Friday, April 10, 2009

100/365 Na Pali Coast

100/365 Na Pali Coast
Originally uploaded by tallasiandude.

In the summer of 1990, on a trip with high school and college friends, we hiked the Kalalau trail along the Na Pali Coast of Kauai. We all made it to Hanakapi'ai beach about 2 miles in. From the beach (generally sandy that summer -- there was only a small patch of sand on the day I took this photo) there's a 2-mile side hike up the Hanakapi'ai Valley to a large waterfall and pool, but... to cut a long story short, we didn't make it, and the failed attempt resulted in a fairly treacherous return hike at dusk without flashlights. (this, before the ubiquity of the flashlights and headlamps that now typifies our hiking gear.)

We missed this hike the last time we were on Kauai because, not naming any names here, but SOMEBODY insisted that we burn the last day on a second day of surfing. Not that there was strong opposition to the contrary.

So, anyway, on this trip, we wanted to make a point of doing this hike. And we wanted to make a point of getting to the waterfall, 'cause, y'know, we dig waterfalls. And my own personal history of failure in that department.

It turned out to be a good day for hiking. It was mostly sunny, and while there were a few scattered showers, they were actually nicely refreshing. However, maybe a little more than a mile into the hike, I started noticing a certain amount of achiness in my muscles that seemed to exceed what might reasonably be associated with surfing. And the headache which I had been noticing the previous afternoon, began intensifying, coupled with the fact that I really only get headaches when I'm hungover (and it was only one beer the previous night) or when I'm sick. (uh oh.) Other things I had been noticing that morning were falling into place, and it finally dawned on me, 1-1/2 miles into a strenuous 8-mile out-and-back hike, that I had a fever and was sick as a dog. During our Hawaiian surfing vacation.

We made it to the beach, rested for a bit. The SOOTTAD tried to force me to eat. (did I mention loss-of-appetite?) And then we hiked the 2 miles back to the car, the SOOTTAD drove us back to the cottage where we were staying, and I spent the rest of the day and a good chunk of the following day either passed out or curled up in a fetal position, moaning and whimpering in bed.

So I guess I just wasn't meant to see that waterfall after all. Duly noted.

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