i almost died

You might remember in one of my previous posts that i mentioned my friend adventure Jenny

was trying to talk me into a swim up the coast.

You can really only do the swim in the summer because come Fall/Winter….the waves get too big

and you can’t do it…which means really the only time to do the swim would be June, July, and August.

So….this last Friday night evening we were all sitting around at the beach….

{this is our “night out”…..pretty inexpensive and it’s become something to look forward to}

and i asked my friend Jenny if Monday would work for her to take me on “that swim”.

She mentioned that she had taken off the day from work anyway because family was in town….

so then i started asking around to some of my other friends because if this ship is going to sink….

she doesn’t want to go down alone.

Maybe someone mentioned it was “Shark week” on Discovery channel …..

maybe someone mentioned that they needed a prozac or two….

but overall….everyone seemed like they wanted to go.

Bryan happened to be off Monday as well….and since he works so much….i wanted him to be included

knowing how much he loves the water.

I even talked my other friend Jenifer …who is a lot like me….in which

we prefer to sit on the sand rather than swim in the ocean type of girls.

Don’t hate us….

we just like to keep the coolers safe and the towels warm.

{we also might be the ones doing the dog paddling if somehow we were thrown into the olympics}

Jenifer said yes…but she could only go if her husband accompanied her…..

{luckily for him…he just did “the swim” the previous week…so he thought it was in Jen’s best

interest if he came}

So….after asking around….we had gotten together about 7 or 8 friends that said they would do the swim.

We agreed to meet at Ke’e beach at 8 am on Monday morning.

Ke’e is at the very end of the road on the North shore……

and this is the place where i hike~run once a week….2 miles in to Hanakapia’i beach

and then 2 miles back out.

I know the trail…..but i don’t know the ocean.

All in all there were 12 of us that showed up Monday morning for the…

“i thought it was a 2 mile swim but in reality it’s more like just over 1 mile” along the coast

Ke’e beach to Hanakapia’i beach swim and hike the 2 miles back out.

Does that sound confusing?

It’s not…..

but once we got started….

and we all split up into groups…..

in which the fast swimmers aka:

no flippers

no snorkel

no wet bag to haul with shoes for the hike back

no boogie board

just a mask

they took off and there were 4 in their group…. adventure Jenny was one of them.


They took off with their freestyle…lookin good….didn’t look back…but i’m not mad….see you at the end swim.

Then the Latino’s and friend took off…..




no dry bag

no boogie board

i think they looked back once.

Then the rest of us took off….

Bryan and i…..our friend Joy…..

Jenifer and her husband Derick and Derick’s friend Matt.

{Derick and Matt had done this swim before and would probably be with the first group…..

but because said wife was swimming….they were with us…}

We had….




bryan and i had a dry bag for our shoes and camera

joy had a boogie board

jenifer had boogie board

and a partridge in a pear tree.

So…..the last 6 of us were in the last group to go out….and we were probably about 10 minutes behind….

the 1st group….but not far behind the 2nd group.

Ke’e beach is protected by a reef….and you must swim out past the reef 

{think reef sharks….and tiger sharks}

and then you get out into the open ocean.

I really didn’t know what to think about this swim…..i was probably a little naive …in thinking

that it was just a casual swim when in reality….

i was fighting for my life the whole entire swim

because as soon as you exit that reef and you are in the open ocean….it’s pretty much

open ocean.

We got out and i was trying to not have a panic attack…..while bryan was pointing out sea turtles

and beautiful fish.  We didn’t get very far when Jenifer {my non swimming friend} was having trouble

with her mask and fins…..so her husband and his friend waved us to go ahead without them while they

helped her.

This was when i had my first panic attack.

It was Bryan….myself….and Joy out in the open ocean.

I looked at Bryan and said……

this is a little harder than i thought

as the waves were huge and my chest was getting tighter by the moment.

My friend Joy pulled out her camera because she knew i was having a “moment” and took some

photos which i would like to point out…..

does not show how huge the massive waves were

but shows how beautiful the landscape was….

{and i guess it shows how close we were to shore …but whatevs…}

the truth is…the current was semi helping us….so if i had decided i needed to turn around and

start swimming back….i would really be in trouble.

