Muliwai Trail

Trail in Kohala Forest Reserve (Waimanu Section)


  • Directions

    Geolocation is not allowed
  • Distance

    7.05 miles

Contact Information


In order to reduce the spread of COVID-19 (Coronavirus), the Department of Natural Resources is closing Waimanu Campground

Due to heavy rains, stream crossings along the Muliwai Trail can become hazardous. Use good judgement--never cross a fast-moving waterway. It is better to wait it out than to chance your life.

The road down into Waipi‘o Valley is closed to ALL users every 3RD WEDNESDAY of every month due to ongoing rockfall mitigation work, between the hours of approximately 6:30 AM - 3:00 PM. Hikers to or from the Muliwai Trail and Waimanu Campsites will not be allowed to use the road on these days.

The Muliwai Trail zig-zags up the western wall of Waipiʻo Valley, climbing approximately 1,200 feet to the plateau. It then leads across the plateau area to Waimanu, crossing twelve gulches that are up to 500 feet deep, then descends another 1,200 feet into Waimanu Valley. It is only minimally maintained, steep, deeply eroded in placed, rocky, muddy, and slippery when wet. Only experienced hikers in good physical condition should attempt it.

Water is available from streams, but purify before drinking.

Trail and Waimanu Valley are year-round game mammal hunting areas; wear bright colored clothing.

Difficulty: Difficult

Highest Point: 1,320 ft.

Lowest Point: sea level

Allowed Activities
Rifle Hunting
Rules & Regulation
No Biking
Stay On Trail
Dogs On Leash
Allowed Access

Additional Information

Special Conditions

* Caution: extremely dangerous riptides and currents in ocean * Caution: flash flood conditions can occur during heavy rains * Steep and Slippery conditions exist on trail * No Emergency phone or cell coverage Do not use any trail or access road that is not delineated by name and color and that may also be displayed on these maps. The marked features are managed for public recreational use. Other trails or roads that branch off from the public features may be on private property, and are not managed for any public recreational use. Access is subject to adjacent landowner approval, and if used without authorization, you will be trespassing and possibly putting yourself at risk. Downloadable resources are provided below.


  • Camping
  • Hunting
  • Pedestrian
  • Tours


  • Campsites
  • Restroom


  • Cultural Study
  • Scenic Viewpoint
  • Stream


  • Dangerous Cliff
  • Dangerous Footing
  • Dangerous Shorebreak
  • Falling Rocks
  • Flash Flood
  • Hunting Area
  • Rip Currents
  • Stream Crossing


  • No Bicycles
  • No Open Fires

Dog Owners

Hunting may be in progress on or near this hiking trail. Hunting dogs may be off-leash while engaged in the hunt. Hikers must keep their dogs leashed at all times and remove dog waste while on this trail.


Cars parked over 24 hours at the Waipiʻo Lookout may be towed. Longer term parking is available for $20 per day from the nearby Waipiʻo Valley Artworks (808-775-0958).


Reservations for permits may be obtained for the nine campsites by contacting Hawaiʻi District State Division of Forestry & Wildlife not earlier than one month in advance. See link below.


Highway 240 leads off Highway 19 at Honokaʻa to the eastern edge of Waipiʻo Valley. A steep, four wheel drive road extends from the lookout down into the valley. Upon reaching the valley floor, take the road to the right, then follow the beach to Wailoa Stream. The road ends at the stream. Ford the stream and follow the horse trail on the dunes to the west side of Waipiʻo Valley and the beginning of the trail.

Simple Trail Tips

  1. Stay on the trail 
  2. Check the weather 
  3. Watch the time 
  4. Avoid undue risk 
  5. Read all posted signs 
  6. Respect other trail users 
  7. Pack out at least what you pack in