Monday, July 13, 2009

Hawaii Loa Ridge

Trail: Hawaii Loa Ridge Trail
Distance: 5 mile (round trip)
Elevation Gain: 1500 ft
Distance and elevation information courtesy of Stuart M. Ball Jrs "The Hikers Guide to O'Ahu"
about 5 hours with the group w/ multiple stops, break at the summit.
Area: Hawaii Kai. In the beginning if you're coming from Waikiki.
Trailhead: End of Puuikena Dr.
Directions: From Waikiki or downtown area. Take H1 westbound and follow onto Kalanianole Highway. You'll see Kawaikui Beach Park on your right. Take the jughandle here to go up Puuikena Dr. There's a gatehouse and you'll have to sign in.
Sights: Excellent views of Koko Head, Hawaii Kai, Waikiki, the surrounding valleys and ridges. Summit view is extradinary overlooking Waimanalo. On a good day, you can most likely see Kailua.

So Nicole and I met up with a group, the Sierra Club, and went for a hike. The club tries to organize hikes every weekend but the leader said it had been slow lately. However this time there were about 25 other people. So met at 8 am went to the hiking base and started around 9:15 a.m. Jeez that was an exhausting hike.. exceeded my expectations (well I didn't have many and didn't research the trail much). Only 2.5 miles (one way) but goes all the way to the top of the ridge.

See that center peak at the top. That's where the summit was. Elevation was 2400 ft or so, vertical gain was about 1000 ft. Visibility was horrible from the summit but at moments we had glimpses of the other side of the island. Amazing views along the way though...

Second pic is another one on the way down. By the time I got to the top, I was out of breath even after taking multiple breaks and calves were burning. There are a lot of steps but uneven... and some stairs that you can't really use. Nicole said it was like the steps on the Great Wall of China.. uneven in height and length. On the way down, legs felt a bit like jelly... enjoyed sliding down on my ass a couple of times. Took about 5 hours round trip. Exhausting and rewarding. So glad I went. Going to try something else next week. Take care everyone!

1 comment:

  1. Going down is sometimes harder than going up. Glad you had a good time and you aren't the only one who's slipped going down hill before :)