Between Joy and Bryan…..they pulled the boogie board strapped to their ankle

that held our dry bags all the while we swam semi-freestyle….

{but with snorkel}

and i would like to take this moment to mention that i don’t breath well with the snorkel….

i feel clausterphobic and i had to *maybe* stop every 2 minutes to take it out and tell my brain that 

i was still alive and okay…..

my friend Joy *might* have noticed me doing this as well…..and helped calm my

“i’m going to drown but just keep going without me” feeling.

{this photo of halfway point slightly shows the current and waves we were up against}

Obviously….we never lost sight of the shore….because that would be plain dumb…..

but you get the picture…and the message.

Everyone was waiting at the halfway point for us which is called “honeymooners beach”.

I don’t know why it’s called that….but if i find out…i’ll let you know.

You don’t know how tired i was at this point…..this was just over a half of mile…..

i might have been pale…i might have been cross-eyed

when i was washed up to shore.

{this photo is looking back at the way we came from and once again….it’s hard to see the huge waves…}

but we made it….and that is the important part.

I realize this was just over half way….and we still had more to go….but i was all for staying the day

except we had no food or water.

We did run around like hippies though…..

but i sat in the same spot the entire half hour.

At this point…..the Fab Four as i like to call them….headed back out to finish the swim….

but we were still waiting for my friend Jenifer…her husband Derick…and their friend Matt.

Next up to shore was Matt….who came in…and told us that Jenifer and Derick shouldn’t be far behind….

and they weren’t…..

just another 15 minutes.

I swear it looks calm…..

but it’s not…..

you just can’t see the swell and the current we were fighting.

Once the Fab Four took off….then the Latino’s ….

and of course…..then there was the rest of us left to tackle the last half mile.

We all took off together….but for some reason Jenifer and Derick decided to stop at one more

deserted beach and play out a scene of “the thorn birds”……

even though the rest of us were more worried about getting to the final point alive and safe.

At this point i was given the boogie board to drag onto shore….

but instead of strapping it to my ankle….i decided to put my body on top of it and swim ashore on it.

best decision of my life

My friend adventure Jenny was waiting for me….

{such a good friend she is….}

even though her group had already decided to hike back out at that point….

{like they had been waiting hours for us more cautious swimmers….}

We all high-fived each other….

some of us kissed each other….

and some of us laid down on the ground and cried big fat tears.

Some of the group can’t wait to go again….

while 2 of us {not naming any names….}

might wait on the beach and keep the cooler safe and the towels dry.

But in reality……

we did it….and even though i really did think it was the most terrifying thing i have ever done 

and i really did have a minor panic attack….

i’m glad i did it.

I’m also glad Bryan was with me…..even though he told me to “get a grip”.


  1. Kasey…I’m so proud of you and so happy I was able to share this incredible adventure day with you!!! It was a such spectacular day. If ever you would like to do this again I’m in. If not, I would love to swim up and see the smile on my friends face, comfortably sitting on the beach, watching the cooler and maybe a pair of shoes. Love you:)

  2. Holy smokes! I panic with a snorkel and waves jut at Hanauma bay, so I can’t imagine! You’re brave girl, props to ya! I would love to see those parts of the island but if they are only reachable via swim, then I can make do without.
    Fun story now, huh? 😉

  3. I had a panic attack just reading this:( You’re very brave! Your abs look amazing, you should get your belly button pierced.

  4. Adventure Jenny…start a blog!

  5. so glad I found your blog. We go to Kauai every year or every other year. our timeshare is at Poipu and we usually spend one day on the north shore. Thanks so much for sharing your favorite places as well as your family’s adventure in living on an island. Congratulations on “The Swim”. You pushed through your fear and conquered! I KNOW how the pull of the ocean is even though the pictures don’t tell. Can be very scary out there so be careful. So fun to read about places I am familiar with. Thanks again for writing.

