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10 Apr
2011

Travel Blog #88 - Waimea Canyon Bike Ride with Outfitters Kauai


We showed up at the Outfitters Kauai office in Poipu at just before 6AM to check in for their downhill bike trip. The ride goes down the road along the rim of the Waimea Canyon. A couple weeks ago I went on a hike along the opposite rim of the canyon, so I knew what kinds of incredible landscapes we would encounter on today's bike ride. It was a rather grey morning at the headquarters in Poipu so I was a little worried that rain could become a factor during the ride. My worries dissolved as we traveled westward towards Kekaha because the weather improved significantly as soon as we got past the town of Kalaheo. Once we reached Kekaha we turned up the hill and our guides began some very interesting narrations.

Andy paused to show the group some various trees that we passed on the way up the hill. He shared his wealth of knowledge about Hawaiian plants and history by clearly identifying the species of most of the plants that we passed as well the country of origin. Andy was also able to elaborate on many of the stories behind the plants (which he did). He explained how most of the plants in Hawaii were originally brought to the island by people. He also told us what the original purposes were behind their initial introductions. Until this morning I did not know that all the Eucalyptus trees along the road to the Waimea Canyon were originally planted to help stabilize the soil around the road during its initial construction. I also did not know that the road to the Waimea Canyon was originally constructed to service the elaborate aqueduct system that was in already in place throughout the highlands of Kauai to divert rain water out of the swamps to provide irrigation water for the fields below.

The bikes we were outfitted with were purpose built for this trip. They consisted of a beach cruiser style frame with modern breaks and a single gear. As we began our ride down I instantly noticed the massive stopping power that the cable disc brakes provided, which I appreciated. I also liked the wide seats and upright bars. If I were to go off-road or up a hill I would definitely want to ride a bike that was set up differently. However, for the downhill, paved trip we were doing today... these bikes were perfect.

How this tour was set up was similar to the other bike tours that I have done before on Maui. Andy drove the van behind the group and the other guide Maggie, took position as the lead rider at the front of the pack. Maggie and Andy each had two-way radios and were constantly communicating with each other. Andy would drive behind the group and block the downward traffic with his the van. Periodically the whole group would pull over to the side and let traffic pass. When I got to the end of the ride I was talking with one of the other riders and he said: (more)

"To tell you the truth, I thought that we were going to have to go pretty slow because we were on a tour. I was wrong."

I had similar expectations, and was also very happy that we didn't have to ride the brakes the whole way down. Towards the beginning of the trip we didn't go that fast because of the corners. We weren't going slowly, but I was definitely using my brakes. When we got farther down towards the bottom of the road it straightened out and we got to let the brakes go and see how fast we could ride. We finished the high-speed section at the end of the tour and we pulled up at the market where the ride ended. I looked around as I got off of the bike and every single person in the group had a smile on their face. I think it's safe to say that we all had a good time.

I had similar expectations, and was also very happy that we didn't have to ride the brakes the whole way down. Towards the beginning of the trip we didn't go that fast because of the corners. We weren't going slowly, but I was definitely using my brakes. When we got farther down towards the bottom of the road it straightened out and we got to let the brakes go and see how fast we could ride. We finished the high-speed section at the end of the tour and we pulled up at the market where the ride ended. I looked around as I got off of the bike and every single person in the group had a smile on their face. I think it's safe to say that we all had a good time.




Travel Blog - Articles #80 to #89

This morning I woke up to very wet and rainy weather at my house in Lihue. My girlfriend had to work and I really wanted to do something more exciting then messing around inside on my computer all day.

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I remember the first time I stood up on a wave. It was a sunny day at a break near Oluwalu on Maui. It was in the middle of one of the summertime adventures with my uncle Dennis that were commonplace during my childhood.

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Today we had something happen that was slightly out of the ordinary. We were on an air tour around Kauai with Airventures Air Tours, when out of the depths of the ocean underneath us appeared a pod of massive Humpback Whales.

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I love the sunset sails on Kauai. I really appreciate that with these sails, there is an actual destination to the whole adventure. You get to sail all the way to the Napali coast while you watch the sun go down.

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I remember passing by the sign for Kauai Photo Tours in Kapaa when I first came over to Kauai in January and thinking to myself how much I was looking forward to going on that trip.

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I had an idea of what we were getting into when I showed up at the headquarters of the Wailua River Guides in Kapaa, but I had no idea how much I was going to really enjoy the kayak and the hike up the river that we did today with Wailua River Guides.

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Today we went out with Aloha Kauai Tours on their Kauai Backroads 4x4 Tour. We met the group at the Kilohana Plantation where we parked my truck and jumped in their customized 4x4 van.

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As we checked in at the Blue Dolphin store in the shopping village of Port Allen I looked up at the grey threatening looking sky and thought to myself:

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When I was a kid, my family lived in Kihei on the island of Maui. During the 1990s when I was growing up, Kihei was one of the fastest growing towns in the nation.

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Related Information

Are you a cycling enthusiast? If so then you're in luck! We offer cycling tours on all the Hawaiian Islands. The trips that we offer will take you to such places as the Volcanos National Park on the Big Island, the slopes of Haleakala on Maui or the rim of the Waimea Canyon on Kauai.

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Related Activites

$97.22 - $100.90

12 mile canyon to coast downhill bike ride that's fun and exciting. Bike ride 12 miles down smooth blacktop from the rim of the famed Waimea Canyon at 3500' elevation all the way to the shore of the blue Pacific.

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