Hiked Kawainui gulch with my buddies, Mike and Jim. Hit Palaa Uka 4WD road approx 11:30 and reached the Kawainui trailhead about 12:30. The road isn't too bad except for some humongous ruts and mud. The trail looks as if it's been cleared since I last hiked there several weeks ago. *Lots* of mountain apples rotting on the ground and the trees were loaded! Quite a delicious feast for us hungry hiker types. There also was strawberry guava and numerous thimbleberry patches. We reached the pool at 2:00 and stayed till 4:00. The water is clean and cold, great for swimming. There's also a couple large rocks about 20-30 feet up from which we all practised our cannonball diving techniques. Very very fun and a relaxing way to spend the afternoon.
Hiked Poamoho again with my buddy Erik. The 4WD road was pretty muddy and there were some large mud pools to drive slowly thru. Reached the Poamoho trailhead at 1:00, the weather was starting to look ominous with large dark clouds obscuring the sky. We went ahead anyway, as Erik hadn't hiked for a month and was dying to get out into the forest. Poamoho looks like a superhighway, some crew has recently weed-whacked the trail and it looks like you could fly it in your Nike running shoes except for the mud holes ;^).
Erik submarined his wimpy lightweight boots calf deep into some mud pits and was making squish-squish sounds as he marched along the trail. Art of course was oblivious to such hazards being properly attired in long cammo pants and waterproof leather boots. Anyway, there were bazillions of monster thimbleberries along the trail, I swear Poamoho has the biggest ones I've ever seen. Fat as your big toe and really juicy, I ate dozens of the things. About 3/4 of the way to the summit the heavens rumbled and we got showered on. Fortunately it was just a passing Mauka shower and dissapated very quickly.
We reached the summit at 3:00, Erik was freezing cold as the wind was blasting and the sky was spritzing us with mini-showers. I quizzed him about the contents of his pack and found he only had a thin long-sleeve cotton shirt to put over his T-shirt as protection from the elements. Further investigation yielded a cheezy saran-wrap thin rain ponch forgotten for eons at the bottom of his pack. Erik put this thing on, fighting with it in the wind like a cat playing in a garmet bag. He finally got it on and it flapped like heck in the wind. We hiked up to the view point on the left where the wind was less severe and spend 2 hours eating lunch, admiring the view of Punaluu/Kahana/Waikane valleys and the always majestic Ohulehule. The trip back was uneventful, we left the summit at 5:00 and reached the truck at 6:30. We drove out with the last light of the sun and made it to the highway before dark.
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