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makapuu lighthouse

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Makapuu Tide Pool Steep Cliff Hike

Oahu Hiking - Makapu`u Lighthouse Trail

If you can handle a steep descent and climb, this is for you.

 

Things to do on Oahu for free: the Makapuu Tide Pool Hike near the cliffs by the Lighthouse

This hike is dangerous and must be approached with great caution.

For best results, you will want to go out during low tide and if possible, calm seas.  Makapuu catches tradewind swells so that means conditions will be best when the winds are light. Carefully survey the situation before you go out.

The steep hike to the Makapuu Tide Pools

Hike along the Lighthouse trail. When you get to the whale watching place (marked by visitor information panels) look for faint signs of a trail. Look way down and you will see the tide pools. The trail is not well marked so you'll have to be quite careful.  The trail is also quite slippery with lots of crumbling rocks. Keep a low center of gravity (i.e. a crouched position) as you slowly make your way.

 

Oahu Weather Now

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Makapuu Lighthouse vertical graphic

  • Current Beach Information for Makapu'u Beach Park, Windward Shore (Oahu) 4/21/2014
    Beach Condition: Extreme — Shoreline activity is extremely hazardous and may lead to injury or death. Lifeguards will monitor ocean access. Avoid areas of wet sand or rock.

    Offshore Condition: Danger — Offshore conditions are very hazardous. Swimmers are advised to not enter the water. Kayakers are advised to not enter the water.

    Surf Report: 000 FZHW52 PHFO 210145 SRFHFO SURF ZONE FORECAST NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE HONOLULU HI 400 PM HST SUN APR 20 2014 HIZ005>011 211400 OAHU 400 PM HST SUN APR 20 2014 HIGH SURF ADVISORY FOR THE EAST SHORE SURF ALONG THE EAST SHORE WILL BE 5 TO 8 FEET THIS EVENING INCREASING TO 6 TO 9 FEET MONDAY. SURF ALONG THE NORTH SHORE WILL BE 3 TO 5 FEET THIS EVENING LOWERING TO 2 TO 4 FEET MONDAY. SURF ALONG THE WEST SHORE WILL BE 3 TO 4 FEET THIS EVENING LOWERING TO 1 TO 3 FEET MONDAY. SURF ALONG SOUTH SHORE WILL BE 2 FEET OR LESS THROUGH MONDAY. OUTLOOK THROUGH SATURDAY APRIL 26: STRONG TRADE WINDS WILL PRODUCE ROUGH SURF ALONG THE EAST SHORE THROUGH TUESDAY. THE CURRENT NORTHWEST SWELL WILL SUBSIDE TONIGHT. THERE WILL BE A COUPLE OF SMALL NORTH NORTHWEST SWELLS EARLY IN THE WEEK BEFORE A LARGER NORTHWEST SWELL ARRIVES WEDNESDAY PEAKS THURSDAY THEN SLOWLY SUBSIDES THROUGH THE WEEK. SURF WILL REMAIN SMALL ON THE SOUTH SHORE. SURF HEIGHTS ARE FORECAST HEIGHTS OF THE FACE OR FRONT OF WAVES. THE SURF FORECAST IS BASED ON THE SIGNIFICANT WAVE HEIGHT THE AVERAGE HEIGHT OF THE ONE THIRD LARGEST WAVES IN THE ZONE OF MAXIMUM REFRACTION. SOME WAVES MAY BE MORE THAN TWICE AS HIGH AS THE SIGNIFICANT WAVE HEIGHT. EXPECT TO ENCOUNTER RIP CURRENTS IN OR NEAR ANY SURF ZONE. $$ DONALDSON
    Surf Report Timestamp: 4/20/2014 4:00:00 PM HST
    Current Wind: Not Available
    Current Weather: Not Available

Hiking Gear Guide

Experienced hikers know what to bring, and here’s a guide for the rest of us:

• Water (lots!)

• Hat, large enough to give you plenty of shade. Personally I like the large “Chinese” hats.

• Good hiking shoes. Either that or go barefoot, like I do!

• Light lunch for your reward at the end of the trail.

• Nuts and energy snacks for along the way of particularly long hikes.

• Camera

• Sunscreen

• Binoculars

• Depending on conditions, leave a change of shoes and clothes in the car.

• GPS unit.

• Walkie-talkies for the group.

• Wireless phone