Crazy to say, but the season is definitely changing. Winter is giving way to spring providing an occasional taste of how predictably glorious summer boating will be in Hawaii. Debbie and I have been busy with guests and some travel commitments, but are now ready to get back at it. Our goal is to explore the whole state, land and sea. After spending some time cruising around this island, I’m convinced Eliana is perfectly suited for Hawaiian waters and anchorages. I’m working through a couple modifications to our routine which I’ll report on later. In the meantime, I hope you’ll enjoy a few of our day trips on land! Remember to click on photos you want to enlarge. Several are hard to see the detail unless you do.
Meet Hale'iwa. I named her after the town, pronounced "Holly Eva", or just Holly for short. She has been a welcome, permanent addition to Eliana's bridge. I've noticed she is happily agreeable to everything I say!
The small town of Nanakuli in the distance.Hale’iwa
Wintertime on the North Shore is beautiful and spectacular. Winter waves can be gargantuan. It’s a surfer’s paradise unless the wind is also blowing hard, then it gets too dangerous. A narrow two lane highway follows the pristine coastline all the way around. Other than a couple of isolated developments, the North Shore is still rural and beautiful.
As we drove northeast up state route 99, Kamehameha Highway, we crossed the fertile O’ahu central plateau. Then as we crested a slight rise from high elevation, a view emerged of blue sea to infinity and what appears to be a frothing white band separating water from land. Soon we arrived in historic Hale’iwa. “Hale” means house in the Hawaiian language and “iwa means Frigatebird. Don’t ask, it’s a long story.
Hale’iwa is nestled at the intersection of Anahulu River and Waialua Bay. The original hotel is long gone, but the town is quaint with B & B’s, restaurants and a few friendly residents. The landmark to look for is the Rainbow Bridge which crosses the Anahulu River.
Hale'iwa Joe's is situated right at the small harbor and serves some of the best fish around.
The famous double arch "Rainbow Bridge" crossing the Anahulu River.
Some big waves, too messy to surf or swim due to wind.
The beaches were closed.Diamond Head
Overlooking Waikiki is Diamond Head mountain. We love to hike, and Diamond Head boasts the most visitors each year due to it’s proximity to the tourist district. We went up just to say we did it and came away more impressed than we expected. We arrived by car through a tunnel leading to the volcano’s crater where the hike begins.
Diamond Head was the last active volcano of O’ahu, most think about 100,000 years ago. It’s only about a mile up the trail, with the summit at 761’ over the ocean and Waikiki.
The bonus for me was the artillery batteries built into the volcano rim. Apparently these were put in about 1910 for defense of Honolulu Harbor. There are a total of 5 bunker levels making up the total fire control station. They are almost invisible when viewed from the ground, but artillery would have excellent range. You have to hike through a 225’ tunnel, then up 99 steps before entering the service tunnel on the lowest of the five bunkers. Very interesting.
The view of Honolulu from the rim of Diamond Head.
Artillery bunkers were almost invisible from a distance, but offered a clear shot across the leeward shore of O'ahu.
Diamond Head lighthouse is the main navigational aid approaching Honolulu. Just beyond the reef we saw Humpback whales cavorting in the water. Manoa Falls
I may have already mentioned O’ahu’s annual rainfall ranges from less than 10” / year on the Southwest side of the island, up to 280” / year in the Ko’olau mountain range on the eastern side. It’s no surprise that just north of the desert like Diamond Head is the lush Manoa Valley. Within 10 minutes of driving, we were amazed at the change in climate from arid to rainforest.
Centered in the beautiful Manoa valley is the University of Hawaii’s flagship Manoa campus. The town is also well known for its marketplace and farmers market since much of it is richly vegetated and has a history of sugar cane, coffee and produce of all kinds.
The head of the valley is defined by Manoa Stream which begins at the 160’ Manoa Falls. I thought it would be interesting to hike up the trail to the falls, maybe a mile and a half in. Wow, the rainforest was beautiful and appropriately was raining the whole time. I got back with muddy shoes, but invigorated.
U of H, Manoa Campus.
The trailhead going up to Manoa Falls.
The trail is very muddy from rain.
The 160' Manoa Falls at the head of the valley.Aloha Stadium Swap Meet
Every Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday, Aloha Stadium puts on a swap meet completely encircling the stadium. It’s unbelievable, really. Venders line two sides of a track that seems to go on forever. These are the best deals in Hawaii on everything from Ukelele’s to Kava Root. The facility works perfectly because it has all the stadium parking adjacent, and restrooms just inside the stadium doors. Weather’s almost always nice!
Beautiful Aloha Stadium
Prospect trying out a Ukelele.
Woven wind chimes hand made entirely of shells. They were pretty neat.
Hawaiian fabrics. Debbie liked this one to make a table cloth.Before Signing Off
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Lying: Ko Olina Marina, Kapolei, HI
Mileage: 11,198 Nautical Miles