Monday, May 26, 2014

Hiking on Oahu

Since I'm grasping at straws for entry ideas, I thought maybe I could write about some things to do in Hawaii. I get this question more than I thought I would on Tumblr.
One great thing to do here is hiking! If you're vacationing, this is not always practical because you have to bring/buy clothes especially for this activity, but if the weather is good and this is the kind of thing you're into, I definitely suggest it!
I'm not super active/physical myself, but you can really go at your own pace for hiking. Yelp is also a great resource for hike suggestions. Just type in the name of one of these (or any that you hear about) and it will tell you the difficulty level (whether it's good for children or pets and things like that) and other reviews from people will come up! 
Here are a few photos from hikes that I've been on. Sadly, I rarely get to photograph the whole of the hike because I don't want to put my DSLR at risk! There is often quite a bit of mud or dirt and sometimes even water features that you have to navigate. I'd rather complete the hike with my camera in tact, so I don't keep my camera hanging from my neck the whole time and I can focus on getting my body to do what I need it to do (lol) without worrying about damaging it.
Anyway, hopefully these photos will kind of give you an idea of what a few of these locations are like!

Ka'au Crater

This is about a 6 hour long hike and it's a loop unlike many of the others (where it's one way in and you go the same way back). Definitely don't recommend for beginners or people who don't have hiking shoes!

These were taken at around the half way point.

I took almost zero pictures on the way back because there was so much brush and mud and dirt. My hands were filthy, and I didn't want to handle my camera! I'm glad I did this hike once but I don't think I'm in a rush to do it again.

Makapu'u (Light House Trail) (and Tide pools)

You can go down the rocks (the marker is a whale sign!) to the tide pools. There are spray paint arrows to mark the easiest way to go down but if you're adventurous, I suppose there's no wrong way

Koko Head stairs
 To some people this is not a "real hike", but the views are nice when you get to the top. Basically it's an old wooden rail road track that can now be used as "stairs". There's about 1048 steps total. This one is not very hard (again, if you go at your own pace), but the catch is that it's entirely in the sun and it's usually pretty busy! There's almost no shade anywhere including at the top. The views are worth it though!
 One of my favorite pictures! I love that there's a rainbow in the back.

Wa'ahila Ridge Trail
This is one of my favorite hikes to do (tbh because a lot of it is in the shade). The beginning is super easy and boring (but still has nice views), but if you continue to the "Mt. Olympus" section, it gets really difficult and the views are really really nice.
Sadly, I can't find my pictures from the very very top. Most of the ones pictured here are from the middle and lower section of the hike. Still very nice though.

Diamond Head
Diamond Head is one of the most popular and easiest "hikes" to do - basically just a lot of walking and you probably don't even necessarily need sneakers. I haven't been on the trail in recent memory (it's more of a tourist thing), but I had an internship in the area while I was still in school, and we were able to go on a restricted area of Diamond Head so here's a few pictures from that! (If you're visiting though, you'll get a different view.)
 I was in my internship clothes including jeans so that can probably tell you how easy this was to walk through.

Wiliwilinui Ridge Trail
 The beginning is a lot like Waahila. Flat and kind of boring but it really picks up later!
 That thing sticking up in the middle is basically the end of the hike I think.
The weather was really bad the day we went (including rain) so I don't have as many pictures as I would have liked.

I've also been to a few other places - Kuliouou, Mariner's Ridge, Maunawili, Pillboxes and a few others - but I can't find good pictures for them/my photo organization sucks/I didn't take my camera out because it was raining or super dirty when I went! I'm always grateful for the mental pictures and memories I took though because if I wasn't worrying about my camera, I was probably focusing on the hike and staying alive lol.
I think the good thing about most of these hikes is that if you get tired, you can stop and turn back at almost any time so people of all levels can do at least portions of these and still get a decent view. I haven't been hiking in awhile because I've been busy and most of these locations are far from my house, but I hope I can get back out there soon!