Photo: Keven Siegert (used with permission). • Click “Continue” at the bottom of the page. Curious, I tried to see if I could select a date in the next 14 days. This is where I learned the exact time at which the reservation window was to be extended on August 1st, 2019 and how I was able to snag a permit the moment they became available. The Kalalau Trail is a strenuous 11-mile hike, one way. This is enough room for one foot. The earliest you could acquire a permit at the time was 14 days in advance. This is a moderate pace that accounts for occasional photo breaks. Even if you could, it would be a long time before anyone could get to you. State park officials are experimenting with a new daily limit on park. We are traveling to Hawaii in September, 2019 during one of my Seventh Week Sabbaticals. Ke’e Reef Lagoon. We’re fortunate to even be able to go because torrential rains in 2018 caused devastating floods which rendered parks in Kauai inaccessible for over a year. Zero were available for every one of the next 14 days. This is the Kalalau Trail. Kalalau Tail on Kauai's Napali Coast is a advanced hike along hanging valleys, jagged emerald cliffs, mountain streams and back to sea level to Kalalu Beach Beginning Oct. 15 visitors to Kauai may avoid 14 day quarantine with proof of negative COVID-19 test. It is a minimum 3-day round-trip journey for most people to hike all the way to Kalalau and back, which means that you h… "The Only Way to See the Na Pali Coastline... Hanakapi`ai Beach has hazardous ocean conditions and no lifeguard on duty. Reddish orange terrain contrasts with lush green grass and, when there isn’t a spectacular blue sky, the canyon takes on a purplish hue in overcast weather. One misstep, or muddy slip, will send you cascading hundreds of feet to a sure death on the rocks and waves below. I didn’t complete the purchase, since my trip wasn’t until September, but I went back to the reservation form and refreshed. I’ll check back tomorrow. There are no security guards. Once you have an account, you can access the online reservation system. While the cliffs provide incredible views, they’re also what make the hike so perilous. They were increasing the reservation window from 14 days to 90 days! Be smart and don’t cross streams when they are flooded, and you’ll be just fine. People have died on this trail, but it’s typically not from falling off one of the cliffs. I initially planned for us to hike to the beach in one day, camp overnight, and return the following day. The Kalalau Trail on the Hawaiian island of Kauai weaves through one of the world's most famous natural wonders, the Na Pali coast. The trail is an amazing experience. Do NOT attempt to cross the river when it's high. The Kalalau Trail is an 11 mile long trail which winds through several valleys, hugging the Pacific ocean along the Na Pali Coast as it goes. I’ve spent more hours, days, and weeks that I can count reading, watching, researching, and acquiring backpacks, camping gear, water filters, camera mounts, dehydrated food… and I’ve had a BLAST doing it all. Sabbaticals have completely revolutionized my life. That would have been at the previous maximum of 14 days prior to our planned trip. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail. You cannot call for help if you twist an ankle. All of the spots were taken. It takes 8 hours to complete the 11-mile hike one way to the destination beach, assuming the weather is good. Hawaiians relied on canoes to access Na Pali's numerous valleys, nearby Ni`ihau and outlying What does one have to do to get a permit? "The trail bed is narrow and crumbly, and I've talked with many people who have either fallen off the trail or seen it happen." On Crawlers Ledge, a rocky path hugs the outer edge of a cliff that provides no more than 18 inches of standing area and as little as 6 inches in a few narrow places. The trail can be experienced in pieces and the most popular section of this trail is from Ke`e to Hanakapi`ai, where you will find a lush river valley. Continuing beyond this point requires a permit which you must purchase in advance, and permits can be difficult to obtain. Kauai Hiking | Kalalau Trail and Hanakapi'ai Trail (Nā Pali Coast). I guess I better try earlier in the day!”. Is there a way people are booking further in advance somewhere else? The Waimea Canyon is over a mile wide and stretches 14 miles in length, but perhaps most impressive are its stunning depths of more than 3,600 feet. The first step is to create an account on the Hawaii government website. Best nearby. The next day, I checked and, once again, all of the spots were taken. So I woke up at 5:15 AM Central Time and checked the system. This hike begins at the parking lot of Ke'e Beach at the Northern most point you can drive to on the island. Amazingly, no injuries resulted from the flooding, but landslides damaged roads and caused highway closures which cut off access to the northern part of the island entirely. Zero available. Those who’d completed the trail, and made it to Kalalau Beach, say it was a highlight of their life and something they recall often. The hike begins at Ke'e beach, at the end of the road on Kauai's North shore. The trail-head officially begins by Ke’e lagoon, in Ha’ena State Park (not to be confused with Ha’ena COUNTY Park, which is East and a short drive (or even a short walk), and where you used to be able to camp and can now only day park. In April of 2018, Hanalei, Kauai received a record of 50 inches of rain in just 24 hours. You’d think the risks would deter most people, but they seem only to enhance the allure. All that remained was getting the elusive permits. The Nāpali