Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Hike to Lao Lao Bay

This was a great Wednesday morning. I was off from work, so my friend, Don Bader (who used to live on Saipan and is now here on a six month sabbatical from his job as an Emergency Room physician in Durango, Colorado) and I headed into the jungle.

This trail to Lao Lao Bay starts on Railroad Drive in San Vicente. The entire hike is down a gully that is usually dry, but fills with water when the rains are heavy. Today it was dry. The hike involves a fair bit of climbing over rocks and under fallen trees, so it can be a bit slow. The hike down is lush and shaded. Some of the most massive Banyan trees on Saipan are on this trail.

It is moderately kid friendly. I've taken my kids on it a couple of times. The ones under four usually need to be carried (mostly for speed), but the older ones do great.

To get to the starting point, turn down Railroad Drive, which is near the San Vicente post office on Isa Drive. The trail starts near the second telephone pole. If you get to the first set of houses on the left, you went just a little too far. There really isn't a trail head per se. At the lowest point in the road, just dive down into the overgrown gully and start walking.

You'll pop out, about an hour or so later, on the road to Lao Lao Bay. Walk left on this road, and you'll soon be at the beach. The fastest way to get back is to not go back up the gully, but rather to walk up the Lao Lao Bay road to Isa Drive, then turn right and walk along the main road (Isa Drive) to Railroad Drive.

It's a great hike, and can easily be done in a couple of hours.

One of the Banyan Trees on the way down.

Lush, "old growth" vegetation at Lao Lao Bay

Lao Lao Bay waters at the bottom of the hike.

1 comment:

SAJAS said...

Dear David & Mara,

GREAT news about Arman - sorry to be posting it here, but I breathed a big sigh of relief and crossed Arman off my list of people I have to pray for when I saw this entry. Couldn't see you galavanting off to Lao Lao with Arman being sick!

Hope you are all well and enjoying life on Saipan - we miss you guys and the island lifestyle.... who knows what the future may bring as far as relocation.

Anyhow, gotta go get some work done before lights out. Tons of love and hugs to you all,