I once met a Vietnam veteran who told me a story about his unique experience on Na Pali Coast. This man had heard about Na Pali from an army buddy who proclaimed it to be the most special place on earth.

Well, the army buddy didn’t make it out of Vietnam, but this man was determined to visit and pay tribute to his lost friend. This is the story of Na Pali Gump.

So, at the start of the Kalalau Trail, he was surprised to stumble upon a camp of hippies living in tree houses, in clothing-optional lifestyle. They had created gardens of organic fruits and vegetables, and yes, even the marijuana was organic. He did not know, until later, that he had found the now infamous, Taylor Camp.

After nearly a week of being adopted by this new community of friends, who shared countless tales of the Na Pali’s famous Kalalau Valley, this man decided to begin his journey down the treacherous 11-mile trail. Along the trail at Hanakoa, a stampede of goats rushed past him, and nearly knocked him off the cliff. If it weren’t for a conveniently located notch in the earth, he would have certainly met his death as there was a 300-foot drop to the sea below. Completely shaken, he relaxed his nerves with a little bit of kind herb from his Taylor Camp friends, and set forth on the trail.

When he reached Kalalau Valley, it was everything he had been told, and more. He was immediately befriended by another group of hippies, similar to the last set at Taylor Camp. One of the hippies graciously loaned him a surfboard, and advised him to take a paddle over to nearby Honopu Beach, just around the corner from Kalalau. So this man, already naked, jumped on the surfboard with rubber slippers and a sack of granola held in his teeth, and paddled over to Honopu. Just picture it, a naked guy on a surfboard.


    Adults $135 | Children $99 | 4.0 Hours


    Adults $135 | Children $99 | 4.0 Hours


    Adults $135 | Children $99 | 4.0 Hours

When he reached the first cliff at Honopu, he attempted, in vain, to climb the practically vertical wall of rock, and quickly gave into letting the waves take him on to the beach instead. So tired at that point, and so thirsty was he, that he found the waterfall at Honopu offering fresh water, and he laid to rest. He awoke a few hours later to the sound of crashing waves thumping on the sandy beach, and harsh reality set in that he would not be able to get back to Kalalau that day. But remember, he was still naked, and the day turned to night and boy did it get cold.So cold did it get that he had to dig a hole in the sand and bury his body in it to prevent hypothermia. He claimed that all through the night he saw the rocks stand up and take short walks on the beach, probably visions resulting from heat stroke. And all night he negotiated with God to let him live and he will promise to be a better this or that.

And sure enough, the next morning the surf had subsided and he quickly paddled back to Kalalau. He swore to never go back to Honopu Valley again, it was haunted for sure. And I looked in his eyes and believe at least part of his story had to be true.

The shape of Honopu Valley allows sound to be transmitted like that of a large amphitheater. Some friends of mine hiked 2-miles into the valley and there they heard the sounds of joyous laughter and cheering. The voices were inches away, or so it seemed. But they were alone in the valley, and truly perplexed, they climbed upwards to a ledge where they would be able to get a large view of their surroundings. When they were able to survey a large, wide area, noticed a couple of kayakers way down at the mouth of the bay, with hundreds of Spinner dolphins surrounding the kayaks. The voices were from the kayakers, who were screaming with delight at the acrobatic skills of the jumping Spinner dolphins around them.