Molokai no ka oi

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Day Trippin'' started by fastxr, Sep 27, 2011.

  1. fastxr

    fastxr Adventurer

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    Earlier this year Pastor Disaster and I shipped the bikes to Molokai for a long weekend. Molokai is only about 25 miles from Oahu but a 20 minute flight out of Honolulu drops us into another world. Molokai, with a population of only about 7,500 is largely Hawaiian in lineage and traditions. Kaunakakai, the largest town, boasts the island&#8217;s only gas station and there are no traffic lights at all. Cell phone service would be spotty, mostly available on the east and west ends, the ends facing Maui and Oahu. As our departure approaches, the weather is cooperative, and clears up after weeks of grey and wet.
    Flying in, we see large swaths of the island are apparently uninhabited. We figured the island would welcome itinerant bikers and planned to camp when we could, hopefully increasing our range. In anticipation we studied Google Maps looking for interesting isolated areas to investigate and hopefully the routes we could use to access those areas. Since Molokai Ranch, the island&#8217;s largest employer, essentially went out of business a few years ago, we figured most gates would be open but had no way to test that theory until arrival.

    The bikes are shipped via inter-island barge a couple of days early and we flew over. Picking up the bikes from the docks , gassed in town, and loaded up.
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/otWlymLTSFl82R0le_q8fg?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-rKVaJhjqKAU/ToIrMYnBikI/AAAAAAAABBs/khdbOHWsxF8/s800/P1060492.jpg" height="480" width="640" /></a>
    Second photo taken in the heart of beautiful downtown Kaunakakai.
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/ZsRQPzq3Qr0TCKoPhr0PZw?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-4QDnLxpmZJ4/ToIrNN8kTUI/AAAAAAAABB0/7aFMz_t_S90/s800/P1060499.jpg" height="480" width="640" /></a>
    Our first night we planned to camp at Waikolu Lookout at the far head of Waikolu Valley. Starting from the cemetery just north of Kaunakakai, we followed a Maunahui road, a jeep trail carved deep into the fine red dirt. Although the dust was thick, we were glad it was relatively dry. Once we left the highway behind us we were alone with full tanks, the road generally followed the broad ridge.
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/cAGNtfTf0QcRU1dTw8lk8w?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-UxbYPSjz-6g/ToIqkvssRUI/AAAAAAAAA-8/NdjLdtPCloE/s800/FirstDay.jpg" height="451" width="800" /></a>
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/fAtnNWjcPxhL3HmsaG3zJg?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-_gLFZkcDIEM/ToIrOTB1WFI/AAAAAAAABCA/2YTeUHud4W0/s800/P1060502.jpg" height="480" width="640" /></a>
    Just before Waikolu Lookout we passed the Sandalwood Pit. Dug in the early 1800&#8217;s by King Kamehameha&#8217;s men to the exact width and breath of the cargo hold of a ship. Sandalwood was a much sought after fragrant wood that grew in the forests above Waikolu Valley. A few moments later we reached the lookout. Getting off the bikes we were surrounded by an incredible panorama. Standing at the head of Waikolu Valley, we could look past sheer walls to the beach and offshore islands. On the opposite valley wall a waterfall with a beautiful isolated swimming hold half way down the sheer wall. We speculated whether anyone had ever actually swam there.
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/Fdua3s-NnQyrG4yTUuP4yw?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-jw-Nh2zg60w/ToIrPH8iYWI/AAAAAAAABCI/9_4kxinCcw0/s800/P1060504.jpg" height="600" width="800" /></a>
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    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/-54_TO-eTF8bwwvteoD09Q?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-3IF_5GXEdaE/ToIqt6O-a6I/AAAAAAAAA_g/gbBZWcPljdQ/s800/IMG_0041.jpg" height="600" width="800" /></a>
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/5DTdWJCDr9p8fSQIru8_yg?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-9SdzL2hgGlk/ToIqrg3rrNI/AAAAAAAAA_Y/fGrOjMy3cU0/s800/IMG_0034.jpg" height="600" width="800" /></a>
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/RVHsRU5fYL11M3S3DahjSA?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-LqmdO7qP08Q/ToIqocnwVtI/AAAAAAAAA_M/g8YT6mIUvK8/s800/IMG_0029.jpg" height="800" width="600" /></a>
    The campsite had a small shelter with a picnic table but no running water. We setup the camping hammocks although the good Pastor can&#8217;t seem to sleep in his so he also sets up a tent as a backup. I sleep like a baby in mine, frequently sleeping until 8 or 9. About 4 o&#8217;clock, a thick cloud cover rolled in, at our altitude it was like fog, it was so thick that returning from the bathroom, I had to follow my footsteps in the dew to find the campsite. It was a total whiteout, IFR conditions, tiny visible drops of water swirling in the air.
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/jn5sdhe6chD4vU1iSAOERw?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-bbAvlwnsUxs/Toi_g2orJHI/AAAAAAAABFs/0sKzzkILnwE/s800/DSC07073.jpg" height="600" width="800" /></a>
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    Pastor Disaster had brought batteries for an air pump but they had somehow fallen out of his pack while we thrashed our way up the dirt road on the way to the lookout. Here he gratefully thanks me for my advise on blowing up his air mattress.
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/6tEzG-AU_B8e4Adt9nEZvA?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-K2cGNG7X-SQ/Toi_iDW9YQI/AAAAAAAABF0/YulbK_Sqg5E/s800/DSCN3344.JPG" height="600" width="800" /></a>
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/d-N6mkFJyElYKkFZEq5gqQ?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-qC1s_vf7CRc/Toi_h8de4VI/AAAAAAAABFw/2YcdnY8WKqo/s800/DSCN3346.JPG" height="600" width="800" /></a>
    About dinner, the clouds cleared and it became clear and still. And as the night wore on it got colder and colder. Later we discovered it got down to 56 at the airport, at our altitude temps in the 40s seems reasonable. Coming from the islands we simply weren&#8217;t ready for these kind of temperatures.
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/cruSZG1_G1jGJZvy6QQZvw?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-_jGapO9HNjg/ToIrWlBX8TI/AAAAAAAABCs/jNkv-OOlDC0/s800/P1060529.jpg" height="600" width="800" /></a>
    #1
  2. BajaJim

