Experience O'ahu, The Gathering Place, as few tourists do The Backpacking Committee's Twenty-Fourth Annual Hawai'an Islands Backpack (June 24 - July 1) adds a non-backpacking, dayhiking segment for those who wish an intimate O'ahu experience along with the comforts of cabin and hotel nights.
The Bishop Museum in Honolulu, with century old artifacts, will give us insight into the history and culture of the Hawai'ian people and their islands from the local point of view. The Planetarium's Hawai'ian sky experience will enthrall and educate you'll never view the starlit heavens the same way again!
Your potted pothos don't grow wild like they do in Hawai'i. We'll take a short hike through hau and pothos along Aihualana Stream to lovely Manoa Falls. We'll hike around the western tip of O'ahu to Keana Point, exploring caves and snorkeling in an inviting ocean cove. The Camp Erdman cabins on the secluded north windward shore will become our seaside for two nights. Our second set of beach cabins are in postcard perfect Malaekahana State Park for four star-filled nights. Here's a chance to put your recent night sky education to real use!
You'll experience dizzying views of Makua Valley and the azure Pacific beyond from the 5 mile Kuaokala Loop hike in the Waianae Mountains then plunge into tropical surf for a refreshing afternoon snorkel.
The (optional) overnight rainforest backpack takes us 3 miles up the verdant Koloa Valley takes us past taro terraces to a secret waterfall in the Ko'olau Mountains and streamside camping. Dayhikers will stay in the beachside cabins. The reef off shore from this white sand beach provides marvelous swimming opportunities, or one can enjoy sunbathing and beachcombing, exploring local artisans' shops, or . . .
Before we venture to our Friday night hotel, Schrader's Windward Marine Resort on Kaneohe Bay, we'll hike a splendid 4 mile loop in Kahana Valley State Park. Our traditional Hawai'ian Aloha Dinner is a time to dine on luscious fresh local fish (or chicken, or steak, or free range tofu) and reflect back on a most memorable, enjoyable week in paradise.
Breakfasts and dinners are cooked group commissary style giving participants an opportunity to learn our sumptuous recipes. Fresh local produce is always on the menu as well as seafood or chicken, or vegetarian upon request.
One should be in good shape for the backpack and for the more difficult day hikes.
Group transportation and logistics, the cabins, hotel night, group commissary equipment, camp fees, and anything else Bill and Joan can think of to enhance this outing are included for the $665 price ($730 Non-Members) if reserved by June 1; after June 1 the price jumps to $765 ($845 Non-Members). Reserve your spot by sending a $200 deposit ($45 non-refundable). Plane fare from the Mainland to O'ahu is additional and seats are limited. Send your check, made out to the Sierra Club Backpacking Committee, and three (3) large self-addressed stamped envelopes to leader Bill Crane, 22351 Mission Circle, CA 91311-1257. A trip sheet is available by sending a sase to Bill. For more information call him at (818) 773-4601.