Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Moanalua Middle Ridge to Haiku Stairs

It has been a long time since I have been on a long hike...
Trekking up Moanalua Middle Ridge along Keahi a Kahoe to the top of Haiku Stairs brought back memories and I am reminded why I love hiking. The lush green, the cool breeze, the exciting walk across a ridge, the unforgettable views, and that tingling feeling in your legs long after you have left the mountain--all I will miss.

Starting in Moanalua Valley, Tiff and I began our hike at around 11:00 am. Originally we planned to leave at 9:00 but after a night of drinking with old neighborhood friends, we decided to sleep in. We jogged part of the 3 mile road to the trail head located about 10 feet after the Kulanaahane Trail state sign. The path was clearly marked and we crossed the stream. The trek up the Middle Ridge was tiresome and I had to stop numerous times to catch my breath. We passed a few hunters with their dogs and continued the strenuous journey. When will this end? I thought. 

After an hour of agony we finally emerged on the ridge. Sights of Pearl Harbor and Moanalua valley came into view. A few rope sections added excitement to the trek and another hour later we were at the Middle Ridge.


Although extremely muddy the anticipation of the infamous satellite coming into view was almost unbearable. The adrenaline made it easy to push through Keahi a Kahoe's thick vegetation and before we knew it sounds of cars driving on the H3 and Likelike could be heard.


A little later, there it was...THE satellite. We made it! The clouds nor wind nor rain dampened our spirits!


As I descended the stairs, I reflected on how beautiful and precious Hawaii is. I am so grateful and fortunate to experience Hawaii in ways many will never know, and I can only hope that all who enjoy hiking as much as I do will take care of the trails for future generations to enjoy.

Monday, June 4, 2012

*Likeke Falls*

Knowing we have less than two months left on this beautiful island, I have made it a priority to explore as much of Hawaii as possible. Today, Ezekiel, Zephen and I started our hike to Likeke Falls via the Old Pali Road. Although Likeke Falls is accessible from the Koolau Golf Course, for as long as I can remember I have gazed at the old road, and like my sons have wondered what lurked beyond the graffiti. To our delight the Old Pali Road is in decent condition and even better, provides a new perspective of Pali Highway.

Due to years of commuting on the Pali I knew the junction to take to get below the highway. (If one is unfamiliar with the area, a good landmark is a pile of boulders to the right where the sharp path will be to the left. Further down is the Maunawili Trail sign.) We walked under using the wooden step stool but were careful as it was rotting and unsteady. The boys and I should have continued straight under the town bound lane and back onto Old Pali Road but instead followed some marked trees down the gulch located to the right. Soon it was obvious that we had gone the wrong way. 

We back tracked onto the road and meandered downhill. At one point the road curved left with a noticeable trail to the right labeled “7”. Although curious about the path, we remained on the road.

Around the next bend the trek opened to a clearing as it joined with Auloa Road. We looked left for the cement easement and utility pole, both of which were quite obvious. 

Zeke, Zeph and I continued along the steps behind it up a short series of swtich backs ending at a four-way junction.

From there we headed straight (on the middle path) where it turned left and descended the mountain's other side. The boys and I continued past a gulch of kukui trees, and the path split again. we took the left trail through a tunnel of hau trees.

A small portion of the path became muddy due to trickling streams trying to make their way down hill, and just after we reached the refreshing Likeke Falls.

Friday, June 1, 2012

*Koko Head*


and of course you two beat me to the top!!! 

Saturday, May 12, 2012


another fun, easy and of course beautiful hike
my family and I will cherish as we take on new adventures in a new home

Starting at the tope of Wailae Iki Subdivision, Wiliwilinui is a 5 mile round trip hike to the Koolau Summit. A good portion of the hike consists of a dirt road wide enough for a 4-wheel vehicle to navigate. At the end of this road, the muddy trail narrows and steepens as you make the final climb to the summit. Although not necessary, there are ropes to aid in the ascent and descent. Just beyond a utility tower is the top, revealing a breathtaking view of the windward side. 

Saturday, April 28, 2012


Zeke and Zeph, 
Initially I thought it was a great idea to take the two of you to hike Olomana today, but as I watched both of you use ropes to transverse the rocks or your tiny fingers grip crevices to manipulate the steep terrain, I couldn't help but be a nervous wreck. I guess that's what they call motherly instinct. In the future, I am not sure how or if I will be able to accompany the two of you as you take on adventures of your own for the older I get the more reality sets in.

