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!
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.