This Mountain bike ride has a great mix of covered trails and hard dirt which makes for a great ride with friends as most of the time the temperature is between 70 degrees and 80 degrees and you ride under the tree canopy a lot of the time. The trails are also marked and the area is not too big so you really cannot get lost. There are no snakes or other pesky wildlife to watch out for either so you do not have to worry about getting mauled while out riding. The terrain consists of tree roots, rocks, leaves and such, so be careful when descending as it does rain a lot in Makawao, which keeps the dirt great for mountain biking. However, it can be slick sometimes in leaf covered areas. Also the roots can become a bit slick if they get covered in slimy mud. If it is raining or it is really muddy, skip the ride in Makawao. Makawao Forest is one of 2 legal riding areas on Maui, the other is the Haleakala Skyline trail. All West Maui off road biking is on private property.
Directions to the Makawao Forest Reserve from Kmart, near Kahului airport:
- From Kmart, Head East on Hana Hwy, State Hwy 36 towards Haleakala.
- Turn right at Haleakala Hwy, State Hwy 37.
- Turn left on Makawao Ave.
- Turn right on Piiholo Rd.
- Continue past Piiholo Zipline Adventures and veer left at Waiahiwi Rd.
- Continue onto Kahakapao Rd.
- If there is room, park here outside the gate, If not then you can either park in Makawao or park further on inside the gate approximately 1/4 Mile on the right is a parking lot. Just note the hours on the signs and leave before the reserve closes.
The trail itself
At the end of Kahakapao Rd you will reach a gate. If the gate is open drive to the gravel parking lot ahead. If closed, you will have to park there. Jump the gate and continue up the road to the gravel parking lot. In the corner of the parking lot there is another gate you have to get over. Once over, ascend up the trails into the forest. There are signs for the East and West loop. Tool around the area its nearly impossible to get lost. There is a jump line on the other side of the road opposite the gravel parking lot. Be careful, the tree roots can be a bit slick.