Sunday, March 16, 2014

Lanikai Pillbox Hike

  The entrance to this popular east side Oahu hike can be found near the private golf course just up from Lanikai town. A bright and colorful sign post points you in the right direction and away from private driveways. I have often looked up from Lanikai beach and seen people working their way up this ridge line to a series of old military pillboxes. We finally had a windy, rainy day with no chance for surf of scuba so we decided to tackle this hike.
  It turned out to be a relatively short hike, with some steep uphill sections, but overall not too tough. I think at a slow pace even families with small kids could do it. There are some very steep drop offs to one side of the trail but luckily the wind was blasting onshore and pushing us away from the dropoff. The view of Lanikai beach and the Moke Islands just offshore was breathtaking. It also looks like it would be a perfect spot for watching the sun rise.

Hold on to your hats, its gonna be windy!

Living on the edge
  The pillboxes themselves are left over from the military stronghold days of the early 40's. Lookouts would have been stationed here to warn of any Japanese invasion. Now they provide a nice resting spot and a canvas for local graffiti artists. Heidi wasted no time in climbing to the top for the ultimate overlook.

Me and the Moke Islands
  There are three pillboxes along this ridge line but most people stop at the second. After that the trail meanders away from the coast. We made it a little farther but decided to come back another day when we had time to explore it fully.

Heidi at the summit
  After all the times of looking up at this hike from sea level I felt a real sense of accomplishment for finally checking it off the list. It won't be too long before I visit the Lanikai Pillbox hike again.

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