Welcome to Day 11 of Janet and Randy's Kauai Adventure 2017
Sunday, November 26, 2017
Today we woke up to some blustery weather. Randy went for a run, while I went for a walk. It was really windy, and we got a little sprinkle of rain, but thankfully it didn't turn into a downpour. While on my run, I came across my parents and so my run turned into a walk with them. After that, we had breakfast, and then just took our time getting ready before we had to head to Kauai Backcountry Adventures for some mountain tubing. Randy and I did this many years ago (so long ago, that we bought a disposable waterproof film camera to take pictures with!).
We picked up Randy's parents at 11:00am, so we could get there for the 11:30am check-in. You need to wear shoes or sandals that won't fall off and that you are willing to get wet. If you don't have any shoes like that, they have shoes for rent.
We checked in, and were given waiver forms to sign. Once that was done, we mentioned that we wanted to rent some shoes. Our guide said he would just let us have them for free - and went to get us some pairs. We were given some swanky beige Crocs to wear (there were also some camo versions, which we joked about how it would make your feet invisible). Once everyone had checked in, we were given helmets and gloves and we proceeded onto the tram that was going to take us the backcountry for the tubing (they called it a tram, but it was like an open air bus). Along the way, we stopped at an overlook and took some pictures.
The road to the tubing is on private land where sugar cane used to be grown. This land cannot be developed and there is a stipulation that any roads across the land cannot be paved. The adventure company tries to maintain the road, but with the rain there are a lot of potholes. So, it was a pretty bumpy ride. The tubing is done in old canals that used to irrigate the cane fields.
We finally made it to the start of the tubing. There was a table set up with some dry boxes where you could put all your belongings that you don't want to float down the river with (purse, wallet, towels, etc.). They also suggested that you not wear sunglasses, because if you happen to flip over, you may lose them. So, we put everything in the boxes except our waterproof cameras.
Before getting into the water, we were led on a little walk where they showed us a spillway for the irrigation canals, some sugar cane plants, some bamboo, and some taro. Then we were given some instructions on our tubing adventure (aka: the safety demo). We had 3 guides - one at the front of the pack, one in the middle, and one at the rear. On the way to the tubing, we were warned how the water is really cold, and the guides warned us that anyone using the 'C' or 'F' words (cold or freezing), would end up getting splashed. In other words, they didn't want to hear a bunch of complaining. Acceptable words were: Refreshing, Invigorating, etc.
To get into our tubes, we walked down a ramp and at the bottom we turned around and were helped to sit in our tubes. The water was a little cool, but it really wasn't that bad. I do think it helps if you are wearing a shirt, as I had one over my bathing suit, and I was fine. There were a couple of girls in little teeny bikinis that were quite cold by the end (they were literally shivering). But then again, I also have little more insulation that these skinny girls did.
Once in the tubes, you basically have no control as to where you go, or which direction you are facing. If you get close to a wall, you can push off with your hands or feet, but that's about it. You also have no control over who you bump into, so sometimes it's like bumper cars. We ended up getting split up with Randy and Harold closer to the front, and me and Lil right at the back. There are actually a lot of tunnels that a person goes through, and some of them are quite long. But we have headlights on our helmets, so you can see where you are going. There is no danger of drowning as the water is only 3 feet deep.
We were in the canal for about an hour. We lucked out with the weather in that it did not rain, and it was actually sunny the whole time. At the place where we got out of the canals, the dry boxes were waiting with our belongings. We grabbed our stuff and were loaded into some heated vans, where they took us on a short drive to a picnic site.
At the picnic site, there were some port-a-potties and some change rooms. They set out a simple lunch of fixings to make a sandwich, along with some cookies and chips. After about half an hour, they drove us back to where we had started. The whole experience took 3 hours. We all had a good time just floating along the canals.
We drove back to Poipu and dropped Harold and Lil off at their place. We were both a little tired, so we just went to our room and lay down for a bit. After we woke up, we decided to have a drink on the lanai. At 5:30pm, we decided to head across the street to watch the sunset. Randy set up the camera to do a sunset timelapse, while I took a few pictures with the other camera. After about 10 minutes, it started to rain and we had to run for shelter. It rained for a few minutes, and when it finished, there were too many clouds on the horizon to see any more of the sunset. So, we went back to our room.
For supper, we wanted something fairly light, and Randy found a place called Holoholo Grill at the nearby Koloa Landing Resort. We decided to share a green papaya chicken salad and the Mahi Lau Lau. We also ordered some mai tais to go with our meal. Because we had told the waitress we were planning to share our meals, she had the kitchen actually split both items onto separate plates for us. So, that was nice!
The food presentation was quite amazing for the Mahi Lau Lau. And both dishes were delicious. The lemon butter that came with the mahi was so good, I almost wanted to drink it. The portion was the perfect amount of food - I was full, but not too full. However, it was so good that I would've definitely eaten more if there was any!
After our meal, we decided to wander around the resort, as we had never been here, and it had recently become a Marriott resort (part of the Autograph Collection). In the lobby, we ended up chatting with one of the front desk staff, asking her some questions about the place. After chatting to her for a while, she asked us if we wanted to see one of the rooms. We thought, why not?
She found a couple of rooms that were vacant. One was a 2-bedroom unit, and one was a 3-bedroom unit. She had one of the bell staff take us up the rooms. An interesting thing about this resort is that the elevators have room numbers on the buttons instead of floor numbers. If you press a room number, it takes you to the floor for that room, and that is the only room you see when you get off the elevator. So, it is a really private entrance, and you would never hear screaming children running down the hallway past your door (like at some places we've stayed).
The units in this resort were originally built as condos, and a person can actually buy one if you want (I'm sure for many, many $$s). If you wish to rent out your condo, then you can do it through Marriott. Both units were very deluxe, and had a full size kitchen, in-suite laundry, and separate bathrooms for each bedroom, plus another 'common' bathroom (which could be used for anyone using the sofa-bed). The hotel grounds had a huge, meandering pool with various waterfalls and even a slide. Might have to come back in the daytime when we can see everything better. I know that I would definitely come back to the restaurant again.
After viewing the rooms, we went back to our room and spent time downloading photos from the day and working on the journal. Check out some more pictures and videos on the Photos link.
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