There are basically two roads to take up to the Waimea Canyon, the “Grand Canyon of the Pacific”. I prefer the Waimea Canyon Drive on the way down, but you should always look in your rear-view mirror or you will miss photo opportunities such as this one below. Be cautious on your selection of pull-outs, as traffic seems to come out of nowhere on this road.
Our attempt to visit the Kalalau Lookout at Kokee to get a clear view of the Na Pali’s Kalalau Valley was unsuccessful due to land fog. This fog is formed not long after sunrise when the sun starts heating up the ground surface near the ocean. The warming along with the cool moist conditions at altitude, generates a moving bank of fog that gently rises and falls up and down the valley. Best times for clear viewing are first thing in the morning, and late afternoon. In our case, all I photographed was fog. Next year…..
At the bottom of the lookout, assuming you can see through the fog, you would see just beyond the very end of the bluff below, the true beginning of the Na Pali Coast. Park your car, kick off your shoes and go for a stroll along the seldom populated Barking Sands beach. Once of the longest stretches of beach in Hawaii, be sure to bring plenty of sunscreen – it’s hot and totally exposed.
Walking to to the end of the beach, you will soon see a mariners cross which serves as a reminder that the loss of life is often just a wave away. Please note, Barking Sands is frequent to serious undertows. Please proceed with caution when playing in the water.