    BajaJim Dirt Research

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2005
    Oddometer:
    128
    Location:
    San Diego, California
    Nice pics, nice map. Is there more?
    #2
  3. Edmond Dantès

    Edmond Dantès The Kanto Pain

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2009
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    Château d'If
    It is always interesting to read a RR from unusual places. I love the old XR250. Can you post some more pictures per favore?
    #3
  4. Tosh Togo

    Tosh Togo Long timer

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2010
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    What he said. :1drink

    I miss Molokai. :cry

    Mo pics please, mo biggah ones!.


    [​IMG]
    #4
  5. fastxr

    fastxr Adventurer

    Joined:
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    Just gotta sort through the photos.
    #5
  6. linksIT

    linksIT nOObie

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    San Clemente, CA
    :lurk
    #6
  7. Kalani Prince

    Kalani Prince Been here awhile

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    Jan 31, 2011
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    122
    Location:
    Maui
    nice, I've always wanted to ride on Molokai.. I've actually never been there and I'm right next door on Maui. Geesh..
    #7
  8. bigtodd

    bigtodd Hi, wanna ride?

    Joined:
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    Location:
    Surf City, USA
    very nice, always wondered about a Hawaian Island tour .... on hte GSA!
    #8
  9. sandgroper

    sandgroper Long timer

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    Dec 26, 2003
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    Location:
    Wanneroo, Western Australia
    yes have to say Molokai no ka oi, nice pictures and story, also thanks to Tosh Togo and his picture of Father Damian, spent some time at Kalaupapa late 50's, a guest of the business admin.
    ed
    #9
  10. MagyarMan

    MagyarMan Long timer

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    Visited Molokai in 1991 for a few days. Did the Mule ride to Kalaupapa. When you come out of the woods to the edge of the 1600' cliff face and realize you are on a 5' wide path,it takes your breath away. I still think my finger prints are still embedded in that saddle. A truly beautiful place !!
    I wonder if the "Hop Inn" is still in town?
    #10
  11. fastxr

