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Winter/Spring 2014

Sea Turtles in Kaua‘i Waters

Taking Flight Over the Na Pali


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Na Pali Coast Magazine


in this issue Sea Turtles in Kaua‘i Waters

Taking Flight Over the Na Pali

4 24 Page 24

Illusive Mermaids of the Na Pali

54

Kauai’s Geology Past and Present

66 Page 66

Living on the Na Pali

Exploring the Island of Kaua‘i (Maps & Information)

Na Pali Coast Gallery

26 100

Page 96

112

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I N 4

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K A U A‘ I

W A T E R S


G r a c e f u l ly

gliding through

t h e o c e a n c u r r e n t, t h e

H a w a i i a n G r e e n S e a Tu r t l e or honu, is one of the o l d e s t, a n d m o s t b e l o v e d c r e at u r e s i n the

Hawai ian Isl ands .

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W

eighing up to 400 pounds, the Green Sea Turtle possesses unique habits that set it apart from the other two species of sea turtle seen in the warm Kauai waters. However, all sea turtle’s lives begin the same way: by dangerously scurrying from their sandy nest into the open ocean. Always fighting to survive, these reptiles are one of the most mesmerizing to spot floating around the island of Kauai. It is most common to see Green Sea Turtles in the Hawaiian Islands, but Leatherback and Hawksbill Sea Turtles also roam these waters. Green Sea Turtles have a more interesting relationship with land than the other two, and that is their biggest difference. Generally, nesting female turtles are the only turtles that go on land. Green Sea Turtles, however, can be seen lounging on rocks and beaches for hours at a time. They do this to warm their shell or to avoid sharks. The different species of sea turtle also differentiate by their eating habits. Leatherbacks and Hawksbill turtles are carnivorous, eating jellyfish, sponge, and other soft invertebrates. The Green Sea Turtle has a unique feeding pattern. It begins its life as a carnivore and later switches to an all-plant diet, eating algae and sea grass. Life for sea turtles doesn’t only consist of lounging and floating around. Sea turtles are constantly in danger.

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G r e e n S e a Tu r t l e s

are the

o n ly s p e c i e s o f s e a t u r t l e t h at e n j oy l o u n g i n g o n the sunny beach.

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Sea

t u r t l e s g at h e r t o m at e a n d t o f e e d o n

t h e r e e f, t h o u g h n o r m a l ly s e a t u r t l e s a r e s o l i ta r y c r e at u r e s .

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Females

w i l l o f t e n pa i r w i t h

m u lt i p l e m a l e s b e f o r e n e s t i n g .

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Th e G r e e n S e a Tu r t l e

h a s a sh a r p b e a k- l i k e m o u t h ,

a l l o w i n g t h e m t o t e a r t o u g h s e a g r a ss e s .

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Th e

cl aws on t he front fins ar e used for

p r o t e c t i o n a s w e l l a s d u r i n g m at i n g .

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After baby turtles hatch, they work together to raise their nest out of the hole they have been incubating in for two months. There are about 110 baby turtles, and as soon as they start to make their way to the ocean, it’s every turtle for itself. Baby sea turtles have many predators in the beginning of life including crabs, birds, the sun, sharks, predatory fish, and of course, humans. Sharks and humans continue to threaten the existence of sea turtles. Whether its taking sea turtle eggs from their nest, or using other parts of the sea turtle for leather, humans are to blame for the decrease in Sea Turtles. In Hawaii, the law protects sea turtles and it is important to report any turtle that looks to be under duress. While spotting a honu sunning on the beach, or swimming around the shallow water might be the highlight of a person’s day in Hawaii, these ancient creatures are sadly fading away. When I first moved to Hawaii, I went on a snorkeling adventure down the South Side of Kauai. In Kipu’Kai, the fish were abundant. I would hold my breath and dive down, getting as close to the ocean floor as I could. The world was fast down there, the seaweed swaying with each strong current. The fish moved with purpose, and the sea slugs didn’t seem to move at all. Out of the corner of my eye I saw it, a huge sea turtle looking right at me. He moved around me, probably trying to get to the good sea grass and I wondered, how old could he be? How many times has he been to this cove, and fed from this ocean floor? All I know is that he’d been around way longer than me. This was his home, and I was only a visitor, mesmerized by the life of a graceful, truly perfect animal. To view a video of the green sea turtles go to the following link. http://youtu.be/CfpkRvOvkVo Winter/Spring 2014

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Na Pali Coast Magazine


M at i n g

i s a n a gg r e ss i v e e v e n t .

Th e

male will sometimes bite the

f e m a l e o n t h e n e c k a n d w i l l u s e h i s c l a w s t o l at c h o n t o h e r .

While I

m a n y h u m a n s c a n r e l at e t o t h e b i t i n g o f t h e n e c k ,

d o n ’ t t h i n k a m a n w i t h c l a w s w o u l d b e a b l e t o g e t a n y d at e s .

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Life

for sea turtles doesn’t

o n ly c o n s i s t o f l o u n g i n g a n d f l o at i n g a r o u n d .

Sea

turtles

a r e c o n s ta n t ly i n d a n g e r .

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G r e e n S e a Tu r t l e s

can be seen lounging

o n r o c k s a n d b e a c h e s f o r h o u r s at a time.

Th e y

d o t his to war m t h ei r sh ell

o r to avo i d shar k s .

