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Maui: Eco Tour, Part 2

As we continued on the Eco-Tour up Waihe`e Valley (destination waterfall), we encountered trees with massive root systems — and the decorative leaves of bamboo.

Eventually, we came upon a suspension bridge — actually two of them — crossing the stream at two different places. These bridges were not much more than some cables with 2x4 cross beams and a 1x12 plank down the middle. They swayed as we crossed. Tread lightly and gently grasp the top cable. A heavy tread causes too much swaying and a tight grasp may result in wire splinters. Fortunately, all our hikers were able to cross — no one fell in or screamed or refused to cross.

Phew! Once over the bridges, we could pause and look closely at the flowers. And if you got close to the one below (on the right) you would discover the wonderful perfume of white ginger. Can I just linger here a while?

Sorry no lollygagging — there is so much more to experience. The water in the creek flows rapidly (left) or slowly (right) — so slowly in the latter case that some kind of aquatic plant or algae has grown in profusion, gently swaying in the current — and providing hiding places for small shrimp and young fish.

As we press on, we see some beautiful rapids.

And quiet spots both in the creek and in the foliage — here a stand of bamboo.

We are told to stay alert as we approach the falls.

And all of a sudden, we're there. Really? This is the falls? It looks like an old man-made dam. Dam ≠ Falls! I've been on the hike to the falls in Halawa Valley on Moloka`i — and I feel a little disappointed.

Well, this is the spot where we will have lunch — that's good. And we can take a short swim — that's good, albeit cold! Some folks were even willing to climb out onto a concrete outcropping and jump into the pool — no thanks!

So I look around our spot and find an intriguing fern wall. But no waterfall!

Wait a minute. I finally spotted the waterfall in the distance. Now that's a WATERFALL. That is what I came for. I wish I could visit the real thing. Maybe someday.

Life is good.

B. David

P. S., All photos and text © B. David Cathell Photography, Inc.