Canyon Trail to Waipoo Falls

MODERATE 270 reviews
#1 of 15 trails in

Canyon Trail to Waipoo Falls is a 3.2 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Kekaha, Hawaii that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.

DISTANCE
3.2 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
1210 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

kid friendly

birding

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

forest

views

waterfall

wild flowers

wildlife

rocky

no dogs

Directions from Waimea: Follow Highway 550 northward into Koke'e State Park. Turn right on to Halemanu Drive, which is a short distance past mile fourteen. Follow this road to the Halemanu-Koke'e Trailhead. (A four-wheel drive vehicle is necessary on this road if rain is in the forecast.)

hiking
9 hours ago

Did the hike today. Moderate Trail. Can be slippery and muddy. View into the canyon is great, standing on top of the waterfalls also. Trail is very highly trafficked. We started at the lookout. Trail was disappointing compared to other trails on the island.

13 days ago

Very nice hike. Did this with two kids and the in-laws. The canyon view was amazing! The falls were just ok, but we’re from Washington where waterfalls are amazing. We all had a great time though. The day was dry so the trail was fine. On a rainy day I could see how this could be a slippery hike.

hiking
15 days ago

Great trail. Great views at the end. Most of the trail is in dense forest but views at the falls are amazing. The trail is very well used and busy. If one drove down Halemanu Road the hike is only 2 miles round trip.

16 days ago

Enjoyable, moderate hike with variety - wooded, open cliff, and the top of a waterfall. Make sure your shoes have good traction, as the trail is muddy and steep in some spots.

19 days ago

awesome!

hiking
23 days ago

Enjoyed this trail, was muddy in spots and to be expected on this island. The views were worth it.

29 days ago

Muddy start but views breathtaking. Reward of waterfall at the end.

hiking
1 month ago

Highly recommend! Not a terrible interesting first part of the hike through the woods but well worth for the stunning views at the end. Go all the way to the top of the waterfall to get full views. It’s cool to stop at viewpoints on the way back and look back on where you were hiking in the canyon. We went after heavy rains and it was very muddy, definitely recommend hiking shoes though I saw others in sneakers. We walked down the 4x4 dirt road to start the hike but from what I can tell you could also park at Pu’u Hinahina lookout at start at the trail that exits from the left side of the parking lot.

hiking
1 month ago

Great hike, and the weather held out for us! Bring layers (during the winter time) and wear the appropriate footwear...muddy and slick!

hiking
1 month ago

Views on the trail aren’t all that great until you get to the open canyon area. Muddy for sure and pretty steep in spots. I wouldn’t recommend it for young children or the elderly. Sitting parallel with helicopters touring the canyon at the end is pretty cool.

hiking
2 months ago

The first half mile of this trail (to Waipo’o Falls parking lot) is just a down and up thru mediocre woods with no views ( and usually very muddy). Just skip it and start hiking at the Black Pipe trail head (corner of Koke’e and Halemanu Roads) down the 4x4 road towards the Waipo’o Falls parking lot. Definitely take the short diversion up to the Cliff Trail Lookout (signs mark the trail). The views are totally worth it.

2 months ago

Beautiful hike
A little busy
Muddy make sure you have good shoes or walking stick

2 months ago

Waterfall was a treat at the end. Relatively busy trail.

2 months ago

Make sure you go to the right towards the end of the trail to stand at the top of the massive Waipoo falls. The first time I did this trail I missed that cut to the right and went left and only saw the small top tier of the falls.

3 months ago

This hike was gorgeous. There was a good mix of rocky cliff areas and lush landscapes. A good distance and moderately easy though we did run into some steep sandy areas. There were also plants that smelled like farts. There were good smelling plants but mostly fart plants.

hiking
3 months ago

Fantastic hike with excellent views. The hike is pretty much all downhiller first, and pretty easy til you get to the cliff. Then it gets pretty steep down the cliff side to the waterfall view. Definitely worth it! Amazing to stand at the top of the waterfall, and hang out at the small falls before the bigs drop off. Highly recommended. Can be muddy in spots, popular like so plenty of others around if you get lost or need help.

hiking
3 months ago

Trail was in great condition, only a few muddy spots. Enjoyed the fabulous views of the canyon and upper falls! A must do!

hiking
3 months ago

Quite slippery as it rained in the morning: my son fell twice in the beginning but he got the hang of it for the rest of the way. It is a pity that view of the lower falls were rather limited unless one adventures to the far edge near the cliff on the west side! There should be board walkway well built with guardrails for the much needed close-up viewpoint of the lower falls.

hiking
4 months ago

A moderate hike. Very little slippery spots. The most gorgeous views ever. I highly recommend this trail.

hiking
4 months ago

Be sure to park at top of paved road where it meets the dirt road as the rental companies won’t let you drive down. When you get to the trail after all the mud in the road, be sure you take the little side path around the big mud hole. Be prepared to get muddy boots and do wear boots-not flip flops like we saw some poor sots. Lots of beautiful vistas and a sweet waterfall at the end. I would agree this is a moderate hike. Easy enough going down but for the mud, but it can be slippery and strenuous coming back up.

hiking
4 months ago

A great hike overall. Some muddy slippery sections and roots protruding but really not that bad. Wear the proper footwear and you will have no problem (Don't take flip flops)When the trail ends go down to left and push through some rocks to a separate set of falls with a great swimming hole. Water cold but awesome after the hike.
Keep in mind that you can't see the falls at the top. Some killer views though and well worth this easy / moderate hike. Enjoy.

4 months ago

Most amazing hike I have ever done so far. A must do hike if you visit this beautiful Island.

4 months ago

Rated as moderate but I would lean towards strenuous! lots of mud but definitely worth the payoff! If the waterfall was the only reward it would be worth it...but the vast canyon views are indescribably beautiful...

5 months ago

Stunning views

hiking
5 months ago

Pretty great hike. The views on the rim are stunning as only Kauai can deliver. I went down to the top of the waterfall and peered over the rock ledge. Not recommended for everyone because the steps are narrow and you’d be a goner if you slipped. Also if you continue the trail you’ll find a small waterfall with a refreshing pool to relax by.

5 months ago

great hike, beautiful views! Directions are misleading however. Just after mile marker 14 , PARK AT THE LOOKOUT PARKING- the trailhead starts there.

hiking
5 months ago

The trail was awesome but I would not recommend doing the Black Pipe part of the trail. We ended up getting lost of this trail because it was porely marked.

hiking
5 months ago

Did this one as an out and back in 2013. Better as a loop with Black Pipe. Still has great views and waterfalls either way you do it.

hiking
6 months ago

Nice hike with great views! Can be slick in places. Worth the walk. You can drive down the service road to the overlook parking if you desire.

hiking
6 months ago

Great exercise, great view of a small waterfall, great views of a breathtaking canyon.

Not so great being inches away from slipping 1500 ft to your demise. I'd consider this a moderate hike, but also fairly dangerous, especially in slippery conditions.

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