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S c r at c h

m a r k s a n d s c a r s o n t h e s h e l l m ay i n d i c at e a f i g h t

w i t h a n o t h e r t u r t l e , m o s t l i k e ly o v e r a f e m a l e , o r , t h e s e mark s can be a sign of a dangerous encounter with a shark .

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G r e e n S e a Tu r t l e s

feed on algae

a n d s e a g r a ss i n s h a l l o w w a t e r s .

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Th e N a ‘ Pa l i C o a s t w o n d e r a n d m y s t e r y.

is filled with

Th e r e

are miles

o f u n e x plo r e d va l l e ys a n d wat e r fa l l s .

Th e

s c e n e r y i s co n s ta n t ly c h a n g i n g , w i t h

cliff sides collapsing, and coastlines eroding.

Each

time

I

g e t o n a b oat, o r

e n t e r t h e w i l d e r n e ss t o h i k e a n e w t r a i l , explore a new riverbed or canyon peak,

I

see the birds and

I

w o n d e r w h at t h e y

have seen and if they realize t h e y li v e i n par ad ise.

ta k i n g

FlighT over the na pali

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B

irds on Kauai range from native Hawaiian birds to birds introduced to the Hawaiian Islands throughout the years. Some are migratory, some live here their whole lives and some live at sea, keeping nests near beaches and on cliffs. This article will focus on a few choice birds found along the Na’Pali coast cliffs, caves, and valleys, as well as

birds found in Kilauea on the north side of Kauai. There are many endangered species of birds found on Kauai, most importantly, the state bird, the Nene. The Na’Pali Coast, and surrounding Pacific Ocean is the perfect habitat for seabirds. By travelling long the Na’Pali Coast, we are able to get a glimpse at the lives of these free flyers.

Th e R e d - F o o t e d B o o b y seen on the

b i r d i s f r e q u e n t ly

N a Pa l i C o a s t. W h i l e

its bright

r e d l e gs a r e t u c k e d w h e n f l y i n g , t h e b e s t way t o r e c o g n i z e t h e b i r d , i s b y t h e l o n g yellow or blue beak.

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Most

s e a b i r d s h u n t d u r i n g d ay l i g h t h o u r s ,

f ly i n g a l o n g w i t h s c h o o l s o f l a r g e f i s h .

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Th e B r o w n - F o o t e d B o o b y b i r d pa r a d i s e t h at i s t h e

f ly i n g a l o n g t h e

N a Pa l i C o a s t.

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Because the

t h e y o n l y l a y o n e e gg a y e a r ,

B l a c k - f o o t e d A l b a t r o ss ,

other birds in

Hawai i,

h a v e s t r u gg l e d

i n k e e p i n g p o p u l a t i o n u p.

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like many

The largest of the seabirds on Kauai, but smallest of its family is the Black-footed Albatross or Ka’upu. It can be seen on the ocean during daylight hours, hunting for fish eggs, squid, and crustaceans. This bird hunts alongside other types of birds, towering over with its 6-7ft wingspan. The black-footed Albatross is easily recognizable by a white band around its long, dark beak. The bird’s plumage is typically completely dark-gray to black, but some Black-footed Albatross have white tail feathers. From November to May, the


While the at

these birds can often be seen along

N a’ Pa l i C o a s t,

K i l au e a P o i n t,

Refuge

birds nest near beaches. In monogamous pairs, they share the duty of incubating a single egg for 65 days. Because they only lay one egg a year, the Black-footed Albatross, like many other birds in Hawaii, have struggled in keeping population up. Alongside the Albatross, a smaller, but more flamboyant bird can be seen diving into the ocean. The White-Tailed and Red-Tailed Tropic Bird or Koa’e kea is an exciting sight on the Na’Pali. With a wingspan around 3ft, this bird is quick, and precise when hunting for small fish and squid.

they are also seen

the

N at i o n a l W i l d l i f e

o n t h e n o r t h e a s t e r n pa r t o f

K auai.

These birds are typically all white, with either long white or red tail feathers. This boisterous breed squeaks loudly when fighting and is known to have an extravagant display when courting. The Red-tailed Tropic Bird nests are tucked away beneath vegetation on the ground while the whitetailed birds nest on high cliff sides. While these birds can often be seen along the Na’Pali Coast, they are also seen at Kilauea Point, the National Wildlife Refuge on the northeastern part of Kauai.

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Th e s e B l a c k N o d d i e s

n e s t i n c av e s

and on cliffs.

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Black Noddies Hawai i,

spend their entire lives in

w h i l e o t h e r s e a b i r d s o n ly r e t u r n t o

the islands for nesting purposes.

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The Kilauea Point National Wildlife Refuge offers a habitat ideal for nearly all seabirds on Kauai. ‘A, or the Red-Footed Booby bird’s largest colony is at the point. The kauaiseabirdproject.org, states there are more than 2,000 breeding pairs in Kilauea. If visiting the point, it might be difficult to identify the Red-Footed Booby because of its color variation. They are usually brown or white with bright, white tail feathers. The best way to identify the bird is by looking at its red feet or its long white or even blue beak. The Red-Footed

Black Noddies Hawai i,

Booby is an important bird for Kauai fisherman. Their flight patterns and hunting routines are a signal to fisherman, because the birds are usually spotted following schools of predatory fish like Tuna and sometimes even sharks. While the Red-Footed Booby is the most common booby on Kauai, the Brown Booby, with yellow feet can also be seen on coastlines including Kilauea. Some birds hunt alongside the Booby Bird, following the larger fish. The most commonly sighted birds are Noddies and Terns.

spend their entire lives in

w h i l e o t h e r s e a b i r d s o n ly r e t u r n t o

the islands for nesting purposes.

