Saturday, January 23, 2010

Kaui Hiking...

One of my favorite things to do is hiking. For many, a relaxing week on the beach is the ideal vacation. I love to relax myself, but there is nothing I prefer on my itineary to a great hike.

Our first full day in Kaui, the weather was perfect. I didn't want to miss our chance to hike the Kalalau Trail along the Na Pali coast. We didn't have the camping gear to do the full 24 mile round trip hike. So we settled for the 8 mile to Hanakoa Falls. I'll never forget that hike. We started out on the shear cliff to the ocean for the first few miles. The views were stunning. The last mile we weaved our way up a rainforest type of vegetation crossing a fairly deep and swift current creek--one rock at a time. After weaving back and forth accross the creek we reached the most amazing waterfall ever--better than I could ever imagine. It was a secluded enclosed area with greenry all around which made it cozy and remote. Yet the pool of water below the falls had complete visibility all the way down to the rocks deep below. The pressure of the warerfall isn't to overwhelming to where you couldn't swim below and underneath the falls. I'm guessing the falls were over 100 feet tall. We did the hike later in the day so we were the only people left at the falls. Most everyone hikes it in the morning to ensure they are back by dark. It would be a scary trail if there was no sunlight. We weren't sure if we would make it all the way to the falls because we had a time mark we knew we had to turn around by to make it back. We were pushing it close--way too close. But it made for a beautiful sunset on our way home.
The only way one can view the Na Palai coast is by foot (the full 24 mile hike), by air (this pic is from the heli ride), or by boat/kayak (which during winter, the swells are too high). The sheer cliffs, waterfalls, and narrow valleys along this coast line are breath taking.

(self-timer pic taken on a very unsturdy rock)
The climatic point of our hike...Wish we could have spent all day there, but we had to get home before dark. Wouldn't want to be on that cliff in the dark that's for sure.

Hanakapia Beach is half way to the falls. It is really quaint beach tucked away too along the trail. I could see how many would just jump on in. But the tide apparently has pulled many out from where the waves break. The waves broke so early and then just sucked its way back if that makes any sesne.


Pierce and Stacy said...

That is SO pretty! What an amazing experience. I like the warning sign. And I'm glad you guys made it back safe!

Diana Hulme said...

How cool! We're going to Kauai in March so I'll have to take notes from your trip. Looks like you guys had a great time!!!

Ana Lee said...

I lived in Kauai for 4 months! I had no idea you guys were going. I love that hike, it is super intense though. Because of work, I never had enough time to go as far as the day though. How amazing for you guys! I cannot wait to take Kory there one day.

Rachel Ricchio said...

im so jealous of you guys. what an amazing time! ps. the whole time i was at my engagement party i was thinking, man i wish i could just peace out and go to disneyland and ride space mountain with mar!

Diana Hulme said...

I starred this post forever ago and just re-read it...when we went to Kauai a couple of weeks ago we were weak & only went to Hanakapia Beach - it was so pretty though. you are impressive for doubling that hike. :)