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The First Outdoor Trip of the Year: Ten Students, Eight Different Countries, and One Angry Prawn

The HPA Outdoor Program's 2017 maiden voyage was an epic three day backpacking trip to Waimanu Valley. Ten students representing eight different states and countries joined HPA's new Outdoor Program Director Renee Jenkinson '98 and headed to the northern coast of the island to spend three nights connecting with one another and with a breathtakingly beautiful, historic, culturally significant part of Hawai'i.

Jenkinson reflects, "By the light of our headlamps, 13 of us hiked down into Waipio Valley Friday night to camp at a colleague's farm and rest up for our 4:30am sunrise climb up the steep switchback trail. After nine miles of gulches, several waterfall swims, and an encounter with the biggest, angriest prawn any of us had ever met, we descended 1200 feet into Waimanu Valley."

The group spent Sunday enjoying the wonders of this magical, isolated place, swimming beneath the thousand foot drop of Wai'ilikahi Falls. The Monday return was filled with laughter, encouragement, and many high fives, and topped off with a malasada from Tex.

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