Though Connie and I chose not to stay at Mahukona our first night on the Kohala Coast we headed there this morning on multiple local's words the whale watching there is good. It was. Rainbows greeted us there first thing in the morning (and so did a bunch of pesky flies, unfortunately -- not good for holding still while looking through a telephoto lens) and I snapped pics of a couple whale duos doing their thing while Connie put together some breakfast. We saw the humpback whales puffing air and water when they exhaled and even saw a few tails come and go. After we walked around the relics of the old cannery option and shoreline we headed back to Spencer to start our trek.
We decided to pack some of our beach-centric gear and head south on the Ala Kahakai trail to see a few more beaches the area has to offer. Though sections of the trail were through that same dusty, dry, lava landscape as the petroglyphs yesterday other sections hugged the water and took us through some stunning private residence and resort grounds. The trail and shoreline access itself is public but these other areas weren't. Still, despite that restriction, we made it to Hapuna Bay to eat a bite of lunch overlooking the water then try out some snorkeling. The little inlet we choose seemed great for access to the waters but, once we swam beyond a nearby point, neither of our beginner snorkeling skillsets left us comfortable with the choppier surf there. We decided to pack it in and head back north along the trail 'til we made it back to Mau'umae beach. Though it's the closest to where we started it was a perfect spot to splash around a bit and soak in some Sun.
The town of Kawaihae offered up a couple options for dinner so we headed there and tried out Cafe Pesto. Despite us running in to their Hilo location being closed for the Super Bowl earlier in the week the food at their Kohala Coast location was fantastic and filled us up well after a day of walking. Spencer beach then offered up another lovely sunset and my lovely lady offered up some lovely drinks while we watched. Bonus tonight were some distant whales completely breaching from the water and repeatedly slapping their fins at the top of the water.