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Hikes on Guam: The Double Reef Beach Trail

Basic Information

  • What: Double Reef Beach Trail
  • Where: NCTAMS, Guam
  • Distance: 4.5 miles
  • Elevation Gain: 366 feet
  • Time: 3.5 hours
  • More Information: The Best Tracks on Guam

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

Map of the Route

double reef beach

Narrative

I have slowly been working on completing various hikes listed in the guidebook “The Best Tracks on Guam: A Guide to the Hiking Trails“.  On a recent weekend I decided to complete another hike in the book, this one to Double Reef Beach.  The trail is located on Naval Communications Station (NCTAMS) in Finegayan in northwest Guam:

I had completed a previous hike on NCTAMS when I hiked down to Haputo Beach in search of an old Chamorro village.  You can read about my prior hike at the below link:

The hike to Double Reef Beach is a much longer and challenging one compared to Haputo Beach.  It is two miles one-way through sometimes rough terrain to access the beach from the trailhead.  The trailhead is located just a short distance from the Haputo Beach trailhead on the appropriately named Haputo Road.  The trailhead is marked with this sign:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

The parking area for the trailhead is located in the grass field across the road from the sign.  I was the first person parked there that morning at about 8:00 AM.  Just like Haputo Beach, Double Reef beach is part of the Haputo Ecological Reserve that protects this stretch of remote coastline on Guam.  From the trailhead the trail starts out through some dense brush:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

Anytime I hike on Guam I make sure to wear long sleeve pants because there are plenty of sharp plants waiting to scratch people wearing shorts:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

The dense brush did not last very long as the trail began to follow a long abandoned dirt road:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

The trail next came to this barrier that would ensure that the dirt road remains abandoned and slowly reclaimed by the jungle:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

As I walked through the jungle I noticed that like other areas on Guam the Haputo Ecological Reserve is filled with many of these black butterflies:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

Something else I spotted were these fruits:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

Does anyone know what these fruits are?

As I continued down the four wheel drive road I noticed that past the barrier it was being quickly reclaimed by the jungle:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

I next came to this sign that showed that I was exiting the US Navy base and entering the Haputo Ecological Reserve:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

Passed this sign the road was basically just a trail due to the thick jungle surrounding it:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

At this point I made a mistake and followed a social trail that went straight down the side of the cliff:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

I thought this was the trail, but since the route became quite steep with loose rock I knew I made a wrong turn.  However, I continued down the side of the cliff and reached the bottom with no issues.  Next I needed to find the main trail again which I quickly did when I spotted this ribbon:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

From there I just continued to work my way through the jungle in search of ribbons to follow:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

This wasn’t always easy as there were times where there were ribbons going in different directions or no ribbons visible at all:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

Some of the side trails though led to some nice viewpoints of the Philippine Sea:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

The trail in some sections was quite rough with sharp coral limestone which made me glad I wore shoes for this hike.  As I continued down the trail I came across this very large rock that had rolled down from the surrounding cliff and has been completely covered over with vines and trees:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

During this hike I also had the opportunity to see my first mangrove monitor lizard while on Guam:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

I walked around this tree and nearly bumped into this big guy hanging on the tree which gave me a bit of a fright at first. It was very cool to stand back and watch the monitor work his way up the tree eating bugs:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

A short walk after seeing the monitor I then stumbled upon Double Reef Beach:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

The beach is really not much of a beach any more since a number of what is known as binalo trees have taken over the beach:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

I hung out at the beach for a little while, but decided not to go snorkeling because of how rough the water was that day and I was the only person at the beach.  So instead I wandered around the beach and took pictures. Here is a picture looking south where the highlands of southern Guam could be seen in the distance:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

Here are a few nice panoramas of Double Reef Beach that I took; the first one I thought came out really good:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

I spent about 30 minutes hanging out at the beach before a group of about 10 people showed up so I decided to call it a day and let them enjoy the beach by themselves like I did.  So I headed back up the trail again. It seemed on the return trip I made much better time getting through the jungle because I knew where to look for the ribbons marking the trail:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

While going up the trail I also spotted this small cave that I did not notice during my hike in:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

Instead of taking the social trail directly up the cliff I decided to stay on the old dirt road this time:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

I ended up coming to a spot where I could take the dirt road back up the side of the cliff or follow it along the coast.  Considering that I had plenty of time and water available I decided to follow the road and see where it goes:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

Something I noticed while following the road was how much of the sharp coral rock could be seen along the coastline:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

Any swimmer who got washed up against these rocks would be absolutely cut up to pieces; it is that sharp.  Here is a wider angle view of these rocks:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

As I walked further down the road I could see that this must be an area where people come to camp out because I saw plenty of garbage lying around:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

There was even a tire sitting out beside the old road as well:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

Hopefully the Navy base does something in the future to clean up all the garbage lying around.  Here is a picture that shows where the road ends:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

I could not see what the point of this road was at one time.  The only thing I can think of is maybe the Japanese made it as part of their defensive efforts during World War II? If anyone knows please leave a comment.

Here is the view looking north back up the coast from the end of the road towards Ritidian Point:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

Looking towards Ritidian Point I did spot this highly noticeable white sand beach that I think is Falcona Beach:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

Since I reached the end of the road that meant it was time to turn around and head back to the trailhead.  Here is the beautiful view I had as I walked back up the road:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

Along the way I spotted yet another mangrove monitor hanging out on a rock on the side of the road:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

I spent a few minutes checking him out before he scurried away.  From there I reach the intersection of the road that climbs back up the side of the cliff. This trail was much easier to follow compared to the social trail I followed earlier:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

Soon enough I found myself back on top of the cliff and approaching the sign marking the boundary of the Haputo Ecological Preserve:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

Next I came to the barrier which meant the trailhead was only a short distance away:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

At 3.5 hours after I began the hike I returned to the trailhead where there was now many more cars parked:

Picture from Double Reef Beach, Guam

Conclusion

In total I ended up hiking 4.5 miles which is longer than the 4 miles round-trip distance to Double Reef Beach commonly listed. The difference in distance has to do with the shortcut I took down the front of the cliff during my descent and then the detour I took to check out the where the road ended.  This made my hike a little bit longer than normal  The elevation gain was an easy 366 feet for this hike.  Overall I had a good time especially since I was able to get some good pictures of the mangrove monitors for the first time.  I will have to come back though at some point to snorkel at the beach because I have heard the marine life there is really amazing.  This just means I now have an excuse to come back to this remote beach.

CLICK HERE TO FIND MORE HIKES AT THE GUAM REGIONAL TRAIL FINDER

Get The Best Tracks on Guam for more trail information:

2 Comments
  1. Dobbs

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