OHE July 7, 1998 (c)

Date: Tue, 7 Jul 1998 11:59:13 -1000
From: Jarrod Kinoshita (jarrodk@hawaii.edu>
Subject: Waihee Tunnel Hike

I decided to join the HTMC for a short hike into Waihee Valley and the water tunnel the Board of Water supply has in there. It's been a while since I've gone hiking so I thought this would be a good stroll to break in my legs for more intense trails.

I met with our fearless leader and 3 others at the Palace, mainly to get directions to the trailhead and headed off to Waihee Valley.

There we met the rest of the group, about 25 of us, and after a short briefing by our leader Zon Owens and assist. leader Steve Brown we headed off into the valley at about 10am.

Twenty minutes later, we met Mahealani (and her 3 grandchildren), who would lead our tour into the tunnel. She gave us a brief description of Hawaii's unique water system before taking us into the tunnel to experience it.

The experience in the tunnel was amazing. Using flashlights provided by our leader, we went about 1000 ft. into the mountain to the source of our water. Fresh water came falling out of the ceiling in the tunnel like a shower. A bunch of us had plastic b ottles, that Mahealani brought, and cups to taste the water directly from the source. After we got our share of the water, we turned off our flashlights and listened to the water flowing in total darkness. Mahealani sang a Hawaiian chant, then we left.

After thanking Mahealani for a such a wonderful experience, the group hiked the 3/4 mile to the falls at the end of the road.

At 12:45, I was one of the last to arrive back at our cars. Hoping that my pictures of the tunnel will turn out well, I left for home at 1pm.

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