Moanalua Saddle to Heaven

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“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page” -St. Augustine. 

After a week of work and time inside it felt about time to explore unknown parts of Oahu again. AC and pavement jungles is after all not everything that the island is about, even if I tend to forget that while I’m a school or work. Apparently it does deprive you of common sense, and leads to near death-experiences on a monthly basis because I can’t help making stupid decisions when I stay cooped inside for too long. Like when I decide Moanalua Saddle would be an excellent adventure for a person like me (i.e. a person who’s only workout routine consists of hiking once or twice a month).

The Moanalua Saddle hike is not an official hike, it is off-road (and off-trail) and consists of rock climbing, dangerous drops and ends at the top of Stairways to Heaven – also known as Haiku Valley Naval Radio Station. I would not recommend anyone to do this hike unless they have some serious hiking skills. I have been spending my time in the woods since I was a child, and while my physical shape is not up to par, my technical skills tend to save me, even on this hike.

That being said: Man, that was fun! It is by all probability the best and worst hike I have ever done in my entire life. I don’t know how many curse words were uttered during the 6 1/2 hour trek, but like Hallvard said, “we’re talking 4 digits”.

Climbing porous, volcanic rock that crumbled underneath your fingers and fighting winds that toppled small trees made for an interesting adventure. I was grinning like a maniac half the time and overall this hike left me with the perfect mix of feeling amazing and exhausted.

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 My hiking partners in crime: Truls, Hallvard & Andreas.

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Moanalua Valley. Nature is beautiful.

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I’d rather be hiking.

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Andreas.

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Truls.

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Pretty.

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Taking a small break before the last trek to the top.

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Almost there! Our goal: the top of Stairways to Heaven, aka Haiku Valley Naval Radio Station.

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Exhausted but happy at the top. You can see the ridge we climbed in the background to the right.

If you want to risk your life – and feel great if you make it out alive – you can find trail descriptions over at Unreal Hawaii.

photos_mine & hallvard’s

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