Sunday, June 9, 2013

Hawaii Photos #7: Swimming

We finally got the pictures from Brad and Courtney's cameras! Yay! You'll see some of them scattered in here, though I guess you probably won't know the difference. lol But trust me, they had some good ones!
Ok, onto the pictures. For those of you who know Chris, you are probably aware that he is a fish. Can't get enough of the water. Will probably sprout gills someday.
Our First Hawaiian Waterfall
We tried to swim as often as we got the chance while we were in Hawaii, even when the weather wasn't ideal for swimming. Our first couple days on Maui were a little on the cold and overcast side, but that didn't stop us from hopping in this little waterfall pool we found off the road to Hana. 
It wasn't a very big one, and the water looked pretty murky, but damn if we weren't soooo excited when we found it.

See that look on his face? That water was chilllllllllly.

But we were in Hawaii, so you know what? Let's do this!

Cave Swimming
In one of the state parks, there's a few caves that are submerged in water, so you can swim around down there. Apparently the cave system leads out to the ocean, but it's super dangerous to try to swim from here to the ocean (never know when your next breath of air will be possible!)

We were pretty happy to just hop in and swim around here and into the dark parts of the cave. Here's my shot of Chris jumping in. Oops! Took the picture too soon.

And here's Courtney's shot of Chris jumping in. Too soon too! Guess Chris is just a slow jumper!

You can't tell because of the flash, but this was pretty dark back here. We were around a corner, so you couldn't see the sky anymore.

Did I mention that it was still pretty cold the first few days we were in Hawaii?

Red Sand Beach
Brad and Courtney took us to this secluded beach that they read about in their guide book. There isn't any easy way to get there, and definitely no signs or directions. You just park near a hotel, hop a fence, walk along a cliff, climb the cliff a little, round a sharp corner, and you're almost there.

But it's a gorgeous hike to get there.

The actual beach is just out of view in the photo below. It would be to the left. There were natural rock outcroppings that broke the waves and made it really calm and nice for swimming.

And look how blue that water is!!!! Even on a cloudy day!

Once you descend the cliff and jump off a rock outcropping you're finally at the red sand beach. Not many people knew about this place, I guess. Or they didn't want to make the journey. But it was totally worth it.

And of course, Mr. Fish ran right in the water and swam around the rocks to see the open ocean.

I swam a little with Chris, but we also hung out on the beach for a little bit while Courtney buried herself in red sand.

The view on the way back.

Cliff Jumping
The very same day as the red sand beach, in fact, less than an hour later, we found ourselves again following Brad and Courtney, this time through an open field, past this Portuguese oven.

Eventually, we found ourselves here.

And Courtney found herself doing this.

So of course, the boys had to join in on the fun.

I made a cool photo strip of Courtney doing a backflip into the water, but for some reason BlogSpot does not want to post it, so check it out on my facebook page if you're interested. This girl is a daredevil.

But everyone survived and we lived to swim another day.

Swimming at the Top of a Waterfall
By far the craziest thing we did in Hawaii. My heart was pumping the entire time. It started the moment we climbed under a fence to get to this "infinity pool," kicked into high gear when we had to climb down the rocks at the very edge of the falls, and didn't stop for about, oh, eight hours after that. lol

See Chris in this photo? Just to his right is a 400-foot drop. Straight. Down.

But take a look at that view. Top of the waterfall, then rainforest, then ocean. Gorgeous.

In the picture below, Chris was still on the edge, and Courtney, Brad and I had swam over to the other side of the little pool.

Can you see the fear on my face? I was really trying to hide it.

If you've ever wondered what it looks like to swim at the top of a 400-foot waterfall, this is about as good a representation as you'll ever get.

And if you've ever wondered what it looks like when Chris slides down the mini fall before the huge waterfall drop and completely freaks everyone out, here's that.

And of course, I'm sure you've all been wondering what it looks like when a not-so-strong swimmer is trying to be brave and swim at the top of a waterfall but luckily has a super sweet husband that is a strong swimmer and also very protective of his wife. Yeah, that's Chris swimming me back to the ledge so I don't freak out or get swept away by the super slow current. lol

Craziest. Thing. I. Have. Ever. Done.

So here's the view of that waterfall from about a half mile away, back on the state park trail. The rocks to the left are where we were sitting and climbing down to the water.

And here's the zoomed out view. You can't see the bottom of the falls because it's wayyyy down there.

Black Sand Beach
Once again, my super strong swimmer/fish of a husband had to get his fins feet wet when we stumbled across this black sand beach. I knew the waves were too rough for me, so I took these super fun photos of Chris battling the undertow and insane waves.

But first, let's set the scene. See the huge waves? See how no one is actually swimming?

See the waves breaking on the lava rock cliffs?

See my husband about to swim in said waves?

Doesn't look too bad here ...

Yeah ... that's a little rougher.

But Chris is persistent.

But eventually the waves spit him back out, only a little beat up and battered.

The King's Swimming Hole
I can't remember the exact details, but about halfway through our ATV adventure tour in Waipi'o Valley, we stopped at this waterfall. The guide said it was some king's personal swimming hole at some point in time. Sorry. Bad memory.

The most important detail is that this place was absolutely gorgeous. And of course, Chris was the first one in.

But I joined him pretty quickly.

Not only were we the only ones in our tour to swim, Chris was the only person to climb into the waterfall for a very refreshing little shower. haha

Kayaking and Snorkeling at Captain Cook
On the Big Island, there's a monument to Captain Cook where the snorkeling is supposed to be pretty amazing. Lots of tropical fish, crystal clear water. We had some trouble finding a place to launch the kayaks though. This would have been a nice place, but launches were prohibited. So we ended up launching from some jagged rocks that were pretty scary.

But in the end, we were successful! Here's Brad and Courtney celebrating.

And we even found a place to pull up the kayaks near the monument. Woo hoo!

No one told them to make that face. They both just spontaneously did that. Clearly these two are meant to be together.

In the picture below you can sort of see the little yellow fishies swimming around. They were everywhere.

And here's a Courtney fishy.


So snorkeling at Captain Cook did not disappoint. Unfortunately, when we swam back to the kayaks, we discovered that the tide had come in and swept away Courtney and my sandals! So Chris heroically swam across 10 inches of water with sea urchins right below him to retrieve the lost sandals for us. And luckily, he did not get any sea urchins stings. Unlike Brad when he went surfing a few days before ...

Ok. Now you can't yell at me for not posting in a while. This was a huge post! But I'll try to get the next one out soon. But weren't these photos worth the wait??