The tour van was crowded but was decent and we got to see a bit of the island on our way to the rainforest waterfall hike. It was sad to see several homeless tents along the way. With the very high price of housing in Hawaii, I have no idea how anyone can afford a home there other than the wealthy.
When we arrived, our guide doled out sandwiches, chips, water, and fresh pineapple to take with us. They also had backpacks if anyone needed one. I had my combat boots on, long pants, bathing suit underneath, a backpack I brought, and my cane. Since this excursion includes walking up and down inclines and in water, I recommend bringing a hiking stick of some kind.
After a quick trip to the loo, we hit the trail. The rainforest is beautiful. We saw all kinds of plants and trees you don’t see in Texas or Idaho. Our guide stopped here and there to point them out to us. I liked the massive clumps of bamboo and the pineapple growing from a stump on the ground. We hiked along the ditches lined with concrete that were created to irrigate the fields. We hiked through rushing water over dams. The distance of two miles was fine though the small uphill treks were a little taxing. Walking through the rushing water was the hardest. You have to face it and walk side step to keep from being swept away. Some of us skipped seeing one waterfall due to the long slippery dam with water going over it that had to be traversed to see it. When we reached the area of the biggest waterfall, we had to walk over big rocks in cold knee high water.
At the big waterfall, Bernie and I ate our lunches first as we watched others brave the freezing water in the swimming hole beneath the falls. Afterwards, since my pants and boots were already wet, I decided to go for it myself in my clothes sans my shirt. It really was FREEZING! Getting in slow was not an option. I walked in up to my waist then just dropped down to get it over with. I wasn’t sure I could swim out to the waterfall. My boots were amazingly easy to swim with but the cold water was a bit too much. My first attempt was aborted. I moved around in the water until I felt better then went for it. I swam out behind the fall and stood up triumphant so Bernie could take a picture. Then I swam through the waterfall after others did. The water was coming down pretty hard and I don’t really recommend following my example but I did make it through. A little danger is good now and then and being surrounded by other people in case something goes wrong helps. It was definitely a life experience.
After the swim, we continued our hike to see some other waterfalls. I got stuck for a minute in the big rocks and knee high water on the way back out. I almost fell and needed to choose a better path. Poor Bernie fell and got wet… ter.
The next waterfall was down a steep incline. Some went down it and actually jumped off the cliff above it into the stream below and then quickly climbed the rocks back up. One brave (or stupid) young woman did it too. It takes the blissful ignorance of youth to do something like that. We were content to watch from above.
We finished the hike and squeezed back into the tour van. When we got back on the ship, we had to change clothes in the shower stall. My boots were full of water in the bottom but combat boots are made for this sort of thing and they eventually dried out just fine and as good as ever. We used the clothesline in the shower to dry our clothes. We had never noticed it being there before on other cruises but learned about it on Facebook. LOL.
For more pics click here.