Laie Summit Trail

HARD 14 reviews

Laie Summit Trail is a 12.1 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Laie, Hawaii that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as difficult. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.

DISTANCE
12.1 miles
ELEVATION GAIN
4491 feet
ROUTE TYPE
Out & Back

birding

hiking

nature trips

trail running

walking

views

wild flowers

wildlife

blowdown

muddy

old growth

over grown

scramble

washed out

no dogs

This one direction 6 mile trail connects to the Koolau Summit Trail on a ridge that sits between Ihi'ihi and Kahanawainui gulches. It shares a common start with the more popular Laie Falls Trail at the back of Po'oha'ili Street. A permit to access the trail is required. Formerly known before World War II as Wailele Trail, this gradually ascending contour ridge hike sits between Ihi'ihi and Kahanawainui gulches. It was built by the Civilian Conservation Corp between 1934-35 to connect to the Kao'olau Summit Trail. The original trail head starts after a drive on a 4WD road at the stand of Cook Pines. Today, the access to the trail head has been pushed back to Po'oha'ili Street due to private land ownership and farming. What used to be a 6 mile total round trip hike is now 12 miles due to this change in access. The first section leading up to the Cook pines is now a multi-use location for mountain bikers, horseback riders, hikers and runners alike. This area is open with many red dirt scrambling hilly sections. It was also an area that previously used to be used for practice shelling during WWII. From the Cook pines the trail traverses a series of hills though not creating any roller coaster effect. Its ascend is gradual and shaded by strawberry guava. This section can be slippery and muddy, as there are a few dry stream crossings (more like high rain run-offs). Past the trail split to Laie Falls to the summit, the trail somewhat overgrown. It changes into an open side contour trail with expansive views of Ihi'ihi gulch on the left. Past the bottom of a 65ft sheer cliff drop to the trail, it switches through a saddle to views on the right of Kahanawainui gulch. Towards the top there are also sections of cloud forests with old Ohia and lobelia growth with many Loulou palm stands along the way. The trail joins the Ko'olau Summit trail just below the highest point. Scramble up the hill and on a clear day you will be rewarded with 360 degree open and clear views of the Wai'anae Range, the North Shore, and east.

4 days ago

I love the summit hike! Beautiful view of Laie, Haleiwa, and Mililani side. Passed 3 hikers the entire time. Go on a dry day because it is muddy without rain! Skip the falls though because there won't be much to see when its dry.

hiking
3 months ago

Very overgrown and muddy hike, great for those who enjoy challenges!

3 months ago

3 months ago

4 months ago

Our original plan was to only go to the falls but once we got to the falls turn on the hike we saw we were also on the summit trail.
My boyfriend and I are from Colorado and are fairly experienced hikers so we couldn't pass up the opportunity to go to the summit.
The hike to the falls -easy
The 2 miles to the summit-very hard
The trail was very overgrown and we went after there had been rain for a few days so their was deep mud the entire way along with bogs in the middle of the trail that you just had to trek through.
We were pretty cut up from the plants going up since we both had on shorts.
The view at the top was incredible. It was a fantastic 360 view and you can see all of Laie and the Northshore.
I would do this hike again. The view was worth it.
Just prepare for it!! Bring enough water, wear long pants and maybe even a light jacket to throw on just to protect from scratching up your arms. Also wear shoes you don't care about at all.

Enjoy it!

hiking
4 months ago

The view was very pretty I have to say at a lot of parts throughout the whole trail and the top was super cool! The trail is not very well used or kept and the under brush is very think and sharp! Wear pants or frickin shin guards! When my friend and I got to the top I threw on some long socks and it made it so much better. my friend's shins were literally bleeding from going back through it on the way down.

4 months ago

The view at the top is great! But you need shin guards to get there.

hiking
5 months ago

5 months ago

Have hiked this before no problem, but went back yesterday, and since the big landslides, and trail just not being maintained...this was an intense one. If you're conditioned the climb isn't the issue, it's more the trail itself (areas of wash out and just overgrowth big time). Made it (amazing view) and would still go again...just not for the newbies. And definitely wear pants. Happy hiking

5 months ago

11 months ago

Intense hike. Expect to spend 6-8 hours on this trail. Amazing views from the summit. Make sure you have clear skies and a few days of dry weather preceding the hike. Otherwise you'll be ankle deep in mud for some of the more technical parts of the trail.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

trail running
Thursday, April 07, 2016

Awesome!!

hiking
Monday, November 30, 2015