Pololu Valley Trail

Hilo, Hawaii 96720

Pololu Valley Trail

Pololu Valley Trail Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"Waipio is the southeasternmost of the Hamakua coast’s dramatic stream valleys. Pololu is the northerwesternmost of those valleys. It is drier than Waipio and lacks waterfalls, but it is lovely in its own way.

You can descend into Pololu only on foot or horseback, and chances are you won’t have to ford its stream. Like Waipio, Pololu boasts a gray-sand beach (some call it a black-sand beach) which offers pleasant sunning but not swimming—the ocean is too dangerous. Come early: by midmorning, the little parking area at the roadend, Pololu Valley Lookout, is jammed. However, relatively few of those people actually make it down to the beach, as the descent is quite steep."

More Pololu Valley Trail Professional Guides

Detailed Trail Descriptions from Our Guidebooks

Hiking the Hawaiian Islands (Falcon Guides)
Suzanne Swedo
View more trails from this guide book
"This is the northernmost of the deep narrow valleys carved into Hawaii’s windward Kohala coast, at one time home to a farming community of native Hawaiians but long since abandoned. It’s mostly ranching country now, and the wider inland part of the valley is private property, blocked by a fence behind which cattle graze. Please keep out. Your reward for negotiating the steep, rocky, sometimes slippery trail is a pretty black sand beach shaded by ironwoods. It is popular with locals, some of whom camp among the trees though camping is officially illegal. The ocean currents are too dangerous for swimming. Pololu is a less-crowded alternative to Waipio Valley, which is not very far away to the south as the crow flies but is separated by a roadless area of the coast. To hike both, you have to drive all the way back to Waimea, across the Kohala peninsula, then up the opposite side"

Pololu Valley Trail Trip Reports

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This is a great hike! Beautiful vistas and lookouts. Be sure to go across the beach to the other side of the cliffs and you will find another trail that goes for a while, we stopped after about 2.5 miles, but the trail keeps going past that!
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Walk down the trail from the lookout and look for the trail behind the beach about 20 yards behind it. Follow this trail parallel to the beach until it starts up the mountain/hill on the other side of the beach. We followed this trail for over 2 miles. We would have gone farther but didn't know it kept going this far and didn't bring enough water. Be prepared for mist and rain but beautiful sites and overlooks.
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Wonderful view from the top. Made it to the trail head about 8:00 in the morning amd no one was there. The trail is steep but in good condition. There is no water in the valley to drink so if you plan to spend the night bring enough water.

Pololu Valley Trail Photos

Trail Information

Nearby City
400 feet
Elevation Gain
Trail Type
Skill Level
45 minutes
USGS Honokane
Local Maps

Trail Log