I spent last week with the Store Division from Automattic at their meetup on Kauai. Toward the end of the meetup Ben, Peter, Joe, and I day-hiked the Kalalau Trail. The trail runs 11 miles along the north coast of Kauai across an area with extremely minimal development.
You start out hiking through lush terrain that follows a well-trafficked trail. Lots of people hike the first 2 miles in to a beach.
That first beach at 2 miles in sits right below a flowing stream. You can take a 2-mile side trip up the valley to a waterfall. We were looking to do the entire trail, though, so we skipped the waterfall.
From there you continue up and down along the cliffs parallel to the coastline. The contrasts are just beautiful as you have the dense green plants growing right out to the ocean.
Around the 6.5 mile mark you come out of the lush vegetation and hit a much drier section of switchbacks. It leads you down to the literal edge of the cliff.
We were looking at the trail and almost confused about where it went as it curled out of sight. Turns out where it goes is just right on around the edge of the cliff. Fun stuff.
Coming back the other direction you can get a sense of how the trail winds its way around.
And when you’re hiking around that corner the trail doesn’t give you a lot to go on.
At 9.5 miles in we paused for a bit. There was a nice elevated point you could walk out to and get a view up both directions of the coast and back in to the valley behind the trail.
It was already 1:00pm by this point so Joe and I turned back for a more relaxed hike back. Peter and Ben ran, literally, the remaining 1.5 miles to the beach at the end of the trail. After Joe took a quick power nap…
We headed back along the trail. I took a brief stop about 5 miles from the trailhead to wash my feet off and cool down a bit in a stream flowing through one of the side valleys.
We got back to the van about 9.5 hours after we left that morning. The sun was just setting which meant Ben and Peter had about 30 minutes of hiking in the dark.
We then drove all the way back to the south shore where we were staying and promptly plopped down in the hot tub for a good long while. Overall was one of the best hikes I’ve ever done. It was a fairly demanding 19 miles but so worth it.
A couple days back some co-workers and I took the gondola up the mountain for a short hike. The gondola itself is a pretty great ride. Takes about 10 minutes and you get some fantastic views on the way down.
From there we did a short trail up to what the resort calls Alpine Lake. Lake might be a bit of an overstatement but it was still beautiful up there.
Most of the hike was through aspen trees. The white bark with greenery all around it is a neat effect.
The sunrise from Jupiter Peak yesterday morning. Woke up at 3:30am and started hiking at 4:00. We set off from the parking lot and ended up hiking straight up one of the black diamond runs at Park City Mountain Resort. Brutal incline on the way up. Overall a really great hike with Nick, Joe, and Mo.
Beautiful view over the valley this morning in Park City. Nice way to kick off day one of this year’s annual Automattic Meetup.
Flew back to Portland last night after a quick trip to New York.
Started the morning at Cafe Lift today. Great breakfast with Yuri, Alx, Spencer, Kevin, Aaron, and Trei. It had been too long.