Explore the most popular dog friendly trails in Hawaii with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

3 hours ago

If it has rained, be warned, this trail is slippery and at times steep. I would only recommend this hike to the ambitious and sure footed athlete - if that's you, then this is a beauty of a ridgeline.

Aloha! I do various guided hikes with photos on Oahu. I hike often/weekly. I hiked this past week and this weekend and will be hiking this week Thursday and this weekend as well. Feel free to check out some examples of photos on my instagram @mike.karas. You can message me there or at mikekarasphotography@gmail.com

Paved surface up to the last 4 miles. At the last 3.3 miles, you will see a cattle gate with a warning not to proceed. Only 4 wheel drive vehicles allowed. Violators will be fined. We parked here in our rental van and proceeded to walk. A friendly couple in a pickup truck asked us to join them to the trailhead. Stay to the right at the Polipoli State Forest sign and go downhill maybe .5 mile or more to the campground. Follow the sign to the Ranger Cabin. The woods were lovely, dark and deep but knowing we had to hike back to the van, we turned around before reaching the redwoods. Awww shucks. We enjoyed the hike none the less! Take a four wheel drive vehicle next time.

Very busy trail, but worth the hassle of so many people. Make sure to check tide charts and go around high tide (+/- 2 hours or so) for best effect. As others have mentioned, I suggest hiking shoes or sturdy sandals, not flip flops.

It rains so often that the trail is slippery. The trail starts out wide and beautiful but narrow towards the end. Some areas are difficult to get up. The waterfall barely had any water coming down when I went back in October. Hopefully that will change because I was really disappointed. The thing I will remember the most is all the wonderful people. Tip- don't wear flip flops (too muddy) and use bug spray.

Too many tourists in flip flops struggling to get up and down made it frustrating at times. However, the vegetation and waterfall were beautiful. Definitely a great one to do if you want a short, relatively easy hike with many beautiful photo opportunities.

1 day ago

One of my favorite. It’s a moderate hike but you can take the kiddos. Make sure you bring water with you and your camera ready to take spectacular pics!

I’ll climb the stairs Fri, Mar 23rd for the 234th time.

The most recent post on my Instagram @Hawaii_Mountain.Man.Matt will give you an idea for an impactful photo perspective.

5 things you should know about the hike:

(1) It is the safest way to reach that elevation on Oahu.

Over the last 70+ years, no one has ever died falling on the stairs*.

(2) There is a ton of trash at the top.

Bring a folded heavy-duty trash bag to help with that.

(3) No matter what, don’t go near homes!

Think: when is the last time you woke up at 3am and whispered: "Honey I think there's someone outside the house!"

Two people have recently been shot on the street by a high powered air rifle fired near the intersection of Kuneki and Makena. That was wrong of the shooter, but also not surprising.

(4) The back way is more dangerous, but worth considering.

Near the base of the stairs, there is one unmarked Honolulu Police Department vehicle roaming to catch hikers.

After the November 12th escape of killer Randall Saito from the mental facility behind the neighborhood, security is on best behavior using off-road vehicles to apprehend hikers.

On a usual morning, a roving HPD officer, a stationary guard and two roving guards secure the area.

The penalty has some variables, but here are the components:

(1) $1,000 fine
(2) Jail, no longer than 6 months. (incarnation is rare)
(3) Legal fees (a defense attorney charges $800 - $1,500 for the case)
(4) Usually 80 hours of community service.
(5) Legal fees for expungement.
(6) Visa/Immigration hurdles
(7) Impact on professional life.
(8) Return travel and accommodations to attend court, community service, etc.

The setback ranges from $3,000 for simple cases, up into the hundreds of thousands over the length of a career for military members reduced in rank, folks who lose their security clearance or a professional license, etc.

Going up the front way, as amazing as it is, is not worth playing Russian roulette with the penalty, so don’t “just risk the ticket”.

Have a plane


‘Three routes through the bamboo forest’ would be where I’d be if I were looking to catch you. Just saying.

Super wet today, still made it up though. A little difficult getting down. Will definitely do it again next week.

2 days ago

Great hike if you’re looking for something that is pretty well maintained, loaded with lush vegetation, and filming locations from Lost. Easy enough for the two of us and our two dogs. Trail gets a bit small at certain points but most hikers were polite enough to make way for others. The base of the falls was a bit crowded but after the past few weeks of steady rain it was to be expected. The rain also made the falls very active and beautiful.

3 days ago

It was beautiful but we got lost and things got a little sketchy for us.