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Red -Footed Booby a w i n gs p a n o f

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3-4

Na Pali Coast Magazine

b i r ds hav e f e e t.


B l a c k - f o o t e d A l b a t r o ss of the

A l b a t r o ss

are the smallest

fa m i ly, b u t a r e s t i l l l a r g e r

t h a n m o s t o t h e r s e a b i r d s w i t h a w i n gs p a n of

6

to

8

f e e t.

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Th e

distinc t blue beak and red feet are

w h at m a k e t h e

Red -Footed Booby

bird

fa s c i n at i n g t o s e e .

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It

i s k n o w n , t h at w h e n

N o d d y Te r n s

are seen

r e t u r n i n g t o s h o r e , i t i s a s i g n a l t h at a s t o r m i s o n i t s w ay.

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According to the Hawaiian encyclopedia.com, 60% of birds on Kauai are Noddies and Terns. The Hawaiian Noddy Tern, or Noio Koha received its name because of its gestures. As one may expect, it nods. During mating ceremonies, the male bird nods to its mate after presenting a fish to her. She then lays her eggs. The Noddy Tern builds its nest in caves, trees and on cliffs.


They hunt with other birds like the Albatross and the Booby bird, but they are different than the typical seabird. The Noddy Tern lacks the necessary oil glands to keep its feathers dry. This prevents the bird from staying on the ocean for more than a few minutes at a time. Noddies are also important to the fisherman on Kauai. It is known, that when Noddy Terns are seen returning

to shore, it is a signal that a storm is on its way. To spot a Hawaiian Noddy Tern, it is important to look for a very pointed, sharp beak, with a dark-gray to black body. There are many variations of the Noddy Tern in Hawaii, from white to blue to brown to black. Noddies and Terns remain prominent in Hawaii, unlike the state bird, the Nene.

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It

is not uncommon to see different species

of birds feeding together.

S h e a r wat e r s

and

Booby

Here,

the

birds follow the

s a m e s c h o o l o f f i s h , d i v i n g f o r f i s h e ggs , s q u i d a n d o t h e r s m a l l c r e at u r e s s t i r r e d u p b y t h e l a r g e p r e d at o r y f i s h .

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Seabirds

also follow shark s around

as if they were the minions to this u n d e r w at e r b u l ly.

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The Hawaiian Goose, or Nene can be seen all over Kauai. It is not a seabird, but is important to the state of Hawaii. It also has a serious threat of extinction. While travelling around the island, it is very common to see signs that say “Nene crossing” or “Don’t feed the Nene”. The Nene can be seen all over, travelling in flocks. This goose, which looks similar to the Canadian goose, is believed to have arrived in Hawaii shortly after the islands were formed, some 500,000 years ago. Many of the birds live on lava flows and they feed primarily on vegetation like flowers, seeds, buds, leaves, fruit and plants. It is estimated that there are about 500 of these birds living in the wild. They can be seen on all the Hawaiian Islands. There are many serious threats to all birds on Kauai, including feral cats, rats, and of course, humans. Organizations like Kauai Endangered Seabird Recovery Project (KESRP), work with birds like the Booby and the Albatross to build population. When travelling along Na’Pali Coast, it seems like there are more than enough birds filling the skies, and nesting on cliffs, but in fact the population of each species is actually quite low. Many birds are increasingly close

Visitors

to extinction, which is why it is important for organizations like KESRP to step in and lend a hand in breeding. With more than 80 species of birds on Kauai alone, we are lucky that we have the chance to see these endangered seabirds nearly ever day along the coast. Flying high above the cliffs and valleys of the Na’Pali coast, diving into the crystal blue ocean, foraging on abundant amounts of fish and squid, these birds, I am confident, know they live in the ultimate paradise. Websites that helped in writing this article: Hawaiianencyclopedia.com/ seabirds-of-the-hawaiian-islands.asp Kauaiseabirdproject.org www.state.hi.us www.fws.gov/kilaueapoint/kilaueapointbirds.html

come from all over the world

t o w i t n e ss t h e e x t r a o r d i n a r y d i s p l a y of endangered birds on

K auai.

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While C o a s t,

food is plentiful along the

N a Pa l i

m os t se ab i r ds ar e s t i ll i n g r av e

danger of ex tinc tion.

Fishermen’s

nets and

o t h e r p o l l u t i o n t o t h e wat e r h av e b e c o m e s o m e o f t h e b i gg e s t t h r e a t s t o s e a b i r d s .

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elusive mermaids o f t h e na pali

W

e all have days when things just do not go the way we want or plan. They are just the trials of life—or lack of control in life—I call it. It’s clearly human nature, though, that we want everything our way, and right now. And for me, I have always wanted to nail down a fantasy-mermaid-Na Pali story or layout—something that is visually inspiring and different to entertain the brain. How hard could that be to put together? Just get one or two stunning models in mermaid outfits, superimpose them onto the shore rocks with the right light, and blam! You’ve created magic. I had been dreaming about this from about the first time I beheld the Na Pali Coast some 20-plus years ago. When my eyes connected with the mid morning summer light creating heavenly electric blue colors to the waters in the Na Pali’s sea caves, I thought this could be so easy and fast—like a click of the finger.

