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A walk up and down Wilhelmina Rise.

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  • A walk up and down Wilhelmina Rise.

    I went for a walk today in Kaimuki. I'm no where close to being ready to resuming my normal running routine, so for the next few days, I'm out and about exploring Honolulu via foot and TheBus. (I have a killer rental car available to me...a brand new Pontiac Grand Prix that had 5 miles on the odometer when I picked it up...but what the heck...it's more fun to explore the city this way...and I really don't want to add to the traffic on the Lunalilo or the Pali if I don't have to.)

    One thing I always wanted to do was walk up Wilhelmina Rise Drive. I've driven it all the way from Waialae Ave. all the way to top many times before, but walking it..nope..I've never done that. I've always wanted to see what it was like, physically, to walk it. Being in Kaimuki today, I deceided to go for it.

    I might be a runner in fairly decent shape, but, boy, that climb up the Wilhelmina Rise is very challanging. In fact, I wondered about a quarter mile going up, if I should continue to try it, with my quads still in pain. I deceided to give it a shot..it will be a long time before I'm in Kaimuki again. To continue: It's a walk one cannot make utilizing a normal walking gait; rather, the climb up is accomphished by taking half-steps at half-speed. I could feel that my heart was really working on the ascent up.

    I'm glad I made the trip up though...my reward upon reaching the summit was spectacular views of Honolulu from a small park which I had completely to myself. From my vantage point in this park, I could see as far eva, as well, Eva Beach and beyond; I could see planes landing at the airport with ease; I viewed the Financial District, Ala Moana, Waikiki, Diamond Head, Black's Point, and Kahala. Magnificent and stunning views to be had up there. I thought to myself that this must be what it is like to view Hong Kong from "The Peak"...except, of course, there was no tram up to this park, but even better than the experience at Hong Kong, there are no tourists..other than me; I guess I count as a tourist now.

    I sat up there gazing down upon the city below, from afar. Here was this bustling city, in full operational mode, far below me, yet I was seemingly so distant and isolated from it. I couldn't break myself to leave...it was wonderful. I was there for over an hour enjoying the view.

    Of course, I did leave, and made my ascent back to Kaimuki. The descent down was no easy feat itself as well. I could feel my legs were using muscles that are used primarily going downhill, and I have to admit, they may be out of shape for going down steep descents like Wilhelmina Rise.

    On the way down, a home owner on the rise exchanged pleasantries with me and gave me a bag full of oranges from a tree growing in his yard. Then about a half-block later, on the way down, another homeowner did the same, but he gave me a pomelo to take home! Man...only in Hawai'i, would something like that ever happen, yeah?

    I just wanted to share this little non-earth shattering story with the ohana of the Hawaii Threads. Really, it isn't that much of a story...but it's little experiences like the one I had today, that cost me absolutely nothing, that are going to make it very difficult for me to willingly get back on that plane for New York and the East Coast.

  • #2
    Re: A walk up and down Wilhelmina Rise.

    Great story, and a pretty amazing feat!
    Did you go on up beyond the park? The road loops around at the very top, and on the east side of that loop is the beginning of one of the hiking trails. A little hard to find, though there's a sign there. It's just a small opening between two properties. Great hike, if you ever get the chance.
    I'm tired just from reading your story. Time for my nap.
    .
    .

    That's my story, and I'm sticking to it.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: A walk up and down Wilhelmina Rise.

      Great story! And...only 2 days post-marathon????? Are you NUTS?!

      Did you actually walk up WR (the street) or did you walk the switch back along Sierra Dr.? Either way is tough with WR the tougher of the 2. I can't even begin to imagine what it's like to walk up WR. I have a friend who lives near the top and my car complains about both the trip up and down. But, yes...whatta view.

      AFAIC, your "little non-earth shattering story" is what Hawaii is all about. It's those "little non-earth shattering" gestures from strangers that make Hawaii so endearing. It's those gestures that continue to make me love living in Makaha. It IS "that much of a story". It's the Aloha Spirit.