Coast State Wilderness Park, including Kalalau Trail, is run by the DLNR. The trail starts at Ke’e Beach and ends at Kalalau Beach where there’s a campground. This means you’ll need to filter water as you go, and while many streams cross your path along the way, there are some stretches of many miles where there is no water source. To think I was only a few weeks out from running into Mark Zuckerberg. Stay aware of falling rocks from overhead, Na Pali's coastline is crumbling and fragile; Pack your trash and protect the environment; You'll be hiking along a cliff, don\t use your phone or camera while walking. If the size wasn’t dramatic enough, the canyon features a gorgeous rainbow of colors accented by waterfalls. The Na Pali Coast Kalalau Trail is the very end of the road here on the North Shore of Kauai. The Nā Pali Coast State Park is a 6,175 acres (2,499 ha) Hawaiian state park located in the center of the rugged 16 miles (26 km) along the northwest side of Kauaʻi, the oldest inhabited Hawaiian island. In this environment, safety is critical. Due to its remote location, it is not advisable to swim here anytime of year. Usually, I stay home and rest or pursue side projects. The stretch from Ke`e to Hanakapi`ai is particularly muddy; On the trail, proper footwear is crucial; Prepare to get dirty - anything white, will most likely be stained Kaua`i dirt red by the end of your adventure; Sun protection is a necessity under Hawaii's strong rays; Hydration is critical due to the strenuous trail and humidity – make sure to begin drinking a lot of water at least 2 days ahead of time and bring plenty of water with you. A starry night on Kalalau Beach. The state park was formed to protect the Kalalau Valley. While the trail is open to the public, most visitors only ever hike the first two miles to Hanakapi’ai Beach. Wait it out. Our flights are booked as well, and we’re traveling there no matter what, but I couldn’t obtain a permit until 14 days prior to my arrival at the earliest. You’ll want to top off whenever you can so you’re not left parched in the stretches of trail that have no cover and leave you exposed to the baking sun. ... • Select Location “Napali Coast State Wilderness Park”. On August 1st, when the reservation window extended to 90 days, I was able to secure camping permits for our trip in September. This, and its remote location, allow Na Pali to remain one of the most beautiful and pristine coastlines in the world. You can make it to Kalalau Beach in a day by hiking for around 8 hours. With 180-degrees of the electric blue Pacific, majestic ridges and unspoiled beaches, every inch of this tropical trail boasts epic views. Not to mention, the last thing you want on Crawlers Ledge is an overly large pack on your back. If it’s not, you might as well turn around. This is one of the most famous hikes in the world and last weekend, we finally got to experience it. I think I’ve had just as much fun anticipating as I will experiencing. Here's everything you need to know about hiking or backpacking the Kalalau Trail. Besides being miserably muddy, it’s far too risky to attempt something as precarious as Crawlers Ledge with anything less than optimal weather. While my planned trip wasn’t until September of 2019, I decided to look at the system for acquiring a camping permit back in July. Na Pali Coast (Kalalau) Trail is a 22 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Hanalei, Kauai, Hawaii that features a waterfall and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The 11-mile trail is graded but almost never level as it crosses above towering sea cliffs and through lush valleys. You can’t gain access to this dramatic untouched portion of the island, however, unless you plan a tour or embark on a treacherous hike. But with the new cap on daily visitors, the limited number of permits required to venture beyond the first few miles of the trail (to experience Kalalau Beach), disappeared almost as instantly as they were made available. Anyone going farther than Hanakapi`ai will need a permit. Photo: Frugal Frolicker (used with permission). A vast array of verdant valleys, waterfalls, sea caves and gorgeous vistas lay ahead of you. click logo to donate Nā Pali Coast ʻOhana is a grassroots non-profit foundation dedicated to the preservation of the natural and cultural resources of the Nāpali Coast State Park, Kauaʻi, Hawaiʻi. Camping: (808) 587-0300 Haena State Park, which saw over a million people per year, had its visitors reduced to zero. While the northeastern part of the island boasts world-record rainfall, the southwestern part of the island is much drier. NOTE: The Na Pali Coast is currently closed indefinitely due to flooding. You can get a permit to camp at designated spots in Hanakapi`ai. Possibly the most exclusive beach in the world—complete with your own private waterfall—Kalalau Beach is accessible only by an 11-mile hike along the Na Pali Coast Trail. Epic NaPali Coast Hike Best Hiking Trails on Kauai. Some people break the hike to Kalalau Beach into two days, opting to stay overnight in Hanakoa Campground at mile 6. The real danger is flash floods. There are no lifeguards. This ended up being extremely fortunate, because I saw a red announcement on the page: Napali Coast camping permits are currently available 2 weeks in advance. The total elevation gain is well over 5,000 feet each way. A week later, I checked the reservation system again—this time, in the morning. Helicopter Tour. I work six weeks and take off every seventh week as a sabbatical. The trail ends at the secluded Kalalau Beach, which sits below Kalalau Valley. 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