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I was wrong. What I thought could be done in a day basically turned into weeks and months, and then years. I had talked and concluded about what to do for a mermaid story with team Napali Coast Magazine—that is Brad my graphic designer, and Joe my Web master. We all agreed it would be a win-win layout. So what took so long to produce this story? First, the models that I had inquired about never called back. Who knows what they had thought? Modeling to be mermaids for an online magazine? Maybe it was to be adult porn? They never called back to even verify what was entailed. Honestly, I understand that in this day and age, there are some total creeps that are twisted with bad intentions. But, I was just not going to fold on this dream—this mermaid layout—due to initial rejection. I believe everything happens for a reason and, well, something better was going to happen—it was just a question of when. A week or two went by and I was checking my Facebook page and wham! There’s the model Andria Lea staring at me, cartooned as a mermaid by Ramon Ramirez of Smarty Cartoons (you can see the cartoon on www.facebook.com/ smartyfanpage). So, well, this had to be a sign. It had to be what I was waiting for. The next thing was to immediately contact Andria Lea, and right away. She was a levelheaded celebrity type model. A time ago she and her husband were passengers on my boat. Every time a whale or dolphin would come close by, it was her vocal enthusiasm that lit up every other passenger. She had a great, and rare, combination of high-energy charisma with sincere and powerful eye contact. This had to be it. All the stars were lining up. When I e-mailed her she was ecstatic and game to participate. She understood the concept to a tee. But at that time she was also busy promoting herself—campaigning for the face of Fox on a Midwest TV station. Well wouldn’t you know it, she got the job. Just look for her face on Fox 43 on your web search. But, in her Fox contract she cannot use her image outside of Fox! The “Ohhhhh!” leaked out of my voice like a tire with a fast leak. Okay! Time to start praying and thinking harder.

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Just

get one or t wo stunning models in mermaid outfits,

s u p e r i m p o s e t h e m o n t o t h e s h o r e r o c k s w i t h t h e r i g h t l i g h t, and blam!

Yo u ’ v e

c r e at e d m a g i c .

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The results were quicker this time. That night as I sat in bed I asked myself, “what about using little mermaids?” Let’s use Brad’s or my daughters as models—little mermaids at play in the sea caves. I love this idea—it is as pure and Disney rated as it gets. In the big picture, it’s of things we get to share—like of our daughters at a moment of time

in their life that will never come back. Let me try to explain. Most parents say their children grow up too fast and are too soon gone. So the focus would not be to just share a priceless moment of having daughters, but to bring every mother back to the best of her own childhood— where everything a child dreams for is possible.

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So, there is my Coral, named after the coral reef. At age 6 she is missing a few teeth—but cashing in with the tooth fairy. She is into scoring goals in soccer, gymnastics, and playing with her sisters. She also likes Jessie of the Disney Channel, and wants to be a doctor like her Uncle Anthony.

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Laysa, at 4 years old is named after Laysan Island of the Northwesterhn Hawaiian Islands. She’s into fashion, dancing and singing. It’s remarkable that her big sisters never leave her out—the reason being she is a living and walking entertainment center. She still loves watching Scooby Doo. Her best line is: “Do not make Mom angry or


Th e

t h r ee g i r l s hav e t h ei r ow n r o oms bu t b ec ause o f t h ei r

strong sister bonds, they all sleep in one room together.

Then there’s Naia. Her Hawaiian name is for the spinner dolphin and she is the big sister at 8 years old. She’s into ballet, gymnastics, bike riding, swimming, soccer, or anything that allows her body to move. Really, she cannot sit still too long—even for TV. She’s very orderly, likes keeping the house clean, and makes Student of the Month every year.

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Madison is 10 years old and loves the water. Whether she is swimming, surfing, snorkeling or just out on a boat ride watching whales and dolphins—this is where she comes alive. She dreams of surfing professionally someday and has been able to compete in a few keiki surf contests already. She also knows a few chords on her guitar and likes to sing with her family.

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Justine, at 8 years old, always looks dressed just right for the occasion. She has an intuitive sense when it comes to effortlessly putting together the perfect outfit—from hairpin to shoes. She loves to sketch out models wearing elaborate outfits of her own creation. She also loves dancing, music, and singing and is known to get her ukulele out for some graceful-island flavored strumming.


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Geology Kauai’s

Past and Present

B y K at i e Tw a d d l e

Since

the discovery of

K auai

in

Cook,

the isl and’s lush

17 7 8

by

C a p ta i n

va l l e y s , h i g h c l i f f s a n d s o f t, san dy b e ach e s hav e b een distinguishing elements in t o d ay ’ s fa s c i n at i o n w i t h the tropical isl and. thinking about the

Isl and,”

When

“Garden

there is lit tle else

t h at c o m e s t o m i n d .

Th e r e

is

h o w e v e r , a g r e at pa s t h i d i n g w i t h i n l ava d i k e s an d valle ys .

