Maunawili Demonstration Trail is a 10 mile one way stroll along the base of the Koolau Mountain Range from Pali Highway to Waimanalo. Of course not wanting to make this a 20 mile hike Beimes, Justin and I parked one car at a friend’s house in Waimanalo and then drove to the starting point at Pali’s “Hair Pin Turn” Lookout. This is, after all, our first hike in over a month and the first of our summer.
We exited the top of the Lookout's parking lot and walked along a trail heading steadily downward. It was wet and muddy and there were tons of mosquitos. We soon crossed a riverbed and back again, and then...the trail vanished. Obviously we had gone the wrong way, but what did we expect when the girl leading was the very one who didn’t read up on the hike?! As we back tracked Beimes referred to Stuart Ball’s The Hiker’s Guide to Oahu and learned we were supposed to head upward towards Old Pali Road, make a few switchbacks, and then pass a watershed. We climbed back up towards our starting point and spotted a pink ribbon. We searched further not wanting to go the wrong way again and finally someone, I think Beimes, spotted the correct path. I don’t know how we missed the trail but finally we were off on our 9.3 mile journey.
There's not much to say about Maunawili Demonstration Trail. It weaved in and out, crossed many small but dry riverbeds, and provided views of Kailua, Olomana, and Waimanalo. At the end, it was quite amazing to look back and see how far we came. We could actually see all the way to Chinaman’s Hat. However, that's about the only thing I found amusing because although the hike was easy, in my opinion, it was really long and mundane. The terrain rarely changed, there was no real challenge, and the views were so-so. With that said I will probably never do this trail again.