I was on vacation in Hawaii with my wife & her parents from Nov. 22 to Dec. 2, 2006. I took my bicycle a Vision R40 Recumbent with me. We stayed in Waikiki
Prior to my trip I had been Pmíing & emailing members from Bike Forums who live in Hawaii to see if they would like to ride. I did ride with one. His member name is CB HI, I donít want to reveal his real name with out his ok.
1. Before we left I had planned on shipping it ahead of me to The Bike Shop, http://www.bikeshophawaii.com/, an LBS in Honolulu. One of their specialties is having tourists & visitors bring/send their bikes to them. They unpack them, set them up for riding then repack them for the trip back home. After finding out what it would cost to have my bike shopped via UPS or FedEx., over $300.00 one way, I decided against that & took the bike with me on the plane, & $80.00 one way.
2. Taking the seat as a carry on piece on the plane. The flight from Sioux City to Minneapolis was on a small plane with the smaller overhead bins. The seat had to be checked with a green tag that allowed me to claim from the jetway once I arrived in Minneapolis. On the DC10 to Honolulu the seat fit easily into the overhead bin in the center of the plane.
3. I also had to call ahead to ďreserveĒ a place on the plane for the bike for the trip from Sioux City to Minneapolis. They only allow one bicycle on the smaller aircraft.
4. Once we got to Honolulu we had to get the bike & other luggage to Alamo car rental. It is not at the airport but about a mile or so away. Thankfully they have a shuttle. We made to Alamo to pick up the rental.
5. The rental was an SUV, but with 4 people and luggage other then the bike, the bike would not fit inside. That is why I brought 2 of my ratcheting luggage tie downs & made sure the rental was an SUV with a luggage rack. I simply tied the bike box to the top of the rental. Worked great.
6. Got the bike to The Bike Shop. It was ready 2 days later on Saturday Nov. 25.
7. As I was the only one on the rental vehicle contract I took a cab to The Bike Shop to pick it up for my first ride.
All of these logistical challenges were met & successfully accomplished. For the trip back home everything was simply done in reverse.
Here is a link to a bike route map of Oahu: http://www.hbl.org/maps/maps.html
The first day, Sat. Nov. 25, when I met up with CB HI at The Bike Shop & we went for a great 34 mile bike ride. We rode out to just past Sandy Beach Park via the ocean side of Diamond Head & the inland side of Koko Head. If you click on Map 4 & navigate to where it says Sandy Beach Park, look to where the green line & the yellow line intersect. That is where we stopped & headed back into Honolulu. It is also the route we took.
The second day, Nov. 26 I rode with my father-in-law. He rented a bike & we rode to the Diamond Head overlook & back to the hotel, 11 miles, look at Map 5.
The next time I rode was a solo ride on Nov. 28. Went east toward & around Pearl Harbor, turned around at a convenience store/gas station on Farrington Hwy & headed back. Look at Map 6. Where I turned around is near Waipahu Depot Rd. This was an interesting ride because the part of the trail is U.S. Navy right of way & part goes through the power plant property, with the plant on each side of the trail.
The final day I rode was Nov. 30. I did a short 10 mile ride to Magic Island, Map 5, then to The Bike Shop so the bike could be packed up for the trip home.
I rode as a VC on the roadways, on BLís & on trails. Sometimes this was done in as little as a 2 mile stretch. This was the first time ever I had ever ridden on actual BLís with the painted lines, the bicycle symbol & wording that states it is for bicycles only. In Hawaii if there is an established BL it is illegal to not ride in it. Oh & there are BLís on both sides of the roadways so bicycle traffic is going the same direction as motorists. Most of the BLís do not go by parking lanes, some do though. I learned very quickly to look ahead & be aware of the possibility of an opening car door, ever had one open while I was riding in the BL.
I did learn from CB HI that all children take a bicycle safety course in school. It is part of the curriculum. I think this is why the traffic is so friendly, they learn at a very young age & it carryís through to adulthood even if they do not ride as adults. Even though Honolulu is so congested I never had a problem, never got buzzed, honked at, yelled at, etc. In fact I had traffic slow down & wait when I had to change lanes to turn left. It may also have something to do with the fact there are so many people who ride bike in Honolulu.
I saw a lot of people riding bike. This ranges from the surfers to serious road cyclists with full kit. A lot of the cyclists rode with flip flops on & loose t-shirts & board shorts, or bikini bottoms if they were female. Most of these were surfers with the surf board carrier attached to the bike. Most of the cyclists did not wear helmets. All of the cyclists I saw riding at night & there were a lot of them, had both flashing tail lights & some sort of head light.
The bicycle parking was something very interesting I thought. There are bike racks all over Honolulu in the shape of a bicycle. Often there were 5 bikes at a time locked to them, including mopeds; it is legal to do this in Honolulu. At all of the overlooks & places like Diamond Head, Hanauma Bay, etc there is bicycle parking & signs directing where it is. The facilities are very accommodating for cyclists in this area of Hawaii.
The road conditions ranged from perfect to rough in areas. The rougher areas were the roadways in the parks. The BLís were excellent. The trails, like the roadways ranged from perfect to rough.
As one of very few recumbent riders & probably the only one on the island & more then likely the entire state with a Vision I got some neat looks, wolf whistles, hang loose signs, waves, smiles, compliments, etc. from people.
We are returning to Hawaii in 3 years, Maui & The Big Island. I plan on riding up & back Mt. Haleakala. I am the kind of person who firmly believes you did not earn the right to ride down a mtn. or hill unless you ride up it first if there are 2 sides or the ability exists to ride back down.
I have seen programs about the Maui bicycle tours where they drive the people up the mtn. put them on a bike & they do nothing more then coast down. Then they get a shirt that says ďI rode Mt. HaleakalaĒ. No they didnít! Iím going to earn that right & the shirt when I return in 3 years. The distance is 38 miles to the top & an elevation of 10,023 feet to the summet.
I think it is safe to say I have traveled pretty close to the furthest distance to ride with another BF member. Close to 3,000 miles.
Any questions, comments please feel free to reply.