“DARBY” THREATENS HAWAIIAN ISLANDS

“DARBY” THREATENS HAWAIIAN ISLANDS

Is Already Causing Flash Floods at Rainbow Shower
Flash flood 7-23-16 Panorama2

Just last night, after I completed my evening rounds of the Rainbow Shower, Elizabeth asked me, “how is it?”

“As perfect as can be,” I replied. “Wish I could freeze it like this.”

I had been working like a slave for three days this week to bring the four Rainbow Shower lawns into perfection, along with the shrubs, tree and other decorative plants on our property.

“But I know that’s wishful thinking,” I added.

We did not have to wait long to prove me right. As soon as I awoke this morning, hearing the roar of our creek, some 70 feet in elevation down in the gulch from our home, I knew we were experiencing another flash flood.

So I grabbed my umbrella (to protect the camera lens from rain), and walked down there. Butt naked. No sense in getting my clothes soaked. And not even birds are out and about in this kind of weather.

Here’s a 1.5 minute video clip I brought back:

FLASH FLOOD NUMBER…? [DARBY IS COMING]

 * * *

You will hear me conclude the broadcast by saying, “this is not the end.”

At the time, our internet was out. So I had no idea that this was not even a beginning. All this rain was just a forefront the tropical storm Darby is sending our way, I found out when the internet was restored. Packing winds of 50 to 65 mph, the eye of Darby is expected pass over the Big Island this afternoon, over Maui tonight, and exit the Hawaiian chain of islands over Kauai on Sunday night.

So “we ain’t seen nothing yet,” as my intuition suggested when I saw the flash flood down in the gulch this morning.

Here are some still pictures, too…

Here’s a weather report about Darby – for those of my FB friends who live in Hawaii:

TROPICAL STORM DARBY WILL CONTINUE TOWARD THE BIG ISLAND THIS MORNING. THE CENTER OF DARBY IS APPROACHING THE BIG ISLAND AND WILL PASS VERY NEAR… OR OVER… THE BIG ISLAND TODAY. A GRADUAL TURN TOWARD THE NORTHWEST IS EXPECTED LATER TODAY… WITH THE CENTER OF DARBY EXPECTED TO PASS VERY NEAR… OR OVER… MAUI COUNTY TONIGHT AND SUNDAY. THEN… THE CENTER OF DARBY OF EXPECTED TO PASS VERY NEAR… OR OVER… OAHU LATE ON SUNDAY AND PASS VERY NEAR KAUAI COUNTY SUNDAY NIGHT. RAIN AND WIND WILL INCREASE WELL AHEAD OF THE CENTER AS IT MOVES ACROSS HAWAII.

 * * *

DARBY STORM UPDATE 2

July 23, 2016 1:15PM

SO FAR, SO GOOD… THE BRIDGES ARE STILL STANDING

Just got back up to the house after revisiting the gulch. And I am pleased to report that both of our bridges are still standing.

The foot bridge tarp has been ripped by the power of water. But it’s nothing major. I even crossed the foot bridge onto the other side to inspect the irrigation and drainage work I did there back in the spring. And the water is flowing normally through that new ditch into the main creek.

So, so far so good. But the worst is yet to come, probably this evening and overnight when the eye of Darby is supposed to pass over or near Maui.

Stand by for that…

 * * *

DARBY STORM UPDATE 3

July 24, 2016 8:147 AM

SERENITY NEAR THE EYE OF THE STORM

 

What a difference 24 hours can make. Yesterday at this time, our creek in the Rainbow Shower gulch was raging and flooding over our bridges (see http://wp.me/p3R16m-2QQ). This morning by contrast is wonderfully calm and serene. Hardly any wind. Plenty of moisture in the air. But our creek is back in its normal riverbed, happily running down the slopes of Haleakala.

Who would suspect then that the eye of the tropical storm Darby that caused all this upheaval in the last few days is about AS CLOSE TO US AS IT WILL BE.  Take a look at the radar and satellite maps I have just updated.

Only 50 miles or so to the southwest of us, the Eye of Darby is churning its way across the Pacific in the northwesterly direction toward Kauai.

So how can things be so calm here at the Rainbow Shower?

It is all because of Haleakala. The giant 10,000-ft volcano on whose northern slopes our property lies is acting like a giant windshield between us and Darby. So Darby’s winds and rain and spinning from the south around Haleakala – toward Hana in the east and Kihei in the west. This is leaving us in a safe cocoon of Haleakala’s wind shadow at the normally windy northern coast of Maui.

