Muliwai and Waimanu Valley Trail

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Honokaa, Hawaii, Hawaii

Muliwai and Waimanu Valley Trail is a 15.1 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Honokaa, Hawaii, Hawaii that features a waterfall and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.

Length15.1 miElevation gain5226 ftRoute typeOut & back
CampingHikingNature tripsWalkingBird watchingForestRiverViewsWaterfallWildlifeBugsMuddyOver grownRockyScrambleNo dogs
Description
Waypoints (0)
Contact
Getting There

Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau, 2270 Kalakaua Avenue, Suite 801 , Honolulu, HI, 96815, Phone: 800-GOHAWAII, Fax: 808-924-0290

Directions from Makapala: Highway 240 leads off Highway 19 at Honokaa to the eastern edge of Waipio Valley. A steep, four wheel drive road extends from the lookout down into the valley. Upon reaching the valley floor, take the road to the right, then follow the beach to Wailoa Stream. The road ends at the stream. Ford the stream and follow the horse trail on the dunes to the west side of Waipio Valley and the beginning of the trail.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (127)
Photos (436)
Recordings (91)
Completed (277)
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William Goodhue
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 16, 2021
Hiking

Totally worth it!

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Brendan Luecke
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 7, 2021

did this as a day hike. started at 8, got back at 6. not easy!!! well worth it. a few pointers ... the crossing at waipio is best done upstream at high tide. water waist level. near the shore was super sketchy with the surf, but just fine at low tide on the way back. the final descent into waimanu was very challenging. mud, rocks, and palm fronds. waaay worse than the road down from the lookout everyone talks about, with a 1300 foot drop in under a mile. I would've had to turn back without poles. also traffic was very low - saw two groups in ten hrs. take a swim in the queen's bath on the third gulch on the way out. magical hike!!!!

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Tyler Michael
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 1, 2021
Hiking

Waimanu Valley is a must see. Would be a pretty difficult day hike, but could be done if you are in good shape and an experienced hiker. Took me 5 hours each way (10 hrs/20mi). Return trail is harder than way there, with the toughest part of the whole trail being the ascent back to the Waipio Lookout (mainly because you are gassed from 19 miles). Would recommend staying in the valley, however

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Stephanie W
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarDecember 24, 2020
HikingBugsGreat!MuddyOver grownScramble

Some fantastic views! Doable in a day, but we clocked in at about 20 miles. We were quite concerned about the river crossing but it proved to be quite simple as long as you stick closer to the ocean (I think it’s more shallow there). Camping is closed online but there were definitely people camping out at the end and it didn’t look like anyone was patrolling it. Make sure to bring bug spray as I got eaten alive! Really diverse views throughout, however, I think the best view is about 3 miles in overlooking the ocean so you don’t have to get to the end to see the best of it. The black sand beach on the far end of the hike is very remote and quiet. This was our favorite hike on the Big Island!

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Shafi Bashar
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Hiking
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theo bassenne
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Hiking
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Victor Shestakov
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Hiking
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Cole Rogers
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarNovember 25, 2020
Hiking

Did this as a dayhike since the campground was closed. 10 hours starting from Waipio Lookout, recorded 20 miles. I spent about 45 minutes contemplating how to cross the river in Waipio valley. I made it half way crossing by the ocean but decided to turn around when it seemed like it was getting too deep (and strong current). I went up river to look at swimming across, which was recommended to me as you avoid the strong current that way, but was not confident in my ability to keep my pack wet in doing so. After waiting a while I ended up crossing again by the ocean, this time slightly farther down, and made it across fine. Didn't bother crossing the river in Waimanu Valley as I figured it wasn't worth the effort since I would just be crossing again right afterwards. It does seem though that in order to get the whole view of the valley you have to cross this one, even from the beach you can only see one side of the valley. I didn't know about the wild horses, the first time I saw them they came right up to me and I pet them. They then followed me for a few minutes. On the way back I saw more, this time right the ocean, which was quite majestic. The trail is fairly flat between the valleys, so you can get some good speed there.

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Marketa Stanczykova Murray
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarNovember 15, 2020
HikingBugsFloodedGreat!Muddy

Amazing hike with my daughter. (22yo)

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craxylife .
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarNovember 1, 2020
HikingGreat!RockyScramble

Did this trail Nov 1 - Nov 2. Just one overnight. Going in the Z trail can be annoying in the sun, fortunately it was overcast and not to bad, just steep. The rest of the way consists of several in and outs of gulches and some small streams. After you first see Waimanu from the trail, the switchbacks start. This is pretty sketchy, loose rock, slippery long leaves, steep, and long. I'm talking baby steps to not slip and fall off the trail. The river crossing was easy as the water tables in the north are low. The views are beautiful and we had the valley to ourselves. Wai‘ilikahi Falls is a definite must go. It's only 1.5 miles from the campsite and offers swimming under the falls. The real challenge of this hike is heading up out of the valley (very steep and long) and Waipio road at the end. Probably a one and done for me, but well worth the trip. below is a link to the stats for both days, and yes 5k ele gain on the trip back. https://craxylife.net/2020/11/03/waimanu/

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Cara Hitomi
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HikingBugs
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Skye Aubrey
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HikingBugs

Gorgeous and safe. Left before sunrise for an out-and-back trip. Took about 4 hours in at a brisk pace. The return of course took longer. ;) Bring bug spray and a water filter. Enjoy the beaches, serenity and the wild horses are very friendly.

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Paul J
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarApril 27, 2020
HikingBugsMuddyOff trailRocky

Did the hike a couple months ago. Man was it a challenge. We decided to camp. Highly recommend packing light - tent, sleeping bags, food, etc. There are a couple fresh water falls along the way so don't get too concerned about water. Definitely recommend iodine tablets or a Sawyer water filter. Recommend starting out early. Countless switch backs. Definitely think the return hike from waimanu was more brutal but doable. The river crossings were pretty awesome just careful falling; recommend a walking stick for the rivers. Weather was great.

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Nicholas Serra
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMarch 30, 2020
Hiking

I hiked this Trail yesterday in one day out and back. Highly recommend driving to the lower parking lot at Waipio and starting from there, you’ll save yourself close to two hours of unnecessary hiking. Be aware of the tides when crossing the beach because on the way back water may be waist high and difficult to cross. Bring at least 5 liters of water if not more if you plan do to this as a day hike. Be at the parking lot at sunrise and pack light, bring snacks, insect repellant, Gold Bond, extra socks, swim shorts to change into if water gets too high. The only issue I had on the trail was running face first into these giant spider webs I recommend walking with a big stick and jus knocking them down before you walk right into them. Enjoy! Good luck.

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Jillian Dansdill
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFebruary 11, 2020
HikingBugsMuddyRocky
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Hannah Suber
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarJanuary 10, 2020
Hiking

This was the first backpacking trip I had ever done. I went with a family member who lives in the area, as I was just visiting. I had no clue the difficulty or terrain of this hike, as I had not done any research—I was essentially walking (backpacking) into the unknown. Do I regret it? Not one bit. The trail is very challenging, specifically the beginnings and ends, BUT you are rewarded with spectacular views and a strong sense of accomplishment. We resided at Waimanu for 3 days and 2 nights. I can easily say I have never experienced anything like it. It was life-altering and simply amazing. You can’t quite understand the magic of this place until you’ve been there yourself. I will always cherish the time I had there, and I can easily say that it was the best 3 days of my life!

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