Explore Oahu 2017 - view hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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Aloha! I went both days this weekend! It was awesome out! I will be hiking wed, thurs, fri this week. I have went 12 times the last three weeks. I have hiked most of the hikes on this island many many times! I have probably done this particular hike more than anyone else on island. (over 100 times) It is often windy and/or rainy but we never have issues as we always have the right gear which is supplied by me when we go. If you're looking to hike and want to link up or get some ideas of what this trail looks like feel free to reach out to me on my Instagram @mike.karas or mikekarasphotography@gmail.com. Bring plenty of water for this hike and other hikes out here in Hawaii.

We hiked to the marker and back which was closer to 2.5 miles from where we had to park, down the road. A lot of people to the first pill box, a little drop off to the 2nd and next to no one goes to the marker. Fabulous 360 views of the ocean, beaches and the mountains to the interior. Pretty steep start to the first pill box but not far.

My second hike on Oahu, was fun and exhilarating . Very slippery if it’s rained. Had a friend slip and almost slide off the trail. If it’s muddy take your time to avoid injury’s. Water at the bottom is ice cold, water fall is gorgeous. Would do again! Even so a guy back flip off the ledge into the pool.

hiking
1 day ago

I definitely must go back and do this hike again. It's not hard to get to, just follow the signs from the Manana Ridge Trail. I could hear the waterfall as I descended, but it was becoming a bit too steep and muddy for me to continue alone, so I decided to turn around. I want to finish the trail though and actually see the waterfall.

Wow, I definitely did not give Koko Crater the credit it deserved. It was very challenging - I had to stop numerous times and catch my breath, and I'm a fit guy. The view of Hanauma Bay is breathtaking, and this is truly the first hike that I've done where I felt so proud to finish it at the top. Be wary of the bridge portion mentioned below though - it is a bit scary. Go around if you're afraid of heights or don't have good balance.

First half of the hike is easy and the hills get relatively steep for the second half. The waterfall is worth the trek.

hiking
2 days ago

Hardest hike you will ever do, totally worth it. locals run it, mind blowing

This hike will definitely get the heart rate up and the legs a little tired. Most of the hike,as mentioned above, is a linear hike up the old rail line. Close to 1,000 feet in 3/4 -mile. Great views of Waikiki and more.

Aloha! I will be taking people hiking this weekend on Saturday(tomorrow) and Sunday. I have went 11 times the last three weeks. I have hiked most of the hikes on this island many many times! I have probably done this particular hike more than anyone else on island. (over 100 times) It is often windy and/or rainy but we never have issues as we always have the right gear which is supplied by me when we go. If you're looking to hike and want to link up or get some ideas of what this trail looks like feel free to reach out to me on my Instagram @mike.karas or mikekarasphotography@gmail.com. Bring plenty of water for this hike and other hikes out here in Hawaii.

Waterfall is beautiful but getting there was very muddy and killer cardio hill.

Hello! My girlfriend, brother, and myself are looking into hiking the legal trail when we go to Hawaii next February. We are novice hikers but are in shape. We know this hike is dangerous but we would like some more safety tips? The dangerous side of it is what’s holding us back...

This was an amazing hike. Beautiful views. Truly not for the weak hearted. Also, I would recommend hiking shoes the rails can get quite slippery.

Starts with a bamboo forest with little room on the trail but it's fine. After a 1/4 mile walk you get out of the bamboo and enter the typical Hawaii forest. Beautiful waterfall at the end. There are multiple water crossings and your shoes will get wet. if it's raining be prepared for lots of mud but the hike is very safe even with all mud.

Hiked Oct 2018,

Depending on your age, fitness level and weight this hike may or may not be difficult to do. It’s basically an hour on a stair climber with a few rocks in your Crocs for entertainment purposes. I could see this being a lot easier for 20 year old me, but as I climbed my old ass up every step watching real 20 something year olds blow past me I was reminded of my age.
The view at the top is breathtaking, literally, but I will say it was worth the trip. Balance is a must on the way back down and having a pair of vibrant knees doesn’t hurt either.
It was a lot of work, but well worth it.

I will climb the Haʻikū Stairs, aka Stairway to Heaven this week for the 292nd time.

My most recent post on Instagram @Hawaii_Mountain.Man.Matt gives an idea for one impactful photo angle.

6 things about stairway:

(1) It is the safest way to reach the summit. People die every day falling downstairs at home, but in 70+ years no one has died falling on the stairs. There has been one death - a heart attack.

(2) I clean the stairs every three days on average, but it builds up fast. To make it convenient to pack trash out, bring a trash bag so you don’t soil your bag.

