Tag Archive: Waimea Canyon

The time had come to make the long-awaited journey up to Koke’e which sits atop the green rain kissed mountains of Kauai. The mountains of Kauai are on record for being the wettest region in the world, seeing more rain in a week as compared to what some places see in years. Knowing this means we needed to carefully plan our travel to the center of the island based on current weather patterns. Seeing a break in the rain, we packed up and headed to Koke’e.

Koke’e is well-known for its spiritual energy.  It sits nestled atop the Waimea Canyon, normally shrouded in clouds, shadowed by towering trees and framed by the awesome painted walls of the 6 million year old canyon that journeys to the sea from the center of the island. It did not take long to realize that there is something special about Koke’e.

Our journey began from Kekaha, the western most village in the USA. From there by vehicle we scaled island plateaus, carnivorous ravines and green spiking peaks. We found this truly amazing mango tree on the side of the road. Its position was like a milestone to mindfulness. A towering tree surrounded by distant views of ocean in all directions – it was as if you just knew you were on the right path to something grand and sublime.

We drove through magnificent koa forests which gave way to norfolk pine and cedar woodlands. Tropical vines and flowers intertwined knarled root structure on the forest floor as moss and ferns dotted the shaded landscape. Down a secluded dirt road and away from touristy lookouts we found a quiet hiking path along a sleeping brook surrounded by only the sounds of birds and my own inner voice. Splintered light rained down like shards of energy – filtering through the branches and trees above.  Once centered, there was this curious feeling that there I sat on the top of the world in the middle of Pacific – with only blue sky and the Universe as my witness.

(please visit Twitter: @JohnCBader where you can see more pictures of Kauai)

John C. Bader




Variable winds are blowing today which is a change from the consistent trade winds that are typically prevalent out here in the middle of the Pacific.

I watch with quiet amusement as my wife battles a fly in the living room area. It was an epic battle as both sides traded sparing moves: The fly, an expert in aerial flight was cunning but it was my wife’s expertise in acrobatic swatting with the “Paco’s Tacos” menu that was truly a sight to see. The battle ended in a tie which is probably the best karmic outcome for a lazy Monday afternoon in Kauai.

Earlier today my son bought a fluffy rooster stuff animal at the outdoor shops near what he described as the “spitting rock thinga-ma-gig” – otherwise known as the “Spouting Horn” on the Poipu side of Kauai. He named his rooster Kahu which is short for “Kahu Moa Nui” which means The Great Guardian. I think nuisance may be a better word for the infamous Kauai rooster, but love it or leave it, the coveted Rooster owns the Garden Isle. I hear one cawing right now outside the cottage.

I am intrigued how here in paradise; a place where the concept of simplicity is born, humans can bring complexity. I see the drama unfold around me on a daily basis as neighbors here in this sleepy Hawaiian village drag all their emotional baggage around (wearing their passion on their sleeves) with children it seems seeing the brunt of the dysfunction. I guess it is the dark underbelly of Hawaiian social immersion. I saw it on Oahu years ago when I used to live on the main island. Still, there is a kind vein that runs through the local people here. I especially saw it on New Years – even people in the store were coming up to each other, hugging and kissing to wish luck and prosperity in for the New Year. It seems we all have flaws; no matter what race or creed – yet the local people of Hawaii exude a beauty and harmony that is as unique as the island chain itself.

As for myself – I create my own problems – though most are aesthetic and sit right on the surface of suffering. Of course, there is my severely sprained shoulder that reminds me that I am not 20 years old anymore. Overdosing on a bowel cleaning elixir has made the last couple days interesting as well – sorry to be so graphic. But arising from the physical maladies comes a refreshing relaxation.  I would love to live this life style but who would support me? I have a home, a dog and a career that waits for me back in Chicagoland. Someday perhaps?

Today, we hike into Koke’e which is located in up-country Kauai – this is considered the spiritual center of Kauai and harnesses unseen energies in its headlands, canyons and trees. I look forward to the hike today and any mindfulness that arises from the experience.

(a special note: due to a poor internet connection, I am unable to post images. I will post an image finale once I return to the mainland as sharing the beauty through images is a necessity). Aloha

John C. Bader


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