The road carried us through the old sugar cane fields and into the rugged mountains toward Waimea Canyon. As we drove through a clump of trees, we heard a noise that seemed out of place. We slowed the car and listened. Did you see that?
Through the trees we could see a dirt biker streaking in wild abandon across the red soil Kauai-style (no helmet) in his slippers.
We drove a little further...and sure enough...
Things were making sense now.
A lot of sense.
We parked the car and headed through the trees.
Well this was not quite what we expected, but it looked like it might be worth a spin. Too bad we didn't have our bikes.
We finally arrived at Waimea Canyon, but we were unaware of what lay ahead...or should I say below. We stepped out of the car into the cool air. We followed the pathway to the sign (below) then headed up a few rocky steps which opened out to a "balcony" on the top. We walked to the edge and looked over.
There are no words or pictures to describe the beauty. It took our breath away. The vivid colors and untouched landscape—not to mention the immensity of the canyon—made me think of heaven itself.
There is a high risk of these canyons being stuffed with clouds, much to the disappointment of those who make the drive. But today, at this hour, the clouds floated above the canyons and parted slightly allowing sunlight to spill here and there.
To the upper right of the picture (above) you can see people standing on the "balcony" of the lookout.
This canyon, and its red lava beds is 12 miles long. It is said to have been caused by a large earthquake that sent existing streams flowing into a single river, which then carved the canyon. Mark Twain called it, "The Grand Canyon of the Pacific."
At the lookout I remember the people around me stood quietly, as if stunned. When they did talk, it was in a whisper. There was a feeling of reverence for this beautiful creation.
Coming up....The day we traveled to the North Shore (to snorkel) and found ourselves lured onto a treacherous trail.