Honolulu County High Point Trip Report
Date: February 1999
Got the family up Ka'ala. For those interested, I can provide some route information -
let me know. Let's just say that we didn't have FAA connections and so couldn't drive
the road, but Bob Packard's DuPont Trail experiences were (while impressive) a bit more
than is necessary for Oahu's HP.
The "trail" we took included belaying the boys (up and down) on a short class 3 pitch,
and lots of ropes and cables in place for handholds, and some rather exposed trail
segments. It was a bit of a stretch for Colin (who is 7 years old), as it spends more
time more exposed than any other trail I can think of (a stumble would NOT be a good idea) -
but we all made it and had a good time.
Experienced mountain folks won't have a lot of trouble with this one if they know where
to find the trail. If you have Stuart Ball's "Trails of O'ahu" this was the Wai'anae-Ka'ala hike.
His description is pretty good, although the road is gated at about 600' elevation
and 1 mile or so before the book's "end of driving," making for a 3500' gain day.
It takes longer than it might look on a map (although from my perspective, it doesn't look
likely that there is actually a trail on that ridge, so maybe it looks like a long trip
on the map as well). Our round trip (with a 7-year-old and carrying a climbing rope
and anchors to slow me down) was just over 9 hours. I'd guess 6 to 7 hours for a normal group,
less if you're fast.
Author: Ken Jones