Eliana and her crew are preparing for a summer of boating in Hawaii. It’s the best time of year because there are so many more anchorage opportunities, especially on the windward sides. Our interest about all things nearby is rising. Noticeably, the old familiar itch to move on hasn’t hit us yet despite the positive reinforcement we get from sailors passing through. One such traveler said, “If you think this is heaven, prepare to be blown away if you keep going.”
I never really knew for sure what “Island Time” meant, but now maybe it’s beginning to make sense. It doesn’t mean idle time. We get up early and go to bed tired. Rather than planning, planning, planning our next move, though, we’re possibly finding a more spontaneous curiosity with our surroundings. Ka’ena Point
The extreme northwest corner of O’ahu is the remote Ka’ena Point. The Waianae mountains taper down to the water making it difficult to get to the point by any other means than hiking or helicopter. We chose hiking the 5.2 mile path along the rocky shoreline. This was the original route of the sugar cane train originating in Hale’iwa and ending in Honolulu for processing. Today, the only remains of the railroad is some of the original bedding and ties.
The point is unusual because it separates the windward side of the island with waves coming from Alaska while just on the other side is the leeward side with waves arriving from New Zealand. Geologically, the rugged, volcanic landscape yields to a flat sandy area perfect for nesting Newell Shearwaters. These beautiful sea birds live and feed far out at sea only coming ashore to reproduce in sandy ground burrows. While Shearwaters can be found around the globe, the Newell's are indigenous only to Hawaii with the greatest population nesting on Kauai. Their populations have declined possibly due to predators on the nests. The Newell Shearwater is on the endangered species classification. We tried hard not to disturb them too much. I hope you enjoy some pictures I took. Remember to click on any photo you would like to enlarge.
Yokohama bay in the foreground. Makua bay and valley in the distance. Makua is an awesome anchorage with a beautiful beach and untouched landscape to wake up to. As you can see, nobody is anchored there. Eliana will be soon.
This path weaves between the rocky shoreline and mountain.
Old rail ties. All that's left of this section of the "Sugar Cane Train". As you can see, the sea erosion is cutting into what was the original path.
Nesting Newell Shearwater chick.
Mama Shearwater is keeping a watchful eye on us while we investigate her nest.USS Missouri
The “Mighty Mo” was launched in 1944 near the end of World War II. She was the largest and last battleship ever built. The symbolism is fitting in that the floating battleship upon whose massive teak deck the Japanese surrender was signed is resting right beside the sunken Arizona that symbolizes the start of the war. The Missouri is in excellent condition having been brought back into service for a brief time in the 80’s. She was rearmed with Tomahawk missiles at that time. Finally, she lies magnificently on Ford Island for public viewing. When we got home, we had to break the news to Eliana there was another boat nearby with a Missouri hailing port!
The business end of the USS Missouri. She could hurl 2,700 pound shells 23 miles.
Looking the other way, you see the Arizona memorial off her bow.
The Tomahawk missle command center was installed during the 1980's recommissioning. The center itself is now designated an historical landmark.
Wish I had room to put pictures of all the fascinating aspects of the ship. This one shows part of the main galley.USS Bowfin
Another fascinating bit of history from the Pacific war is the USS Bowfin. Launched in 1942 right after the attack on Pearl Harbor, the Bowfin was nicknamed the “Pearl Harbor Avenger”. She is diesel powered, tiny by today’s standards, but sank 44 ships when America needed it most. It’s humbling to see how 80 or so submarine mariners lived and worked underwater in the middle of nowhere.
The forward torpedo tubes. There were similar tubes on the stern. Believe it or not, torpedo's were pushed into the tube using a rope block and tackle.
Two large diesel engines kept large battery banks charged for underwater operations.
I thought the captain's cabin was modest, but compared to seamen's bunks, it is very spacious. Notice the two dials at the foot of his bed. Heading and depth appear to be the two most important things for him to see the moment he wakes up!
The dive control center was very sophisticated for it's time. Every single hull opening had an associated electric green light to indicate it was closed and ready for dive.
It's amazing this tiny galley prepared meals around the clock for 80 seamen.Battle of Nu’uanu
Speaking of battles, the view from Nu’uanu Pali Lookout is gorgeous with Kaneohe Bay in the distance. It’s hard to imagine this is the site of the bloody battle in 1795 that gave King Kamehameha control of O’ahu. Kamehameha’s forces arrived on the beaches of Waikiki and drove the O’ahu army all the way up into the mountains to this point. With no place to go, over 400 warriors were driven off the 1000 foot cliff to their deaths.
This was the last major battle as it persuaded the kingdom of Kaua’i to surrender thus, for the first time putting all the islands of Hawaii together under one rule. King Kamehameha finally achieved his goal of uniting and organizing the various Polynesian cultures together.
The spectacular view from Pali Lookout to distant Kaneohe Bay.
A painting depicting the battle of Nu'uanu Pali.
No, you don't want to get pushed off the edge.Before Signing Off
Meanwhile all is peaceful at home, aboard Eliana. The nearby leeward coast is an excellent place for keeping her exercised with good anchorages, snorkeling and diving. We wash her every week or so using our own water. The bottom gets cleaned every 60 days when we check the zincs and through-hulls to make sure they are clean.
Eliana's quiet little back yard abode on G-dock.
Hawaii's state flower, the Hibiscus from nearby garden.
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Lying: Ko Olina Marina, Kapolei, HI
Mileage: 11,198 Nautical Miles