Hike the Wiliwilinui Ridge Trail

Hawaii Wiliwilinui Trailhead

Added by

Whether a Hawai'i resident, or a visitor to the islands, this is a great hike with spectacular views. Located close to town this ridge trail lacks crowds, and pavement, making it a must-do hike on Oahu!  

Getting there:  Traveling eastbound on the H1, from Waikiki, the H1 becomes the Kalanianaole Highway as you pass the Kahala mall... Soon after this transition you will make a left hand turn on Laukahi St. and continue on this road until you reach a guard station. You will notify the guard that you are there to do the hike, they will check your id, and then give you a pass as well as directions to the trailhead (the pass also has a map on it if all else fails). Park in the designated spot and exit your vehicle... The hike is about to begin. 

The Hike:  The beginning of the hike is, as many popular trails on Oahu, paved (this ends soon though, so do not be discouraged). After the pavement ends, and for a little over half of the hike you will travel along a dirt road with vegetation on either side. Be sure to keep an eye out here for small clearings as they offer excellent views of Honolulu, Hawai'i Kai, and the ocean below. 

After walking for over a mile the wide road ends and you will see a round landing area with a set of stairs to your left... there is a bench here and a nice view in case you want to take a break and rehydrate  before continuing up the stairs. From this point you will hike along the ridge and climb up a series of stairs until you reach the summit. There are some spots along the way with ropes that will aid in your accent but in general the stairs provide nice traction to work your way up the occasionally steep ridge. Once you make it to the (radio?) station the summit is not far, just continue on the trail for a few hundred meters more. There is a small area at the top with a bench where you can take in views of Waimanalo, Kailua, and the surrounding area. (As you look towards the east you may notice a very popular Oahu hike: Olomana a.k.a 'three peaks'

Because of the fairly wide single track, and the man made stairs, this trail is an excellent introduction to hiking on Oahu. 

Additional Notes:  

  • This trail can become quite muddy and extra caution is needed in spots.
  • Depending on the time of year the summit can be engulfed in clouds and the view is obstructed (as shown in the pictures). Do not let this stop you though... the climb is fun and the occasional break in the cloud cover will allow for excellent views.
  • You can mountain bike over half of this trail (up until you hit the stair sections)

Pack List

  • Water...  Hawaii is hot and you lose a lot of water hiking.
  • Tennis shoes/hiking boots (that you don't mind getting dirty!)
  • Poncho (depending on the weather)
  • A snack may be nice
  • Camera (if you fancy that sort of thing)
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How to Get There

4 months ago

Dog friendly

I took my little dog, about 9lbs, on this hike and he loved it! This hike is pretty similar to Kuli'ou'ou but with less shade. Easy enough for my me and my small dog but still had a nice view.

4 months ago

6 months ago

Beautiful hike!!

I just did this hike today. It's a little more than 5 miles round trip and really beautiful the whole way. We went a couple days after a rainstorm so parts of the trail were really muddy and there were some deep ravines in the trail but they were still passable. if you hike this trail after a rainstorm, take a minute to look at the mud. It has streaks in red, yellow, green, and purple!

6 months ago

Added by Erik Holmes

Hawai'i based: Mathematical graduate student, enthusiastic photographer, passionate adventurer (roughly in that order)...

Activities:

Photography, Mountain Biking, Hiking

Skill Level:

Beginner

Season:

Year Round

Trail Type:

Out-and-Back

Distance:

4.5 Miles

Elev. Gain:

1600 Feet

Rating:

Features:

Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Scenic

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