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Hawaii Trip

Day 12 of 14

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Sunday, July 8th
Kalalau Trail to Hanakapi'ai Beach

It rained during the night, but only briefly. The rain didn't bother us. What bothered us was those stupid chickens. The roosters started calling out as early as 2am, although I don't think I heard them until 5am. Once they got started in earnest, they didn't stop. You could hear one call out, then another respond a couple seconds later, then they'd go back and forth forever. I think they went on for over an hour.

We sleepily ate our breakfast, then rested and pondered our day's hike. One of our options was the Kalalau Trail. Reading reviews on the Internet left me a bit concerned. One site called it one of the most dangerous trails in America. To be fair, though, it was referring to the entire 11 mile stretch along the Na Pali coast. We wouldn't be doing that today. We'd only be doing the 8 mile round trip to the falls and back, or more likely the 4 mile round trip to the beach and back. I read that the trail up to the falls was much harder than the beach portion, and could get muddy and slippery and involved several stream crossings. Our kids had already been through enough mud on this trip, so I decided to keep it to the 4 mile trip.

We got a late start, leaving the house around 11am, driving northwest along the highway. The section of highway past Princeville is beautiful, including some sections with what looks like Monterey cypress, except they're about 100 feet tall. Then there are the mountains, poking steeply up, reminding me of the mountains of Guilin, China. It started to rain as we approached the beach - a light rain but driven sideways by a steady wind.

As we approached the beach, the roads became narrower, with one-lane bridges and other sections requiring drivers to yield to oncoming traffic. It's not nearly as bad as the road to Hana, however. Eventually we made it to the beach and did our hike along the Kalalau Trail to Hanakapi'ai Beach.

After the hike, we stopped in Hanalei for some shave ice and ice cream. There are a lot of restaurants here (on either side of the highway) if you're looking for a post-hike meal. Then we continued along the road, past Princeville (where there are some pricier meal options), and back to our rental house.

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