      Speaking of endearing gestures...I did some shopping at Safeway Kapolei today. Behind me in the checkout line was a local mom and her teen daughter. The beach or pool was on their agenda as the young teen had on baggie board shorts, a bikini top and a beach towel wrapped around her shoulders. As soon as I started loading the first grocery bag into the cart, the teen came forward and finished loading them! I heard no prompting from the mom. It was a random act of kindness...again, the Aloha Spirit. Gotta love it.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: A walk up and down Wilhelmina Rise.

        Originally posted by Surfingfarmboy
        I'm glad I made the trip up though...my reward upon reaching the summit was spectacular views of Honolulu from a small park which I had completely to myself. From my vantage point in this park, I could see as far eva, as well, Eva Beach and beyond; I could see planes landing at the airport with ease; I viewed the Financial District, Ala Moana, Waikiki, Diamond Head, Black's Point, and Kahala. Magnificent and stunning views to be had up there.
        Sounds great. Maybe I'll drive up there this weekend.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: A walk up and down Wilhelmina Rise.

          Hey Lika Nui: I went only as far as the park. If I knew there was a trail that close by, I would have loved to have seen it as well. Next I'm up that way, I'm checking it out.

          Aloha Tutusue: I went up on the eva side going up the rise; I went down the rise on the Diamond Head Side. I did consider going down via Sierra, seeing how it is relatively "flatter", if one can call it that. I figured, being the switchback street it is, going that route would have added a lot more walking time. Speaking of Sierra Drive, I always thought it would make a good trivia question in one of Scrivener's contests, the question being: Without looking at a map...How many times do Sierra and Wilhelmina Rise intersect?

          Howzit MadAzza: Good to see you back here in the HT fora! It's been a while! Anyway...do drive up in a car. I can't imagine what driving WR would be like on a motorcycle. Anyway...you will be rewarded, no matter what method you go with multi-million dollar views from that park.

          Randy..(who's being driven crazy by a gecko in my room!)

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: A walk up and down Wilhelmina Rise.

            i used to skate that hill almost every weekend...certainly some of the most memorable moments of my life, and certainly a taste of teen bravado...wilhelmina was one of many town hills...now i ride a bike down...farmboy, you da man...
            Don't be mean,
            try to help.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: A walk up and down Wilhelmina Rise.

              correction...we skated sierra drive, with a couple of short runs down wilhemina between intersections...still not as sketch as hoofing it up...
              Don't be mean,
              try to help.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: A walk up and down Wilhelmina Rise.

                Originally posted by jdub
                correction...we skated sierra drive, with a couple of short runs down wilhemina between intersections
                That said, Sierra Drive might make a good downhill course for the street luge competition during the ESPN/ABC X games!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: A walk up and down Wilhelmina Rise.

                  Originally posted by Surfingfarmboy
                  Hey Lika Nui: I went only as far as the park. If I knew there was a trail that close by, I would have loved to have seen it as well. Next I'm up that way, I'm checking it out.
                  It's called the Lanipo Trail, a.k.a. Mauumae Ridge Trail. One website had this to say about it:

                  "This is a lush green rollercoaster workout. You're going to sweat and you're going to get muddy. It does require some four-point climbing but ropes are always present to assist you. A good down n' dirty trail for those serious hikers who like longer, more involved trails! Terminus views are expansive, including most of the coast fronting Bellows AFB, Lanikai, and Kailua.

                  "Mauumae Ridge ends at the peak called Puu Kainawaaunui. From here, the traverse to the trail terminus (Puu Lanipo) continues right (east) as a 15-minute crest-hike atop the narrow Koolau spine.

                  "The entrance is officially marked with metal signage affixed to a cyclone fence. The trailhead is located at the highest point of Maunalani Heights (Maunalani Circle at the top of Sierra Drive). The easement to the ridge splits private property to the right and the Board of Water Supply to the left.

