Lanipo...finally had my fill of this hike. Might do it
again someday but probably not in the near future. First time we got drenched!
Second time the top was totally socked in and windy. The third time I got the
meanest sunburnt lips! Kept me out of the sun for over a week!
This hike starts at
the very top loop above Sierra Drive. It starts of with a two rocky sections (which
is a terror to climb back up), then I think four more hills. Can't really remember
if it was three or four. I was counting but got lost my train of thought (damn!)
Anyway, this lower section is pretty brutal if done in peak sunlight. Or I'd
imagine it is anyway since I have never done it during that time. Once you get out
of the lower sections it gets nice and lush. At about the half way point you can see
Ka'au Crater on your left. From there the ridge walking is invigorating! You
can see Konahuanui, Olympus and Palikea on your left, and Pu'u Lanipo, Wiliwili Nui,
Waialae Nui and Hawaii Loa ridges on your right.
Once you get to the top you're looking almost straight down at Olomana. Head
right along the summit about a half mile to Pu'u Lanipo. There are a couple steep
peaks with dropoffs along the way but not too bad. From Lanipo we stopped to enjoy
the view then heading on to the top of Waialae Nui ridge. This is a nice strawberry
guava forested peak with an overgrown grassy area facing windward. Next was on to
Wiliwili Nui ridge. The slope down from Waialae Nui is probably the most dangerous
of this ridge section that we traversed. It's somewhat steep and bare and a slip
could very well send you down to the Koolau foothill the quick way.
Right after the climb down from Waialae Nui ridge you come across several utility poles
lining the summit. The views eastware of the Windward side from that section are
really nice! From there it's up to Wiliwili Nui! We then blitzed it down to
the parking area in about an hour.
Date: August 1, 1998
Time Duration: 6.5hours (with lengthy stops along the way)
Danger: Blue (along the summit)
Notes: This hike with the summit walk is really nice! You can park one car
at the Wiliwili Nui trailhead and start off at the Lanipo trailhead. Start early to
beat the heat, plus you don't have to come back down that way! Once you're done with
the summit walk it's just a really short trip down Wiliwili Nui!
There are some very steep sections along the summit so use caution, especially coming
down the Waialae Nui peak