DIAMOND HEAD, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) - It's been about a month since the city disconnected the water supply to a community shower and garden above the beach at Diamond Head. Officials said it was because there were complaints about homeless camps in the area, although longtime users say there are no homeless there.
Now, city crews are nearing completion on a new public shower about a third of a mile away, but in an area where there have been several homeless encampments.
The makeshift shower was at a spot known as "Cliffs." The shower head is actually a lawn sprinkler that was attached to plastic pipe and a hose.
"The shower part's pretty new. It used to be just a hose and then they had the shower here for a few months, and then suddenly it was completely gone," said surfer Brendan Tomayko.
The city had said the water connection there was not authorized. Officials are also trying to discourage people from using the steep and unimproved trail, where warning signs are already posted.
"It kinda bums me out because it's something you look forward to," said Tomayko. "You climb all the way up the hill and it's nice to get in the cold shower, and it's gone."
The water was also used for a garden at the top of the trail, "But I see a lot of the plants that the braddahs had been planting are just kinda dying and we need the water. And the showers, you know?" said another surfer, Claude Saclausa.
A city spokesman said there was a need for a public shower at the top of the paved trail to the beach, next to Diamond Head Road. There's already a public shower at the bottom of the trail, next to the beach itself, used by hundreds of surfers.
Some are sure that homeless campers there were take advantage of both of them.
"They're not really within view," said surfer Michael Gavin. "(But) people have good real estate right here in the camps."
Several surfers we spoke to said they are trying to persuade the city to reconnect the water reconnected at Cliff's, but right now, that doesn't seem likely.