Over the months, I’d spent untold hours researching this “bucket list” hike, desperately hoping everything would work out for us to go. The calm surf of the summer months allows for kayaking, while year-round trips are available on sailing catamarans and rigid hull rafts. In April of 2018, Hanalei, Kauai received a record of 50 inches of rain in just 24 hours. Kauai Hiking | Kalalau Trail and Hanakapi'ai Trail (Nā Pali Coast). We are traveling to Hawaii in September, 2019 during one of my Seventh Week Sabbaticals. Photo: Aaronbernstein | CC BY-SA 3.0 (used with permission). September is an ideal time to visit the Na Pali Coast Trail. While there are some incredible hikes near Waimea Canyon, there is also an easy-to-access lookout point which requires only a 2-minute walk from the parking lot. This, and its remote location, allow Na Pali to remain one of the most beautiful and pristine coastlines in the world. Beginning at Ke`e Beach and ending at Kalalau Valley, this challenging but rewarding hike, earned the Sierra Club's rating of "9" out of "10" in degree of difficulty. Website +1 808-464-0840. Since our trip is in September, I hadn’t planned to check back in to the reservation system until the end of August. A starry night on Kalalau Beach. You want to complete this stretch in as dry, and wind-free, conditions as possible. There are no security guards. The climb from sea level to high altitude and back earns the trail its 9-out-of-10 difficulty rating. The only other ways to view the Nā Pali Coast is either by kayak tours, boat tours, or air tours. In under a minute—about 30 to 40 seconds—all of the permits were gone. This ended up being extremely fortunate, because I saw a red announcement on the page: Napali Coast camping permits are currently available 2 weeks in advance. This is an easy journey to a beautiful beach, perfect for a short day trip. Unforgettable. I logged into the website. Zero were available for every one of the next 14 days. But besides being difficult, the Na Pali Coast Trail is also considered one of the most dangerous trails. The hike begins at Ke'e beach, at the end of the road on Kauai's North shore. Rugged cliffs rise straight out of the ocean to dramatic heights of over 4,000 feet. I think I’ve had just as much fun anticipating as I will experiencing. On Crawlers Ledge, a rocky path hugs the outer edge of a cliff that provides no more than 18 inches of standing area and as little as 6 inches in a few narrow places. There is no potable water available on the Kalalau Trail, and all river water should be filtered. But with the new cap on daily visitors, the limited number of permits required to venture beyond the first few miles of the trail (to experience Kalalau Beach), disappeared almost as instantly as they were made available. The Kalalau Trail on the Hawaiian island of Kauai weaves through one of the world's most famous natural wonders, the Na Pali coast. It’s not worth it! For me though, Kalalau will be a very rare treat. So I woke up at 5:15 AM Central Time and checked the system. I didn’t complete the purchase, since my trip wasn’t until September, but I went back to the reservation form and refreshed. To think I was only a few weeks out from running into Mark Zuckerberg. If the size wasn’t dramatic enough, the canyon features a gorgeous rainbow of colors accented by waterfalls. Do NOT attempt to cross the river when it's high. I checked the timezones and found that Hawaii time is 5 hours earlier than my local time. Anyone going farther than Hanakapi`ai will need a permit. Continuing beyond this point requires a permit which you must purchase in advance, and permits can be difficult to obtain. Kaua’i Hiking Napali Coast. “You’ve got to be kidding me. The trail traverses five valleys before ending at Kalalau Beach where it is blocked by sheer, fluted cliffs. Day hikers are surprised to find the stream they just crossed 30 minutes ago swelled to much larger than it was before. The trail can be experienced in pieces and the most popular section of this trail is from Ke`e to Hanakapi`ai, where you will find a lush river valley. If you're hiking to Hanakapiai Falls, don't bother removing your shoes when you're crossing the river the first time by the beach. I love beaches, and I love mountains, and Kauai is everything in one package. A vast array of verdant valleys, waterfalls, sea caves and gorgeous vistas lay ahead of you. Dogs are also able to use this trail. We’re fortunate to even be able to go because torrential rains in 2018 caused devastating floods which rendered parks in Kauai inaccessible for over a year. The trail starts at Ke’e Beach and ends at Kalalau Beach where there’s a campground. By far the most popular way to hike the NaPali Coast is on the Kalalau Trail which begins at Kee Beach. Na Pali Coast Kayaking Photo. Mezmerizing and ominous is the Nā Pali Coast, the northwestern side of Kaua’i where no roads or homes exist. Na Pali Coast stretches fifteen miles along the north west coast of Kauai between Ke`e Beach in Haena State Park to Polihale State Park in Mana. State park officials are experimenting with a new daily limit on park. Helicopters circle the island, taking you on an unforgettable tour that feels like you’re being whisked through a 60-minute screensaver. What does one have to do to get a permit? • Click “Continue” at the bottom of the page. "The Only Way to See the Na Pali Coastline... Hanakapi`ai Beach has hazardous ocean conditions and no lifeguard on duty. The state park was formed to protect the Kalalau Valley. 11 miles of hiking through both large and small valleys, snaking one's way around cliff faces, enjoying amazing views, and exerting a lot of energy will take you all the way to Kalalau Valley, the official end of the trail. The Nāpali Coast State Wilderness Park, including Kalalau Trail, is run by the DLNR. HONOLULU (KHON2) –A 41-year-old Kapa‘a man died Sunday while hiking the Kalalau Trail on the way to Hanakāpī‘ai Beach on the Nāpali Coast. The trail head is clearly marked and so is the trail. This is how people lose their lives on Kalalau Trail. Must be a busy time of year. Hawaiians relied on canoes to access Na Pali's numerous valleys, nearby Ni`ihau and outlying Nāpali Coast State Wilderness Park & Kalalau Trail: In-order to access the Nāpali Coast State Wilderness Park as well as the Kalalau Trail, visitors have to go through Hāʻena SP. Bridges are still undergoing nightly reconstruction work as of August, 2019. You can get a permit to camp at designated spots in Hanakapi`ai. The Kalalau Trail provides the only land access to this part of the rugged coast. One misstep, or muddy slip, will send you cascading hundreds of feet to a sure death on the rocks and waves below. The people in the group are incredibly helpful, and the search feature will reveal a wealth of information about the trail and how to prepare. The surging water can wash you away in seconds. The group is moderately sized, and posts in there typically garner something like a few dozen likes. Beyond the initial two miles of the Na Pali Coast trail, on the road less traveled, hikers are rewarded with jaw-dropping views unlike any available elsewhere on the planet. Were available for every one of my Seventh week Sabbaticals you must purchase in,! 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