Keep climbing. Stop at the ranger station for H20 and maybe to down a coconut water + cayenne pepper shot if you've got a little headache. Then, keep climbing. And climbing. And climbing. And breathing, or at least attempting to, because you will be getting into some seriously thin air at this point. The wind will also start to become a factor, as you are now 100% exposed. If you're lucky, it will toggle between head/tail depending on which direction you're heading. Not so lucky? Side/side.
Eventually, you will see the observatory in the distance. Save a bit, because the last .5 miles up to the summit itself is the steepest .5 miles of the climb. Because of course it is.
Take obligatory Elevation 10,023ft shot here.
High fives! You are at the top! Time to score some epic pics, re-layer up, and eat some extra calories, because you are about to enjoy the world's longest paved descent!
As much as we would love to tell you to shred all 35 miles, you are about to be heading down for anywhere from 1 - 1.5 hours. You will need to stop occasionally to let your brakes cool off a bit, and depending on the weather, the wind can be brutal. We definitely do not recommend anything deeper than 35mm rims for this ride due to the extreme island winds.