This is an awesome hike! There are steep drop offs all over the place and great views of the ocean. You are hiking through a rain forest most of the time

This trail is not for the faint of heart or those easily scared of heights. The crouching lion trail is a 4 mile loop with an elevation gain of 2,000 feet. The elevation gains and losses are near the beginning and the end of the trail. The middle of the trail is where the dangerous knife-like ridges are. To get there, travel 25 miles on the drive from downtown Honolulu. Take the Pali Highway to get to the windward side of Oahu. Once you are through the Pali Tunnels, descend downhill, turning left on Kamehameha Hwy. About 2.5 miles later, turn left onto Likelike Highway. Turn right onto Kahekili Highway, which after 4.5 miles transitions to Kamehameha Highway (key landmarks there are a 7-11 store on the right and the Hygienic Store on the left). Continue on Kamehameha Hwy. for just short of 10 miles. Parking is available at the Swanzy Beach Park. Walk north up Huamalani Rd to the trailhead. The trail is between two properties and there is no reason to go up anyones driveway looking for the trail. After this, the trail is sometimes hard to follow but there are usually pink ribbons tied to trees to help with directions.

The trail follows the Pu’u Manamana ridge on the island of Oahu, Hawaii. The full loop is called the Kahekili-Manamana loop. It took us about 5 hours to complete. The trail is difficult to find in places, and very overgrown. Multiple times we were basically crawling through the mud in order to get under the heavy overgrowth. I know that at least a few hikers who have tried to hike this have died, so make sure you stay focused while hiking this trail and watch where you are placing your feet. It can also be very muddy in spots which makes for a very difficult time.

Pack List

  • Water
  • Snacks
  • Backpack
  • Shoes and clothes that can get muddy
  • Raingear
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunscreen
  • Sun Hat
  • Camera
Show More
RT Distance 4 Miles
Elevation Gain 2000 Feet
Activities Photography, Hiking
Skill Level Advanced
Season Year Round
Trail Type Loop
Features
Scenic

Reviews

Leave a Review

Overall rating: 

Amazing!

This was such an amazing hike. So glad we came across this post to help us get there. Definitely stick to days where the ground won't be wet, it can get slippery. Amazing views. We did about a 30 minute hike up and it was perfect!

Amazing

When I hiked it I only went up the the first area on the ridge, not the full on summit. The crouching lion mini hike is awesome! Super quick and not to difficult...as long as you watch your footing and don't go after it has rained.

Spectacular

My favorite hike during my Oahu visit. The trailhead was difficult to find, as it's off the street and you can miss it. You have to go through some trees and under a fallen one, as the trail head is not marked. It took me a while to find it, but once I did, I was so excited! I went alone, and was dropped off, so I have no recommendations of where to park. I would make sure you are watching your next step and make sure you are holding on to something, as it can get steep and you can fall down and hurt yourself. Especially windy once you're up top, so don't be too carefree.


Please respect the places you find on The Outbound Collective.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More

Nearby Adventures

More Nearby Adventures

Paddle to Mokoli'i

288 Saves

Hang Out at the Kane'ohe Bay Sandbar

259 Saves

Bodysurf at Pounders

112 Saves