Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Letting the days go by, letting the water hold me down,

Shipwrecks Beach, Kauai

 It's been a while since the last post, because we haven't been climbing.  After 15 years of never taking more than a week off, we decided that it was time to let our bodies heal for a couple weeks.  Neither of us had injuries that kept us from climbing, but we both had creaky fingers, tweaky shoulders, and I often felt that my elbows were on the edge of tendonitis.  It would be good to heal, but when, and how?  We're addicted to climbing, and when it's available, it's what we do.  We needed to get away from the rocks for a while to avoid the temptation, but we didn't want to get out of shape.  So we made some plans last winter.  Ashley's parents let us reserve their timeshare in Kauai, and we bought plane tickets.  Instead of climbing, we would stay in shape, and get our adrenaline doses, by surfing and body boarding.

Ashley catching a good sized wave with my board.
 She couldn't use hers, because she had gotten slammed by a big one earlier.
 I bought some new footwear, because body boarding without fins is almost like bouldering without climbing shoes.
I tried surfing for a day, but gave up because strapping the board on top of our compact rental car, and then trying to drive without it blowing off was much too much trouble.  The body boards fit conveniently in the trunk, and by the end of our trip we were catching long rides on reef breaks far from shore.  The reef breaks were too far out to get pictures, but we also got some short, fun drops on the shore breaks.  

Life is everywhere on Kauai.  Here is a Monk Seal napping on the beach after a night of catching fish.

 And a giant green sea turtle inside the waves.
So much life, thriving and beautiful, isolated from the rest of the world.  It changed my perspective.

Much of the coast is covered by well manicured resorts, such as this salt water pool at the Hyatt. 

 But I prefer the wilder landscapes.
 The wildest we visited was the Napali Coast.
 A two mile hike lead us to an empty beach.
 Well almost empty.  This feral kitten is living there full time.

 We didn't bring any climbing gear, but we accidentally found out that a little climbing would be possible on Kauai.  Bouldering could be done in some of the coastal caves. 
 One short crag looked great, but it's on private land.
 We found a nearby cliff with fragile tufas.  Then we looked up, and we saw bolts.  The cliff had about ten short sport routes.
 But many of the bolts looked really sketchy!
So you could climb on Kauai, but I wouldn't recommend it.

The body boarding was so much fun.  Elemental, exciting, and enriching.  But I missed climbing.  I spent hours working on the bouldering guidebook, to try to fill the void.  
Now we're home, and the climbing posts will be back soon.


jacob said...

how awesome. looks like you all had fun

Lloyd Family said...

It's good to hear from you! For a while I worried that the fire was in your area, but it's south isn't it? Did you ever need to evacuate?

jacob said...

just evacuated and glacier view is on fire.
wish me luck

Lloyd Family said...

Best of luck, stay safe, and hopefully your place will make it through alright! It's crazy that the fire hasn't been contained yet. It's been going for quite a while now.