Monday, May 17

Mauna Lahilahi

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Mauna Lahilahi translates to “Thin Mountain”, and according to the locals this is the World’s smallest mountain. A couple months back I said I wanted to hike that mountain and ever since then every time we drive by it Jewel says, “Man, I really want to hike that mountain”. Now I don’t know if she’s saying that because she heard me say it or because it’s just screaming to be climbed, but today we decided was the day.

I did a brisk walk this morning up to the water tower and back, then figured we’d spend the afternoon at the beach. But then we remembered it was Sunday and since Jake only wants to go if he can surf, we figured we’d just wait until tomorrow after everyone goes back to school and work. (At least that sounded better then we were just plain lazy.) Then by about five Jewel was having a breakdown because she spelled a word wrong and Jake corrected her. I determined she was having saltwater withdrawals, so her and I took off for the beach, but brought hiking shoes just in case.

We headed straight for the mountain, and after walking almost all the way around it I had to ask a local on the beach how to get to the trail to go to the top. There’s a few paths but nothing that looked like an official hiking trail. Basically it was just find your own way up the mountain.

Maunalahilahi Hike 006

About half way up we were treated to gorgeous views of Maunalahihi Beach Park and Waianae ValleyMaunalahilahi Hike 008

We trudged along pretty good, really enjoying the easy challenge of the rocks

Maunalahilahi Hike 015And then we hit a vertical wall and thought we were done, but we weren’t ready to give up yet and after a lot of debate we made the decision to tackle it.

Maunalahilahi Hike 018I was very scared to climb it for a few reasons. One: Not a soul except the homeless man on the beach knew where we were. Two: My daughter is only eight years old. Three: We’re in bathing suits

Carry on.

We made it up the wall and then our adrenaline was through the roof! Jewel was thanking me for bringing her on this hike, saying she wanted to remember this moment forever, and that this was a GREAT day. I’m thinking the same things, but I’m also thinking: Holy crap…where did I bring my baby? What if she slips? Hawaiian rocks are infamous for giving way and killing hikers. What if I fall?  What if it gets dark?

Maunalahilahi Hike 020  l’m literally shaking at this point and she’s all “Look…sailboats!”

Maunalahilahi Hike 017

Looking inland offered perfect views of our valley. Top left are The Towers which is near our condo.

We walk a little more and then get to another vertical rock wall that I’m frankly too ill prepared too conquer. I had planned on looking for the geocache hidden at the summit, but considering our situation and my inexperience with this mountain we decided to turn back. I want to try it again when I have some pants on and maybe with someone that’s done it before, or at least without my baby. I could never live with myself if something happened to her and I already felt like we accomplished what we wanted to do. It was MUCH harder and scarier than I thought it would be, and am actually extremely proud of what us girls accomplished today.

One thing I didn’t expect on our way down though, was to get lost.

Maunalahilahi Hike 025 Can you see the trail in this picture? Yeah…neither could we.

We ended up going down the wrong rocks and having to climb back up and around. At this point Jewel’s starting to get a little worried, and it’s funny….her fears kicked me into power mode. I had to let my fears go and assure her we would get down safely, and before dark.

Maunalahilahi Hike 027 Then because we didn’t take the same route down we passed our water bottle I set down to free up my hands, so Jewel happily climbed back up to retrieve our water.

After our hike we walked down to Turtle Beach Maunalahilahi Hike 016

Where we enjoyed a sunset swim and snorkelMaunalahilahi Hike 037

Hawaii. Never a bad day.


NTWS Jon said...

Mauna Lahilahi was once the private property of the John T. (Jack) Waterhouse estate -- he same family that once was part of the Alexander & Baldwin, the global shipping (Matson Logistics) and sugar.

Anonymous said...

Mahalo for sharing your beautiful pictures of Mauna Lahilahi! I used to climb this mountain when I was a little girl. I used to always go to look at the petroglyphs on the rocks. You just brought good childhood memories back! Thanks again! :0)

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