Likeke Falls

Guys, I went on a hike with the little ones this week. This is big for me.

I didn't hike by myselfI went with a local hiking group of parents with children; but the last couple of months, I've had a lot of anxiety about going out by myself with the little ones. I don't know why, but it's so different now than when it was with my older two kids. I'm not sure if it's because I was younger, more energetic and more patient; or because we went through a pandemic and my two-year old is currently going through the "terrible twos." (Case in point: When we arrived at the meetup site, he was crying and not only slapped my face, but then punched it. What a great first impression. I almost went back to the car to go home. Maybe try again next time.) Since IJ was born, I became accustomed to having the older two kids and my hubby help me whenever we go out. I would schedule my days based around their schedules, so I could take only IJ with me or have someone join me on my errands. This week, though, I decided that I was going to start taking the little ones on more outings—like to the park, library and grocery store—without the boys.

"Mind over matter." It's what I have to tell myself when I think something is too difficult. I decided if all these other moms could be here with their little ones, I could do it, too. LJ finally decided to participate with the group, and we started hiking towards the falls. Although, we trailed at the end of the group as he was more interested in picking up sticks and hitting the leaves and ground with them. At times, I would have to carry him because I felt pressured to catch up with the rest of the group. However, during one of the times that he decided to look for more sticks or rocks, I just so happened to look to my right, and I could see a beautiful view of the mountains. 

It was a breathtaking moment to see the clouds over the mountains with all the lush greenery surrounding it. I was so focused on trying to reach the destination that I wasn't enjoying the journey. Afterwards, we enjoyed the hike at his pace, and we eventually joined everyone at Likeke Falls. (There were times, though, where I had to carry him because of the bigger, muddier steps—it rained while we were hiking to the falls, and he would put his whole body on a step to try and hoist himself up. We had so much mud on our clothes and shoes when we returned to the car.)

Since it just rained, we were able to enjoy more water gushing down the two-tiered waterfall. The kids and I stayed at the lower pool, and LJ enjoyed trying to skip stones (I constantly had to teach him which sizes were appropriate to throw and where to throw them. 😅 ) 

So that we weren't holding the group back on the hike, we decided to head back a few minutes before everyone else. Surprisingly, LJ was a lot faster at walking back to the car than he was to the falls. He still stopped to pick up sticks and climbed up some trees, but I felt like there was less coaxing on my part for him to walk with everyone. Since it rained, though, the trail was muddier and more slippery. Since most of the hike back is downhill, I walked with caution since I was babywearing IJ and carrying LJ at times. 

I didn't take many photos during the hike as I was focused on making sure the kids and I didn't slip on mud, but I did remember to look out at the same viewpoint as I did earlier in the hike. What a difference an hour made—the clouds moved, and I could see more of the peaks of the mountains. It made for a great ending to our adventure. I am so glad we decided to stay and participate in the group hike. Slowly, my anxiety of going out with the littles by myself is going away. It helps to have play dates or meetups with other families who enjoy exploring this beautiful island!

The trailhead for this hike begins within the grounds of the First Presbyterian Church of Honolulu at Ko'olau. Although, it used to be Ko'olau Golf Club (closed in 2020), the Ko'olau Ballrooms & Conference Center shares the same address. When you enter the grounds, you'll drive straight to the porte-cochère (the covered driveway entrance). There will be a parking attendant, and (at the time of this article) it costs $10 to park your vehicle. (There are no k
āma'aina/military discounts.)

Trailhead Location: First Presbyterian Church of Honolulu at Ko'olau, 45-550 Konaole Rd, Kāne'ohe, HI 96744

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