Thanks Maryanne for organizing a great warm-up. I would love to try what looks like the best part of the rope course, speeding down that very long wire.
We were planning to do a quick pump up to Pu'u Piei round the bend by Kahana Bay. Introduced ourselves to Pat Roarie and found out that he was heading in the same direction We all agreed to meet a bit past the boat ramp, there's plenty parking on the side but take everything you hold dear with you. It just begs to be a rippoff spot. Do not park in the boat ramp, garans to get towed or broken in.
Everytime I've hiked the Kahana Valley, the ascents require steep powering for long periods of time. Always that pounding in my head as if my heart was relocating and signaling its forwarding address. And Piei turns out to be quite the predictable.
We pushed into the woods past bristly hala and started up the the wood railings switching for a short stint. There's a confusing junction, and as Pat confirmed, he had taken the right thinking it would lead him to the Pu'u. It gets you to a small coned peak that's just as gnarly to get to but not as tricky as the rise to Piei. Once past the fishing heiau and the dry tall grass you start the ascent. Pat is obviously a power hiker cause Phyllis, Moshe and I were trying to keep up, something we gave up on real early in the hike.
The ridge narrows and every break in the midst of hala brings on a hoard of mosquitos. My legs were carpeted with the beasts but I don't feel them much, as I had a mosquito from hell experience years ago in the Florida Keys, on a mangrove stranded sailbo at. Phyllis is hardier so she was able to keep up with Pat. There's narrow drops to the left and the contour of another ridge on the right. They seem to be hiked frequently, as I saw wide trails along them. Then it gets down to clawing up dirt and ro ck and a wire that drops down about 100 feet. This place could use some serious cable.
We pushed up to a saddle that overlooked Kahana Valley. This is where Pat and Moshe pushed on to the top. We hung back to enjoy the view and wished we had started this hike earlier in the day. It was too hot, and I was already trail weary (I don't know how you guys manage the 12 - 16 hr hikes without going completely gonzo). Moshe came down without Pat. Knowing full well Mr. Rories legendary ability to work his way out of anything, we decided to start hiking down.
Wouldn't you figure, Pat caught up with us and passed us. The descent is a little confusing through the tall grass but down is down and this is Kahana Valley on a Sunday which means follow the blasting C&K music from somewhere below.
Sorry Pat, I did promise to write this earlier but am only now getting to it. Hope to meet you on some journey through these beautiful mountains.