  6. oh gosh – you do crack me up! i always read your blog – and never comment (you’re a blogging superstar so i figure you don’t need a comment from me – i guess this is a “sorry!”) anyway – I just have to say once when i was scuba diving i had a panic attack down 30 feet and it was horrible! so i know how you felt – yikes! i’m glad you made it ok – and def. guard that cooler next time!!!

    xo ellie

  7. i can vouch for the size of those waves. we hiked into that beach about 33 years ago. i think it might be called “honeymoon beach” because, at that time, it was a nude beach. i waded out into the water and one of those waves came in taking my sunglasses right off of my face and knocking me right on my rear! you can scratch that off your bucket list and, thankfully, can continue to entertain us with your own delightful adventures!

  8. You are a better woman than me! 🙂 Its absolutly beautiful, I wish I was brave enough to do that. I freaked out in an ocean kayak!!!
    Bryan sounds like my husband … always supportive but real enough to tell us to get a grip when we need it! 🙂

  9. Hahaha…oh my gosh…Bryan’s “get a grip”…Hilarious!

    Soooo proud of you…I was getting a tight chest and claustrophobic just reading this. I’ve snorkeled in Hawaii before & I don’t think I do too well with the mask and snorkel either…I got pretty panicky myself.

    Way to go…mark it off your bucket list and keep the towels warm & cooler safe from now on! 🙂

  10. Wendy in Kennewick says:

    Congrats on working through your fears and finishing! I had one of those moments while snow skiing. Hiking up to the lip of a big bowl, only to have a fear of heights kick in. But was able to talk myself through it and get my stomach out of my throat and went for it. And did it again the next day!

  11. Love it! Great job at facing a fear and doing it…… Especially during shark week! Keep doing more adventures and letting us enjoy them with you!

  12. I am an EXCELLENT* swimmer and you would never catch me doing that. No way. *I was a WSIT–meaning I taught people how to be lifeguards and teach swimming lessons. I taught swimming and competed from sixth grade to freshman year of college, I can tread water nearly forever, I will swim in Minnesota lakes, but lord help me, no ocean swims for me.

  13. I did once snorkel in FL, but I didn’t like it very much.

  14. That was a great feet you should be so proud of yourself, what a great story. Keeping the cooler safe is a job I would do.

  15. Wow. I felt like I was having a panic attack right along with you!

    And… I can’t imagine living in a place where people freely wear bikinis. As beautiful as the scenery is, you couldn’t pay me a million dollars!

  16. Adventure Jenny's Mom says:

    Kasey–Love your stories and pictures. I would be sitting on the beach with you while the others do their ocean adventures. The water and fish are beautiful, but I need to stay close to shore. So glad you two met and I look forward to all your stories. I love Kauai!

  17. That would be totally frightening….but since it looks like Jason Statham is in your group, no worries!

  18. Kasey!!! I’m so proud of you!! You are amazing and have so many wonderful adventures to share. I love the way you can tell a story. Bryan is funny! “Get a grip ” is something Luke would say to me:)

  19. Becky @ Farmgirl Paints says:

    Loved this post…probably one of my very favs. You couldn’t have gotten me out there for anything. That’s scary business! I would have drowned…or panicked…or drowned..lol! You are ballsy. Oh and that Honeymooners beach is amazing. Wow! Unbelievable adventure.

  20. this post gave me a panic attack! I probably would have freaked & my husband would have told me to get a grip as well! but i think he would have added a few more words……I love your posts & I love hearing your adventures.

  21. this was great! well done for doing it, I’m sure it wasn’t easy. Thank god Bryan was with you, even if he did tell you to get a grip!! There’s something about living on an island that calls for adventures, don’t you think? Heather x

  22. That was a thoroughly enjoyable read! I laughed. I gasped. I cheered. Glad you made it the whole way. You should be proud that you persevered and triumphed over the waves and your fears! Well done.


  23. I’m so glad you finally came out about the 1-mile versus 2-mile. I felt like we were living a lie!! 🙂

  24. Wow,you are brave!!!! I never swim in the deeper part of the ocean,I stay close to the shore as I am not a strong swimmer. I felt nervous reading about your post,lol!!!!! Glad you had a good time and everyone made it to the end safely!!!!! Blessings,Sara

  25. Never underestimate the importance of keeping the cooler safe and the towels dry.

    Love your spirit to join the “fun.”

  26. oh.my.goodness! you go! I am so proud of you for taking that challenge on, it would honestly scare the boots off of me! Wow, honestly impressive! Check that one off the bucket list 😉

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