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Polihale beach

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Polihale beach

Is there any way to get there by hiking or walking? We don't want to violate our rental car agreement but REALLY want to go to this amazing beach.

Can we park our car at the end of the paved road and walk the rest of the way? We're in good shape so not worried about that. Is this possible?

Moorpark, California
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for Kauai, Catalina Island
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1. Re: Polihale beach

It is a very long way along the dir road. Are you sure the rental car company will not let you go out there? When we rented from Budget two summers ago, the agent told me NOT to take our rental car on any unpaved roads EXCEPT Polihale and Mahalapu. She said those roads were fine as long as we drove carefully. We never had an issue going out to Polihale as long as we drove slowly and did not go into any thick sand. We just park next to the public restrooms and walk out to the beach from there.

Maybe a tour? Not that I'm aware of any....

Edited: 09 August 2010, 01:56
Wailua
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for Kauai
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2. Re: Polihale beach

I will add that, unfortunately, you cannot walk along the beach either, due to the Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF), a military base. The sand is continuous for over 10 miles from Kekaha to the cliffs at Polihale, but lateral access to the beach of PMRF (part of which is the famous "Barking Sands") is forbidden. So one of the longest beaches in Hawaii is off limits for most of its length.

If you get to Polihale on the road, you can walk back towards the base about 2 miles until you reach a small fence. Before you actually get to the fence, a security guard will come down from the dunes and ask you to turn around.

Military personnel and residents with permits have access through the main gate, but I believe they can only go to certain small areas of beach on the base.

LYON, France
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3. Re: Polihale beach

I was wondering the same thing... How many miles / kilometers is the non paved road ?

Can't it be a nice walk along this road ?

Moorpark, California
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for Kauai, Catalina Island
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4. Re: Polihale beach

I'm not sure how many miles the unpaved section of the road is. We are going out there next week and I will make a note of the distance. I do know that it takes us a long time to drive the unpaved portion. It could be as much as 10 miles (or more) round trip. Considering I walked 8 1/2 miles today, that's not too far for someone in OK shape. But it's pretty hot and dry along this route and I've never seen anyone walking this road.

LYON, France
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5. Re: Polihale beach

10 miles would indeed be a very long walk... I'm really hesitating with all the rental car stuff... Everyone says the road is OK if you drive carefully, but if my rental compagny forbids going to polihale beach and something happens there, that would mean troubles !

Wailua
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for Kauai
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6. Re: Polihale beach

Yes, walking on that road would not be much fun. This is the hottest part of the island, and it woud be very dusty with the cars going by. Plus, there is not much scenery to make it worthwhile, until you get to Polihale beach.

Ask your rental car company, that should settle the question. Or if you don't feel comfortable driving on bumpy dirt roads, don't go. There are many other beaches to see and hikes to do that will be just as pretty, and much more pleasant.

The only other option I can think of is renting a mountain bike at Outfitters Kaua'i in Poipu and bike on the road (assuming they allow their rental bikes on that road...). That should go much faster and would actually be fun. Still, be sure to take plenty of water for the whole day, you can never be sure if there is drinking water out at Polihale.

San Diego
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7. Re: Polihale beach

Kauai2011,

We drove out to Polihale beach last month, with our rental car and it was just fine. Just take it slow and easy. It took us about 35 min. to get there and I think it is about 4 mile on the dirt rode. When you get to the big tree go left, you'll see it, it is close to the end of the drive. It was so BEAUTIFUL there. Queens pond was so neat. There was only two other families there, (that were camping).

So worth the drive

Santa Rosa...
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8. Re: Polihale beach

"Can't it be a nice walk along this road ?

"

NO, it won't be a nice walk. Think.....hot, dusty, no shade, dodging the cars that are dodging the potholes. The last time we did it the road was in such bad shape that the drive took around 45 minutes, going about 15-20 mph. Even though you're walking you'll also be crossing back and forth across the road to avoid the deep ruts. There is NO shoulder to walk on.

Edited: 09 August 2010, 20:24
Albuquerque, New...
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9. Re: Polihale beach

Last time we did it, subsequent to a week of rain, the attendant at Alamo looked at the car, said: " Did you enjoy Polihale?" and grinned.

Seems as though there was a thread, quite some time ago, that included a warning of $200 towing charge; any updates?

There are popular places on the Big Island, Maui, Molokai, Lanai and even Oahu where you can get in as much, if not (a whole bunch) worse, trouble...everyone is entitled to their own definition of tolerable risk.

With reference to hiking, no specific crime data regarding the particular intersection in question, but one of the generally accepted admonitions in all of Hawaii is "don't park your car in a location having little auto or pedestrian traffic; especially one offering an easy getaway for thieves".

Imo summary: Worth the drive? (especially if taking along a moderate Mai Tai supply and staying for sunset) - DEFINITELY.

Same experience had it included a 200 buck towing charge - no.

Hiking: Only if I can drop 30 lb's, protect my chrome dome, turn back the calendar 3 decades and not end up with a bashed-in car window..

Kauai, Hawaii
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10. Re: Polihale beach

The road to Polihale was pretty good last month when I drove it. Plenty of rental cars made it as well. There have been years when I would hesitate to drive my own car there.

I was on the road to Maha'ulepu this morning and it's also in pretty good shape, compared to some years. Just drive slow.

Yesterday I drove all the way up to the Kalalau Lookout, and the last 5 miles has some pretty pot holed spots, worse than parts of the unpaved roads!

I wouldn't worry about driving a rental car into these places - but if you ask them in advance, they'll be obliged to advise you not to drive on "secondary roads" and then you'll miss out on the fun.