(3) Please dont poop anywhere on the mountain - even off the beaten path. Squat over a one-gallon ziplock bag, toss the wipes in, press the air out, double bag it and pack it out - just like a kid’s diaper.

(4) Take it easy on the neighbors.

When was the last time you woke up at 3am and whispered: "Honey I think there's someone outside the house"...?

Most locals are friendly, but some are understandably aggressive. Blood has spilled over this hike more than once in the past year.

(5) Plan your hike and hike your plan.

The most common Haʻikū Stairs story is:

“We went to bed at 11pm, woke up at 2am and tried to get in. We got caught by police before we reached the stairs, so we went back to the hotel and slept. We really wanted to see the stairs up close, so we decided to try the ‘back way’. It was harder than we expected, and when we got to the top we decided to take the stairs down because we would rather get the ticket than die.”

a. The ‘back way’

If you are considering skipping the magic of the stairs and going the legal way, it only makes sense to choose companions who can manage the challenges of retuning down the back way as well. You can get the ticket going down the stairs.

Legal access hours to Moanalua Valley Trail are 7am - 7pm. I recommend starting right at 7am because it’s reckless to rush on the mountain. It’s common for people to get lost a few hours, and some don’t find the summit.

If you want sunrise, I recommend beginning at noon and spending the night. As long as you don’t sleep inside the railing or access the trailhead out of hours, you’ll be legal. The mountain is usually cold, wet and windy, so prepare accordingly. The ground is especially cold - bring an insulating mat.

I recommend hiking cleats (‘good’ hiking shoes are insufficient), a GPS device, cautious confidence, and enough internal fortitude to enjoy this day of your life, rather than just survive it.

Note: keeping the stairs illegal endangers the public. Tearing them out, as currently proposed, permanently removes our ability to channel traffic safely. If the stairs were legal, Daylenn Pua would still be here.

b. The stairs.

If you’re considering the stairs, it is important to be personally and professionally prepared for legal exposure, and know which actions increase that risk.

The financial setback can be anywhere from $3,000 to the loss of a career. I recommend handling this decision carefully.

Send me a message at Facebook.com/MatthewKievlan for some advice there.

(6) Linger in the mountain.

People think I go for the epic view, but when we go, they slowly begin to recognize their own reflection in nature. They resonate with the energetic blueprint of a place so majestic, and discover new light to admire in their soul. As we climb, energy begins to grow in us and melts our physical senses, opening us to sense spirit. We become immersed, perhaps because we’ve stepped “into” the experience 3,922 times as we move from civilization into a little heaven

After a while at the top, our group fades into shock (in a good way) and stays that way for the rest of our journey. Like a broken record, every time I hear: “We researched it, but we could have never guessed it would be so good. ‘This’ makes it so much more than a hike.” Always with smiles - sometimes in tears.

Most visitors get to the top, take photos, and head back down. I suggest staying for the ‘main event’. The magic begins when you settle in with comforts, and look back on your work while still in the environment of it.

We create space with good scents and music and soak in the bliss of it. We write our names, share our stories and sit on memory foam eating French Toast with warm maple syrup.

If you leave the top and start down right away, the noise of civilization drowns out your senses and erases the fragile nuances of new truth you found along the way - before those memories have time to settle into your heart.

Reflection in-space is the actual gem of this priceless experience. We change lives up there. Even after so many times, I haven’t gotten tired of it. Once we start up again, I’m lost on it too.

Dm me for a video of what we do at the top.

Aloha,
@Hawaii_Mountain.Man.Matt

There are so many scenic views while hiking to the top, you won’t mind stopping so often because you’re so out of shape!
This hike is not for the faint of heart. If you’re doing this while on your vacation to Oahu, be prepared to feel the pain. But, the views at the top are very much worth your lungs almost collapsing and heart about to explode out of your chest.
If you’re doing this in the middle of the day, bring plenty of water. My wife and I went through our Nalgene’s by the time we came back down. Would highly recommend doing this either in the morning to see the sun rise or in the evening when the sun sets. Or any time it’s cooler.
Would definitely do again!

Very challenging! Scary at times! I went in March last year. The weather was great. At the time when I did this hike my prior experience with a trail with heights was angels landing in Utah. This was much more scary and more demanding. Be prepared to get muddy several areas of the trail had mud. There are streams you have to pass though so wear water proof shoes. This took 7.5 hours to complete. The ropes are helpful but I would try not to depend on them because who knows who installed them and after getting to the top of some I noticed that they were tied to branches that might not have held much more weight. The ropes get progressively worse as you go more steep and with more exposure. Bringing gloves could benefit as the ropes are very tough on the hands. Once we reached the stairs the views were stunning! Bring a jacket cause it gets windy up there! We left back down moanalua valley trail because we didn’t want to get in trouble for being on the stairs, even though honestly I think the stairs would have been much easier than the back side of the mountain, and taken less time. Bring snacks, water, good hiking shoes, gloves, jacket and camera!

