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hiking
13 days ago

Fun hike with lots to see! We stopped about halfway (about a mile after the reservoir) and still saw pineapples, guava, and passion fruit! Some of the areas higher up were a bit muddy and had a bunch of mosquitoes so bug spray and hiking shoes are recommended.

99% of tourists dont know about these unofficial trails. Sometimes I wonder if its better not to say anything.

The Iao Tableland Trail( aka Iao Valley Secret Trail) is behind the lookout point. You have to jump over the fence and follow a feint trail towards the backwall of the valley. At the end of this trail, you can see the wall of tears ( dry) , the surrounding mountains and a sliver of Wailuku town.
It is not an official trail.

Lookup Iao Valley ‘Secret’ Trail on alltrails. That is the trail which I am talking about and this Kapilau Trail should be renamed to that. The Kapilau Trail to the Cross is a different trail altogether.

hiking
17 days ago

Planed on a short hike for an hour or so but ended up completing entire trail. I have determined golf shoes were not the best choice lol!!! Great hike. Took my time. 5.5 hours start to finish. Last mile or two was mud.....not so fun! Will do again with proper shoes.

hiking
17 days ago

Nice trail leading you accross the river. We didn't meet anyone there. In the end, you can co right or left - there is a waterfall on each side. On the left side, you can climb one waterfall, on the left side, you can climb two waterfalls. We continued among the ropes after the second waterfall but there is really tricky way, really hard to get, it is very long way and the end is not worth it. There is a big waterfall that you see from big distance. Apparently, you can still continue the journey but we don't know where the path ends...

I liked the trail for the diversity it had.

walking
22 days ago

Nice trail for morning runners! Pass many beautiful resorts and nice beaches. Great workout for the morning.

hiking
26 days ago

Hiked today with my wife. Our second time in 2 years on this trail. Love it. It was dry today until we got rained on. The rain was inviting as we were sweating from the humidity. Scored on 2 ripe pineapples as we passed through the old pineapple plantation. We will do this one again. Good cardio hike with good views and changing flora

Great spot! There’s a beach area and then you walk up through the Ritz hotel property to reach the trail. We only did a small portion out to the peninsula where there’s great views overlooking the ocean and watching the waves crash against the rocks. There’s a cool maze out there as well (in one of the images above).

hiking
1 month ago

Started at DT Fleming and we only made it up to reservoir. I agree it was overgrown in parts and pretty challenging but overall a good hike. Lots of different plants to look at and the hike down is easier!!

Without going into great detail of the sections of the trail it was without doubt a poorly maintained one in spots. The vegetation was overgrown in two spots. The second spot made the trail almost non existent. I thought I was lost. Thank goodness my husband was blazing it ahead of me! The stairlike rocks were challenging, probably the most difficult part of the trail in terms of gaining elevation. The mud was horrendous! I would recommend hiking boots as my sneakers are now ruined. The view at the top was definitely not worth the trip through the mud. The one saving grace is that we found pineapple plants, and some pineapples. Also there was unusual trees and foliage.

This trail definitely needs to be updated to moderate due to the wet footing and tricky crossings. Elevation and distance aren’t bad, but inexperienced hikers should we cautious taking this. Still, such an incredible and isolated hike today. We had the trail all to ourselves. Humid but cool enough. Lots of fun steam crossings and gorgeous waterfall at the end. After the “13th” crossing the stream forks. Be sure to take the one on the left and follow up to the waterfall in a sheer gorge drop. Beautiful.

Awesome hike. We got 8000 steps round trip! Gorgeous scenery. Brilliant!!

Good trail with beautiful views. Although it’s not an extraordinarily long trail it does provide
good cardio with some of the climbs.

So pretty! Easy and beautiful hike/walk. Payoff was Kapalua Beach with great snorkeling and sea turtles on the beach and in the water.

We had a great time finding our way to the arboretum, sloshing through the mud and traipsing through overgrown vegetation. It was a lot more fun than it sounds! Based on previous reviews, were prepared for a rough hike. I had full length pants and a full length shirt, and they came in handy. I regretted not also having serious hiking boots. My trail runners were soaked in mud, guava juice, and snail guts by the end of the hike. The full length clothes also helped to protect against the many bugs on the trail. You may consider bringing bug spray.

