eat him, right? Well, he is a slice of starfruit. It’s quite tasty. The pulp is crisp and not too sweet.

Steph and Vic have a starfruit tree in their front yard, with ripe fruit.

Starfruit tree

Here you see one being sliced:

Okay, to make this blog extra special I’ll include the video I took of my brother Eric with his assignment from Victor to harvest the ripe starfruit on their tree:

Despite the rigorous requirements of the job, Eric seems up to the task.

By the way, after you visit Hanalei you absolutely must drive 8 minutes further west on Route 56, pull off to the side of the road and park, and walk the path down to Lumaha’i Beach! We visit this beach every year. It is magnificent with high surf, albeit it is unsafe for swimming and surfing most of the year. This beach was made famous for a scene in the movie ‘South Pacific.’ The surf was low when we visited this year and I didn’t take a video. But it is worth sharing the video I took last year…

Although I do catch a rooster crowing three times (??) in the background, my video doesn’t hold a candle to a video I found on You tube of the same spot: click on this link – taken on January 20, 2016, during record high surf with an added bonus of lots of girls diving into the crashing waves in bikinis. (You’re welcome, honey)

I took a photo of the short climb back up…

Onward now, to the Queen’s Bath, again, only a few minutes drive from Princeville. Here, a visual of the area:

So high tech – screenshot of a Google link

You can practically walk to the Queen’s Bath if you’re in Princeville, however, the path down to it is treacherous after a rain. David, Eric and I hiked down to it on a sunny day, after a few rainy days. Boy was it slick! We didn’t follow too closely behind the people in front of us.

The trail takes you down onto a ledge of rocks

Follow the rock surface along the shore to the point – where you have marvelous views of the distant coastline.

We have been to the Queen’s Bath several times but have never seen the bath because it was covered by high tide. But today – we hit it at low tide. The ocean has retreated enough to expose the bath, and the waves crash over the edges of the bath replenishing the water. As the bath comes into view – we notice a swimmer in it.

It’s a mermaid

A mermaid? She must have washed up into the bath from the ocean with the other fish? Hey if fruits can make eye contact with you while perched on the edge of your drink in Kauai, then why would a Mermaid encounter surprise you?

Pretty certain she’s a mermaid

Suddenly the mermaid disappears from sight and humans of all sizes scramble to the edge of the bath like clusters of crabs.

They jump in, swim around, climb out, and another group lines up along a descending ledge, climb in, and swim.

We watch the swimmers a while, then decide to hike back out. (Maybe next time we’ll wear our suits, or flippers or something.)

Hiking back out now.

The muddy path weaves through what looks like a Giant’s petrified potato patch.

Hiking back up from Queens Bath

Toward the top of the trail I pass a very large spider. Do you see him/her? She’s right in the center of the photo – a yellow blotch.

Spider is dead center

Here, I’ll zoom in on her so you can get a closer look:

See her striped legs? I think she’s a common Kauai garden spider. Pretty exciting. When was the last time you saw a large garden spider?

Okay, well, we blast our muddy shoes, legs and feet with the hose nozzle before we announce our arrival to Steph and Vic back at their house in Princeville.

So … why do I keep writing these endless Kauai blogs??? Just think! I could have been outside instead, picking up dog turds strewn across our back yard that dropped like pine cones out of the winter snow melt.

Kauai 2016 – Part 2

January 24, 2016

Blizzard of 2016 slamming the U.S., burying most of the east coast in at least a foot of snow?

Let’s go back to Pila’a Beach! This next photo was among the photos I had taken at Pila’a Beach and blogged about in my last post. I had left this photo out! – The ancient banyan tree near our picnic spot …

Find the Buddha

Find the Buddha

A perfect place to meditate. I showed the photo to David. This picture got left out of my last blog! I said. “All that’s missing is the Buddha,” is what he said.

Sit with the photo for a bit …. ‘Ommmmmmmmm…’ Can you find the Buddha? ….. um …..ommmmm …..uh, …. mmm …

Yes? No? Yeah, well, this is the image that greeted us at breakfast, bright and early the next morning:

Why don't you drive us insane, Eric, with your shirt?

Why don’t you drive us insane, Eric, with your shirt?

It’s brother Eric, wearing his crazed kitty shirt, or fluorescent whirlies kitty vortex migraine headache shirt, or something. Geez, Eric. Isn’t the Kauai sun bright enough for you?

One of our favorite hikes is to Sea Lodge Beach, which we walk to from Steph and Vic’s house just by crossing a couple of holes on the golf course. Eric, David and I visited Sea Lodge Beach several times. Steph came with us once. Here we are, on the golf course.

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(You can also drive to SeaLodge Resort and park near the trail to the beach, but that’s just too … sensible?)

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David is watching like a hawk for golfers tee-ing off and flying golf balls. He leads the way along the edges of the course, and we follow. Notice the signs posted at the trailhead to the beach

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Caution – this trail is extremely dangerous. It is steep, slippery and hazardous…Use at your own risk….

Eric has already started down…

We crossed a little creek and then entered a banyan tree mini-jungle.

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An elevated rocky narrow path takes you along rock cliffs to Sea Lodge Beach. We only made it to the beach once. A couple of families with young children made it too.

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They scrambled across that narrow ledge along the rocks, hopped down onto the beach and were immediately in the water, snorkeling. The beach is quite secluded.

Sea Lodge Beach

Sea Lodge Beach

Walking back now – here’s David navigating the narrow path along the cliff.

Wouldn't do this after a rain!

Wouldn’t do this after a rain!

There’s a beautiful spot on the rocks along the way where you can sit and enjoy the crashing waves, which is where we usually hiked to.

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On our way back up now:

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We met several roosters and hens with half-grown clutches, cock-a-doodle-do-ing, clucking and pecking.