Our usual trade winds come from the northeast. Which is why north is called the Windward coast in Hawaiian islands. But not today. Today, we are experiencing a sort of a “pole reversal.”  The normally dry (and touristy) south and west coasts are getting pelted with rain and buffeted by wind, while we are enjoying a peaceful and serene Sunday morning.

MAGICAL SUNSET SAIL: BLUE HOLE OPENS UP IN STORMY SKY TO LET SUNSHINE IN

DAY 3 – APR 25, 2015

Na Pali sights

BELATED SILVER SUNSET ACCENTS MAGICAL SAILING EXPERIENCE ON NA PALI COAST

What happened on our would-be sunset sailing trip up and down Na Pali coast was pure magic.

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In the middle of stormy skies, like that photo above left taken at the start of our trip, the Spirit opened a blue hole right above us to let the sunshine in.  It lasted only a few minutes. But that was enough for some spectacular pictures , like these…

Bob ElizNa Pali 4-25-15 Blue Hole-Na Pali

… and a feeling of total bliss.

Why total bliss?

Because it was a miracle. Seeing that Blue Hole open up was the answer to my shamanic prayers earlier that morning, our third day on Kauai. It was a gloomy and rainy day from beginning to end. Except for those few sunny moments at the end of our northward sailing up the majestic Na Pali coast.

 Na Pali coast

But first things first…

PREAMBLE TO SAILING TRIP

The morning was as gloomy as that first photo of our sailing trip.  By the time we were getting ready to leave for Port Allen, occasional drizzles had morphed into steady rain.

I told Elizabeth not to get her hopes up of us actually seeing the sunset. The radar maps of Kauai showed the showers all over the island.  And I could see a band of strong showers heading from southwest to the northeast – straight for Na Pali coast where we were planning to sail.

By the time we made it to Port Allen and checked in, the rain had actually stopped. But thick cloud cover obscured the sun and thus any hopes of sunset.

“Will be get a discount if there is no sunset on this ‘sunset sail?'” – I asked the check-in agent, half jokingly.

“I am afraid not,” he replied. “There is always a sunset, even if you are not able to see it.”

I laughed. Thought that was a pretty clever answer.

The captain of the Blue Dolphin, a large catamaran, reinforced my cautionary comments to Elizabeth. The first thing he said in his introductory remarks was that the weather forecast was calling for heavy rain all day.

He added that he expected heavy weather, meaning a bumpy sailing, especially early on during the cruise.  So he asked everyone to hang on to something with both hands, and never let go of the railings with at least one hand while taking pictures.

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Soon, these warnings were proven very valuable. You may not realize it when you look at these pictures, but every time I took one, I was actually hanging onto something with my hand for dear life.

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RETURN TRIP

And that’s it.  No sooner did the captain announce that he was turning the boat around for a return trip, the sun vanished. We were back to gray and gloomy skies. And VERY bumpy surf.

Unlike the winter surf, which tends to have much bigger but also longer waves, these swells had no pattern. Sailing against them was like driving a 2WD vehicle down a dry riverbed with over lots of large boulders. We all hung on for dear life again.

Still, I managed to take some pictures of the would-be sunset, even if merely a silvery kind.

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Finally, just before entering the harbor again, the sun peeked at us again.

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And that was that.  No golden sunset. Still, we were happy about the magical moments we got to experience on Na Pali coast.

Besides, we get plenty of golden sunsets right at home on Maui. Like these…

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EPILOGUE

Overall, it was a great trip to Kauai. We also brought back some tangible memories.

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Like these rocks with crystal in them which I picked up at Waialeale, the wettest spot on Earth. And the T-shirt with a picture and the name of Hawaii’s state fish.

Can you pronounce it?

If so, maybe you can also become a Hawaii resident… 🙂

* * *

Also see OUR KAUAI ADVENTURES 2013 (KAYAKING ON HANALEI RIVER, BAY… SNORKELING ON HIDDEN BEACH… HULA IN KAPAA… RUSSIAN FORT SUNSET – ALL IN ONE LONG DAY)

Aug 21, 2012 HAIKU, Maui, Aug 20 – Our second full day inKauai was designated as a Mauka Day – a day in the mountains. We planned to pursue various …
Updated April 26, 2011. Easter Adventure on Kauai, Niihau. From ocean’s depths to mountain highs… and everything in between …
Dec 24, 2009 HAIKU, Maui, Dec 23 – Kauai is the oldest major Hawaiian island. It is known as the Garden Isle because it is so lush and green. Kauai is also …
yinyangbob.com/HI2009/Dec09/Kauai09_1.html