    fastxr Adventurer

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    The Hop Inn, a Chinese restaurant in downtown Kaunakakai was closed about 15 or 20 years ago by the Health Department for unknown violations. Permanently.
    As early morning approached, it got colder and colder. Sleeping in the hammock was bone-chilling even fully dressed and with a 20 degree sleeping bag. Pastor Disaster was uncomfortable from both the cold and his ongoing struggle to sleep in a hammock and woke about 1AM, I could hear him softly cursing in the dark, from then on he alternated between sleeping on the picnic table in the shelter and his tent, each about equal in comfort since his air mattress had failed again.
    I&#8217;ve got a 5 gallon gas tank while Pastor Disaster has a stocker, probably a little over 2 gallons which provides 95 miles before a 25 mile reserve. I know this because I used to have an identical XR250L. PD has never really learned to trust his petcock, for him, going on reserve is a matter requiring priority attention no matter what else is going on. After using only about 20 miles of gas from a full tank he will want to fill up before a 20 mile dirt ride. He is extremely paranoid about running out of gas on Oahu, where gas stations are common. To add to his difficulty calculating fuel range, his odometer recently went on the blink. On this trip he was totally and completely dependent on me to monitor his fuel status. I could&#8217;nt help but think &#8220;this is gonna be fun&#8221;.
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/cAGNtfTf0QcRU1dTw8lk8w?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-UxbYPSjz-6g/ToIqkvssRUI/AAAAAAAAA-8/NdjLdtPCloE/s800/FirstDay.jpg" height="451" width="800" /></a>
    Today&#8217;s path is shown on the GPS map as the purple line heading south from the lookout. After a cup of coffee and a light breakfast we headed out. Our route would vaguely follow the Makakupiapia Trail which started near the campsite and descended on one of many ridges heading south for the coast. Although it hadn&#8217;t rained in almost a week, the section at the top was a bog with deep, water filled ruts and slick clay surfaces. Pigs in the area will often use the ruts as their personal mud bogs and outhouses. Breaking the surface of the water would sometimes release waves of fermented sewage stench from the pig water. Within the first mile PD had dabbed with both feet, it was unbelievably disgusting, lol.
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/lMqucz52VSutAkpSdhrRuQ?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-b_hYU43gzP0/ToIrW7E1_mI/AAAAAAAABCw/_BNa-6djxUU/s800/P1060549.jpg" height="480" width="640" /></a>
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/A8118WDUNR8d43tPDm1FVQ?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-omrddqy19-4/ToIq0oGfcvI/AAAAAAAAA_8/JjMN6iO3FuM/s800/IMG_0084.jpg" height="600" width="800" /></a>
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    After slogging several miles through the wet section we were relieved to break out at the top. Dropping down to the coast, we would pass through different elevations, temperatures and ecosystems. In the bog was low brush, the ridge was populated by pine trees and a welcome breeze. And because we were on the leeward side of the summit, the route was dry and fast.
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/b7nXoEtanozlww64hrKWyg?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-mWGL_pqfY94/ToIrYKhsiEI/AAAAAAAABC8/3f6vGVIquh4/s800/P1060556.jpg" height="480" width="640" /></a>
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    Western Molokai in the distance.
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    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/-26nQiRK-CLaJedgNFM0Fg?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-bC-87oTGNd8/ToIrEUN4D5I/AAAAAAAABA4/lDpaoPyV28Y/s800/IMG_0125.jpg" height="600" width="800" /></a>
    After dropping into Kaunakakai for a thorough washing and disinfecting of PD&#8217;s feet and lunch, we headed for the west end of the island. Google Maps clearly showed a coastline road which started roughly at Hale O Lono Harbor near the southeast point of the island, proceeding east and ending up near Kaunakakai. Hale O Lono is where the annual Molokai to Oahu canoe race starts, any other time the place is deserted except for sailboats that take refuge in the only protected harbor in the area. The southern coast is hot and dry with no water or services of any kind available, we follow the coast road for several miles, the road gradually deteriorated until we were snaking through tall grass, standing on the pegs to try to detect the faint swath. Despite the parched surroundings periodically we ran into the remains of stone bridges used to cross streambeds, the bridges washed away by periodic flash flooding. After wrestling the bikes across several streambeds populated by bowling ball shaped rocks and with a rapidly disappearing road we turned back and setup camp at an abandoned fishing camp we passed earlier.
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    It appeared we had found the perfect campsite complete with private beach and covered parking for the bikes. We setup camp in abandoned camp and went for a swim.
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    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/5L2Smn60ZeOzZM8Atei_Ug?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/--TkxR8vrBng/ToIrLapeobI/AAAAAAAABBc/AflukgO8Br8/s800/IMG_0146.jpg" height="600" width="800" /></a>
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/lStPAWeYpd_ZYHRh00BX7w?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-2tQ2IwVsXHo/ToIrLnjjMjI/AAAAAAAABBg/OgFTi0MpH2k/s800/IMG_0152.jpg" height="600" width="800" /></a>
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/Aj14aNYsgRBOuO3Hs5tBlQ?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-QbjixGa92wU/ToIrLISZ2qI/AAAAAAAABBY/-tM8_vRvKRw/s800/IMG_0153.jpg" height="600" width="800" /></a>
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/S6vr3S-Q6kTiXsYVnjwaDQ?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-CL4jRTWY3Dk/ToIruREKZ3I/AAAAAAAABDg/mSZ-lEbtegI/s800/P1060601.jpg" height="480" width="640" /></a>
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/eITUHhQntPlQ2RRxvxQqAg?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-vGNwZjvW9RA/ToIrHIbsyTI/AAAAAAAABBI/ldSTytya36c/s800/IMG_0138.jpg" height="600" width="800" /></a>
    <a href="https://picasaweb.google.com/lh/photo/80r4RoHOjyGPPPtOr_3wPQ?feat=embedwebsite"><img src="https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-qXC4O13D0d0/ToIrs_IPiyI/AAAAAAAABDc/irG3W0mMCG4/s800/P1060578.jpg" height="600" width="800" /></a>
    PD and I have been experimenting with various meals we can easily pack and carry, that don&#8217;t take much preparation, water or cleanup. We&#8217;ve tried and rejected various options including Mountain House freeze dried foods, various one dish meals and MREs. That night we made a chicken curry couscous from raw ingredients that was pretty good. After a camp stove dinner, we sat outside and talked while watching shooting stars cross the sky. Eventually PD retired to his hammock and I walked the beach. After dark sand fleas come out and they attacked me viciously, biting my feet and ankles and leaving welts that itched for a week. I quickly left the sand for the comfort of Mr. Jack Daniels.
    #11
  12. fastxr