As has been mentioned, there are a few parts of the trail where it seems like trees and/or overgrown vegetation are blocking the way. For the first obstacle, at the beginning of the hike, we were able to make our way over the fallen trees by staying to the left of the trail and walking over the fallen trees.

The second time, we found overgrown vegetation next to the golf course, immediately after we re-entered the unpaved portion of the trail (the trail passes on the rod for a short portion). So, instead of staying on the trail, we turned back to the paved road and followed it to the right until we got to some building structures on the right side of the road (including restrooms, which are locked, by the way). We got back on the trail right next to the restrooms and followed the trail for a while.

At some point, the trail took us to a beautiful view of the valley and ocean to our left. Then, the trail headed into a dense patch of vegetation on both sides, which is where we reached a third portion of the trail that was overgrown and barely discernible. As we were about to turn around, we noticed that there was a (poorly maintained) ATV road to the right of the trail. It turns out that, once you get to the ATV road, you can follow it to an intersection where, if you hang back left (where the trail is), you can get back to a very beautiful and rewarding portion of the trail. This was my favorite portion. Lush vegetation and a trail that stayed dry even in spite of the rain that was falling around us.

The trail was fully discernible until the arboretum from there on. However, I note that we encountered some extreme mud and prolific spider webs - though we were hiking in the rain so perhaps other hikers would find less mud. And so much fermenting fruit on the ground!

Finally, we reached the arboretum, which we found muddy and poorly maintained. It seems like nature has completely taken over what used to be a well maintained exhibit. There were also many signs and references to a shuttle that was never to come. It felt like we were surrounded by ghosts.

There is at least one port-a-potty at the top, where the shuttles used to be, though we did not try using it.

As has also been said, the incline of the trail does not warrant a “hard” rating. It seems like the difficulty lies in the navigation and mud. I suggest that you download the trail map on All Trails and follow it. It was the saving grace for us whenever we lost our way. And we lost service for most of the hike.

I’m giving it five stars because, for us, the ruggedness and difficulty in navigation was part of the fun.

Follow up for next poster:

We navigated around or through the overgrowth in three locations. We got really lucky and we’re able to find the trail after these points.

1) near the trailhead had to climb over a huge downed tree. It would have been much easier to enter at the paved road crossing just past this point.

2) we also took the cart path to the bathrooms

3) From his description, I think this is where Peter turned back, and we were ready to as well. If this is just past the pine trees, once you hit the overgrowth, there is a parallel 4x4 road to the right of the trail. The road is about 10 ft higher so you need to climb a short hill to get there. Once you get on the 4x4 road, continue parallel to the trail until it forks. At the fork, the trail crosses the road and you are able to re-join the hike. It was clear sailing for us from this point.

hiking
1 month ago

I'm curious to hear more from Chris Olson, poster below me. I read most of the reviews here about the difficulty of tall foliage and inaccessible paths, and can attest to much of it. Lots of potential for this trail but they need to clear the path. There were at least 3 times when I was squatting through the foliage in order to keep eyes on the path. Although I never was, it seems like an easy path to get lost in the overgrowth. I made it past the stepping rocks (to the left of the private property sign), ascended the red clay hill, and hiked through the pine trees. At this point, I had to make judgement calls on whether or not to venture through the overgrowth. There were moments I almost turned around b/c I was unsure where I was going and that's why I ultimately gave up about half way in, according to my AllTrails app. I couldn't see what I was stepping on anymore and there was no clear path ahead. I had been making assumptions based on the overgrowth that I had been stepping on as to whether or not I was heading in the right direction, but I could not do this any longer since I was afraid of falling off 1 side of the ridge. I had to be more cautious than not since I'm unaware of the area. I did achieve some altitude and got scarce beach views, but my views were mostly of the adjacent ridge. I'll upload a few pics that can be used for reference, along with a screenshot of how far I apparently got on the trail. ALSO, the original trail head from Fleming Beach, where entrance is left of the preschool, has a landslide about 300 yrds in, so you need to enter another way. Park at Fleming Beach and ask a lifeguard or the preschool nearby. Both should know. You need to walk past the pre-school. At the end of the Preschool lot is another gravel path past the trees and onto another road. Take a left uphill, and go about 100 ft before turning right back onto the path. You'll see signs and it'll become more obvious at this point. You'll be crossing a couple driveways until you need to make your first right into the trail (overgrowth already obvious) before entering the golf course.. There is a lot of overgrowth at this point. Although the sign advises not to, I'd recommend going onto the golf cart path, take a right, walk down a very steep hill and you'll see a restroom/break station for the golfers at the bottom of the hill. Take a right around that area and you can hop back on the trail. I think is where they originally shuttled you from Kapalua Village, but the shuttle is no longer in service. I've called...