TRIP TO THE WETTEST SPOT ON EARTH, JURASSIC PARK, LAZY BEACH AFTERNOON

DAY 2, Part 1 – APR 24, 2015

FORMER SITE OF “JURASSIC PARK” LOOKING FORLORN NOW

We woke up on our second day in Kauai prepared to get thoroughly soaked during our first ever trip to the wettest spot on earth. Looking at the pictures of the Blue Hole (top header), it was no wonder Steven Spielberg picked this place for filming of his 1992 megahit movie “Jurassic Park.” Instead, we got bone dry “vog” (volcanic emissions) with occasional bursts of sunshine.

jurassicpark4148 (as seen in the movie… and now)

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Oh well… at least we got some better pictures this way.  Like the above shots at the entrance to Jurassic Park, looking rather forlorn today.  All that’s left of that imposing gate with flames shooting up are two concrete posts.

So to try to get that old feeling back, as Karen Carpenter and Barry Manilow sang 40 years ago, here a 2:47-minute video “trailer” I have just created combining the original Jurassic Park footage with my own film from within the Waialeale volcano.

Kauai Jurassic Park: Visit to Wettest Spot on Earth – inside Waialeale volcano crater – a film by Bob Altzar Djurdjevic – Apr 27, 2015

* * *

OPAEKAA FALLS, FALLEN TREE BLOCKS THE ROAD

Dry weather notwithstanding, our trip to the wettest spot on Earth did not lack unexpected excitements.  A large tree fell right in front of us blocking the road before we even got to the Jurassic Park. And I also got both of my feet and shoes wet when I slipped into a creek inside the Waialealea volcano while trying to take a picture of this waterfall.

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But first, we stopped in Wailua for a quick look at the Opaekaa Falls.  And then, a few miles later, as we were entering the rain forest, we came upon a road block.  A natural kind… a fallen tree.

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We were not alone in this predicament. Two other cars had also stopped at the higher ground above the fallen tree.  Our driver Paul told us that we may have to cancel and reschedule the tour.  He then telephoned his boss to tell him the same.

But, as luck would have it, and we always magically seem to have good luck when we need it on our adventures, a County of Kauai truck showed up. Out of nowhere!

“Does he have a chainsaw?” I asked Paul.

“No, but he does have a steel line,” Paul replied. “So he’ll try to tow the tree away.”

Can you believe our luck? So instead of having to turn around and suffer the disappointment of a missed adventure, we took part in the excitement of the fallen tree being hauled away.

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Wondering that that caption re. Martha Stewart pointing is about?  That’s a standing joke between Elizabeth and me.

Some years ago, I read a story about Martha Steward being interviewed on camera in her garden that she took pride in.

“So did you plant all these beautiful flowers?” the reporter asked.

“Well, I pointed,” Martha replied.

And so did Elizabeth, appearing to direct the two men about how to secure the line around the fallen tree. 🙂

RIDE THROUGH JURASSIC PARK

From there on, the ride to and through the former Jurassic Park was uneventful. Except, of course, for a very bumpy ride and the crossing of several running creeks.

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Right off the bat, we found ourselves in a beautiful Eucalyptus forest.  It reminded us of the magnificent Boranup Karri forest in Western Australia (see Feb 19, Part 3 – CAPE-TO-CAPE, PART 3: BORANUP KARRI FOREST…).

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Along the way, we also stopped for occasional curiosities, such as that stealth gecko and the Hau leaf in the shape of the island of Kauai.

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Our ride ended at the Jurassic Park gate (below right). From there, 479106190_309bd49975we hiked on DSCF4828foot for another mile or two in the direction of the Blue Hole and the Weeping Falls inside the Waialeale volcano, the wettest spot on Earth (left).

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DSCF4844 (photo taken with my camera by Paul, our guide)

Eliz Jurassic Park    Kauai map  Bob Jurassic Park

BLUE HOLE

Reaching the Blue Hole from the trailhead where we stopped takes a herculean effort by strong and experienced hikers. You can read about it in this Hawaiian travelogue by alohafrom808.com.

When you get there, however, the views are spectacular. Here’s a top and bottom view of and from the Blue Hole that I put together using photos from various websites.

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Here’s also another Blue Hole on Na Pali coast…

Blue Hole Napali

* * *

DAY 2, Part 2 – APR 24, 2015

LAZY AFTERNOON AT THE BEACH

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After our adventures at the wettest spot on Earth – the Waialeale volcano crater – we decided to take it easy and just relax on the beach at our hotel. We don’t often do that when we travel. So it was a nice treat – to just do nothing for a couple of hours.

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Just as we got to the beach, we noticed the Pride of America cruise ship sailing in the distance. IMG_3751

“It’s heading back to Honolulu,” I said.

