Thursday, August 13, 2009

Waimalu Ditch- Recast from FB

From Hawaiian BU

Another adventure from the FB files. Such a wonderfully, untainted hike on the Leeward side of the island, with an excellent waterhole and a great place to campout overnight. Read on and enjoy! Originally posted on FB Sunday, July 26

The roster today? Kylie, Dawn, Me, Ryan, and Ryan's friend Nic. I was really confused about today's plan: I thought Ryan wanted to do a North Shore hike, but when we were at 7-11 (the food/drink load-up spot), he thought we were doing a hike I had mentioned before but wasn't on my radar for the day, Waimalu Ditch. So I wasn't exactly prepped for that one, but I was down, and of course, I had the hiking books to refer to. Also, my brand new phone came thru with flying colors! After a quick look at the books and the HTMC website, we got the directions and we were off. Waimalu Ditch is a ridge/valley hike that starts at the top of Pearlridge (via Kaonohi st), and it makes its way to the back of the valley where Dawn lives currently. Her mother thought it was funny that we were hiking there. The hike contours the ridge and is pretty easy to follow. As with all hikes on Oahu, the terrain, the flora, and the fruits change as you progress through different elevations. This hike is a good test of mental will and stamina (more on that soon). Basically, the goal is to proceed down towards the valley floor until you get to a RIVER Crossing (no, we did NOT experience the same thing as the last watefall hike we took). We crossed the stream several times before we decided that we were done because of the time and the obvious exhaustion. This is when we discovered that Nic was BIG time prepared for hiking. His bag had all types of good, useful tools that would have come in handy had we run into trouble. So we stop by the stream and decide to rest. Ryan and I went for a dip, then Ryan went to explore upstream. So I'm relaxing there, when all of sudden, Kylie and Dawn are telling me that a Crayfish was going to pinch my toe! I didn't see it til later, but obviously I ran out of there. That sucker was huge, maybe the biggest crayfish I ever seen! After Ryan was trying to get the crayfish to fight with other crayfish, we headed back to a very nice spot to camp that we had passed earlier next to a decent-sized swim hole (about 8 feet deep at it's bottom). The camp site was clearly used before, with a kettle being left behind as well as a sizeable firepit away from most trees and brush. We talked about it and I pretty sure it's going down if you're interested. Overnight sleepover! (Let me know if you're interested) Again, Nic came through with his suggestions of how to make it happen and what it would take. Like I told Ryan, Nic can join us anytime he wants. Good stuff.
Now like I said, we had to make our way to the valley floor, so it meant we had to haul ourselves all the way back up. As ususal, I was the caboose of the train, and I was following Kylie, who seemed to be hopping along like a tree sprite. As I was being envious of her energy reserves, I wasn't paying attention to the ground, I slipped in this hole in the ground and hurt the right ankle (not the left like last time). It was pretty painful. As I type this right now, my ankle is swelling like an apple and it's not going down. And this happened BEFORE the major hill we had to climb. I was not happy, and my ankle was really giving me a hard time. (I think both are attached by rubber bands by now) This is where one of the lessons of Kaipapau came thru for me. If you remember, me and ryan walked out of that raging mess with my left ankle and hip all screwed. I remember thinking that I couldn't worry about the pain and I had to focus on getting out safely. That helped me today. And the great thing: Ryan realized the need and fell back and waited for me as I trudged my limp butt all the way up the hill. Thanks brother, I really appreciated it.
To wrap it up, I like this hike. The group was great, the exercise is good and challenging, and the pool is a great reward at the bottom. Ryan said that he read somewhere that there was no waterfall at the end. This got me thinking that there must be some underground tunnels that ferry water to the valley. We discovered some caves that looked like water rushed thru. We also heard what sounded like a generator humming, but we think it's water running thru the mountain. And when he posts it, you need to check out Ryan's underground Air Conditioner video. And can someone please help me find some ankle braces! I'm tired and sore, but absolutely satisfied and happy. Take care. K

Waimalu Valley

Mountain Apples. Had choke!

Tu Bu Pa'ina, having some laughs!

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