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Almost Died the First Day on Oahu.

But truthfully, it wasn't as eventful as I'd hoped for it to be. When you're piggy-backing off a friend's trip with the sole mission of hiking the Haiku Stairs, you can't hold your expectations too high after doing the stairs. I'll try to make this short and sweet as possible.

A CrossFit and photographer friend, Mike (IG: @mike22d) asked me if I wanted to join him and Alvin (@chipmun_k) to climb the Haiku Stairs before they tear it down for good. If you know me, I almost never turn down once in a blue moon adventure opportunities, even if there is a slight chance that the stairs will be there in another 30 years (insert rolling eyes emoji here). Bought my plane ticket, rented some lenses from a local camera shop and packed my bags. More than half my luggage contained electronics....

I flew in to Oahu on Monday, February 22nd, and arrived at noon, about an hour before Mike & Alvin's arrival time. I quickly went to pick up the rental car and drove out to grab a quick bite from a local joint. When in Hawaii, all diets go out the window! Sad to say though, I didn't get any malasadas from Leonard's Bakery nor did I get a single bite of musubi in my mouth the whole trip! #FAIL. Failed really hard if you ask me. After grubbin right quick, I was on my way back to the airport to circle the terminals 7 times, while the two waited to grab their luggage from baggage claim. 

More dilly-dallying to grab water, snacks, and pizza from Costco (more fail) and then we finally headed to the Sheraton-Waikiki Hotel to check in. I wasn't impressed with the room, but the view was pretty nice.

 The Sheraton Waikiki pool down below. Still kicking myself for not jumping in during our stay.

The Sheraton Waikiki pool down below. Still kicking myself for not jumping in during our stay.

 Diamond Peak off in the distance. I'm sure the swimmers and surfers had a better view than we did. :/

Diamond Peak off in the distance. I'm sure the swimmers and surfers had a better view than we did. :/

Around 4:30pm, Mike suggested we hit Hanauma Bay State Park for sunset. An hour or so later we found the park gates closes at 6pm as we arrived at 5:55pm. We found a parking lot overlooking Koko Head across the road, parked and threw on our backpacks. We hiked half an hour uphill and then down some loose sediment layers to find the hidden rock bridge. Playing near where the waves meets the rocky shore is not for the faint of heart. We heard a few souls have been lost to the ocean here. At one point, a jet-skier came close to us and asked if we were okay. It was the first time I used the shaka gesture since setting foot on the island. :) Also, check out Mike's "getting-ready-to-dip-out" stance!

Below are a few of my favorite images. Click on the images below to enlarge them.

After Hanauma Bay, with our headlamps on, we trekked back to the car. By midnight, with tummy's full, our heads hit the pillows with alarms set at 2a.m. in preparation for our climb the next day.