Hiking Waimea Canyon
Our first hike was Waimea Canyon, one of the world’s most scenic canyons, and part of Wiamea Canyon State Park. At 3,000 feet (914 m) deep, Waimea Canyon is often referred to as “The Grand Canyon of the Pacific.” This canyon is certainly greener than the Grand Canyon and not as big but the reference is obvious. I never expected to find a canyon like this in Hawaii. We hiked up and down the trail until we crossed a pass along the edge of the canyon where we could look out over it’s vast beauty. Then continued on to a lush waterfall flowing into a small pond. Almost completely surrounded by trees and greenery, we crawled and snaked our way forward until we had a close up view. It was well worth the effort.
Hanakapi’ai Falls Trail
The next day we tackled an 8 mile trail; 4 mile in and 4 miles out. The first 2 miles were difficult, the last two were strenuous. The first 2 miles followed the typical up and down pattern of many trails. It was steep and rocky but groomed. Somewhat wet and muddy in spots from the serious rains that plagued Kawai the week before we arrived. At the end of the this section was a beautiful beach. The surf made swimming in the ocean too dangerous, but crossing the wide mouth of a waterfall we slipped on the rocks dipping our shoes into the cold water. It was unintentional but felt good all the same.
The next two miles were increasingly uphill and rocky. Crawling over rocks, crossing several riverbeds, and loosing the trail several times made the hike slow and hot. But the final destination was well worth the trip culminating at a 300 Ft Waterfall.