3 Hikes Worth the Pain

One thing I have come to love about being a teacher is that I was more excited for Spring Break than my students! So, over my first Spring Break in Hawaii, I have hiked a bit… Let me tell you, I’m plenty sore from these hikes, but the views have been well worth it.  If you’re in the area, and looking for a completely free activity, I recommend hiking.  But, before you jump into it make sure you have adequate water/snacks, sun protection, and bug spray.  I have listed these hikes in order from what I thought was easiest to hardest.  But, everyone has different fitness levels, so what was easy for me, may not be so easy for you.

Waimano Falls:

This hike is located in Pearl City, and there is residential street parking available.   As the name implies, this hike leads to a waterfall in the middle of the forest.  It is gorgeous, and includes swimming areas to take a dip (there is even a few rope swings to drop from!).  I liked this hike because it was close to our home and quite short (about 3 miles round trip).  The way to the falls is mostly downhill, but it is challenging because you are walking on rocks and roots.  If it had rained recently, I wouldn’t suggest going on this hike… Mud would make this hike very dangerous.  The falls themselves are calming, and simply beautiful.   But the way back, is all uphill! Luckily there are roots and vines placed so perfectly well that they make the uphill trek a little more manageable.  There are also places where ropes have been installed to help hikers.  Feel free to bring a swimsuit along with you to take a dip!

Kuliouou Ridge:

This hike is another one tucked away in a residential area, so parking is a struggle.  We had to park down the street a little bit -which made it feel like we were hiking before the hike even began.  This hike is a lot longer, about 4.5 miles, and does take some time.   One thing I liked about this hike was that it was shaded for a majority of the way.  It isn’t too steep, but there are areas where there are stairs, or roots you have to walk on to get up.  Of course, at the top the views were amazing! So it was worth the long trek.

Koko Head:

This hike is short (about 1.5 miles round trip), and there is a nice parking lot for hikers at the bottom.  Although that all sounds nice, I’m not going to lie, this hike nearly killed me! It is a total of 1048 stairs going straight up a damn mountain!  In the middle, I got a touch of heat exhaustion, and had to take a break for a lot of water, shade, and a near barf (believe me, not my best moment).  The “stairs” that this hike is, are really an old railroad track, so you can walk on the wooden beams, the metal rail, or the ground in between.  There is a sketchy part, where the ground seems to have washed away and is below the track a bit -but there is a small trail around that if you don’t feel like being that adventurous (like me).  Despite my heat exhaustion, I did make it to the top, where there is a small Pillbox, and you overlook Hawaii Kai and Hanauma Bay.  Don’t forget though, it’s another 1048 steps back down!



If you have hiked here on Oahu, I would love to know your thoughts and if you have hiking trail recommendations.  But for now, I’m going to relax at the beach and enjoy the last few days of Spring Break.


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