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“Spectacular Views...at the top!”
4 of 5 bubbles Review of Kukui Trail

Kukui Trail
Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
38 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
“Spectacular Views...at the top!”
Reviewed 25 May 2014

Kukui trail started at the same trail head as the Iliau Nature Loop but kept going on loose, rocky, slippery, often poorly/un-marked trail ranging from tree-protected steep trail with man-made wood and/or stone steps, to open exposed desert-like rubble on narrow sometimes very eroded but easily identifiable trail, to red dirt flats, and red dirt trails, steep red dirt hill with large crevices and no actual trail with little to hang on to, leading further to covered trail again with lots of rocks and roots to climb up and down. Now keep in mind, at least to the red dirt "flats" mentioned above, there are many great photo opps with some of the most amazing views I could otherwise never imagine of the Waimea Canyon (I can't tell you whether there are just as good views elsewhere). At the bottom was a lot of really large rocks, a little water, and the same trees you just emerged from blocking all but one canyon wall from your view. I am told that, had we hiked another 2 miles up the river we would have gotten to some better views. But we knew we still had to hike back up so, given time concerns (and the fact we didnt know about that view further up), we headed back up. So although we can now say we hiked to the bottom of the canyon, the views down to the red dirt "flats" (about 1 3/4 mi from the top) were the best. After that, don't go for the view unless you plan on hiking that extra couple miles up river when you reach the bottom. I'm not what would be considered "fit" but I'm not a couch potato either. I made it out alive. Take your time, be realistic about what you can do so you can get out of there before dark, don't do this hike in the rain (it's really slippery!), take lots of water, wear shoes with good tread/traction, wear clothes you don't care about (everything stains red), and take lots of pictures to show you were there! Most of all, have a great time!

Visited May 2014
5 Thank TAP1175
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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33 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
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English first
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
23 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
“Most amazing vistas of Waimea Canyon”
Reviewed 15 May 2014

Wow! We randomly stopped here toward the end of our day at Waimea and Koke'e Park just because we wanted the pleasure of staring at the Waimea Canyon one more time. We walked the very short and easy Iliau Nature Trail and took in some simply stunning views of Waimea. There was no one else there and I think this stop-over may even be preferable to the tourist-heavy Waimea Canyon Lookout. The views are just as good, if not better. There are also many beautiful flowers here and didactics highlighting the native flora and fauna. But, truly, this place is ideal for just parking it and taking it all in. I wish that we had stopped here for that day's lunchtime picnic. There is no parking lot. It's just one of the spots where you pull off the road, but it is well marked.

Visited May 2014
Thank Alli-gators
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
77 reviews
22 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 62 helpful votes
“Amazing scenic vista of Waimea Canyon”
Reviewed 11 May 2014 via mobile

Just 30 seconds into the start of this trail you will see spectacular views of Waimea Canyon. The trail is a bit challenging for anyone with knee problems but a great hike that is well worth doing.

Visited April 2014
Thank AbbintheATL
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Citrus Heights, California
Level Contributor
125 reviews
48 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 84 helpful votes
“Quite a view!”
Reviewed 3 May 2014 via mobile

We hiked only about half of this trail today because it is in pretty bad shape, needs maintenance. We saw wild goats and the Waimea Canyon views are excellent, but the trail footing is treacherous after the first half to three quarters of a mile. We turned around at the mile marker because we did not want any sprains or broken bones. Even so, the views are awesome.

Visited May 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Great views of canyon!”
Reviewed 19 June 2013

This is a strenuous 2.5 mile descent into the canyon (approx 5 miles round trip). If you want canyon views this is a great trail to do. Be prepared though, there isn't much shade cover for at least the first 1.5 miles. I have done this trail twice, both times I backpacked, but that isn't necessary. Just remember, you are hiking straight down, and then straight back up. The second time I hiked just down the trail and then hiked the Waimea Trail, along the river below and hiked out of the canyon to Waimea town (this way is about 14 miles). If you are looking canyon views instead of a rainforest view this is a great hike to do. Also, both times I've hiked it I ran into LOTS of mosquitos once I got below the tree line....don't forget the repellent, you need it for the second half of the hike!

Visited April 2013
2 Thank atlstl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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