Thursday, May 3, 2018

4WD Adventure in Hawaii

In my post about visiting the Big Island of Hawaii's Green Sand Beach, I promised that I would share the details of our terrifying 4WD (four-wheel-drive) excursion. From the main highway that loops around the island, we drove several miles on an old, paved road, which was slightly wider than a single lane but still not wide enough for two cars to pass without one pulling off into the grass.

Even on the main highway, we had been in the middle of nowhere. (Aside from a few large towns and vacation resorts, the majority of the Big Island is beautifully secluded.) We took a few turns and arrived at a dirt parking area. Folks without 4WD were leaving their cars to either hike 3 miles to the beach or pay for a shuttle. When I say shuttle, I don't mean a fancy van or mini bus. These shuttles were muddy pickup trucks, and the passengers stood in the back, holding onto railings for dear life.

We had a pickup truck, so we decided to drive a little further and scope things out. After talking to several folks who had made the drive, we went for it and didn't look back. Well, that's not exactly true. For the first 10 minutes of the trip, I looked back many times and wondered if we had made the right decision.


The landscape was beautiful, and thankfully, it hadn't recently rained, so the ground was dry, and there was no risk of getting stuck in the mud.

The most challenging part was avoiding the impassible sections, as there were many paths to choose from, and they frequently crossed each other. Some just flat out ended with no warning. We had received a few pieces of advice, but for much of the time, we just chose random routes, knowing that at any time, we could come across a deeply rutted spot and have to back up. Thankfully, that only happened twice.


Mr. Handsome drove, and I sat in the passenger seat providing him with a steady stream of advice and reminding him to "take it slow." I played a very necessary role, or at least that's what I tell myself. 


I filmed this video while we were on our way back. It doesn't do a great job of showing just how bumpy the ride was, but I think you'll enjoy it.

13 comments:

  1. Anonymous5/04/2018

    You were safer on a bumpy road than looking at an active volcano that has now erupted and people are having to be evacuated.count your blessings.

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    Replies
    1. Very true. It's sad to hear what has happened with the volcano over the past 5 days! On the Big Island, it's not uncommon for a lava flow to destroy a few homes, but this eruption seems to be much worse than usual.

      Ellie

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  2. Anonymous5/04/2018

    It looks like such a beautiful peaceful place and being able to see the ocean makes it even more special.

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  3. Anonymous5/05/2018

    Why would people want to drive over the native flora like that? I don't understand why that would be necessary. Maybe some places on this planet aren't meant to be reached by tourists. I'm sorry, but I look at those pictures and see unnecessary scars on the otherwise beautiful land. I wonder who owns that land, and why vehicles are allowed on it. Did anyone explain?

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    Replies
    1. Anonymous5/07/2018

      It’s just grass

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    2. Anonymous5/08/2018

      I doubt it's just grass. Whenever land is left undeveloped like that, an abundance of plants and animals quickly move in. The biodiversity on Hawaii is unique and amazing, but in danger.

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  4. Anonymous5/06/2018

    Thank-you for sharing your adventure.
    Your Mr Handsome stayed cool on that rough road!
    (Inspiring!)

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    Replies
    1. He did stay cool, didn't he? That's something he is much better at than I am. LOL

      Ellie

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  5. Anonymous5/06/2018

    Ellie how come you don't keep up with your Nashville wife site? You can't let yourself be so star struck by the Duggars that their site becomes more important then your site. They get plenty of exposure so you should tend to your site. You have a nice site so girl take care of your site too. Lol

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    Replies
    1. Anonymous5/07/2018

      I could be wrong, but I thought the Duggars site was Ellie’s job?

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    2. I love Ellie's blog and think she keeps up with it very nicely. Posts are the same or more frequent than most bloggers I know. The Duggars and Bates have dozens of people to update on which is probably why she posts more frequently there. Ellie has herself and Mr Handsome. Just something to think about.

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    3. Anonymous5/08/2018

      Sarah I don't think whoever wrote the comment was saying they don't like Ellie's site but just the opposite. I for one get burnt out looking at the Duggar and Bates site. After awhile you just feel like saying, who cares who is getting married, courting, having babies, buying houses etc. Ellie's Nashville site is like a refreshing walk in the park where there is no drama, but is instead very informative and fun.

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    4. Hi there,

      Thank you for your kind words. I don't post every single day, but I do keep up with it. Currently working on a brand new layout, which has been a big job.

      Have a blessed day.
      Ellie

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