Wednesday, March 8, 2017


This is actually a reverse waterfall since it falls up but I included it in this post anyway. It is called the Spouting Horn and is actually water driven in from the ocean shooting through an empty lava tube and shooting up in the air. The first time I visited it, when I had left my camera and phone on the hotel balcony, it was quite dramatic due to the higher waves. The second time when I remembered my photography gear, it was overcast, raining and not nearly as dramatic.

Many of the waterfalls on the island could only be seen from long distances away or not at all without permission of private owners. This one falls into the former category and I took with my zoom lens maxed out from the road going up the west rim of Wamea Canyon. I'm guessing the lower falls was at least several hundred feet tall.

One morning, I set out along a trail in the interior to a pair of falls that could be accessed via trails but requiring long hikes. As one would expect compared to the others you could drive up too, I had these two all to myself, or so I thought. More on that below.

The trail started off distinct but kind of petered out in the depths of the jungle. Fortunately since it followed the stream causing these waterfalls, I didn't have to worry about getting lost. I found it kind of neat to be hiking in a dense jungle and not hearing monkeys or other exotic birds making noise. Instead, all I ever heard were roosters crowing and only on rare occasions did I ever get close enough to actually see one.

As I approached the upper falls, I noticed the bathing suit and flip flops abandoned on the rock. I didn't think much of it at first and proceeded to take some pictures and rest a bit while taking in the scene. After awhile, it hit me that instead of being abandoned, they owner may actually be swimming in the stream. The guidebook had said the only way to access the upper falls at river level was to jump in and then swim downstream to where you could get out and walk back. I kind of glanced around to see if there was a head looking back at me from the river but didn't see any. I finally decided I should head on downstream and let whomever retrieve their clothes. Unfortunately I forgot to look on my way back up to the car to see if they were still there.

This was one of those falls you could drive right up to on the road and of course it was packed. I took this picture shoulder to shoulder with about 50 other people lined up along side the road. At the end of the pullout, there was a bum looking guy sitting on a bucket and weaving palm fronds into extremely intricate baskets. Everyone else gave the man a wide berth but that wasn't my style. I walked up to the fellow and started looking at his bowl. I would have bought one if I could have thought of a way to get it home without crushing it but I wasn't even sure it was for sale. I started talking to the fellow and he was a homeless man who had come to Hawaii when he realized he could just live on the beaches as long as he put a fishing line out in the water as per local laws. Like many of similar types, this man was very religious which always seems to make people nervous. I talked to him about freedom of religion for a while as he wove what I thought would be some decorative piece for his woven bowl. Others started crowding closer to us as they realized he was harmless and seeing the bowl I was holding in my hands and admiring. I set the bowl down and shook the mans hand thanking him for the time and wished him luck. He handed me what he had been working on which turned out to be an extremely intricate rose woven out of palm fronds. For your sweetie he told me. Once again it benefited me to talk to people others ignore.


Kelly said...

Beautiful photos! I think the "reverse" waterfall is pretty neat, too!

I love your story at the end. Good for you for seeing beyond what others might fear or despise. If the woven rose made it home intact, you should share a photo with us. :)

sage said...

Incredible scenes. I've seen a few "blow holes" which are always neat to watch. I love the red rock of the larger falls.

Pumpkin Delight (Kimberly) said...

Beautiful photos. I always find waterfalls spectacular. It looks like Kauai didn't disappoint in that area!

Ed said...

Kelly - We left it for the hotel maid who was Filipino and took good care of us while we were there. We weren't sure it would make it through customs since it was technically a green plant shoot.

Sage - I've seen some of the geyser persuasion but never originating from the ocean.

Pumpkin Delight - It didn't disappoint but according to some of the pictures I saw in books, some of the best ones are on private lands.