Koko Crater Rim

Colors of the Crater
DATE: 28 June, 2010
TOTAL TIME: 2.5 hrs
PARTICIPANTS: "Hangover" Lynnale, Me

It was time to revisit what I affectionately call ‘my training ground’ in preparation of Pu’u Kalena later this week. The last time I did this, I just hiked up the south rim from the botanical garden in the crater and went down the stairs on the other side.

"Hangover" Lynnale and me

Looking back toward the Haluna Blowhole, Sandy Beach, and Makapu'u Point in the distance
Instead of traversing the entire south rim as I did before, we opted to climb up the crater side via the natural stone arch bridge, which was pleasantly nice and steep with nothing to hold on to but a few misshaped rocks. Yay. The ridgeline to the top wasn’t as crazy as I remembered and was fairly easy to negotiate. I was hoping for a somewhat stronger breeze to create some feeling of instability when climbing up rocks but I guess the wind factory was on strike.

A natural stone arch bridge looms in front of us

Waiting for me halfway up the bridge

Path along the top of the crater rim
Unlike most ridges which are flat at the apex, the rock atop the north rim was tilted to the outside, making for a narrow, slanted walk that would totally max out the ‘Jason Scare Factor,’ which would in turn peg my fun meter. One thing for anyone wanting to hike the entire crater rim; when walking back to your car, stay on the road. It will be faster. If you decide to cut straight to the main highway, you’ll spend about an hour walking through dry brush and thorny plants with a mission to get in your way. If you’re a hardcore golfer, ignore my warning. There seemed to be plenty of extra golf balls to pick up among the brush. You may even be interested in a little sightseeing, as there are what looked like children’s graves, pigeon garbage, and a possible abandoned meth lab. Wear gloves when handling used syringes please.

For more on this trail, refer back to my earlier hike (May, 2010).

The less used north rim

Enjoying the blazing hot sun

Rocks rest at a weird angle, making this more of a challenge

Terrain that looks eerily similar to that of the desert in Arizona

Horse stables and the Botanical Garden lie on the crater floor

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