Explore the best trails near Waimea with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers and nature lovers like you.

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hiking
16 days ago

Went up on a super clear morning which was nice for a view 100% of the time but somewhat scorching hot as the breeze was minimal and no shade for about 2 hours hiking up the hill. (I was training with a large backpack which slowed me down some and I suspect most people without a heavy pack on would make it up faster).

Once we made it to the tree line, my big black pooch, and I saw a boar and a few hunters. We didn't want to get caught in the middle of anything and quickly got away from the area back down the hill. So beware of that, especially if you have a dog that could be mistaken for a black boar or that gets lost on hikes chasing after pigs or their smells. I'd do this again, maybe without the dog and earlier in the day to avoid the heat. Didn't make it to a waterfall or anything other than the tree line. Great views.

hiking
18 days ago

We crossed paths with a gentleman named Issac on his way down the Phantom Road. He was a civil engineer that worked on it. They built the road only 8 years ago and it took two and a half years to build. Built for the military and "possibly" as an emergency access or escape to/from the north shore. Never planned to be open to the public. Road washed out three years ago and they closed it. That's only 1.5 years of use. The whole road is 19 mikes long.

hiking
19 days ago

hiking
22 days ago

The road portion is 2.5 miles from the boy scout camp. Look for a clearing on the right immediately after a bridge. This will take you to Koolau Summit and Trail. Once you reach Black Juction marked by two wooden signs, veer left if you want to go an old helipad with a view. Veer right to continue on the summit trail which will take you to Pu'u Hina in about 1.5 miles. At Pu'u Hina , you can turn around or continue to hike along the Koolau Summit. Very overgrown and muddy. If you miss the critical junction, the road will take you all the way to Kahuku. So, remember to look for the junction off the road at 2.5 miles from the camp. This is not the state maintained Kaunala trail I am talking about. The complete loop as depicted on the map is the Kaunala Loop trail. The actual Pupukea Summit Trail goes to the helipad and ends there.

hiking
1 month ago

Reading these reviews I think that most of the posters have this trail mixed up with the Kaunala Loop trail. Both park at the same spot, both begin on the same paved army road, but the Loop Trail is the "real" state trail. This "summit" trail is supposed to be just a long slog uphill on the old Army training area roads. Unfortunately looks like a lot of posts here are describing the Kaunala Loop Trail.

hiking
1 month ago

Just as others have said.
By my reckoning though, it is 5.06 miles INCLUDING that non-trail proper access road stretch from where you park to the actual trail head; total distance walked from car back to car again is 5.06.
That "phantom" road that some speak of is (I think - I'm pretty sure) an Army road dating from the early 21st century for the Stryker vehicles to get up into the Kahuku Training Area. Since the stryker brigade have given up their heavy vehicles and converted to foot infantry, I don't think the Army (definitely not the State) will anymore pay for that road's upkeep. I walk the K-loop in mid Sept 2017 and at least four spots the paved section was washed away at least halfway. It won't be but a few more storms/years and the road will be cut completely in several places. Should still be trafficable by foot when that happens, but may entail a significant down-then-back-up to cross the forming gulches.

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