Friday, November 25, 2011

Give a Bike Vs. The Volcano

Hawaii!! State #50!  Thanks to The Best Wedding Coordinator ever: Michele Neff for sponsoring Hawaii.


After we left cold, cold Anchorage, we had a few days in Oahu without our bikes before we flew to The Big Island to complete our goal of touring through each of the 50 States. 

Waikiki was Hawaii in a nutshell.  Beautiful beaches, lots of palm tress, and restaurants on the ocean. 








In Waikiki, we were lucky enough to stay with family friend's, Linda and Tony, who took us to a few special spots along the coast.







A day traveling around the island with Zach and Meg let us get a taste for what we'll have to come back for someday.














Within a few days, we were leaving Oahu and on our way to The Big Island. APEC was in full force during our time in Waikiki, our bikes were waiting for us on The Big Island, and besides, we figured we'd just be getting more of beautiful Hawaii there, too.... or so we thought.





In stark contrast to Oahu, The Big Island was more or less a movie, built up too much.  We're in Hawaii!  We're supposed to be biking in between palm trees and white sand beaches, stopping around every corner with a picturesque view point, having a man in an Aloha shirt bring us a Mai Thai, all the while listening to Israel Kamakawiwo╩╗ole's version of Over the Rainbow in the background.

What The Big Island had in store for us was quite different from the ideal Hawaiian vacation, though.

Building our bikes back up when we picked them up at Bike Works in Kona.
Aren't we supposed to see Palm Trees lining every street?

Close. We did see some Palm trees, although we later found that many of them were actually imported to the island.









Instead, The Big Island is actually one of the most diverse terrains on the planet. Hilo, on the east side, is the wettest city in the USA, while the resorts on the west side get close to no rain. And you get a little of everything else in between.




We got to ride through what looked like open plains...





We took detours through the rain forest...







But mostly, we rode through miles and miles of volcanic rock from lava spills many many years ago. Nothing grows on this volcanic rock . No palm trees there.














How about white sandy beaches?

I believe there are a few of these on The Big Island. We visited one or two. One of them aptly named, White Sand Beach. I guess that's because the majority of the beaches are volcanic rocks or black sand. What a clever way to distinguish between the different beach terrain.





All of the volcanic rocks make for some amazing snorkeling, though.



We will most certainly have a Mai Thai while cruising through Hawaii.

Unfortunately, the $3.25 can of Sprite we bought deterred us from even looking at the drink menu.

Hawaii is expensive. We kept to our oatmeal breakfast, tuna wrap lunch, and pasta dinners for our time on the island.  We were also lucky enough to find some fantastic friends who helped us along the way.










Hawaiian music? 

We did hear Over The Rainbow coming from almost every car that passed throughout the island, but we found true Hawaiian music everywhere we went.  Just listen.....
















 In conclusion, while The Big Island may not be only palm trees and white sand beaches, it felt like we re-visited every part of the main land in just one week. You can get it all here!

Off to Kauai for some real rest and relaxation.... do you believe us?



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