Kalalau Trail Hiker Swept Down Hanakoa Stream
On Friday, 2 days after the Kalalau Trail was closed due to Storms Iselle and Julio approaching, a 19-year old woman was swept downstream while attempting to cross the stream at Hanakoa. The woman, who had been camping at Kalalau with a 24-year old male friend, was last seen as she was swept away downstream. The friend attempted to find her as he made his way down to the shore but was unsuccessful. He then hiked out to contact authorities.
Firefighters received the call shortly after 6pm and were on the scene with their helicopter by 6:30pm on Friday. The search continued until dark on Friday and then reconvened on Saturday morning with the help of the Department of Land and Natural Resources.
Honakoa is located around the 6-mile mark of the 11-mile Kalalau Trail which runs along the Napali coast on Kauai. During storms, the streams are subject to flash floods as the water levels rise due to heavy rain. Hikers are cautioned to always use caution while crossing streams and not to cross flooded streams.
The Kalalau Trail was closed on Wednesday, along with many other parks in Hawaii, due to the oncoming storms Iselle and Julio which are Hurricanes traveling through the Pacific Ocean.
[Update] The body believed to be that of the missing hiker was found on Saturday around 11:30am near the Hanakoa shoreline.