Hiking: Poamoho Trail

Hiking this trail isn’t easy to come by. It’s a permitted trail, only allowing hikers and hunters on the weekends and federal holidays. The permit enables five people and one 4-wheel drive vehicle. It’s a 45-minute slow drive up a rutted (if it’s been raining, muddy) road. But once you arrive, it is all worth the effort.

My effort was very minimal as I was one of the five that didn’t have to apply for the permit or drive the truck. All I needed to do was to arrive at the meeting places at a reasonable hour (7:00). I’m a lucky girl (really an old lady). Haha.

Beautiful day for a hike

Our group of five hiking friends that met through my cousin, “E.” There was “L,” “J,” “R,” “E,” and myself. Pretty well paired with each other as hiking ability goes. Several of them have excellent knowledge of fauna and birds on the trail. Always nice to have that on a hike.

The trailhead

The weather was beautiful; winds picked up from earlier in the week. Sunny, with a minimal amount of clouds. It had been dry the previous days before making the mud at a minimum.

The trailhead looked different because of the tall grasses surrounding the sign. Hiker “L” heard the trail upkeep might be lacking because of the quarantine. Grasses were tall but still walkable.

It has been at least two years since I last hiked the trail. It was a similar type of day; dry and sunny. I’m happy because of the stories I’ve heard slipping, sliding, and walking out mud up to mid-calf doesn’t sound like fun.

On the way up, we were met with a brisk breeze around every corner, making corners something to look forward to. The trail was narrow, on foot in front of the other in places. Making it a good workout on our balance.

Much of the Strawberry guava was past it’s prime. The fruit flies were swarming in those areas (needed to breathe through our nose or get a mouthful). And where there wasn’t guava, there were ferns. I’m not sure what type of fern, but a sturdy variety as it saved me from falling into the mud.

Once you reach the summit, you understand why this is one of the beautiful hikes in Hawaii. You can see all the way to the east side beaches. On this day, the breeze was more than a breeze but a Pali Lookout style winds.

We had our rest and back on the trail. It was as comfortable as the morning as the sun had risen high in the sky. Turning the corners, we were not greeted with a gust of wind. But we made our way to the last bench for orange slices and the last of the water to get us out to our truck.

We all feel accomplished finishing the 7 miles and dreaming of our next hike together.

Next Steps: part 1

Been thinking a lot of where I would spread Oat’s ashes when I get to Hawaii. His mom said in Thai culture the ashes should be spread in the ocean.

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rocky shoreline on the trail to Kaena Point, more to come in part 2

I thought of having a get-together with friends and family at the beach then asking someone with a surfboard or kayak to take his ashes out.

Or going on a hike–maybe the one that we got lost on last time were there. . .

Well. . . things just fell into place.

The hike came first

Asked my cousins if they like to go on the hike we got lost on to spread Oat’s ashes. So he could finally see where were suppose to go.  But my cousin’s hiking friend offer to get a permit for Poamoho Trail. Top 5 of hikes in Hawaii according to one of my cousins. So that was set, just wishing for good weather so we didn’t have hike in the mud.

Poamoho Trail is permit only. It takes around 10 days to get the permit and only 5 people per permit. They allow only 100 people per day on the trail. I’m so grateful for Livia (my cousins’ friend) for getting the permit for this hike and her awesome Subaru that got us up to the trail head. Our crew: Macy,  Eunice (my cousins and sisters), Jodie and Livia (part of my cousin’s hike crew)

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Front L to R: Macy, Eunice; Back L to R: me, Livia and Jodie at the trail head.

[One little hiccup to the day. I left my phone in my dad’s car when I went to my cousin’s house. (I think seeing my aunt and uncle and delivering a pie a I bake made me forget). I didn’t realize I forgot it on the car until we met up with Livia and Jodie. All photos by Macy, Eunice and Jodie. Thanks all for sharing.]

Getting to the trail head

Thanks to Livia and her awesome Subaru we got up the crazy rutted dirt road to the trail head. The trail head was a 45 minutes drive with the excellent navigational and driving skills from everyone else except me (not too many off road experiences here in NJ). Thank goodness for dry weather or we would have been slipping and sliding along bouncing through the ruts.

Because they only allow 100 people on trail per day, the trail was so quiet. All you could hear was the birds, our chatter, an occasional hunters and their friendly dogs and hikers coming back down from the cabin.

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Ohia trees

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rest stop to cool off

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the trail (notice no mud!)

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wild orchid

To get to the summit, I was told by everyone that we needed to go through an unmaintained part of the trail. But Iguess there has been some trail maintenance because the unmaintained trail was the most beautiful unmaintained trail I ever been on. A few muddy spots and a river crossing, then you arrive to the grassy area with incredible views of the north shore and beyond. It was pretty gusty and it cooled you right down from all the hiking upwards (a good thing for Princesshotflash).

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by the river crossing

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The summit

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at the monument 1–L to R: Macy, Eunice, Jodie and me

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at the monument 2–L to R: Jodie, Eunice, me and Livia

I wanted to spread Oat’s ashes at the summit but was quite sure where. My cousins suggested by the monument so I’ll remembered where it was. It’s a place with such a beautiful view. I think he would have loved this hike. Will have to come on this hike again for a visit.

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Daredevil Macy

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sign from the monument

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our view (we think that’s Molokai in the distance)

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Well worn shoes from the trail

Here a link of a little video by my cousin Macy from the summit. You can hear the gusty winds: https://www.facebook.com/macytadena.massey/videos/pcb.10213885944758872/10213885933118581/?type=3&theater

Back down

You alway think going up is hard but really going down is harder. Your legs are tired and you’re sweaty and somewhat muddy and not as fresh as at the start.

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Macy and me (of course, I’m sweaty and flush as always)

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Eunice

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Macy, me and Jodie walking the trail

Awww! We finally made it down. What a beautiful trail. So worth the effort.

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Getting hydrated at the end of the trail