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W

hile we think of Kauai as a paradise, its geology does not emulate a carefree or simple existence. Kauai’s past is complex, exciting, dangerous, and as unstable as its future. About 5 million years ago there was a volcanic eruption along the Hawaii-Emperor Volcanic chain. The eruption sparked the beginning of Kauai and ultimately, the beginning of the Hawaiian Islands. Through the volcanic eruptions, the underwater mountain began to rise above the surface. Kauai went through three stages of development: shield, post-shield and rejuvenation. The shield phase refers to the first exposure of igneous and metamorphic rock, becoming the foundation for the landmass. In the post-shield stage the volcanic eruptions slowed down. The lava dried and the excess magma was forced to invade the previously formed rock, causing lava dikes and tubes. Rejuvenation consisted of streams and rivers forming valleys within the huge mountain of early Kauai. While it seems a mystical creation, there were problems with Kauai’s structure. Kauai grew quickly. It rose from the sea and at its greatest mass it was 1,155 square miles. Its highest peaks stood at nearly 8,500 ft. But the structure was weak. ‘The resulting instability of such rapid growth … led to majorstructuralfailuressuchastheprobablynormalfault that formed the west escarpment of Waimea Canyon, … and [the] catastrophic submarine slope failure that producedthepostulatedmega-landslidedepositspresent ontheseafloortothenorthandsouth.”Blay-Seimers,44

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Th e r e

wa s a t i m e wh en g eo lo g is t s b eli e v ed t h er e wa s an ot h er

fa u lt l i n e c a u s i n g t h e d r a m at i c c l i f f s o f t h e

N a Pa l i C o a s t. Th i s

t h e o r y h a s b e c o m e l e ss p o p u l a r , a n d t o d a y m o s t g e o l o g i s t s b e l i e v e t h e c l i f f s w e r e c a u s e d s o l e ly f r o m w a v e e r o s i o n .

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K a l a l a u Va l l e y the

is t h e l ar g e s t valle y alo n g

N a Pa l i C o a s t

b e c a u s e m o s t o f t h e wat e r

t r av elli n g d ow n fr om

M t . W a i ’a l e ’a l e

up flowing into

ends

K a l a l a u Va l l e y.

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At 4 - 5 the

million years old,

N a Pa l i C o a s t

shows

b at t e r e d s h o r e l i n e s a n d c l i f f s .

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‌t h e N a p a l i C o a s t

stretches

14

o n t h e n o r t h fac i n g s h o r e to

miles from

K e’e

beach

P o l i h a l e Stat e Pa r k

on

1, 4 0 0

f t.

t h e w e s t fac i n g s h o r e w i t h c l i ffs u p to

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5

m i l l i o n y e a r s a g o a m a ss i v e

a m o u n t o f wat e r wa s s p i l l i n g o v e r onto the northwest side of the isl an d c ar v i n g o u t t h e valle ys along the

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N a Pa l i C o a s t.


After losing nearly 3,000 ft. in elevation, the highest peak on Kauai is Mt. Wai’ale’ale at 5,147 ft. The island now encompasses 555 square miles. It is believed the eastern side of the island collapsed during the post-shield phase and therefore creating the beginning of Waimea Canyon. The western slope and the NaPali Coast remained upright, although extreme wave erosion has cut back on the NaPali Coast, creating its dramatic cliffs and accentuating lava tubes and dikes. Weathering and erosion is ever present on Kauai, and is exemplified best along the NaPali Coast. The NaPali, which translates to “the cliffs,” was first formed entirely of lava flows. Later, water flow on the island had a major affect on its shape. Mt. Wai’ale’ale is the wettest place on earth, receiving 448 inches of rain per year according to Kauai’s Geologic History. While today the water flow has changed due to irrigation measures taken by early settlers, 5 million years ago a massive amount of water was spilling over onto the north west side of the island carving out the valleys along the NaPali Coast. Not only were streams cutting down from within, but the Napali Coast was and is battered each winter with waves up to 30 ft. high. The sea caves along the NaPali were formed when the waves cut through the rock. And when the waves cut through faster than streams could carve, cliffs and waterfalls formed. 5 million years later, the Napali Coast stretches 14 miles from Ke’e beach on the north facing shore to Poli Hale State Park on the west facing shore with cliffs up to 1,400 ft. and some elevations reaching 4,000 ft. From end to end, from top to bottom, three different climates can be seen along the NaPali Coast.

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Th e

so-called

“ C at h e d r a l s �

a r e a s p e c ta c u l a r

e x a m p l e o f w e at h e r i n g a n d e r o s i o n o f l ava r o ck s co m b i n ed w i t h s t r e a m c ar v i n g throughout the last

4

million years.

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It

r o s e f r o m t h e s e a a n d at i t s

g r e a t e s t m a ss i t w a s miles.

Its

at n e a r ly

80

1,15 5

square

highest peaks stood

8,500

Na Pali Coast Magazine

f t.


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81


Th e

se a c av e s alo n g t h e

N a Pa l i

were

fo r m ed w h en t h e wav e s cu t t h r o ug h the rock.

And

w h en t h e wav e s cu t

t h r o u g h fa s t e r t h a n s t r e a m s co u l d c a r v e , c l i f f s a n d wat e r fa l l s f o r m e d .