    fastxr Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2005
    Oddometer:
    12
    I miss Molokai. :cry

    Mo pics please, mo biggah ones!.


    [​IMG][/QUOTE]

    By the way, this is a different view of the same islands we saw from the lookout. In your photo, the two coconut trees on the right that form a broad "V" are right in front of the island we could see from the lookout.
    Scott
    #12
  13. Mendo

    Mendo Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2008
    Oddometer:
    283
    Location:
    Chattanooga, TN
    Wow awesome, I really want to go ride Molokai. It looks so close from Maui, now to find someone with a boat ;)
    How much was it to ship from Oahu?
    #13
  14. Big Spag

    Big Spag ONESPEED

    Joined:
    May 5, 2009
    Oddometer:
    122
    Location:
    Bend, OR
    Spent two weeks on Molokai at the ranch a few years ago. Great place to chill.
    #14
  15. sandgroper

    sandgroper Long timer

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2003
    Oddometer:
    5,057
    Location:
    Wanneroo, Western Australia
    [/QUOTE]

    If i had a choice, this would be a place to end it all
    #15
  16. 81twins

    81twins Adventurer

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2005
    Oddometer:
    82
    Location:
    Lethbridge, Alberta
    Great ride and thanks for the pictures from the lookout... have been up there a few times when on the island and never seen out to the ocean... always there when misty. Have wandered some of that country up high where you took pictures of the town.. interesting views and rugged country and usually clear views on that side of the island.
    #16
  17. Tosh Togo

    Tosh Togo Long timer

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2010
    Oddometer:
    1,594
    Compared to Oahu, Maui's a far better place for riding of any kind, and there's a ferry from Lahaina to Kaunakakai. :1drink
    #17
  18. NHESS81

    NHESS81 Adventurer

    Joined:
    May 30, 2010
    Oddometer:
    31
    Location:
    San Ramon, CA
    Nice. Pictures can never do justice.
    #18
  19. Humunn

    Humunn Where Next?

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2006
    Oddometer:
    1,147
    Location:
    Sunny Central Oregon
    Great adventure...thanks for sharing!
    #19
  20. fastxr

    fastxr Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2005
    Oddometer:
    12
    It was something like $280 round trip with a G Van which holds two bikes.
    #20