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!!!