Fantastic hike! I started at Makapu'u and yes there's signs everywhere that say no hiking. There was an unmarked cop car at the entrance to the parking lot. I just walked across the street from the parking lot to the beginning of the hike and never looked back. It instantly goes uphill with you climbing mixture of rocks and sloped meadow. Once you get to the top of the first hill, you basically begin a ridge hike. it's undulating, narrow and windy. 1 hour in, you get to the puka. You could stop the and go back if you would like.

I continued. There are two jump off points (wooden platforms) along the way. One of them covers up the old Dead Mans Catwalk. The ridge continues on, past a private property area with antennas and stuff. There are cameras mounted. there is also a cool stairway to nowhere on the south side. A few peaks later, you get to where there's two big power poles. that's where you go down.

The descent is rocky, but not too crazy or difficult. just watch your step. not all the rocks are solid, some crumble underneath you. TEST BEFORE YOU STEP! The trail ends at Manawaiola St. There's a fence being built. It's a neighborhood, so don't be an asshole or disruptive.

5.7 miles, 4.5 hours.

Awesome fun trail that will challenge you as much as you want depending on your pace. If you're in decent shape, you can be up and down in less than an hour, and you'll feel accomplished. My 10 year old and I were at the summit in just under 20 minutes, but took him about 30 to come down because he was a little more nervous. I highly recommend wearing closed toe shoes, though I saw someone doing it barefoot. Fun trail to take the family and enjoy the view. Take water, there's a park at the foot of the mountain to fill up your container. It's not an easy climb and it's definitely not extremely technical either. It's primarily hard because of its grade, but the tracks help. You can abort and turn around at any point. Highly recommend going, you won't regret it.

The view from the pillboxes are stunning!

Loved it. Great views! Pretty much straight up for the first 1/2 of the trail. Use the ropes and light weight gloves might have been helpful. Past the pill boxes relatively level with inclines. Would hike it again.

Go early it was so hot! Fantastic views from the pill boxes. We hiked with our three year old so we only did two. My husband carried him in the pack for part of it.

A must hike. Went at 0500 and only had a couple other folks along the way. Took us 35 minutes and that includes walking from the residential area since the gate was closed. Got crowded by 7 on the way down. The views are amazing.

Nice and short, no real accent. falls are nice. very muddy and you will get your feet wet along the way.

2nd time completing, but did so after the sunrise - the first was much better hiking in the dark catching the sun as it broke.

Encountered an injured hiker this time around, someone twisted an ankle on the way down. Had plenty of help, but had to get the person all the way down.

Recommend wearing ankle supporting shoes/boots and bring water/snacks. Also, a sweat towel is a must.

awesome hike. incredibly muddy and much harder going back down than coming up. trying not to slide all the way down was difficult.

Great but very dangerous yesterday due to weather conditions!

We went yesterday and although it was sunny in Waikiki it was raining on the trail. At first very very light rain barely perceptible, but as we hiked the rain got heavier. By the time we made it to the third waterfall it was pouring to the point of not being able to open ones eyes, and the waterflow was very powerful. We had trouble crossing the waterfall at the top due to the heavy rain and waterflow, but ultimately was helped across by another hiker who happened to be from the airforce. On our way back we had help from two marines who brought their own rope to cross the stream which was like a floodzone at this point.

Tl;dr if it’s raining heavily, turn back. In those conditions I would not recommend hiking this trail as the route up the waterfall and crossing the streams is very dangerous due to slickness, powerful waterflow, and deep streams.

Hello there! I will be visiting Oahu next week, and would love to hike this trail, only problem being it would just be another person and myself. We were looking for a person or multiple people that can help us out and lead the way a bit, I promise we don’t bite, the bigger the group is the better. I will be arriving October 14th and leaving the 20th. Please email me at evelynnisabella@gmail.com. Thank you!!!

We started out about 7:15am and took us just over 8 hours round trip. We went on a rainy day, it rained pretty hard as we approached the top so it was a bit cloudy and diminished the views a bit but still a surreal experience when at the top looking straight down the cliffs at the highway. We saw a police helicopter at the top. The rain made things slick so we took our time along the path. Definitely the most difficult yet most rewarding hike I have ever been on. Being in shape helps. Bring gloves, good hiking shoes, snacks, water and camera. Well worth the time and effort and would like to go again someday!

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