But for now, as I sit here in the comfort of our home, I beam with pride! Both of you not only made it to Olomana's first peak but smoked me in doing so! Wow Zeph, even at your little six-year-old stature you were able to ascend Olomana, a hike rated difficult by many. You are, if not, one of the youngest people to accomplish this huge feat. Just as awesome Zeke, you demonstrated maturity beyond your years. You composed yourself and did not let your fears get the best of you, something many adults are not capable of.

I love you both dearly and look forward to creating more memories to last a life time as we spend our final months in what has been home to us all our lives...

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Kaliuwaa Falls

If I could, I would keep this journal entry private. After all, this blog is for my children. Today we went on a hike that I enjoyed tremendously but do not recommend it. If you are like me, and just have to try and experience new things, acknowledge the risks, and take full responsibility, God forbid, anything should happen, then I am sure you would do this hike with or without the existence of my blog. Nonetheless, if you do this hike, you are forewarned of the potential risks involved and possibility of death. YOU are liable for your actions.

Kaliuwaa Falls better known as Sacred Falls is closed indefinitely due to the tragedy that happened on Mother's Day, May 11, 1999. Eight people died and more than 50 others were injured. Because the state advertised the place as a tourist destination, it was found guilty for not adequately warning tourists of possible falling rocks, and in having knowledge of the danger due to previous incidences.

Like countless sites warn and many people have told us, it is likely to get arrested on this hike so Matt, Nate, Moani, Kalei knew  we had to be incognito. We parked our car at the beach and waited until the coast was clear before walking around the yellow gate fronting the once public park. Nat spotted a trail to our left and suggest we take it.
"It's a sign," he said.
We looked at the path but kept heading straight. As we neared the second locked fence, fate would have it. A van pulled up and a man exited to unlock it. We ran into the bushes for fear of getting arrested. We couldn't help but giggle, although this was not laughing matter. Nate calmly walked behind acknowledging that the man had seen us. Yes, we probably looked really stupid but the thought of getting arrested is non-existence in my mind. Plus, I'm sure Nate can outrun anyone, but me, I'd be the first to get caught! We hid as the van drove in and waited patiently for it to pass. We exited the trail which led around the gate and back onto the dirt path. Fearing more cars, we headed down to the stream and tried to walk along it, but in reality spent more time in it.
The hike didn't even start yet and my shoes are wet! UGH! I thought.
But there was little time to complain as the sound of an engine neared and another truck passed.
What are the odds of that? Seriously?!!! Out of all the days and times, we have impeccable timing! 

Having soggy shoes sucked so much that Beimes and I headed back to the road even though we knew there was a great possibility we'd have to jump in the bushes if a third car appeared. My heart raced at the thought of being caught but luckily the coast was clear. We took a left as the road made a "Y." The wide trail split again, and we continued left for a second time on a much narrower path.

From the distinct trail, it is obvious that many people still frequent the falls. Unlike Maakua Gulch it was very clear where to go. We snaked through some boulders, ducked under some hau and crossed the river bed. Once on the right side, we strolled through the load of mountain apple trees. To my surprise they were full of fruits. Not as ripe as I would have liked, but I'm not complaining.

About thirty minutes later we excited the grove and walked up the river bed to the base of the falls. I stood in awe and respected the beauty and power of it. We took tons of pictures and had a blast swimming beneath it. We decided to set the timer on Beimes' 7D to take some final group shots. As we were about to take the last one...DUNK! It was a rock! It had fallen right next to Nate..
"Time to get out of here!" someone shouted.
We all agreed and headed out.

It took about an hour to get back to our car. I cannot believe how easy it was to get to and from the falls. No wonder so many people visited it and still do, even with the potential risks! I am glad I got to experience Kaliuwaa Falls and feel extremely blessed to live in such a beautiful place. However, I still don't think if I'll ever be back...

Friday, October 8, 2010

Hamama Falls

How could we have lived in Kaneohe all our lives and
never have heard of Hamama Falls? 

Coincidentally while searching for another falls in Ahuimanui, Beimes came across this hike. Starting at the end of Waihee Road (the first left after the bridge in Kahaluu), Hamama Falls is an easy 3 mile roundtrip stroll. Once through the hole cut in the locked fence we continued on the dirt and gravel path. Running water could be heard almost entirely throughout the hike and to my surprise mountain apple and guava trees lined some parts of the trek. After a few minor inclines and only about thirty minutes we were standing below the gorgeous Hamama Falls. Another beautiful day, another beautiful hike...