Incredible!! Only did the first two miles to beach, full of gorgeous views the whole way. You can continue up to a waterfall an additional 1.8 miles from the beach. Any further along the trial and you need a permit to continue. We reached the parking lot at 830 and there was plenty of room in the farther second lot, but this fills up fast and people start parking along the road. Bathrooms at the trailhead and the beach at 2 miles. Several stream crossings but able to stay dry with balancing. Recommend hiking shoes or waterproof hiking sandals with straps, though saw plenty doing it in sneakers. Nice to get out early but also be sure to catch some views post noon on the way back, as the light changes and water turns a beautiful azure blue.

They did put up a gate, making it way harder to get passed, unless you’re daring. So disappointing because this was one of my favorites.

3 days ago

This was a really fun trail. Slippery in spots and rope climbs are a bit dicey but as long as you’re in shape you’ll be fine. Don’t stop at the cell tower, keep going up to the bench for the view. It’s not very difficult until after the bench. If you keep going, there are a few spots where you get great views of Hanalei Bay and the valley behind you. We hiked a little over 2 miles in and turned around, as we were not prepared for a longer hike. However, it would have been about another 1.5 hours to the highest peak. Still, we got great views and a good workout. Definitely wear trail shoes if it’s wet.

3 days ago

3/17/2018-Started around 0810 (had to park at the bottom of the street because there was no spots that were open any nearer to the trailhead) and came across 56 groups/solo hikers. Weather was a little muggy but there was some breeze once you got higher up the mountain. The top was all clouds today but the breeze was really nice after climbing all the stairs.

As the locals say “1 mile down-10 miles up”! Worth the leg burn down. Beach and waterfall views are awesome. Think Stairmaster going up! Pack water, snacks and wear good shoes. Go earn that beer! Recommend the nachos at Big Island Brewing in Waimea for post-climb refuel.

Fairly easy hike up. It was a little muddy and a bit slippery but still fairly easy. The waterfall at the end it was amazing I spent 20 minutes taking a cold bath in the pool beneath the waterfall. Only reason this is not five star review is because it was extremely crowded probably saw close to 100 people on the trail with the majority of them congregated at the waterfall

5 days ago

It’s an easy hike but definitely busy and slippery. Wear proper shoes.

5 days ago

It’s a beautiful hike! The waterfall is gorgeous and the stream can be heard throughout the hike!

However, it’s muddy and can be very slippery so wear good shoes!

5 days ago

Easy hike and spectacular view!!!

The view at the end is Amazing! Having said that, it is not an “easy” hike. So.many. Stairs at the end, but if you can push through, you’ll be happy you did. I think this would be a rough for kids. Slippery in parts and the steps are large (think standing lunge to get up). Took about 2 hours to get up and 1.5 coming down. Bring water and snacks for the top.

Nice hike, and fun even with the insane rain. We were soaked through the whole time, and you have to take your time since rain means mud and pretty consistent rain drainage I'm the trail. It was still fun and offered a nice and quick up and down with beautiful trees and overlooks that showed how foggy it was. Would love to do again when not raining.

Very easy hike with beautiful scenery. I went on a Monday when it was pouring which made it not so crowded.

The hike up gets your heart pumping, and the view at the top is so worth it! It’s a pretty straightforward hike, and mostly shaded. Also, not crowded!

8 days ago

Forgot to start all trails on this hike but it was fun.

8 days ago

Really fun trail. Not too long, but steep in places. The views of the valley and shoreline from the top are worth it. The bunkers along the ridge line provide a neat link to the WWII history of the island.

One of the best hikes I have been on. Most of the reviews and you tube videos are pretty misleading about the dangers. Crawlers ledge is not a big deal. At no point did I feel like I was in much danger. Yeah if you fall it would be bad but honestly by the time you get there (mile 7, 8 or 9 not sure) you have pretty well been tested. Just keep your eyes on the trail as you go and stop walking if you want to look around. The river crossings were not a big deal either. I know that can change but just do what the signs say. If it’s really muddy and fast looking don’t cross. If the river is moving rocks (you would hear) don’t cross. I feel like people make a big deal about that stuff more to seem extreme or daring than to warn people. No body wants to see anyone get hurt. Be smart but don’t let the dangers stop you from going. It is an extremely rewarding experience. It would be even more so if you were scared of those things and did it anyway. The thing that surprised me about the hike was how hard it was. I have done some 20 to 25 mile days before so we thought about doing it in one day but decided we wanted to camp at the beach. Good thing to because by the time we got there we were ready to call it. I don’t know if it was the humidity or the constant up and down but it was a hard 11 miles. I saw some people recommended staying at the camp at six miles. If you have 3 or 4 days and your worried about the difficulty that’s probably a good idea. Take two weeks if you need to. It would be worth it.

9 days ago

A very easy and relaxing hike.

Awesome hike! Be prepared to sweat. It’s clear and footing isn’t hard, but the elevation is legit.

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