Olympus via Kolowalu [CLOSED]

MODERATE 104 reviews

Olympus via Kolowalu [CLOSED] is a 4.5 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Honolulu, Hawaii that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking and nature trips and is accessible year-round.

4.5 miles
2,335 feet
Out & Back


nature trips



wild flowers





over grown




no dogs

Closed due to landslide. More information can be found here: https://hawaiitrails.hawaii.gov/trails/#/trail/kolowalu-trail/221 A more direct approach to the Koolaus and Olympus ( Awa'awa'loa). Kolowalu is a finger ridge that connects to Wa'ahila Ridge. You gain elevation very quickly, and is quite demanding and a good cardio workout, even for a veteran hiker. A finger ridge trail that can be very mudd yand slippery. 95 percent uphill. Elevation gain 1400 feet in less than a mile. Trail ends at the junction with Wa'ahila Ridge. Continue on Wa'ahile ridge to the Koolau summit.

1 month ago

Intermediate hike. About 5 hrs round trip from start to Koolau Summit and back. It will wear one out from all the steep climbing.

2 months ago

As of 20 Oct 18 this trail is closed.

3 months ago

I liked it but going down the trail is a ***** and my bro fell like 10 times hah but it was very fun. And the view is amazing go check out my video on it tonight . KenantheAviator my YouTube channel

3 months ago

Stay on the trail and don’t try like I did to go to the left right under the summit to do a loop to go thru this waterfall valley. I wasted a ton of time on an overgrown trail and had to go back anyways and use a headlight at the very end of the hike which wasn’t fun.
After the landslide it still looks pretty fine.

3 months ago

REGARDING THE RECENT LANDSLIDE: yes, there is a new trail to the right of the landslide. I caution everyone, however, since it is apparent that the debris from the landslide is being held in place by a smaller tree. That's a lot of weight to bear for one tree. When that tree goes, I suspect more of the trail underneath will be obliterated. Exercise extreme caution. DO NOT touch any branches or put weight on any boughs in that area to avoid another landslide. I think the clock is ticking on this thing, seriously.

3 months ago

TRAIL HAS BEEN RESTORED AFTER THE LANDSLIDE. I completed the hike on 9/17/18 and yes, there is a landslide, but there is a safe bypass trail that was made that safely goes around the wreckage.

3 months ago


4 months ago

I went this morning and I believe the back to back tropical storms from last week and yesterday eventually caused a massive landslide to block off parts of the trail 1mile up from the kolowalu sign.

5 months ago

Great hike and worth your time. You’re going to want to go on a clear day when it hasn’t rained much. Note parking may have to be in the neighborhood below.

5 months ago

This hike stitches together two great trails: Kolowalu Finger Ridge Trail (starting near the back of Manoa Valley) and Wa’ahila Ridge Trail (which connects you with Awa’awa’loa in the Ko’olas).

Look for roadside residential parking near the shared Pu’u Pia trailhead. Residential parking manners apply.

After about .2 miles on the main trail, peel right to begin Kolowalu (there’s a metal sign to mark this turn). Kolowalu is a workout with 1600’ of elevation gain happening in the first mile of the trail. This section of the hike is a wooded hill climb with a few brief glimpses of Manoa Valley in the last 20 percent the ridge. At the top of Kolowalu, turn left and follow Wa’ahila Trail 2.5 miles to the summit of Awa’awa’loa (Mt. Olympus).

All along Wa’ahila, the views are stunning. Near the peak, it gets pretty steep and muddy. However, there is a reliable series of ropes and mud ‘stairs’ to assist your footing.

If you’re in good/great shape (and moving pretty swiftly), this hike could take anywhere between 2.5-3 hours. Trail runners can do this in 1.5 hours. This is not a hike for dogs or children.

Payoff: 10/10
Intensity: 8.5/10
Risk: 7.5/10
Wayfinding: 9/10

6 months ago

nice hike close to Honolulu. lots of mud and a few tricky spots even in good weather. often cloudy at the top but still a fun one. don't need pants for this one but some shoes with tread are helpful. 3 hours at a decent clip in good conditions for an experienced hiker, probably around 5 for less experienced taking breaks. shout-out to Joel, nice running into a fellow AllTrails hiker!

6 months ago

What a rewarding experience. I urge anyone to complete the full distance till you cannot go any further, use caution. The beginning is very energy consuming and a constant incline, once you move past the sign where the maintained trail ends is where it gets exciting. Be careful

7 months ago

All I can say is that the struggle the entire way was absolutely worth it. Once you hit the ridge, it’s gorgeous views the entire way. I would absolutely check the weather beforehand and also recent reviews to see what the status of the trail is because it does get pretty narrow and there can be a fair amount of mud. Regardless, so worth it! I’d do it again, of course, after my legs recover.

