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South Point

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About South Point:

South Point, also known as Ka Lae (Hawaiian for “the point”) is indeed that, the southernmost point in the 50 United States and a beautiful, windswept stretch of coast on the very southern tip of the Big Island. Recently featured in the June 2008 Rock and Ice photo essay on Hawaii climbing, this area is well worth the visit if you will be on the Big Island for even a couple of days. Although lacking any sort of climbing development, (i.e., sport or anchor bolts), there is much potential for deep water soloing if the water conditions are ideal. Additionally, for those experienced with setting up elaborate anchors, many of the cliffs here can be top roped or led from the ground up in some areas where protectable cracks in solid rock abound. Even if you forget your rock shoes, be sure to check out South Point for its crystal blue-clear deep water, which if calm, makes for spectacular snorkeling, diving, and cliff diving, however beware of treacherous currents here and avoid the water unless perfectly calm. Local fishermen in the area have installed an old metal ladder which allows easy access from the water to the cliff top. Ka Lae is also a National Historical Landmark and a special and sacred place to the Big Island Hawaiian community, be respectful when you visit. Consider bringing an extra trash bag to cart out some of the wind blown debris that ends up here. Lastly, be sure to check out the excellent island-kine grindz in nearby Naalehu and Pahala.
Nearest town or city: Naalehu
Directions: From the Hawaii Belt Road (or Mamalahoa Hwy.), just west of the town of Naalehu, turn…south! Drive for about 25 minutes until you reach the end of the road.
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