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Upward incline the entire time with some Lookout spots along the way. Some off-paved paths that looked interesting but I wasn't that brave... One wrong foot and you could slip right down the cliffs. Not much to see along the way except cacti and scary spiders in the brush. Once you reach the lookouts to the ocean it's beautiful. Deep blue and you might catch a glimpse of a whale. We saw a little baby one playing in the distance. At one of the whale watch spots there's a steep Rocky trail down to the tide pools. Wanted to do it but it was really windy and we were already pooped as it was our second hike of the day. Heard they are a must see though. Saw tiny people down there floating in them.

bugs
muddy
2 hours ago

Wear appropriate shoes if you're not experienced or tend to be a little clumsy like me. Steep but well worth it. Lots of people but it's a short beautiful tropical hike worth visiting.

Wasn’t marked very well. The all trails map saved us!!

Can get a little muddy but definitely worth the hike. Easy to do and a definite must if you are visiting Hawaii.

Easy hike but heavily trafficked. This hike is definitely a good start of you are planning on coming to Hawaii to hike. Great views from the top. If you aren't used to hiking you will get tired and the stairs may seem like they can beat you but you got this.

hiking
bugs
rocky
2 days ago

From Manoa Falls, I went up Aihualama. At the end of Aihualama where it meets Pauoa Flats, I took the right and headed towards a lookout point with a bench. Once past Manoa Falls, I hardly came across anyone.

Nice waterfall, but many people.

Short easy hike, very crowded.

Hard, but worth every bit of sweat!

hiking
bugs
muddy
over grown
3 days ago

hike with the right conditions make the walk enjoyable, and definitely worth it. The trail does get confusing at the end if you haven't been to the falls before or there are very few hikers around. No swimming space at the waterfall, but often kids climb up and sit on the low ledges on the falls, foliage is also very beautiful, great for picture taking and nature enthusiasts. There are prime picture taking places before the falls if you're just going for the views, large trees and shrubbery/trail markings are nice props for photos. Does get muddy, and depending on how rainy it's been there are bugs/mosquitos. Children, dogs, and active adults will have a great time here, with the right weather conditions.

hiking
3 days ago

Great hike, with beautiful views! Short and to the point. Try to start the hike prior to 9 am and you won’t be cooked out by the sun. Easy to get to and there is parking. Easy to miss the trail when driving it’s located about 9 light poles from the last intersection you turn on. Enjoy!

Nice afternoon hike. I wouldn't rate it hard, rather moderate. The view from the top was great!

hiking
muddy
3 days ago

I would say this is tougher than the rating but only due to the fact I carried about 30+ extra pounds on my back (baby+carrier). The “waterfall” wasn’t anything really worth the trip today but the view overall is amazing. The hike was up and down challenging and was a good workout overall. I’m sure there’s more of a waterfall when there’s more rain but not on a day like today.

Lost Garmin watch.
Reward if found.

hiking
4 days ago

This is not an easy hike! Several older hikers had to turn back. AllTrails has a tendency to underestimate the hikes. The falls at the top are tall but not too much water. It’s not Yosemite falls. You’re not suppose to go in the small pool at the bottom of the falls. Lots of steps to the top make it strenuous. When it’s flat then it’s easy. Very slippery and muddy because the trail is in shadow.

worth it! not anyone there with us when we got there. mostly up hill but super easy

Beautiful scenery! We all loved this hike! The light mist was refreshing!

What beautiful view from the top. Make sure you bring water if hot.

Well that was fun! I hiked it with my parents (50s) me (30yo). It’s officially their first Hawaii hike in the books! It was both challenging but doable. It’s definitely muddy, I don’t know why we even bothered trying to avoid the mud on the first half of the hike... getting covered is pretty inevitable, haha. We did go on a cloudy day though. So we didn’t get to see that incredible 360° view from the top, it was just misty. But it was very green and lush and had incredible views on the way up!! This one was a great one!

The hike was great although crowded. Everyone was so happy...must be because we’re all in Hawaii! Can get steep, but an overall easy hike. The views from the top are spectacular and worth the 1 1/2 hour round trip (although we spent an hour at the top taking pictures!)