7 months ago

Hiked to slightly past the halfway point. A challenging, rugged trail with some tricky terrain problems and a ton of mud. Great workout.

Some nice views in places, otherwise you're in the thick of the trees. Pretty humid; rainforest hiking!

7 months ago

you gain elevation quickly about a 1/4 in, very steep and muddy in some areas...feels like the climb is never ending...id rate this hike as a fuckthis

7 months ago

A little challenging at some places, but the efforts are rewarded with the nice views. The beginnng of the trail isn't so beautiful, but once you hit the ridge, you get some nice lookouts along the way. However, if you want your trip to worth it, make sure to looked at the weather before. It rainned the day before I did it, and the trail was slippery and muddy. At some point, we had to use the ropes, so if ou attempt it on a rainny day, prepare yourself to get your hands and your shoes dirty! I'd recommend to wear long pants as well, cause, I would say the last third of the trail isn't so well maintened and is really bushy.

7 months ago

Loved it!

8 months ago

I found a car key near the final approach to Olympus on May 12th. If it is yours please leave a review w. contact info. Great hike btw. Enjoyed the hike. Sunny day on Oahu, not on Olympus!

10 months ago

I loved this hike. We done it Friday morning and it was great. a little slippery in spots but not too bad. I went to the ropes my partner wasn't with it. haha

11 months ago

Wasn’t as hard as I thought it was going to be BUT the views were very rewarding! Love this trail and would recommend it to both novice and seasoned hikers.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Awesome! Difficult in places and worth the work when you see the view at the summit of Olympus.

Wednesday, January 03, 2018

Great hike!! Don't underestimate the ones who say tough incline! we didn't make it to the rope part, as we had a time limit. The passer-goers said we had made it a bit more than half way. Still very much worth it. Beautiful vantage points! Slightly muddy, but not a "ruin your shoes" type.

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Definitely a good cardio workout. And hardly any people! Even bettah!

Sunday, December 03, 2017

This hike offers a beautiful view. When I hike in Hawaii I bring micro spikes with me. Bring one on this hike as well because it will help you. It can be extremely muddy all year round. Oh... do bring gloves and have extra bags and towels at your vehicles to store your dirty shoes and wipe yourself down. You probably be muddy.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Harder than I thought...especially when you’re not comfortable using ropes in muddy areas.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Our route:
We staged a car at Wa'ahila state park at 7am, and drove the 10-15min to Pu'u Pia/Kolowalu trailhead. Hiked up to Mount Olympus then down Wa'ahila trail back to the park. 5.5mi, 2600ft elev, and 5hrs total, that's with multiple longer breaks as well.

The ascent is relentless, but it's really not that bad if you're in shape and the conditions aren't wet. Liken it to 3x Koko Head maybe? Very strenuous for most, but doable. No scary parts or death drops, sorry thrill seekers. But there are some stunning views, and if you're lucky enough to have a clear day at the summit, you'll want to hangout for a while!


Sunday, October 08, 2017

challeging hike .
Really exausting the first hour then when u Turn left to mount olympus its all about ropes and some steep ways. The views are great along the way. Make sure u bring hiking shoes otherwise it gets really dangerous. Bring at least 2 bottle of water and some food.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

One of the more challenging hikes I’ve been on, it’s almost all uphill and pretty steep at parts. Got rained on a couple times on the ridge so I would recommend checking to weather and bringing a light jacket for cover as it did get a little chilly in the rain with all the wind. Hiking up through the clouds was quite the experience, albeit exhausting. A good amount of rope sections here, and I would advise wearing gloves if you have them as some of the ropes are pretty rough on non callused hands. The actual peak itself is not in an open area, so the views from there are difficult to find, but the false summit just below has very rewarding views when the clouds finally parted. Only giving it 4 stars for the large sections that are badly eroded and a little more difficult to maneuver (more ropes in these areas could help).

Monday, September 04, 2017

Super fun and not to hard, definitely my favorite hike and the view is definitely worth it, the only hard part is the beginning which is straight up hill and the end which is another intense climb with ropes, but you can definitely feel the mana when your up there

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

First mile is a killer cardio workout. Always love doing Mt Olympus, but this the first time taking the Kolowalu to get to the main trail...great hike to do before having to go into work this afternoon.

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