Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Hawaii: Climbing Diamondhead (8-21-09)

September 2, 2009

After lunch on August 21, 2009, Elaine and I decided to do activities on our own. It is our last day in Honolulu. She needed to do her last minute shopping. And I HAD to climb Diamondhead.

At about 315pm, after Elaine had caught the bus to Waikiki, I rode the bus #14 from Kapahulu St. to be dropped off along Diamondhead Road nearest the crater entrance. However, there was still a 10 minute walk up to the site, then another 10 minute walk/hike uphill and through a car tunnel (!) to get to the ticket booth. I began my climb up at around 4pm or so.

The hike itself was not too bad. I am not going to call myself very fit, but I was able to make it to the top in about 30 minutes. The most challenging part of the climb was the last 1/3 of the climb, when they had the 76 step up - then long tunnel - then 99 step up combo, followed by a steep spiral staircase upwards. However the views and fresh air at the top was really worth all the had work getting there. The views of Waikiki Beach and Hanauma area are simply breathtaking.

The climb down was not that bad. People were still climbing up when I was on my way down. When I reached the parking lot at 5pm, the bus selling the Shave Ice just drove out of the driveway! Too bad, as I wanted one as a reward.

The day I climbed was Statehood Day, so the Bus was on a holiday schedule. I walked my way all the way back to Waikiki since no buses were passing by. Must have taken me an hour to make it back to my hotel in Kuhio St., but I also felt that long walk back was very fruitful because of the scenic views on the Pacific coastline. I was following the famous Waikiki sunset all the way down, and that was also fantastic! Those pictures will be in the next album. Watch out for those!

Shaved Ice Reward
But it was gone when I came down!

Zigzag Trail

99 Steps Up!

Narrow Spiral Staircase

Final Steep Climb Up

The Summit

View of Waikiki

View of Hanauma Bay

Kids Climbing

Danger Signs

Walking in the Tunnel

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