Early 2018 Robin and I experienced an adventure of a lifetime over the course of seventeen days. We flew from Michigan to San Francisco, from there we boarded the Monoa, a 900 foot container ship, with Captain Jeff Idema. Once on board, we waited until 2 AM when the Monoa was given the okay to leave the Oakland harbor and begin the journey across the Pacific Ocean towards Honolulu, Oahu.

During our nearly six day journey, we saw incredible sunrises and sunsets, Gannets soaring between waves to fish, flying fish trying to escape the path of the Monoa, and a small group of Laysan Albatross!! Neither Robin nor I had ever seen Albatross before, so we were absolutely blown away. The Laysan Albatross has a wingspan of six and a half feet, what a huge bird! 

Once our sea bound voyage was complete, we began leg two (of three) of our adventure. From Oahu, we flew to Kauai, the garden Island, of the Hawaiian Islands. The first night in we hiked along the Kalalau Trail to Hanakāpīʻai Beach for sunset. Hiking back was a bit of a journey. Over the two miles of wet and steep terrain with only headlamps to guide us, we encountered massive toads, I believe we counted 64, so weird, I know! The next two days we spent in Kōkeʻe State Park. The park is home to the Waimea Canyon, the Grand Canyon of the Pacific, and the Kalalau Valley, a massive valley filled with dense rainforest flora. The rest of our time on Kauai was spent driving and hiking at different beautiful locations around the Island. Kauai is truly unlike any other place, if you have the chance to go, take it! 

From Kauai, we flew over to the Big Island to begin our third and final leg of our trip. Here we visited a sea bound lava vent dubbed Pele’s Well, Snorkeled with tropical fish, hiked to stunning waterfalls, and spent an entire evening hiking the required 11 miles to witness the awe, terror, and splendor of flowing lava! It was exhausting to say the least, and after 10 days of camping we were ready for a real shower and a soft bed. I hope everyone enjoys our story and the photographs. Please feel free to ask any questions you have about our trip, as I am more than happy to answer any and all!

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