By now, we seem to know its schedule even though we have never taken a cruise and never will, if I can help it.

We have seen this giant ship board its “cruisers” in Honolulu on Saturday afternoon. We see it docked in Maui every Sunday and Monday, and sailing past the Rainbow Shower to the Big Island on Monday night. We have seen it in Hilo on Tuesday and in Kona on Wednesday. Guess Kauai must be the Thursday and Friday on its itinerary. So now that it was Friday afternoon, the ship was heading back to Honolulu to complete the circuit and disgorge its passengers. Just to start the whole thing all over again the next day – Saturday.

Honeymooners Then and Now

Hawaii has always been a magnet for honeymooners. They used to look like this…

Honeymooners old fashioned

And now, here’s what the newfangled honeymooners look like…

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Yuck!

* * *

Also see OUR KAUAI ADVENTURES 2013 (KAYAKING ON HANALEI RIVER, BAY… SNORKELING ON HIDDEN BEACH… HULA IN KAPAA… RUSSIAN FORT SUNSET – ALL IN ONE LONG DAY)

Aug 21, 2012 HAIKU, Maui, Aug 20 – Our second full day inKauai was designated as a Mauka Day – a day in the mountains. We planned to pursue various …
Updated April 26, 2011. Easter Adventure on Kauai, Niihau. From ocean’s depths to mountain highs… and everything in between …
Dec 24, 2009 HAIKU, Maui, Dec 23 – Kauai is the oldest major Hawaiian island. It is known as the Garden Isle because it is so lush and green. Kauai is also …
yinyangbob.com/HI2009/Dec09/Kauai09_1.html

HIGH SURF WELCOMES US TO OUR KAUAI ADVENTURE

DAY 1 – APR 24, 2015

HIGH SURF WELCOMES US TO OUR KAUAI ADVENTURE

Our trip from Maui to Kauai was mercifully uneventful. When we got into our hotel and walked out to the beach, we saw the highest surf we have ever seen in this area of Kauai.

Of course, relative to where we live on the north shore of Maui, where winter surf can rise up to 50 ft or higher, these 6-8 ft waves were baby-size swells by comparison.  But they made for beautiful scenery.

Our 2015 Kauai adventure seem to be off to a good start. Or did high surf portend some surprises later on?  Like that this might be the trip of silver sunsets?

Check out some of these early morning beach shots taken just before our trip to the wettest spot on earth…

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* * *

Also see OUR KAUAI ADVENTURES 2013 (KAYAKING ON HANALEI RIVER, BAY… SNORKELING ON HIDDEN BEACH… HULA IN KAPAA… RUSSIAN FORT SUNSET – ALL IN ONE LONG DAY)

Aug 21, 2012 HAIKU, Maui, Aug 20 – Our second full day inKauai was designated as a Mauka Day – a day in the mountains. We planned to pursue various …
Updated April 26, 2011. Easter Adventure on Kauai, Niihau. From ocean’s depths to mountain highs… and everything in between …
Dec 24, 2009 HAIKU, Maui, Dec 23 – Kauai is the oldest major Hawaiian island. It is known as the Garden Isle because it is so lush and green. Kauai is also …
yinyangbob.com/HI2009/Dec09/Kauai09_1.html

KAUAI: FROM WETTEST SPOT ON EARTH TO MAGICAL SUNSET SAIL

PREAMBLE

When it comes to Hawaiian islands, Elizabeth and I like cats. We like to leave our scent on each about once every a year or two.  So before we head back to Arizona for the summer, we are planning to spend this coming weekend on Kauai.

Waialeale Blue Hole

Friday: Trip to the Wettest Spot on Earth

On Friday, we hope to go on a combination 4WD tour and a hike to the wettest spot on earth – the Blue Hole in the Waialeale crater. For those of you who remember the 1993 movie “Jurassic Park,” that’s where it was filmed.

479106190_309bd49975“We’ll drive right up to the T-Rex pen, and will walk from there,” said Mike, the tour guide and owner of the company that takes people to the wettest spot on Earth.

In preparation for it, Elizabeth and I will be watching tonight the “Jurassic Park” again. So we’d know what to expect when we get to the T-Rex pen. 🙂

That will be the “Mauka” (Mountain in Hawaiian) portion of our Kauai adventures.  Weather permitting, of course. Which is always a big question mark when it comes to plans made by mice and men that can be washed out in minutes by flash floods at the wettest spot on earth.

Saturday: Na Pali Sunset Sail

Then for Saturday afternoon and evening, we booked a sunset sail on a catamaran up and down the  Na Pali cost.  Assuming, of course, we return from the T-Rex pens unharmed the day before. 🙂

That will be the “Makai” (Beach-Ocean) portion of our Kauai adventures.

