Yes, I quoted a TLC song. It seemed perfectly fitting even if that’s not what the song is really about.
We were woken up at the crack of dawn by the hideously loud sound of a bird from the nest that the owner had pointed out the day before. That’s when it dawned on us the reason why she mentioned it. Fumbled to get ready and packed up our our Camelbaks. The night before we had filled and frozen reservoirs, so that we’d have cool refreshing water throughout the 8 miles round trip (4 hours) hike and headed over to the Hanakapi’ai Falls Hike.
In my bag:
- Gallon zip lock bag for my camera
- Freezer bag for my iPhone and iPhone battery
- Wet wipes
- Water proof jacket
- Haribo Gummibears
Jieae, her sister and Brian had packed lunch for all of us in their bags. Once we met up with them at the base of the mountain parking lot, we took quick bathroom break before heading up the trail. The clouds were out and about, but generally the trail was beautifully shaded and the sun was out.
On the Hanakapi’ai Falls Hike there are two possible endpoints starting from base of the hill. The first opening ends at Hanakapi`ai beach, which is roughly 2 miles into the journey. If you continue going on the trail 2 more miles up, you end up hiking through Hanakapi`ai Valley and end up at the falls.
The full hike is considered pretty strenuous, there are lots of extreme inclines and declines that occur regularly throughout, not reliable water sources unless you bring it or carry a filter, there are multiple points where you need to cross the river fast moving water and the lava rock when wet can be extremely slippery, especially when your shoes are muddy. You should be in good shape and generally observant to be able to tackle this trail.
Heading up we were lucky to have the cloud cover with us, otherwise the heat might have been unbearable. During the walk we encountered a bamboo forrest.
During we tried to chat, but honestly I was breathing so heavily, as I wasn’t in great hiking shape that I could barely breathe and walk, let alone hold an intelligible conversation. The whole time I could process repetative tasks such as was singing to myself Magic!’s Rude, which was playing at Pono Market while we were picking out poke. It has an island beat to it and is about not giving up, which I thought was appropriate for 6 hours of hiking.
After one hour of hiking over the mountains and through the woods we reach the beach where we take a brief pitstop.
As we continued, whenever we reached a rushing river area, instead of trying to jump from rock to rock I would just wade through the water in a slower area with my water shoes! They came in handy to avoid slipping and falling backwards. The shoes were generally awesome, the one part that wasn’t great about the shoes was that tiny rocks would collect in the shoe while wading through the water, but all you needed to do was shake them out after crossing.
2 more hours later and we come to a rocky clearing and at the end of the path a majestic waterfall. A cool breeze made flurries with the water falling down from the sky.
We sat on the rocks near the pool of cool water and everyone else contemplates taking a dip. I still do not formally know how to swim, so this internal debate doesn’t occur to me. I do however want to put my feet in the water. After we’ve rested a bit out of Jieae’s sister’s backpack comes delicious Korean wrapped sushi. I demolish 2 rolls without taking much of a breather.
For dessert I whip out these:
We sat until the clouds came in and a chill filled the valley. The water in the pool of the waterfall was definitely too chilly for any of us to partake in. But that didn’t stop others.
The clouds came in shortly after our lunch break and told us to bid farewell to the waterfall. We started out trek back to civilization hiking past all the difficult passes we had before, but this time more carefully as everything was waterlogged. The lava rock was slippery, the rushing rivers teemed with more urgency, and we were tired, but the inclines and declines seemed to never end. We all ran out of water, so much for needing only 16 oz an hour. I hadn’t rationed as well as I should have.
A previous ligament injury in my left leg that cropped up in the last 30 minutes of the trek home. Moving more slowly and deliberate to avoid a shooting pain up my leg, I fell behind and waved at Laurie to go ahead, but soon after I did we spotted the parking lot. We all took a long break at the water fountains and then head to the car.
I spot this epic cave on the way to the car.
Reach into my pack to grab my DSLR from a ziplock bag to find the bag has filled with water. After taking photos at the waterfall I had not properly zipped the bag and the rainwater had pooled inside the plastic bag. My camera no longer turns on and I’m filled with intense sadness. I’ve had this Nikon D80 for almost 10 years. I chose to buy it after completing Project 365 one year and committing myself to photography.
There’s nothing I can do, so we hop in the car and on our way home to shower and relax before dinner.