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And a lizard. There is one in the picture below. Can you see it?

Find the lizard

Find the lizard

… Near the center of the photo. Pretty well-camouflaged. The top of its head is orange. Still can’t see it? Look where the branches form a ‘Y. Yea!

Back up on top now near the trailhead taking in the view:

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We hit our favorite place in Hanalei for lunch – the Kalypso- and ordered a round of their killer Mai Tai’s, called Iniki’s – named after the 1992 killer Hurricane Iniki, the worst hurricane to ever hit Kauai, that freed the chickens (and pigs, and goats, and…) on Kauai.

I captured brother Eric’s state-of-ecstasy expression once again (see last year’s blog)

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after our round of Iniki’s was delivered. (Just kidding Eric, I was in a state of ecstasy too – those drinks are fantastic!)

After lunch we drove to Lumaha’i Beach, on the north side of the island just above Hanalei. It’s just off the road. It has the finest sand and a very impressive surf. Here we are, walking the beach:

Lumaha'i Beach

Lumaha’i Beach

Well, David, Eric, and Victor are walking the beach. That’s Stephanie walking along the shore where the waves are crashing.

We stop to rest and take in the action and sounds of the waves

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And of female voices and laughter

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More Mermaids? But of course, certain male members of our group insist we stick around on Lumaha’i Beach a bit longer to investigate…

Kilauea Farmers Market

February 5, 2015

At the local Farmers Markets you can find the most lucious locally grown fresh food. We visited the Farmers Markets both in Hanalei and Kilauea. Here we are, pulling into the Kilauea Farmers Market.

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At 9 am sharp. Right when it opens.

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Along with a throng of other eager shoppers.

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I’m suddenly starving for fresh organic vegetables

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and fresh tumeric, maybe…

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You stand there looking at it, vibing it, and just know intuitively, it’s an extremely healthy and therapeutic plant, er, root. A heavy-duty anti-carcinogenic, for sure. You should seriously buy a heap of it. Except, what do you do with it? Here, I googled it: “what to do with fresh tumeric’ Looks like you prepare and use it as a strong flavoring, much like you would fresh ginger. You might find the link helpful (or maybe Google it yourself) if you want to know more about how to use fresh tumeric root and especially if you think you’d like a recipe for Beef Rendang.

Ah, what have we here? ULU?

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Ditto healthwise on the ULU? So I Googled ULU too (say that five times really fast as a brain exercise – an added health bonus for reading my blog). ULU or ‘breadfruit’ is apparently grown in about 90 countries throughout South and Southeast Asia, the Pacific Ocean, the Caribbean, Central America and Africa. It gets its name from the texture of the cooked fruit, which has a potato-like flavor, similar to freshly baked bread. It is a staple food in many tropical regions. ULU, like potatoes, are roasted, baked, fried or boiled. But, actually, since we hail from Idaho I think I’ll stick with potatoes. At least for now. I believe that’s the first time I’ve seen ULU’s in my entire life.

Eric is carrying our spoils

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What uncanny fashion sense he has. In this case, dressed as though he belongs in the basket.

Victor has home-cooked menus planned, lists made, before we hit the Farmers Market. Then he surprises us at mealtime. Like, with his won ton soup for lunch.

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Wontons stuffed with fresh pork and herbs, in a seasoned broth, garnished with fresh chinese bok choy, green onions and cilantro. (I think. I actually tried to make it myself after our last visit and it was a total disaster.)

But aren’t you getting healthier by the minute just reading this blog? The images alone should increase your vitamin, mineral and antitoxicant, I mean, antioxidant levels. And a brain exercise embedded in the blog to boot!

Yes, so we all need balance in our lives, so of course, we also eat lunch out – at the Kalypso in the center of Hanalei.

David's shadow entering Kalypso

David’s shadow entering Kalypso

The Kalypso is a great place for lunch, especially after dragging your body through a long strenous hike, and you need to shower before you can enter your own kitchen. The Kalypso offers a very special drink, you know, to quench your thirst after a long hike, or short hike, or walk on the beach, sunbathing on the beach, buying post cards, etc. It’s called an Inikki.(I may have spelled this wrong – it’s hard to recollect exactly.) Okay so I did spell it wrong – one of my dear readers sent me a FYI with this link as a hint as to how (and why) the drink is spelled: ‘Iniki’- as in ‘Hurricane Iniki’– a category 4 hurricane with 145 mph winds that hit Kauai September 5, 1992. Iniki was the most powerful hurricane to strike Hawaii in recorded history. Damage on Kauai was the greatest, where more than 1400 houses were destroyed, more than 5,000 damaged, and likely just as many chickens freed that still roam the island today. ‘Iniki’ – meaning, “strong and piercing wind.” We ordered four (plus an organic beer for Steph). Since the presentation was so beautiful I just had to take a picture:

Eric having an ecstacy experience

Eric having an ecstacy experience

Uh, news flash, Eric. Those drinks are for four people. Eric does appear to be deriving indescribable pleasure from his drink – I feel a tinge of guilt depriving him of mine. What? No way! Of course I’m drinking mine!

Usually at breakfast we devoured a fresh fruit plate (compliments of the Farmers Markets and Victor) – fresh pineapple, chinese grapefruit, papaya (picked from Steph and Vic’s tree), rambutan (those red spiny balls). Oh, here’s an example

Still-life of breakfast plates with the burned out LED sidewalk lamps Eric was supposed to fix

Still-life of breakfast plates with the burned out LED sidewalk lamps Eric was supposed to fix

We devour every last morsel.

'Victor depositing the last used napkin"

Victor depositing the last used napkin

We’ve got to beef ourselves up, you know, nourish and strengthen our bodies for the Jungle Hike ahead that Eric has planned for us. Does that sound like a potential death march to you?