Kauai – Part V

Hanalei Bay Beach

Puff the Magic Dragon
Lived by the sea
and frolicked in the Autumn mist
In a land called Honalee

This 1963 song by Peter, Paul, and Mary tells a story of the ageless dragon Puff and his playmate Jackie Paper, a little boy who grows up and then loses interest in Puff, leaving the dragon alone and depressed. The story takes place “by the sea” in the land of Honalee.

His head was bent in sorrow, green scales fell like rain,
Puff no longer went to play along the cherry lane.
Without his life-long friend, Puff could not be brave,
So Puff that mighty dragon sadly slipped into his cave…

“What’s with Puff and your blog?” you might ask?

I think we saw Puff! In his alone and depressed state oh so many years ago he may have slipped into the crevice at Rock Point (where we were yesterday- see Kauai-IV blog) and when he sees a human out there on the rocks he explodes out of that crevice as the angry, abandoned ‘Hissing Dragon.’

Or…

Puff could still be here at Hanalei Bay, and happy! – frolicking with the strapping young surfers. (If you look at this next picture carefully you will see them out on the water catching the waves.):

I could be happy, frolicking with the strapping younger surfers.

Just a thought…

Anyway, getting on with our trip …. We hiked the Kuilau Ridge Trail –

And I half-expected to run into Harrison Ford and crew filming another sequel to Raiders of the Lost Ark. I just now Googled it and, sure enough, the opening scenes of that movie were filmed in Kauai.

It’s a tropical forest. Without the bugs. On all of our hikes in Kauai combined, the only insects I saw were tiny ants, one small bumblebee, and one wasp. Well, and spiders. That’s the beauty of hiking in Paradise. If you see a flying winged thing, it’s probably a bird.

On Friday morning we hike the Kalalau trail, an 11-mile ridge trail along the Napali Coast. (Impressive, huh?) We start at Ke-e Beach and head for our destination: Hanakapi-ai Beach. Okay, so it’s only two miles to Hanakapi-ai Beach- but the trail climbs 600-ft to the ridge and then drops 600-ft to the beach.

Eric leads the way. Right away we experience a close encounter

of the worst kind for Eric…spiders. You can’t really see them all in the picture but there are five webs there in a cluster, and, well, we learn not to look too intently above our heads. I feel sorry for the first person on the trail in the morning busting through spider webs (yeah, in my dreams, while I’m sleeping in).

It’s a steep climb that first half mile and we arrive at the ridge. We take in the view of Ke-e Beach behind us

and the Napali Coast in front of us.

It’s a 2-hour hike to Hanakapi-ai Beach. We are getting close now…

What’s that sign say? Unseen currents have killed how many people? (Okay, so we won’t swim at the beach)

We cross the Hanakapi-ai Stream

and encounter wild life on the rocks near the beach

Seriously, this “Kauai kitty’ looks affectionate and cute, but there is no way you’re going to catch it, or even touch it. There’s a litter of three hungry feral cats here about 3 months old. Did someone carry them in and abandon them here? Did their pregnant mother fall out of a helicopter and land on this beach?

David and Eric on the beach.

They’re a tough breed.

I didn’t take a picture of the water (Duh)

We’re headed back now

up, up, up,

There’s our trail traversing that hill ahead

It’s nice to have hills you just look at and don’t have to climb…

We’re atop the ridge again

The ocean is fifty shades of blue.

The view of Ke-e Beach is just as awesome on the way back.

Almost down now…

I mean, up! AAaaaa! Don’t slip! We did pass a hiker half-covered in mud.

We’re down now. Time to rest and enjoy some ice cold coconuts.

The milk’s the best!

A native visitor meets us by the car.

It’s Alpha rooster. He wants his share of that coconut meat.

Afterall, It’s HIS island.

Okay, so I gotta put a wrap on these seemingly endless Kauai blogs.

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