Started at D.T. Fleming park. About 1/4 mile in we came across a wall of vegetation. Stayed left and crossed above the downed tree. From there the trail is reasonably easy to follow, except in a few spots. We snuck off the trail a couple times to avoid serious bushwhacking. About 2/3 of the way up, the trail was very muddy. Overall a good trail, I wouldn’t call it hard, except for some extra mud and trail recognition in a few spots. The trailhead had a sign saying it was 17 miles round trip. I’m not sure I believe that sign, but it felt longer than the 9.9 miles all-trails indicates.

I would call this a moderate hike compared to the 14ers in Colorado. If you are looking for a walk in the woods, this is probably a hard one.

Muddy and slippery, that’s the reason why it’s closed officially. But still worth going if you don’t mind getting dirty shoes. You can wash them in the river at the end. Great view over the Valley.

Not easy by any means. You do cross the creek about 13 times. Rocks are slippery and you definitely want shoes that are meant for water. My two kids did it and had fun but they hike a lot, I wouldn’t say it’s “kid friendly” for kids that don’t hike on a regular basis and my kids did have a couple of falls. It was also very unclear where to go to get to the waterfall. The trail is confusing. Definitely some pretty areas but not my favorite hike ever.

walking
2 months ago

Yesterday the beach was effectively closed for all activities except for surfing. Local park person stated the sharks come into the bay whenever it is brown due to rain runoff. And it sure was brown in the whole bay. I don't think you would have seen your hands on front of your face. There were a lot of papayas on the trees heading to the beach. Just need to learn how to climb those trees!

Pretty hike and easy. Compared to some other coastal hikes we've done this one just isn't AS awesome but nonetheless still beautiful!

walking
2 months ago

A nice easy stroll along the north shore. Enjoy the views all along the way, and imagine how many millions it would take to own one of those residences with those views. Saw one turtle when we were at the south point of Onelua Bay. Can get quite warm on the trail in the middle of the day.

hiking
2 months ago

Unfortunately given the recent storm it is not passable after about a quarter of a mile - but it is very well spoken of, easy to find and seems very do able even in the unpredictable Maui weather

There is an upper and a lower “secret” (closed) trail. People who speak of a river are on the lower. The upper is quite wooded. But you become grateful for the trees as you get into the muckier trail conditions! This would be why these trails are CLOSED. Most hikers are not equipped for this type of hike physically, let alone equipment-wise while on vacation. I’ve been on much better hikes with great views. This one only has a good view at the end. We hiked 1+20 one way, and the conditions just got worse and worse. We were there after a good stretch of non-heavy rain weather (Iao Valley is naturally in a geographic location that gets over 380 inches of rain per year, so barely a day goes by without rain there) and the trail was still quite slippery and dangerous.
If you still go- bring water, food, bug spray, and poles if you have them. Yak tracks would have been great! You will be filthy from the knees down, so be prepared to get dirty and your shoes will need cleaned. Please don’t wear slippers (flip flops) on this trail. The trail is closed because of too many rescues- do don’t be “that guy/gal”. (-: Turn back before you get in trouble!

This is a fun trail, can get slippery, the views are spectacular. We got to cool off in the rushing river, it was tough in a few places, take your time, take water and snacks.

The GPD says you’re there but you’re at the parking lot and there’s no trailhead in sight. The parking attendant said there is no trail, just the scenic walk. Parking there was $5, nice views but no trail.

This is a nature walk through a tropical area. There are many vines, beautiful trees, and tons of chickens! I enjoyed the walk very much.

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