We were invited to this beach by a new friend, but as always, I wasn’t sure what to expect.  There is another beach down the road that was touted online as a great spot for Hawaiian sea turtle (locally known as honu) sightings. So honestly, my plan was to put in some time here and then head down to Laniakea Beach.  Turns out that it was totally unnecessary.
The beach park is unassuming with only street parking and a playground before the beach.  But it turned out to be the perfect little place for quite a large number of people.  So much barbecuing, activity, and friendliness happening.  Quite neat actually.

I made a beeline for the ocean, and was so excited to see the waves rushing in.  This was our first trip to the North Shore, and it did not disappoint.  The waves weren’t huge like some other locations we’ve heard about, but they were constant and powerful.

A look to our left revealed a drainage pipe of some sort and a beautiful coast line.  Our friends were actually invited by another family, so we all stood and chatted for a bit.  We were informed that this exact beach is quite a good place to see turtles, and just then we noticed a large mass down by the end of the tree line.  We couldn’t tell if it was a big rock or possibly a honu, but we definitely wanted to check it out.

Look at that!  No idea if it was a male or female, and I’m completely ignorant when it comes to turtles so I couldn’t guess an age.  But it seemed weird that it was just hanging on the beach.  It kept opening its eyes to look at us.  But otherwise, it didn’t seem to be concerned.

Looking at this photo, I have to honestly say that it feels odd.  I can’t help but worry that the poor creature wasn’t just resting.  And here we are posing next to it.  But according to this website, it’s become pretty commonplace to see these beautiful things sunbathing on the shores of Hawaii – particularly on the North Shore.  So that’s good to know.  We made sure not to touch it at all, but I’d like to see James’s foot move another six inches away for the comfort of everyone.

Still, I feel kind of bad.  The poor thing is exhausted and wants to take a nap, but here we all are running up to it to take pictures.  Totally acting like tourists.  Go us.  (We know better now than to do that now.)

And then our friend came up to show us a tiny dead jellyfish.  Eek!

So after doing our little photo ops, we started to walk back down the beach.  And what is that?!  A turtle in the water.

And more!  We probably saw at least 20 as we were walking.  It was absolutely incredible.

Here you can see three just riding in the surf.

And I decided to stick my waterproof camera under the water to catch a glimpse.  Clearly that didn’t go so well.

This is a view as we were walking back toward the beach park.  See the windmills?

So we hung out at the park for a while and had some lunch.  James tried to walk on this slackline with little success.  But it was fun to watch.  I think he made it about 4 feet total.  The line was placed there by the family that invited our friends and I couldn’t believe how much entertainment it provided.
Then there was some football action.  It was so great seeing everyone running around and having such a good time.

But at that point, I couldn’t take it anymore.  I had to get back down to the beach and look for more turtles.  Aidan even came with me.  We walked along the coastline and caught this video.

And then I tried once again to get some underwater shots.  This was the most successful.  But I am SO excited to go snorkeling up here.  Swimming with them has to be even more incredible than this was.  And this was pretty great.

Look at these babies!  Wow.

And then I decided I’d taken all of the photos that made sense.  Although let’s be honest, I could have taken a hundred or two more.  So I went back up to the beach park.  But at that point, Audra and Austin decided they wanted to spend some time in the water.  So back down we came.  However, because the waves are so powerful here and we don’t know much about the current, they were only allowed to walk a few feet into the water.

Safety first and all that.

This boy lost his perfect little shell in the water.  Grumpy face.

Grumpy face times two when he got slammed with a wave.

But Mommy can fix anything.  So he got happy.  He’ll find another shell.

Meanwhile, Aidan was up with James hanging out.  He gave the slackline a try with similar results.  But look at that smile!

And then he spent the next hour or two reading.  And this picture gives a small glimpse of how many people were actually at the park.  Thirty, maybe?  A lot.  And most were homeschooling families.  The community here is so big!

This is our new friends’ little girl.  She and Audra have majorly hit it off.  I think Hawaii is fitting us just fine.

Koko Crater Railway Trail
Manoa Falls Trail