Of course, we will probably end up doing a lot of other things on a spur of the moment as we usually do. But these two trips are the two anchors for this long weekend.

I am not taking my computer on this trip. So stand by for my usual travelogues after we get back in Sunday afternoon.

Here are some Kauai shots to whet your appetite. Aloha!

Hanalei Bay DSCF4146 slide_338262_3446099_free

Eliz Jurassic Park Kauai map Bob Jurassic Park

* * *

TABLE OF CONTENTS

DAY 1, APR 23 – HIGH SURF WELCOMES US TO OUR KAUAI ADVENTURE

DAY 2, APR 24 – TRIP TO THE WETTEST SPOT ON EARTH, JURASSIC PARK, LAZY BEACH AFTERNOON

DAY 3, APR 25 – MAGICAL SUNSET SAIL: BLUE HOLE OPENS UP IN STORMY SKY TO LET SUNSHINE IN

* * *

PAST KAUAI TAVELOGUES

Also see OUR KAUAI ADVENTURES 2013 (KAYAKING ON HANALEI RIVER, BAY… SNORKELING ON HIDDEN BEACH… HULA IN KAPAA… RUSSIAN FORT SUNSET – ALL IN ONE LONG DAY)

Aug 21, 2012 HAIKU, Maui, Aug 20 – Our second full day inKauai was designated as a Mauka Day – a day in the mountains. We planned to pursue various …
Updated April 26, 2011. Easter Adventure on Kauai, Niihau. From ocean’s depths to mountain highs… and everything in between …
Dec 24, 2009 HAIKU, Maui, Dec 23 – Kauai is the oldest major Hawaiian island. It is known as the Garden Isle because it is so lush and green. Kauai is also …
yinyangbob.com/HI2009/Dec09/Kauai09_1.html

OUR KAUAI ADVENTURES 2013

KAYAKING ON HANALEI RIVER, BAY… SNORKELING ON HIDDEN BEACH… HULA IN KAPAA… RUSSIAN FORT SUNSET – ALL IN ONE LONG DAY

Hanalei Bay_Panorama8-28-13 Hanalei Bay River_Panorama8-28-13

Hidden Beach_Panorama8-28-13 Hanalei Bay St Regis Panorama 8-28-13 (click on photos to enlarge)

What a day Wednesday was. Non-stop adventures from morning till dusk on a beautiful island of Kauai. Here’s a selection of photos from more than 150 pictures we have taken. In due course, I plan to put together a short film about it all. For now, here are some still shots along with a video clip filmed in the Hidden Beach of Hanalei Bay, followed by a slideshow.

But first, check out the headline news that greeted us when we arrived in Lihue (Kauai) on Tuesday evening:

IMG_0595 “Different strokes for different folks” would be my caption. While the world seems to be on fire again, and another war is in the offing, the headline news on this laid back island is the death of a sea turtle. Way to go Kauai!

KAYAKING ON HANALEI RIVER

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KAYAKING ON HANALEI BAY

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SNORKELING OFF HIDDEN BEACH

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UNDERWATER SIGHT-SEEING

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BEACH CONCERT BY HARRY

RETURN KAYAK TRIP

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BACK AT HOTEL FOR ANOTHER SWIM, BEACH HULA

We got back to the hotel by mid-afternoon. After a short break, we went for another swim at the nearly deserted beach in front of our Kapaa hotel (see the map).

The waves on the southeast side of the island were quite a bit bigger than in Hanalei Bay. There was also a strong current that pulled me away from shore. For the first time in my life, I got to experience what it is like to swim against the current. Would not recommend it to anyone.

Eventually, I caught a ride on a big wave that took me back to shore. That’s where Elizabeth joined me. As I was telling her what happened, another wave knocked both of us on our butts. One at a time. It was fun…

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After we cleaned up, Elizabeth danced hula on the beach to the tune of the music being played on hotel loudspeakers in the pool area behind us.

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Kauai 2013 Slideshow II (Aug 28, iMovie version)

Kauai Adventures Slideshow I (Aug 28, iPhoto version)

KAUAI ADVENTURES 2013 SLIDESHOW

AND NOW, FOR A COMPLETE KAUAI 2013 PHOTO ALBUMS, click on…

PART 1 – KAYAKING ON HANALEI RIVER and HANALEI BAY… (41 photos)

PART 2 – SNORKELING ON HIDDEN BEACH… HULA IN KAPAA… (33 photos)

PART 3 – RUSSIAN FORT SUNSET – ALL IN ONE LONG DAY (21 photos)