Vog! Fog! We couldn't see the Waimea Canyon...But, we saw so much more...A year ago...birthday visitors...

The early morning sky through the windshield as we left Princeville at 6:40 am yesterday morning for our mini vacation.

The higher up we drove, the more we realized that we'd most likely not be able to see the Waimea Canyon due to the vog.
Expectations often lead to disappointment.  In our world travels we've attempted to keep our expectations low allowing many opportunities to be pleasantly surprised, rather than sorely disappointed.

These few photos were taken from a lower elevation.

At this point, we were at 2500 feet above sea level.

Upon entering the state park, we still have several miles to drive to the lookout point.
So was the case yesterday when we were particularly pleased that we'd kept our expectations low for actually seeing the Waimea Canyon.

By the time we reached the lookout point, the vog had taken over.  No overlooking view were to be had.
Thus, when we arrived after a two, not three hour drive from Princeville (in moderate traffic) and, the canyon was shrouded in the vog (fog and volcanic smog) which was so thick you could cut it with a knife, we weren't surprised or overly disappointed.

This was the walkway to the lookout point at 9:00 am, getting "voggier" by the minute. 
We had an agenda of other sites to see on the south and westerly end of the island of Kauai that without a doubt, were as satisfying as seeing the canyon may have been on a clear day.  We'd heard it was more likely we'd wouldn't be able to see the canyon than not. 

Through the vog we spotted this chicken and her chicks huddled again a short stone wall.
Once we arrived at the Waimea Lookout Point and after a few minutes of checking out the views, we were heading back down the mountain with "other fish to fry."  The vog was simply too dense.

As we drove back down the mountain, the visibility improved although there was no sun.
With a map in hand and numerous points of interest to explore along Highway 50, we found ourselves driving to the very end of the most westerly point on the map as shown below in this previously posted map.

Kauai Map
As of yesterday, we've now traveled around the entire perimeter of the island of Kauai, as far as the roads allow, from the Napali Coast in the northwest all the way around to Polihale State Park in the west. (We only drove part way into the park when the road wasn't paved and proved too rough for the little car). 

Over the next several days, we'll continue to share the many photos and stories of the fabulous time we spent in Poipu and the southern coast of Kauai to celebrate my birthday which is today.  What a perfect way to celebrate a birthday!

The sun peeked through for a few minutes, only to be hidden again for most of the remainder of the morning, making a strong appearance after 2:00 pm.
The overnight stay at the Sheraton Kauai was also ideal.  Able to get a free upgrade with a little nudging we had a partial ocean view and spacious room with free wifi.  Using the link here on our site for Hotels.com, we've been able to accumulate enough points for three free nights valued at up to $216/night to pay for most of the cost for the room, leaving us with a bill for $77 plus the $31.50 resort fee. 

The rich clay soil along the canyon's edge at a lower elevation.
Our total out of pocket cost for the "getaway" was $107 plus the cost for fuel (minimal with the tiny car) and meals.

This morning as I prepare this post, we're hoping for an hour by the gorgeous oceanfront pool before hitting the road again, planning to stop at Costco in Lihue to "reload." After Costco, we're heading back to Princeville to unpack our stuff and the Costco loot settling in for a great birthday dinner at home.  We couldn't be more content.

Tom suggested we return again this morning although we suspected it wouldn't be any different another day.  It appears that a sunny view of the canyon is relatively unlikely most days.
Thanks to my husband for making this birthday special as he always does in one way or another. 

We'll be back tomorrow with many new photos of other sites we visited that are clear and easier to see as opposed to today's "voggy" batch from the unpredictable Waimea Canyon.  Please check back.

Photo from one year ago today, February 20, 2014:

One year ago we posted this photo when friends had come for dinner to celebrate my birthday and this charming visitor came to call during dinner.  What fun we had!  For details from the day's post, please click here.


Staci Finch Thompson said...

That was one gorgeous sunrise! Sorry about the vog but I imagine it was beautiful anyway. Sounds like you had a great getaway and hope you all got back "home" safely.

Jessica said...

We were surprised it showed through the dirty windshield, Staci. The traffic was moving too fast to stop. But, tomorrow, we'll share the most amazing sunset photos we'd ever taken that we took last night. It was a quick day and a half but wonderful time. We're now back home, the Costco stuff is put away and tonight we'll have a great dinner at home.

Thanks for writing, Staci!. We love hearing from you!

Warmest regards,
Jess & Tom

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