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Ascent of Nounou Mountain on 2019-02-13

Climber: Caleb Crandall

Others in Party:Stephen Crandall
Date:Wednesday, February 13, 2019
Ascent Type:Successful Summit Attained
    Motorized Transport to Trailhead:Car
Peak:Nounou Mountain
    Location:USA-Hawaii
    Elevation:1241 ft / 378 m

Ascent Trip Report

Began at 1 PM, took walking sticks from the communal pile and started up the well defined, but VERY muddy trail. The trail was crowded, and some steeper and slicker sections were backed up. Nonetheless, my dad and I made good time until we came across what appeared to be a fork in the trail. The right trail looked correct, but we were confused when the right fork started losing elevation quickly. We turned around and started up the narrower and clearly less used left fork.

As soon as we started up the left fork, we noticed rocks spray painted with X's and arrows that pointed in the direction we came. Further along, one larger stone was spray painted with the words "GO BACK". My dad and I were concerned, but we decided that we had gone too far to bother turning around and we continued. That was a mistake.

The trail went to hell in a hurry, losing almost all definition and becoming considerably steeper. A couple of sections were upper class 3 rock scrambles that my 50-something year old dad struggled to negotiate. We had to hang on to tree roots to keep balance because the dirt was so steep and slippery. My dad took a couple of nasty falls in this 1/4 of a mile section that I would never recommend. The right fork was right.

Fortunately, we intercepted the main trail again and continued on as normal through the muddy path, passing droves of fellow tourists until we reached the "chest" of the sleeping giant. There was a nice pavilion to rest at and take in views. The "nose" of the giant was the highest point, so we took the short trail to the summit area. The last section was much less muddy, but also more strenuous. There is one class 3 scramble just before reaching the summit ridge, but it wasn't that bad.

The views were fantastic. Very few clouds and that ocean was BLUE! We descended along the main trail (thank heavens) and returned at 4 PM.
Summary Total Data
    Total Elevation Gain:1000 ft / 304 m
    Total Elevation Loss:1000 ft / 304 m
    Round-Trip Distance:2.8 mi / 4.4 km
    Grade/Class:Class 3
    Quality:4 (on a subjective 1-10 scale)
    Route Conditions:
Maintained Trail, Unmaintained Trail, Bushwhack, Mud/Swamp, Scramble
    Weather:Pleasant, Calm, Clear
Unusual for Kauai!
Ascent Statistics
    Gain on way in:1000 ft / 304 m
    Distance:1.3 mi / 2 km
    Route:The Main One (mostly)
    Start Trailhead:Nounou Mountain Trailhead  241 ft / 73 m
    Time:1 Hours 30 Minutes
Descent Statistics
    Loss on way out:1000 ft / 304 m
    Distance:1.5 mi / 2.4 km
    Route:The Main One
    End Trailhead:Nounou Mountain Trailhead  241 ft / 73 m
    Time:1 Hours 
GPS Data for Ascent/Trip


 GPS Waypoints - Hover or click to see name and lat/long
Peaks:  climbed and  unclimbed by Caleb Crandall
Click Here for a Full Screen Map
Note: GPS Tracks may not be accurate, and may not show the best route. Do not follow this route blindly. Conditions change frequently. Use of a GPS unit in the outdoors, even with a pre-loaded track, is no substitute for experience and good judgment. Peakbagger.com accepts NO responsibility or liability from use of this data.

Download this GPS track as a GPX file




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