10 Apr
2011

Travel Blog #89 - Dog Walking on the Kealia Bike Path


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. Unfortunately, it grew so fast that some of the city planning came in after the fact. These rapid developments led to a fairly chaotic urban sprawl across South Maui. When I was in high school there was much talk about a "Greenway" that would cut through the entire town of Kihei. This space was supposed to provide a safe haven for pedestrians away from the hustle and bustle of South Kihei Road and the Pi'ilani Highway. Unfortunately, this "Greenway" in Kihei was never constructed. I was delighted to find out that there is a similar project in Kapaa on Kauai that has been approved, and is currently under construction.

This path is planned to span the entire stretch of coastline between Lihue and Anahola. Currently, the construction of the path has only been completed on two sections. The north section travels between Kapa'a and just north of Donkey's Beach. This stretch spans just over four miles. Farther south, the other two-mile segment of the bike path goes in front Lydgate Park (which is located just south of the Wailua River). The construction that will join these two segments of the path is expected to be completed in the near future. The completed sections of the path are perfect for taking a bike ride, hike, rollerblading outing, skateboarding ride or dog-walking journey.

Today we decided to take my black lab, "Holly Girl" for a walk on the bike path. We started out at the Kapa'a Boat Ramp, then worked our way north around the point to Kealia Beach. This stretch of coast is absolutely beautiful. From the point on the south side of Kealia you can see all the way down the coast. The view extends past Kapa'a and the Wailua River, all the way to the islands main airport in Lihue. We took our time walking and stopped to see all of the sights along the way. Pavilions were located periodically on the side of the path to provide users of the bike path with shade, as well as a comfortable place to sit down.

We stopped once we made it to Kealia Beach. I threw a stick for Holly Girl for a little over half an hour. The waves were rough but I was confident she would be fine. She has been a beach dog since she was a puppy. When she was small I used to take her to Makena Beach on Maui (Makena Beach is known for having a pretty strong shore break). I would go skimboarding and she would make it her mission to chase after me down the beach and into the water and oncoming waves. At first when she would do this I would try and make her stop; I worried that she would get hurt by the waves. Keeping her out of the water was easier said then done. Nothing I could do short of tying her with a metal cable would keep her from chasing me. Even if I did tie her she would cry like a little kid that was told "Christmas was canceled". Eventually, I just started letting her go for it and miraculously enough, there has been no serious incidents. Through these beach experiences as a puppy she developed the ability to completely submerge her nose under the water. This skill has helped her to learn how to do all kinds of stuff in the ocean that most dogs never learn how to do. Playing in the surf is one of her favorite things, and it is really fun to watch her in action.

We stayed at Kealia for a just under an hour until we started getting hungry and made our way back to Kapa'a. All in all, we spent about three hours from the beginning to the end of our trip. After we were done my girlfriend Simone told me:

"I wish we had known about this earlier, because we should definitely do this again."

We decided that we definitely wanted to do an excursion on the bike path again soon. I think next time we're going to start at Kealia Beach, then go north to the end of the path just a little ways past Donkey's Beach. This morning we saw some people riding tandem bikes down the path...... Maybe we'll have to give that a try at some point too.




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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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.

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