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Winter/Spring 2014

83


The west side of the island is desert-like. There are cactuses growing and the landscape is brown. On average, the west side receives 21 inches of rain per year. Moving from the west side along the NaPali, the coast is brown and lacking in vegetation. At the very tiptop of the cliffs, in Kokee State Park, a temperate rain forest thrives. It is also a cooler atmosphere in the State Park, with temperatures staying within approx. 4075 degrees Fahrenheit. As the coastline begins facing north, the brown cliffs begin to show more vegetation. The valleys are lush with rivers and cascading waterfalls. Eucalyptus trees and bamboo grow. These diverse ecosystems are what make Kauai a unique place to visit. Like the sandy beaches created by unseen surrounding coral reef, there is more to this island than meets the eye. Kauai’s geologic history is not a simple one. In fact, Kauai is still extremely complex. It has now entered the dominantly destructive phase. The island is essentially disappearing. 71% of beaches on Kauai are eroding. Ocean waves and animals like wild pigs and goats are also causing massive amounts of erosion on the island. Also, Kauai rides along the Pacific Tectonic Plate, drifting north. Because of this, the island is slowly sinking. It is believed that Kauai will disappear within the next 20 to 25 million years. Just like everything on earth, there is a beginning and an end. We are between the two and lucky enough, we are granted the opportunity to enjoy Kauai for all that it was and for all that it is. Sources Blay,Chuck.Siemers,Robert.Kauai’sGeologicHistoryA simplified Overview. TEOK Investigations, 2013. Print. Richmond, Bruce. “70 Percent of Beaches Eroding on Hawaiian Islands Kauai, Oahu, Maui.” Usgs.gov. usa. gov. 7 May 2012. 7 May 2012. http://www.usgs.gov/ newsroom/article.asp?ID=3199

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Th e

western slope and the

N a Pa l i C o a s t

remained

u p r i g h t, a lt h o u g h e x t r e m e wav e e r o s i o n h a s c u t b a c k on the

N a Pa l i C o a s t,

c r e at i n g i t s d r a m at i c c l i f f s a n d

a c c e n t u at i n g l ava t u b e s a n d d i k e s .

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From

end to end,

from top to bot tom, t h r e e d i f f e r e n t c l i m at e s can be seen along the

N a Pa l i C o a s t.

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K auai

i s t h e s u m m i t o f a n u n d e r w at e r m o u n ta i n

r e a c h i n g n e a r ly

16 , 5 0 0

f t. b e l o w s e a l e v e l .

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living O N T H E N A PA L I

About 600 2000

plus

y e a r s a g o t h e r e w e r e r o u g h ly

P o ly n e s i a n

mile by three mile

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Na Pali Coast Magazine

people making this three

K al al au

va l l e y t h e i r h o m e .


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91


T

o me this seems like overpopulation, even though they brought sustenance with them—the coconut tree, the kalo or taro root to cultivate, banana plants, breadfruit, and yams, to name a few. They also brought pigs and dogs. They built elaborate long stone walls or terraces along the streams which were essential for cultivation on the valley floor, especially of taro. On the entire Kauai island, the Hawaiian population was estimated to have reached a whopping 110,000 persons. I believe so high a population was possible because of the good drinking water and the durable

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Na Pali Coast Magazine

kalo or taro that was their staple. Its root could be boiled or pounded into poi and preserved—semifermented—for later eating. Its leaves could be eaten as well. Kalo is one of the most nutritious plants on this planet. Due to the need for firewood for cooking, the valley was much deforested, except for hala trees whose leaves, or lauhala, were used for making huts, mats and clothing necessities. An odd bread fruit tree here or a coconut palm there—the place was rather bare in places. The most sacred koa trees were spared to make canoes. Much of the wood for fuel was probably thrown down from the cliffs where it was harvested. Treacherous trails led to the Kokee forests above the back or south end of the valley.


These people’s lives were hard. No time to get bored or for thinking too much. It was all about survival. During winter the ocean and much of the shoreline was made inaccessible because of giant waves of immeasurable power. It must often have been impossible to get the fishing canoes out. Understand this was a rain forest type valley exceeding 100 inches a year, which translates to flash flooding. Floods were a way of life in Kalalau, that brought renewal but also caused landslides or earth slumps on the high cliffs above—even long after the rains ceased.

Most Hawaiians had moved out from Kalalau by the early 1900s to the safer, less remote areas of Kauai. Today there are still a few die-hard hippies living in the caves deep in Kalalau’s interior—living welfare check to welfare check—and eluding the Department of Land and Natural Resources who are always checking for unpermitted camping. These modern day primitives work the ancient terraces for kalo, and attempt to live their dream of back-to-nature paradise.

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The Na Pali Coast’s awesome and spell-binding Kalalau Valley is today viewed and visited by no less than a half a million visitors each year. I think it’s a magnetic attraction—nature’s magnetic pull—the lure of a peaceful paradise-found feeling. One’s eyes are treated to views of multi colored, lush green, fluted cliffs, massive pinnacle-shaped lava dikes, and cascading crystal clear waterfalls complete with misty and vibrant rainbows. It all looks to be out of a fantasy hobbit forest. There’s no mystery why Hollywood has a presence here. The Napali Coast has been well publicized the world over by Hollywood—from Pirates of the Carribean to King Kong, from Six Days Seven Nights to Jurassic Park. And that barely scratches the surface. From any angle of view, there is magic in beholding Kalalau Valley, be it from the north, west, south, or east. The valley imparts feelings different according to the constantly changing colors. Shadows from trade wind blown clouds above change the hues like by a light switch. Seaward, the ocean’s electric blue waters magically glow and change also according to the rapidly moving clouds above. Between the clouds the sunbeams are manipulated, dancing upon hikers on the cliffs above, then down through the crystal clear oceans below onto the white sand bottoms. From a boater’s or kayaker’s view, these heavenly watercolors are what they came for. And for those viewing from above, like the breath taking birds-eye view from a helicopter, it can overwhelm ordinary human emotions. A few are brought to tears of joy. But, the majority of visitors will do the basic—which means renting a car—then driving to the cliff-edge lookout at Kokee. There, at the Kalalau Lookout above the valley, they will behold the valley 4000 feet below, between dramatically parting clouds. Most will say this is why they came. And with this in their memory banks, they will tell themselves they have completed the punch list on their vacation planner. The truth is that your punch list for Kauai has just started. The punch list for paradise Napali Coast would take eternity to complete.

