Continuing on, the trail traverses out of Waiahuakua valley and starts on another breathtaking section of coast-slope traversing. The trend towards a less moist and more dry environment start to become more apparent here - there are longer and more frequent open sections.
At the 8.5 km mark (about 5 miles), you round a corner and are presented with a view of the much larger (than the previous few valleys) Hanakoa Valley. This valley is a major stop along the Kalalau Trail - there are campsites here, along with a covered shelter and a composting toilet. There is also a side trail leading up to another scenic waterfall (Hanakoa Falls).
The Hanakoa Shelter makes for a good place to make lunch (on a full day hike to Kalalau Beach, it is quite possible you will be in this area around lunch time).
There were quite a campsites scattered about in the forest along the trail in Hanakoa Valley, and it is not clear to me which ones are 'real' ones and which are just makeshift. There doesn't immediately seem to be any one best place to camp.
Climbing out of Hanakoa Valley
Sea Cliffs, Hanakoa Valley
The trail traverses out of Hanakoa Valley and back to the coast, gradually rising as it does so. After switchbacking up and around the lower part of Manono Ridge, the character of the trail suddenly changes - it is much more open. In fact, it is almost completely open - a big change. The trail starts a steep, switchbacking descent to a barren cliff that, upon first glance, looks impassable. Yet the trail does traverse across this cliff.
Approaching the exposed stuff
Start of exposed sections
Many descriptions of the Kalalau Trail describe a treacherous cliff section - this is that section. It is known as Chivalry Point, or Pohakukumano in Hawaiian.
Thanks to the tireless efforts of a freelancing trail volunteer - Bill Summers - this section of trail is not as bad as it once was. Although the stretch around the point is open and exposed, the footing is relatively good and the bedrock underfoot is quite solid. Assuming that you have a reasonable head for heights and there is not a massive storm ongoing, you will likely make it through this section intact. Scenery-wise it is spectacular.
Closeup,Chilvary Point section
Approaching Chivalry Point