                  "The trailhead is right along Maunalani Circle. From Waialae Ave, just take Sierra Drive to the top and get onto Maunalani Circle. The best locator is the chain-linked Board of Water Supply lot."


                  You can Google the trail name for more info, or contact the Hawaii Trail And Mountain Club. I've only been partway up the trail but still enjoyed the heck out of it.
                  .
                  .

                  That's my story, and I'm sticking to it.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: A walk up and down Wilhelmina Rise.

                    Back in 1994 I was walking up and down that hill to prepare for a climb up Mt. Rainier. Carried a backpack with 40 pounds of water in it just for ballast. No one gave me a second glance and I wondered why.

                    Until I saw a woman doing the same thing. She was also training for some other major event. I guess it's not all that uncommon. Or maybe people thought we were homeless or something!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: A walk up and down Wilhelmina Rise.

                      Another training "hill" is Tantalus also with a gorgeous view. Dunno, but I think WR might be the tougher of the 2.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: A walk up and down Wilhelmina Rise.

                        When I was 13-years old, I rolled a basketball all the way down Wilhelmina Drive. I heard of someone rolling a car tire down the same hill.

                        When I was an older (yet still naive) 17-year old, I drove my dad's car straight down Wilhelmina Drive like Streets of San Fransisco (airborne and all). I bragged about it the next day in school and was reminded that the stop signs were not on Sierra Drive.
                        Life is what you make of it...so please read the instructions carefully.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: A walk up and down Wilhelmina Rise.

                          Originally posted by tutusue
                          Another training "hill" is Tantalus also with a gorgeous view. Dunno, but I think WR might be the tougher of the 2.

                          38-seconds...Tantalus run
                          Life is what you make of it...so please read the instructions carefully.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: A walk up and down Wilhelmina Rise.

                            That was a very good story surfingfarmboy. Yeah, WR is quite a killer to climb. I can remember way back 1999 when we climbed that area. I agree that the view is fantastic.

                            There is another trek we did that year and it was really a stupid idea. I can't remember the name of the trail but it is the one which you can start trekking from Waimanalo Home Road. We found the trail information from a book and we set to go and did it. In the book, it says it's sort of a loop and it takes an average of 45 minutes to walk it. On the way after 1 1/2 hours of walking, we knew we were lost. It was one of my scariest moment as the path was only about half a metre and the drop was about 1,000ft (if my estimate is right). We didn't know whether it would be better for us to go back following the same route we came or just carry on thinking that, indeed, their is a loop. On the way to the summit, we never came across other trekkers. We carried on and on and it took us to a beautiful place overlooking Kaneohe. The view was fantastic. However, it is one trek I'll never do again. Some areas during the trek was deadly dangerous and it took us about three hours to complete it.

                            When we got back to my mum's place, I consulted the book again and looked at the route it suggested. The one thing stupid I did (which is very likely of me) was not to check the year of the publication of the book. It was really old. When we went to a book shop in Ala Moana and consulted one of the guide books, it says that - that trail was actually condemned and there were trekkers who have an accident in there before.

                            After that, I said never again...especially that my son was only 8 months old by then.
                            Last edited by Lowena; December 19, 2005, 08:52 AM.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: A walk up and down Wilhelmina Rise.

                              The Lanipo Trail. The only hike that has ever defeated me. I've tried it twice and have not made it to the end. You really want to get an early morning start. And don't bring beginners.

                              There are parts where you're on the ridge, which is maybe a few feet wide, and there are dropoffs on either side that you just know you wouldn't be able to get back up from. I'm not saying it's dangerous, but it's kinda thrilling.

                              They say the view at the end if breathtaking. Someday I'll see it for myself!
                              But I'm disturbed! I'm depressed! I'm inadequate! I GOT IT ALL! (George Costanza)
                              GrouchyTeacher.com

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