Sandy Beach

[Photo of Sandy Beach]

By Donna Rohlf and Blaine Date

Alohaaaa to all my Internet pals, If you ever get the chance to go to Hawaii you have to check out one of the most beautiful beaches on Oahu, it's called Sandy Beach, a great beach to go surfing, boogie boarding, picnicking, kite flying, or you can just explore the tide pools.

I rented a moped and headed out of Waikiki towards Diamond Head, on the Kalanianaole highway. The drive took me through Aina Hina, where oleanders and bouganvillas of pink and purple flowers are all along the highway. Hawaii Kai was next and it is an area that has beautiful malls and multi million dollar homes. Henry Kaiser was the first to develop this area back in the early 60's and it has continued growing to this day.

On the right side of the road after passing Hanauma bay I stopped at the first scenic turnout, where there is a wonderful view of the ocean and on a clear day you can see the islands of Molokai and Maui and sometimes the island of Lanai. Continuing up the road about three quarters of a mile, there is a spot called Bamboo Ridge, a favorite fishing spot for fishermen.

Right around the bend, after Bamboo Ridge, you will see the famous Halona Blowhole. Blowhole is a lava tube which was formed beneath the ocean millions of years ago. When it is high tide and the water is rough, the water pushes up from beneath the entrance of the lava tube and enters the tube, then you can see a spectacular water spray that can go as high as 20 to 30 feet into the air.

As I look to the left at the Blow Hole I see Sandy Beach. I jump back on my moped and head for the beach. I was getting pretty anxious to hit the water as it was a warm day. But as I looked at my watch it had only been a little over a half an hour since I left Waikiki. If you take the bus it will take longer because of all the stops it makes.

Sandy beach is one of three swimming beaches within the Koko Crater. This beach was not accessible by cars until late in 1931, when Haunama Bay was opened to the public. The beach used to be called “the sand beach by the Blowhole,” It wasn’t until later that it became known as Sand beach and now is called Sandy Beach. This beach has always been known for its big waves and during World War Two, so many military men drowned there that it was put off limits to Military people for many years. In the 60s the beach was very popular with the bodysurfers on the island, and in 1968 the City Parks and Recreation took over and put lifeguards on the beach and restrooms for the public. The beach is about 1200 feet long and has a sloping sand area. (John R.K. Clark; The Beaches of Oahu.)

The waves thrilled me as I watched them break on the shoreline with such force that all I could see was white foam and the arms and legs of surfers popping out of the water. I even saw parts of surfboards that were broken in half float to shore in the white foam.

While I was sitting on the sand I met a local boy and he said I could use his extra board. Before I knew what was happening I was in the water and I ended up getting slammed face first right into the sand. I consumed so much salt water that it made me feel like a fish. After that I didn’t want to go back into the water again. But after awhile I realized that it was too much fun to give up so I went back in and had a great time. I learned that the waves are so strong that if you make a bad move, or turn your back to the water you can get slammed and even possibly seriously injured. If any of you ever do get to come over here you really should come to this beach. But first I want to share something with you that I learned about the current. It gets stronger as you move to the left while facing the beach. The waves get bigger, stronger and much more dangerous. So stay on the right side of the beach. If you are not a strong swimmer you have to be very careful and be sure to talk to the lifeguards before attempting to go into the water.

After my water experience I walked across the parking lot to the park to eat the lunch that I bought from Zippy’s, a popular restaurant here in Hawaii. The smell of teriyaki meat that a couple near me were cooking over their little hibachi made me wish I had brought the bar-b-que instead of the fried chicken.

As I ate I watched the colorful kites being maneuvered by teams of professional kite flyers. Some of the kite flyers were sitting on chairs anchored to the ground because these large kites are so powerful against the strong winds that the kite handlers could be dragged across the grass.

After lunch I walked over to the tide pools and I was so surprised to see so many little fish in such shallow pools, I also got to see a sea urchin and tiny crabs skimming over the sand.

Hey you, out there on the Internet, if you do get the chance to come over here don’t forget your sunscreen and a baseball hat .