Sailing Around The World

Hiked to the 3rd Tallest Waterfall in the World

We are in Hakatea Bay which is surrounded by 2400 foot rock walls that lead up to a 2000 foot waterfall. Yesterday when we arrived we decided to hike the trail up to the base of the waterfall. The bay here has only one house and no dock to land your dinghy. It was low tide and the surf breaks about 30 feet off shore. As we motored closer to the beach a big swell lift us up and dropped us onto the rock bottom. At the same time the outboard motor was grinding the rocks. I tried to tilt the motor but a second wave almost tipped us over and I fell out but I was able to keep the dinghy from capsizing. Adam and my dad were nice and dry as I dragged the dinghy to shore. I have to say landing a dinghy in surf is very hard to do. But anyway, we carried the dingy up the beach and tied it to a tree so when the tide comes back in our dinghy won’t float away. I was pretty mad to be wet again because for the last week I have been wet every day by rain or waves as we ride the dinghy to shore.
We hiked on a 2 track road that slowly changed into a trail and headed for the waterfall. We had to cross small streams and rivers by wading across them. As we hiked there were old stone structures and stone carvings that littered the forest floor and the path was made of solid stone that had been perfectly puzzled together. The closer we got to the waterfall the cliff walls began to feel like skyscrapers and caused the trial to narrow. The forest floor was full of wet thick moss, and vines from trees that grew all over and twisted together to form a natural structure and was devouring the old stone walls that were left behind. Then we popped out into a clearing and looked up and you could see the cliffs hanging over our heads 2000 feet up and made us dizzy because they were so high and big. You could see 100s of birds flying in circles and nesting in the cliff walls. The spray from the waterfall filled the canyon with mist, everything was bright green and looked like no other human had been to this place but us. As we turned the corner you could see the top half of the waterfall that disappeared behind stone and then you could see where the water landed. In front of the water fall was a deep big pool that Adam and I waded across to and climbed up the sharp rocks to get to the water fall. As we looked over the stones you could feel a cool strong wind blowing from the force of the falling water. There was a second pool of water that had a strong current running through it and we decided it would not be a good idea to swim any further. So we took lots of pictures and were happy to see the worlds 3rd tallest waterfall.
After eating a little lunch P&J sandwiches we hiked back to the beach. On our way out we passed a house with a man and a women sitting outside. They yelled for us to come in and buy some fruit. The man was about 30 and had a tattoos on half his face and body. His hair was shaved into a Mohawk and had a carved chicken bone pierced through his ear drum. I bought 40 or more bananas and paid 1 dollar. We then made it back to the beach and carried the dingy to the ocean. We wade out about 40 feet and jumped in as a big swell hit us. But we gave the motor lots of gas and pushed over the wave and only flooding half the dinghy.

3 responses

  1. j

    Very interesting, what an adventure, you are experiencing. The closest episode that faintly compares is when I spend time in the Peruvian Rain Forest in ’95 and was near and also on the Amazon River.

    June 1, 2013 at 4:14 am

  2. tom

    Jacques, what an awesome adventure you guys are having..great to read the blog

    June 1, 2013 at 11:29 pm

    • Thanks Tom, it has been very interesting and tough work but so far worth it.

      June 3, 2013 at 5:22 am