We’re in central Oahu here looking at the Koolau summit. Our first objective is that peak in the middle. It’s the Waiau summit and it’s 6 miles away.
At the Waiau summit we turn right and hike along the Koolau crest (sometimes called the Koolau summit trail) to the summit of Waimalu Middle Ridge. It’s that peak you see at the top of the photo.
At the top of Waimalu there’s a wide open meadow.
A long hike in Hawaii connecting two central Oahu ridges.
Finally, we descend Waimalu Middle Ridge down into the valley (back towards central Oahu) and hike to civilization via the Waimalu Ditch Trail. We completed this 10 mile hike in just under 12 hours.
This hike happened back in June. Kaleo Lancaster (Island Trails) coordinated a hike with a bunch of other folks and I ended up tagging along. The plan was to have a bunch of people start at different places and then meet up at the top of Waimalu.
Kaleo put in a lot of research and planning into this one. You can’t just show up to the trailhead and do this one. It’s important to read up on all the trails and make sure you know the way. He and Ryan Chang also stashed some water along the trail a few weeks earlier so we could refill our hydration packs. (Other hikers have refilled using treated stream water.)
This hike is long and grueling. When we were done I was exhausted and my legs were in shambles. Was it worth it? Absolutely.