Friday, March 30, 2012

"Stairway To Heaven" Oahu's Forbidden Trail

The Stairway to Heaven  or Haiku Ladder was originally built by the US Coast Guard in 1942 and was a wooden ladder spike into the cliff it was used to monitor the radar communications that could pick up signals some 6600 miles away from the station located at the top. It’s a very steep and dangerous hike to the top with some 3900+ steps on Oahu’s Haiku Valley cliffs. 

It was closed to the public in 1987 because of accidents due to the terribly worn and dangerous condition of the stairs. In 2003 the City of Honolulu spent $875,000 to repair the stairs but the stairs remain closed due to land use rights issues and liability.

However this does not stop of thousands of hiker each year that take on the challenge of this dangerous hike and the constant present of the guards who man the entrance gate and turn hiker away by the hundreds each day including Sunday. It’s said if you can get pasted the guards either before there shift begins in the very early morning hours 4AM – 5AM or during their breaks you can sneak past and make your way to the stairs. Beware you can be sited if caught. If you are coming down from your hike however they are known to just ask about the view or how your hike was today.

If you are lucky to be young enough or in excellent physical condition to make this adventurous journey please don’t forget it is very dangerous and many people have been injured, this hike will take anywhere from 4 to 6 hours both ways so make sure like any hike you pack penalty of food and water, ware comfortable shoes and take a jacket, it’s cold at the top or even a blanket if you can.  Beware while descending the stairs they are likely to be wet and slippery, go slow!

Remember to leave the top and trail better then you found it, please take all your garbage with you as no one is going to clean up after you and there are no park rangers or guides. I hate to be a killjoy but this hike is still illegal so do it at your own risk.  Make sure you have a cell phone to call emergency services should you need them.  Good Luck and enjoy the hike if you dare go!

Thank you for stopping by my blog, I do my best to try and make it interesting, I encourage and welcome your ideas, comments and questions. You can also follow my blog by clicking on the "follow this blog" on the right side of my blog home page. Have a great weekend and aloha!

Roxy ... 

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