Be it up a mountain or along a beach both my girlfriend and I have always had a love for that old favourite 'the walk'.
Coming from the foot hills of the Knockmealdown Mountains in Co. Waterford I have spent quite a lot of my childhood traipsing up and down the mountain during the summer helping my granddad herd his sheep in for sheering. Although the herding itself was a chore I was always delighted when I reached the top and saw that magnificent view. For me that was worth the effort.
Ruth's childhood walks were usually along the beautiful Corracloe beach in Co. Wexford. You might remember it from the opening scene of 'Saving Private Ryan'. With its amazing scenery and the odd seal following you in the water it makes for a great way to spend a day.
That's our walking history over, so now onto why we picked the Hanakapiai Trail. Well its quite simple really. It’s in Hawaii.
We always wanted to go there and were blessed with the opportunity to do so in 2010. Finishing up our college work experience in Long Island New York we still had a couple of months left on our visas and did not want to waste them. We pulled out the map on the bedroom floor and scanned through it looking for what was the most 'fun' state in America. The finger landed on Hawaii. Kauai to be more specific. Known as the 'Garden Island' due to the lush green landscape. It is nearly always raining on some part of the island which was nearly an attraction rather than a deterrent as it would help us prepare for the Irish weather on returning home. All be it a lot warmer.
While on the island we made sure to make the most of it by doing a number of different excursions including snorkeling at Tunnel Beach and kayaking up river to hidden waterfalls within the island. The most memorable however has to be the Hanakapiai Trail.
Beginning where the road ends at Ke'e Beach it is an eight mile out-and-back trail with the 3000 foot tall Hanakapiai Falls at the four mile mid-point. As luck would have it, the day we attempted to hike the trail there had been heavy rain not long before so we were unable to finish the full trek to the falls due to flooding. Disappointed however we were not as the amazing views of the coast line were like little rewards as you rounded each fold in the curved coast line. In some sections it felt like we were in the memorable scene in Jurassic Park when the helicopter approaches the island for the first time. That though might have something to do with the fact that the film was shot on the island.
The incompletion of the trail wont haunt us till the end of time as we do plan on returning to Kauai again.
ar an rothar
endurance cyclist, adventurer and usually hungry