Waihe'e Valley Swinging Bridges

Wailuku, Hawaii

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The trail’s informal name comes from the two suspension bridges across the stream. The route is on private property belonging to the company that owns the irrigation ditch that in earlier days supplied water to sugarcane fields. You used to have to contact the company in Wailuku to get a permit to enter (a rule that was often ignored), but now entrance is controlled at a kiosk where you can buy sodas and snacks and sample macadamia nuts. This has been a very popular hike for many years. The swinging bridges are fun to cross and there is a perfect little pool to swim in at the end. It’s on the rainy side of the island, so the earlier in the day you go the better, but expect to get wet anyway. Park in a wide spot just beyond the kiosk and hike up the road to a Y junction with chains across both forks. Step over the chain on the left (south) fork, indicated by a sign. Soon you will begin to hear the water flowing through the ditch on the left. Shortly thereafter you’ll reach a second fork and turn left (south) again, stepping over or around another gate. The road levels out for awhile and you stroll alongside sugarcane and laua’e (maile-scented ferns) to the first swinging bridge. It looks pretty rickety, but it’s firm.

Waihe'e Valley (Swinging Bridges) Professional Review and Guide

"The trail’s informal name comes from the two suspension bridges across the stream. The route is on private property belonging to the company that owns the irrigation ditch that in earlier days supplied water to sugarcane fields. You used to have to contact the company in Wailuku to get a permit to enter (a rule that was often ignored), but now entrance is controlled at a kiosk where you can buy sodas and snacks and sample macadamia nuts. This has been a very popular hike for many years. The swinging bridges are fun to cross and there is a perfect little pool to swim in at the end. It’s on the rainy side of the island, so the earlier in the day you go the better, but expect to get wet anyway.

Park in a wide spot just beyond the kiosk and hike up the road to a Y junction with chains across both forks. Step over the chain on the left (south) fork, indicated by a sign. Soon you will begin to hear the water flowing through the ditch on the left. Shortly thereafter you’ll reach a second fork and turn left (south) again, stepping over or around another gate. The road levels out for awhile and you stroll alongside sugarcane and laua’e (maile-scented ferns) to the first swinging bridge. It looks pretty rickety, but it’s firm."

Activity Type: Hiking
Nearby City: Wailuku
Distance: 3.8
Trail Type: Out-and-back
Skill Level: Easy
Duration: 1.5 to 2.5 hours
Season: Year-round
Local Maps: USGS Wailuku
Driving Directions: Directions to Waihe'e Valley (Swinging Bridges)

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May 2018