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Hiking up Diamond Head.

Hiking up Diamond Head More than just a landmark, the tuff cone of Diamond Head is the site of a short (0.7 mile) but steep hike inside the crater to spectacular views of Honolulu. And now, following efforts by volunteer groups and the state, the trail is in better shape than ever.

Lined with kiawe trees, the trail climbs gently from the parking lot to a platform with a view of Koko Head. From here, a set of 66 steps leads up to a tunnel, which in turn leads to another staircase (this one 99 steps long). You clim a spiral staincase in a four-level bunker built in the early 1900s and used in both world wars as a military observation post. At the third level, you step out onto a trail leading to one last set of stairs. These ascend to the summit.

The crater is open from 6 to 6 daily. To avoid crowds and heat, start early in the morning. Bring a flashlight and water.

To reach the trailhead from Waikiki, take Kalakaua Avenue toward Diamond Head and turn left on Monsarrat Avenue (it becomes Diamond Head Road). Turn right at the Diamond Head Crater sign, and continue a mile to the trailhead parking lot. Or catch bus 58 from Kuhio Avenue; it runs every 30 minutes (once an hour on weekends) between about 7 and 7 and stops at the crater sign.

At 9 every Saturday morning, the Clean Air Team conducts a guided, one-way, 3-mile hike from the Honolulu Zoo entrance to the summit (no reservations needed; donation is $o, free for children). For information, call (808) 944-0804. The New Otani Kaimana Beach Hotel, at 2863 Kalakaua Avenue, provides a guidebook for a $3.95 donation.
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Title Annotation:Honolulu
Date:Aug 1, 1990
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