Read the Guidebook

When Pilot and I visited Oahu, one of the things we did was hike through Diamond Head. It was quite a hike.

Straight up.

0.8 miles one way, if you would like to know. A 560 foot ascent to the 750 foot tall volcano.

99 steep, concrete stairs, after you have wound your way upward, through the mountainside for half an hour.

Did I mention it was straight up?

Then we reached the tunnel.

225 feet long.




No lights.


The tunnel was pitch-black. Really. You could not see your hand in front of your face.


I had read the guidebook. I was prepared. I had a flashlight!

Once we passed through this tunnel, there was another, shorter tunnel. We climbed up a three-leveled spiral staircase, and ended up in a bunker. The only way out? Through narrow slits that were designed for guns to slide through. Not people.

It really is that narrow. I was afraid I’d end up like Winnie-the-Pooh, when he ate too much honey in Rabbit’s house. I wasn’t sure whether to have Pilot go out first, so he could pull me through if I got stuck, or stay behind, so he could push me out.

Once outside the tunnel, there were still 54 more stairs to climb to the summit. Yes. I counted!

For goodness sake.

And we’d have to do the whole thing in reverse to get back down the mountain.

This hike is not for the claustrophobic, those afraid of the dark, or those unable to crawl through a tiny bunker slot-window.

Was it worth it? You bet it was! The 360 degree panoramic view, from the top of Diamond Head Crater, of Waikiki and beyond was, literally, breathtaking.

We made it through the dark tunnel without serious injury, and without needing to turn back, because I had read the guidebook. We weren’t sure when the darkness would end, but we had a light with us, so we weren’t afraid. It was tough going at times, but definitely worth the effort to get to the other side.

If we hadn’t gone through the tunnel, if we weren’t willing to go the distance, and take each challenge as it came, we would not have reached the summit. We would not have seen the splendid view.

Same with life.

We have to read the guidebook. God’s word. The Holy Bible.

Life is tough. When the way is dark, straight up hill, or so constricted, we don’t think we will get through, our only hope is to hang onto the Light of the World, Jesus Christ.

Just like getting through that 225 foot dark, scary, winding tunnel, when you walk with the Light, things aren’t quite so bad. The final reward, the end prize, the splendid view, will all be well worth the effort it took to get there.

Have you visited Diamond Head and gone through the tunnel, or had a similar experience? What was your experience like?

Your words are a flashlight to light the path ahead of me and keep me from stumbling. Psalm 119:105 (TLB)

Leave a comment below to share your thoughts on the subject.

I wish you well.