It’s hard enough to hike Koko Crater stairs once. Imagine making 37 trips — in a row

Nicolas Escobar enjoys the great outdoors and putting his body to the test.
Published: Aug. 18, 2022 at 12:44 PM HST|Updated: Aug. 18, 2022 at 7:29 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Nicolas Escobar enjoys the great outdoors. When the 30-year-old isn’t working at Tikis Grill & Bar, chances are he’s putting his body to the test.

“I love competition. I ran in college. I’ve always been inclined to get into it with other people,” he said.

Escobar moved to Hawaii three years ago and almost immediately dialed back on road racing to do trail running and extreme hiking.

His longest hike covered 22 miles.

“I was out there for like 14 hours,” he said.

That’s nothing compared to the hike he aims to do.

On Wednesday, Escobar will go up and down the Koko Crater stairs 37 times in a row — the equivalent of Mauna Kea’s 33,500 feet from sea floor to summit.

“I like to say I’m up for a challenge,” he said.

Escobar is doing it to bring awareness to mental health issues and to raise money for Mental Health America of Hawaii. “Wherever I go I want to help,” he said. “Normally, for me it’s a physical way of doing it because I’m a very physical person. I love exercise and that’s how I cope with my own mental stuff.”

The day of his ultra-hike happens to be his birthday. Escobar will set out at midnight and estimates being on his feet for 20 hours straight.

He’s been training for four months to get his body ready.

“I want to make sure I can last and not hurt myself in the process. This is probably going to be the hardest thing I’ve ever done,” he said.

Word of Escobar’s hike for mental health is spreading on social media.

He hopes to raise about $1 a foot, but he’d be very happy if the community pledges even more.

“I think it’s going to be bigger than I originally imagined,” he said.

To find out more about Escobar’s fundraiser for Mental Health America of Hawaii, click here.