Friday, June 13, 2014

The Big Island - Kekaha Kai State Park

We arrived on the Bid Island on the Thursday afternoon of our trip. We didn't have any thing, so I checked our app "The Big Island Revealed" for suggestions. It turned out that there was a black sand beach called Makole'a Beach near the airport. We decided to go check it out before going to our hotel. I was fascinated with the landscape - so unusual. The beach is part of Kekaha Kai State Park. This sign on the side of the road into the park was a joke:
 Calling the road "Unimproved" was generous. Barely navigable would be a better description. We were in a tiny little Chevy Spark rental car, and we were both unsure if we should try to drive on the road. James asked another motorist, who was leaving the park if he thought it was safe. He was in a small sedan, and he assured us that we'd be fine if we drove slowly.  Once we arrived at the parking area, we had about a 3/4 mile walk -mostly through a lava field- to get to the black sand beach. We hadn't planned this excursion, so the only food and beverages that we had were things that James had packed - Pop-Tarts and Gatorade. Not my usual picks for hiking refueling, but better than nothing should we need it. We were in a little bit of a time crunch. The park closed at 7 pm, and we noticed that there was a gate on our way in. We didn't want to get locked in the park overnight. It took us about 30 minutes to walk to the beach. Pretty slow pace, but we had to walk very cautiously over the extremely rough, jagged terrain. It was so much fun though!

The lava was sparsely marked with white spray paint to guide the way.

 There were only two other people at the beach, so it felt like we had the place to ourselves. One surprising thing - the sand wasn't hot at all. I've been on white sand beaches that got so hot that it hurt to walk on them without shoes, so I was surprised.

The facilities at the park are minimal. There are no restrooms at the beach we went to - those are located back near the parking area. And they primitive. No running water, it is basically a modern outhouse.

 We ate dinner that night at Killer Tacos. We both had fish tacos, which were quite good and cheap!

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