To start with: I have never before done an as incredible hike as this one. Not only is it a quite hard one but it is also risky and gives a thrill. But I am usually not a rock climber so maybe those of you who climb freely more often experience it differently.
I also have to mention that I think the hike is not quite legal so try not to attract more attention than necessary.
To get there you drive to Hauula homestead road and drive towards the mountains. The street will briefly turn into Maakua Rd., at the end of which you will find a yellow gate. There is no official parking lot as far as I’ve seen so you will probably want to leave your car somewhere near the beach park. If you go there by public transport take the Bus 55 and get off at ‘Kamehameha Hwy & Hauula Homestead’ and then go through Maakua Rd until you reach the yellow gate.
Pass the gate and follow the street until you get to another yellow gate on the left hand side, the pass this one too. After a few minutes you’ll reach a graffiti wall, do not leave the street here, there are a couple signs and trails for other hikes on both sides of the road. After the grafiti walls you follow the street further until you can see a fenced house. It kinda looks like a toll station. We haven’t seen any guard or so but you still wanna keep your eyes open if anyone is watching you.
Go past the house on the right side where the sign is, there you’ll also see the first trail marker flagging tape, you have to watch out for these during the hike since there are parts where you will find yourself in the forest without seeing a trail. There are pink, orange and blue tapes but they all mark the same hike since there is no other hike in this part of the valley.
After the fence you find yourself on the path illustrated in the picture beneath, there is the beginning of the trail right behind this little wall.
From now on you just have to follow the trail and look for the marker flags, at some point we were not able to spot them anymore so we continued hiking through the riverbed. As a rule of thumb, in case you lose sight of the trail markers, as long as the valley gets narrower you’re on the right track. Be aware of the danger of flash floods, especially in narrow valleys like this one.
After about 2 hours you will reach the first waterfall, it is not really a proper waterfall since it is very small but still. This is the time to get everything out of you’re backpack that should not get wet because from now on you’ll have to swim every now and then. We packed some dry clothes, a towel and our cellphones into a plastic bag and left it in front of the waterfall where it remained dry. There is no service in the valley so you can as well let your cellphone in the car or home if you don’t use it for taking pictures.
This is the second Waterfall, the first one where you really have to climb. There are 3 ropes but the left ones do not look very trustworthy. In general, never trust a rope you haven’t tied yourself, you never know how long it has been there and how or how well it is fixed. Before relying on the rope test if it is stable.
After the second fall you have to hike a few minutes until you get to the third fall which is higher than the second one and more slippery. Also you will recognize that you’ll have to switch to another rope which is a bit more left when you’re almost up.
This was the last one we climbed because waterfall number 4 was even more slippery and the rope did not have any knots to hold on which made it a lot more difficult. I guess it would’ve been doable but since we do not have any experience with climbing, especially climbing down a waterfall, we decided that it’s far enough for the first try 🙂 Climbing down turned out to be more difficult than getting up so we were glad we stopped there.
If you wanna have information to the last 3 falls visit this site, they went further than us 🙂