Nuku Hiva

Quest: 3 Hikes and a Sacred Site

Matt and I were determined to get some exercise traversing across these mountainous ridges.  Our quest was to explore all 4 “known” hikes during our short visit.  Our first hike was to Baie Colette (read about it in the last blog).  A few days later we adventured to a gazebo atop a mountain, a waterfall, and a sacred site called Koeva.

Gazebo Hike

Taiohae anchorage is actually inside a caldera.  Probably one of the coolest anchorages we have been in since not many people can say they parked their boat inside a volcano!  At the southwest side of the caldera, atop a mountainous ridge sits a gazebo with spectacular views of the bay.  The photo shows the gazebo from the half way point in our hike.

Gazebo at top of Hill

Gazebo at top of Hill

It was labeled as a “gentle” hike.  I’m not sure what that means as it seems like an oxy-moron to me.  But we ventured on this quest.  The first 2-2.5 miles were a gradual climb up the hill on a paved road.  But, the last 1-1.5 miles were straight up a dirt, rocky path with lots of switch backs.  It was steep, but worth the view.

Many benches and rock tables were scattered about at the top of the ridge.  The rock tables had really cool carvings showing what the view was in front of you.

Maps carved in stone at top of hill

Maps carved in stone at top of hill

The gazebo faces Baie de Taiohae and gives sweeping views of this beautiful caldera

Taiohae Bay from the gazebo

Taiohae Bay from the gazebo

After cooling off, we decided to stop at the “pebble” beach which is another hike just off the main path for the gazebo.  As it turns out, it was not much of a “pebble” beach but rather a rock beach.  Either way it provided a nice opportunity to dip our feet in the water and cool off from the hot day.  The top photo shows the beach in the lower right corner.

Pebble Beach

Pebble Beach

Results

  • Total Miles:  6.5
  • Total Steps: 16,653
  • Flights Climbed: 55 floors

Waterfall Hike

Most of the cruisers we know make use of a compendium that has a lot of data on each of the archipelagos and islands.  It is crowd sourced and managed by a boat called Soggy Paws. In this document, a cruiser mentions a nice hike to a waterfall.  We gathered our friends on Maple and began a new quest.

It was pretty easy to find even though there is no true trail.  A lot of the directions were similar to “turn right at the banyan tree.”  But we found it or rather we found a waterfall but not exactly what we were expecting.  It certainly was water cascading from the mountain, but it fed the village’s main water supply.  Which meant no swimming, no dipping, and no cooling off.  But it was pretty.

Our waterfall hike ends here

Our waterfall hike ends here

Results

  • Total Miles:  3.5
  • Total Steps: 10,435
  • Flights Climbed: 6 floors

Koeva Hike

We believe Koeva to be a holy spot with some historical or archaeological significance.  Unfortunately, there is very little information on Koeva both locally and online.  The entire site was spread across a grassy area and covered in trees and wildlife.  There were dozens of 1-sided huts with thatched roofs.  Elaborately carved poles held the roof and wall up.

Koeva tiki poles

Koeva tiki poles

Lots of tikis were peppered across the region.  Some were hidden by wildlife while others were in prominent locations.

Tikis spread throughout the site

Tikis spread throughout the site

The huts reminded me of separated areas for families or clans to pray or pay homage to their gods. But honestly, I do not know.

Huts in Koeva

Huts in Koeva

Some of the huts had things inside like an outrigger or tiki

Koeva Site

Koeva Site

There were plenty of beautiful views along the way.

Views along our hikes

Views along our hikes

Results

  • Total Miles:  6
  • Total Steps: 15,821
  • Flights Climbed: 50 floors

Some pretty photos of the black sand beach and Tu Hiva Tiki:

Nuku Hiva

Nuku Hiva

 

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.