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On

the entire

K auai

isl and, t he

Hawa i i a n

p o p u l at i o n w a s e s t i m at e d t o h a v e r e a c h e d a whopping

110 , 0 0 0

persons.


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In ancient times there once stood here an important Hawaiian fishing village. But today unless you snorkel past the pristine barrier reef jutting out, past all the fishes and turtles that populate it, you’d probably notice nothing very exciting. You’d not really know what to look for. Basically there’s not a lot of eye candy here compared to nearby Kalalau beach. There’s very little vegetation on this dry side—like someone forgot to turn on the sprinklers. But if you have a good boat guide to direct your eyes and tell of Nu’alolo’s history, you’d see on those black, sheer lava cliffs two distinct gray lava dikes that stand out on the east wall, forming an X. Below that X is the area where the village once stood with a population incredibly close to one hundred. And the fish filled reef was one of the keys to the survival of those ancients. Notice too that how the reef sticks out and forms a natural jetty that protects the bay from the north east trade winds that bring waves and swell year round. The reef was their refrigerator for fish, seaweed and edible sea shells. In lean times when most went hungry at night, this reef was the allure that kept people here.

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Today some visitors do wet their feet to go ashore to better know this archaeologic site. They’d see the old rock walls still in place, see the fishing heiau where people once prayed to one of their many gods, and the old rock floors of ancient house sites. Here’s a tip before you go. First check out the Hawaiian history online, then see the old photos at Kauai’s museums—especially the photos showing the rope and ladder system once used to scale the east cliff to connect up to Nu’alolo aina, the massive taro growing valley above. Honestly we all complain about rush hour traffic jams, but back then it was the life-or-death rope and ladder climb that must have been really annoying!

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Na Pali Coast Magazine

…t h e

r e e f s t i c k s o u t a n d f o r m s a n at u r a l

j e t t y t h at p r o t e c t s t h e b ay f r o m t h e n o r t h e a s t t r a d e w i n d s t h at b r i n g w a v e s and swell year round.


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EXPLORING THE ISLAND OF KAUA‘I

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Na Pali Coast Magazine


10

Must Things TO DO IN KAUA‘I 1

Na Pali Coast Raft/Catamaran Trip

2

Helicopter Tour

3

Hike Koke‘e/Waimea/Na Pali

4

Learn to Surf

5

Learn to Scuba Dive

6

Sail to Ni‘ihau

7

ATV Tour

8

Hawaiian Luau

9

Sky Dive

10

Zipline The map—or rather cartograph—to the left was provided by Lahaina Printsellers. Check out their Web site for other exceptional art from—or having to do with—Hawai‘i: www.printsellers.com The following pages show maps of different areas of the island of Kaua‘i. They are designed as a resource to show major roadways, beaches, hikes, snorkeling, and other activities that can be enjoyed on the island.

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EXPLORING THE ISLAND OF KAUA‘I

Taro Fields in Hanalei

Ke‘e Beach

Ke‘e Beach i. 2M

i. 4M

au lal a K

il Tra

Tunnels Beach

560

Ha‘ena Beach Park

Ha‘ena

Hideaways Beach Wainiha Beach Park

Lumaha‘i Beach

Hanalei Pier Hanalei Bay Rd Aku Rd ke e W Hanalei

Ka Ha ku

Rd Princeville

560 Hanalei 56

North Shore Roads Dirt Roads Hiking Trails SnorkelSpots Note of Caution: The waters around Kaua‘i are known for dangerous currents, large surf, shore breaks, and sneaker waves. It is critical that you check ocean conditions and consult with a lifeguard before going out into the water.

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Na Pali Coast Magazine

Bridge


Hanalei Bay

Kilauea Lighthouse

Kilauea Lighthouse

Kahili Beach

Kilauea Wailapa Rd

Pila‘a Beach Na ‘Aina Kai Botanical Garden N. Waiakalua Rd

Larsen’s Beach

Kuhio Highway

Moloa‘a Bay Rd

Rd

Ko ‘ol au

M ol oa ‘a

Kalihiwai Rd

Kil au ea Rd

Kalihiwai Beach

Rd ai iw lih Ka

Anini Rd

Secret Beach

Lighthouse R d

‘Anini Beach

Anahola Beach Park Anahola Anahola

56

103


EXPLORING THE ISLAND OF KAUA‘I 56 Kuhio Highw ay

East Side Kawaihau Rd

na Mailihu

Rd na e h ‘Olo

K No uam un o‘o ou Tra il

Noun ou M t

Kuam o‘o R d

Trail

Rd ‘alo Ma

Kuhio Hig hway

56

50 wy ali‘i H u m Kau Puhi

Hanama‘ulu Wilcox Hospital

Hanama‘ulu Bay

Ahukini Rd

Lihu‘e Ric eS t

Na wi liw ili Rd

51

51 58

Lihu‘e Airport Kalapaki Beach

Nawiliwili Na Pali Coast Magazine

Lydgate Beach Park

Nukoli‘i Beach

Ka pu le Hw y

Kuhio Hwy

56

Nawiliwili Bay

Waipouli Beach Park

Waipouli Beach

583

Note of Caution: The waters around Kaua‘i are known for dangerous currents, large surf, shore breaks, and sneaker waves. It is critical that you check ocean conditions and consult with a lifeguard before going out into the water.