Nice easy hike, but way too many people

This was a super fun, easy hike if you hike a lot of trails. I hiked around lunch time on a Saturday which was still pretty packed. It was around 80° and humid so bring lots of water since there's minimal shade towards the top. It's definitely worth it. I wasn't aware of a tunnel which might be a little scary if you get claustrophobic but it's super short and quick. There's also 2 ways to get to the top. If you go left, it's the easier route and looks out to the ocean. If you go right for the steep stairs, it might take a little longer depending on how packed it is with people. There's also a cool bunker you can go through. It's quite a scene when you get to the top.

I took my 10, 9, and 5-year olds on this hike and they managed better than I did! It has some great views during the first half, and then gets quite steep as you descend to the pools. Lots of folks were jumping off and doing pull-ups on the ropes that cross the water - it was fun to watch. It was very dry the day we hiked, which meant that the steep parts (hard-packed dirt) were extremely slick. We fell on our butts a few times, just due to skidding out. I will say I saw a few people hiking barefoot, or with Crocs - would not recommend that. It took us almost three hours RT, but that was with some snack breaks, and lots of time at the bottom of the trail to watch the jumpers. It was fairly busy on a Saturday, but not obnoxious -- and definitely not as crowded as Manoa falls. Don't be tricked by the first 0.8 miles -- really easy and fun. Then it gets quite steep... Definitely try it wth kiddos - they will like it a lot (if you continue tossing in the breaks for granola bars and fruit snacks!).

All I can say after this hike is "Wow!" Not Wow as in completely awesome, nor Wow as in terrible, but just not what we expected. I really wish I had read the reviews before setting out on this hike. I wasn't sure if I should give it 1 star, or 5 stars, but I finally decided to settle on 3. I'm going to break this loop down into 4 parts:

Part 1: (3*) This starts from the parking lot trail head and is pretty straightforward. After roughly 1/2 mile look for the Kalauao Falls trail off to your left. We actually missed it but quickly got back on track. Follow this for roughly another 1/2 mile until you see the only mango tree on the entire hike. We missed this too but again realized our mistake and found the trail. This is where the hike gets tougher.

Part 2: (5*) There is a steep trail leading down to the Kalauao creek stream bed, but it's pretty well marked with ribbons and there are even a few ropes to help you down. We didn't have to deal with mud like some others did. Once you get to the bottom where the stream is, turn right and follow the trail along the water. This was by far the best part of the hike. Beautiful surroundings, frogs, fish, and crawfish in the creek, and not a person anywhere. Absolutely amazing. The waterfall is really neat too, although it wasn't flowing much while we were there. The pool below looks like a great place to relax and swim, although we did not. At this point I was on cloud 9 and having the time of my life. Little did I know that part 3 was just ahead...

***At this point if I were you I would turn around and go back out the way you came in. Don't make the same mistake that we and several others have.***

Part 3: (1* although I would give it negative stars if I could) This is where the hike gets BRUTAL. First off, you have to really look carefully to find the pink markers showing you that the trail goes pretty much straight up. We missed it but again, quickly got back on track. From this point until you reach the Aiea Trail, you are scrambling pretty much up the side of a cliff, with mud, bees, thorns, fallen trees, overgrown bushes, and anything else you can imagine the Hawaiian jungle could throw at you. Also it is a bit harrowing in places because the trail is poorly marked and there are paths leading everywhere. Make sure you are using GPS in this part because you will go 100 yards or more with no trail markers. We are an adventurous, outdoorsy couple and have hiked on some extreme trails, but this section was just miserable.

Part 4 (3*) You can't imagine our relief when we finally came back to the Aiea trail junction. We sat down, ate something, and just relaxed for a bit knowing that we would indeed make it out alive. After getting our bearings again, we set back to the car on another fairly mundane and easy path. I think it's about 1.5 miles from the junction to the parking lot.

So in summary, I would highly suggest hiking to the falls, enjoying the beauty, and going back the way you came. That would probably make this a 4-5* hike in my book.

Short, sweet, side hike. Saw humpback whales. Lovely views and easy path.

such a great hike! took my boyfriend and I about 3.5 hours, with time to relax at the top. recommend wearing good hikers for grip as it can get slippery with the rain. when we got to the top it was too cloudy to see the view but the whole way up and down the view is amazing.

7 days ago

super easy and fun. my 3 year old did it with no problems!!!!!

Great hike but very muddy- wear shoes you don’t care about! Like most ridge hikes on Oahu it was clouded over at the top, but beautiful views on the way up. If you don’t feel comfortable climbing the top part with the ropes your views and hike won’t be compromised.

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