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Old 01-26-2014, 07:42 PM   #796
Need For Speed
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Originally Posted by Birdmove View Post
Did you ride the DR650 or the DRZ400S? Or both? Looks like you had a great time!!
DR650 the first two days, DRZ the remainder of my time on the island.
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Old 01-26-2014, 07:57 PM   #797
Birdmove
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I'm considering buying one or the other. Which did you like the best for this island? We have Montgomery Motors in Hilo 12 miles from me, and they sell Suzuki. All the other brands are sold in Kona.

Thanks for your comments. Glad you enjoyed your stay here. We moved here in Sept. of 2011.
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Old 01-26-2014, 11:52 PM   #798
Big Bamboo
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Beautiful clear warm day up on the Saddle today, so I went to the top...

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Old 01-27-2014, 10:55 AM   #799
Birdmove
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Great photos. I've not been up there yet, but have seen the observatories many times riding between HPP and Hilo. Notice much of a power loss at that altitude?
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Old 01-27-2014, 11:26 AM   #800
Big Bamboo
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Yes, there was some power loss. There's only 40% oxygen up there compared to sea level, but the BMW still idled and pulled well once I got going. Worst part was the corduroy road surface (I think I lost a filling or two) and pea gravel (oddly, worst at the very beginning, but also where the cars chewed it up going around the Z bends). You should give it a go, it's really not that far from where the dirt starts at around 9,000' to the top. In comparison, the ride up to the Solar Observatory at 11,000' on Mauna Loa seems longer, but then, that's from around 7,000' where you turn off the Saddle Road. Do bring extra clothes and warm gloves, once I got above 11,000' the wind kicked up and it got very cold on exposed skin. There was a couple pedaling up on ten speeds in bicycle shorts and spandex ! More power to them, but I'll bet it was a cold ride back down... It was the clearest day I have ever seen up there. In this photo you can see Waipio Valley better;

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Old 01-27-2014, 12:30 PM   #801
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Beautiful!!
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Old 01-27-2014, 09:58 PM   #802
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It was the clearest day I have ever seen up there. In this photo you can see Waipio Valley better;
Looks like Haleakala way back there too, nice.
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Old 01-27-2014, 10:16 PM   #803
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Looks like Haleakala way back there too, nice.
Yep, that's Maui across the channel, North Kohala in the foreground. Here's Hualalai from the old Saddle road and the view northwest, Maui in the distance (from the beginning of the ride)

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Old 01-27-2014, 10:40 PM   #804
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Nice. I used to go to Maui on vacation, and go up to the visitor's center on Haleakala, and could see the big island from up there. My loss that I didn't come here sooner. Now I live here and love it!
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Old 01-28-2014, 01:30 PM   #805
lopaka
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If you are planning to ride up to the top of MK, it is a good idea to check summit weather and webcams

Weather
http://mkwc.ifa.hawaii.edu/forecast/mko/index.cgi

Webcams
http://mkwc.ifa.hawaii.edu/current/cams/

Road closure status
http://www.ifa.hawaii.edu/info/vis/

It's starting to spit snow as I write this.

The Rangers will close off access to the summit to civilians if the weather gets too iffy. A week ago there were winds > 100 mph at the summit ridge.

Lots of pretty days, but it can change fast. The remains of a guy from Michigan that went walkabout in 2007 were found back last August. He went hiking, dressed for sea level, and a big snow storm came in.

Occasionally a tourist goes missing and search teams are turned out. Often, those lost are taking a "short cut" or exploring off the road or main paths.
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Old 01-28-2014, 01:36 PM   #806
Birdmove
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Thanks, lopaka, for the good information. And I bookmarked all 3 of those websites for future use.
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Old 01-28-2014, 01:45 PM   #807
Big Bamboo
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Here's another I use for planning trips around the island. http://radar.weather.gov/Conus/hawaii_loop.php

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Old 01-28-2014, 08:20 PM   #808
lopaka
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Mauna Kea Today - Impassable

Everyone left the summit today. Rangers report impassable.

Click on animation
http://www.jach.hawaii.edu/weather/camera/ukirt/
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Old 01-28-2014, 11:27 PM   #809
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Everyone left the summit today. Rangers report impassable.

Click on animation
http://www.jach.hawaii.edu/weather/camera/ukirt/
Driving home today I caught glimpses of the mountain between the clouds, on the east side definitely snow below treeline! I couldn't help but think of a sunset summit ride, either that or a R-1 ride east of Onizuka, guarens ball bearins you'd hit snow at some point!
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Old 01-29-2014, 11:22 AM   #810
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Snow on the Mountains!

Oh heck yeah! Here's the view from my back yard at about 7:30 this morning,, First, Mauna Loa: ...and then Mauna Kea, with the summit still in the clouds:

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