104

Kapa‘a

Wailua Bay

Wailua Falls

50

Kapa‘a Beach Park

Ha lei lio R Wailua d

580

Roads Dirt Roads Hiking Trails SnorkelSpots

Kealia Beach

581 Kap a‘a Byp ass

Rd ola h a n Kai

Kamalu

KuilauRidgeTrail

l rai eT rlin we Po

Moa lepe Trai l


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EXPLORING THE ISLAND OF KAUA‘I

South Shore Roads Dirt Roads Hiking Trails SnorkelSpots Note of Caution: The waters around Kaua‘i are known for dangerous currents, large surf, shore breaks, and sneaker waves. It is critical that you check ocean conditions and consult with a lifeguard before going out into the water.

Pakala Beach

Ka um ua li‘i Hw y

Kalaheo

Salt Pond Beach Park

Po‘ipu Beach

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Na Pali Coast Magazine

Hanapepe ‘Ele‘ele

Hanapepe Bay Glass Beach

540 Ha lew ili Rd

50


50

wy ali‘i H u m Kau Puhi

Lihu‘e

Ric eS t

Na wi liw ili Rd

Kau mu ali‘ iH wy

Nawiliwili

Maluhia Rd

Lawa‘i

530

Koloa

Po‘ipu Rd

Spouting Horn

520

ass) Byp

Lawa ‘i Rd

u Po‘ip loa– i (Ko inoik Ala K

d aR lo Ko

Lawa‘i Bay

Tree Tunnel

Po‘ipu Lawa‘i Rd pu Beach Baby i ‘ Po Beach Koloa Landing Shipwreck Kiahuna Beach Brennecke Beach Po‘ipu Beach Beach Park

Ha‘ula Beach

Gillin’s Beach

Kawailoa Bay

Spouting Horn

Po‘ipu Beach

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EXPLORING THE ISLAND OF KAUA‘I

Militar y Bou ndary

Polihale State Park

Waimea Pier

Ko ke‘ eR d

y Hw li‘i ua um Ka

Pacific Missile Range Facility Waterfall next to Koke‘e Road

50 Ke ka ha

Kekaha Beach Park

Waimea Canyon

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Na Pali Coast Magazine

Rd


Waimea Canyon

552 Rd Canyon Waimea

Wa ime a Ca nyo n Tr ail

550

Ku ku iT ra il

Waimea Canyon Lookout

on ny a C i‘e a Ko

West Side

550

Roads Dirt Roads Hiking Trails Kekaha

Kikiaola Small Boat Harbor

Note of Caution: The waters around Kaua‘i are known for dangerous currents, large surf, shore breaks, and sneaker waves. It is critical that you check ocean conditions and consult with a lifeguard before going out into the water.

Waimea

Lucy Wright Beach Park Pakala Beach

Ka um ua li‘i Hw y

50

Hanapepe ‘Ele‘ele

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ta k i n g i n

the Na Pali Coast

3

3a

6

7

4

Open Ceiling Cave

8

Awa‘awapuhi Valley Nu‘alolo Kai Miloli‘i Beach

9

Makaha Valley

13

12

10 11

Nu‘alolo Aina Valley

Milo li‘i R idge Trai l

Makole Roads Dirt Roads Hiking Trails SnorkelSpots

Polihale 110

Na Pali Coast Magazine

Note of Caution: The waters around Kaua‘i are known for dangerous currents, large surf, shore breaks, and sneaker waves. It is critical that you check ocean conditions and consult with a lifeguard before going out into the water.

9


1

2

Ke ‘e Beach

5 Hanakapi ‘ai Beach

Wai ‘ahuakua Valley Double Door Cave 6

3

4

5

7 8

Honopu Beach

Koke‘e Aw State a‘aw apu Park h iTra 3.2 il 5M i

Nua lolo Trai l 3.2 5

Ho ‘olulu Valley

Hanakoa valley

5M i.

Pohakanoa Falls

i. 4M

3a

i. 2M

il Tra u a lal Ka

Hanakapiai Falls Trail

Pirates Cave

2

1

Hanakapia Falls

Kalalau Valley Ka lal au Va 2 M lley Tra i. il

10

Hanakoa Lookout

.

11

Mi.

550

12

13

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W i n t e r A t t r a c t i o n s the breach

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W i n t e r A t t r a c t i o n s the tail slap

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napalicoastmagazine.com

Na Pali Coast Magazine Winter/Spring 2014  

In this issue: green sea turtles of Kaua'i, sea birds, mermaids, geology, ancient history and lore of Kauai's Na Pali Coast. Visitor's guid...

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