There will be no sugar coating travel on Miloli’i Trail, road, beach, and falls. The area is remarkable in every respect. For 99 44/100’s percent of the traveler’s to the island of Kauai the safest and best viewing experience of Miloli’i is from a boat on a Charter Tour. Next would be from a Charter Helicopter.
Note: Everything about travel on Kauai is affected by local weather conditions. Kauai is the King of Micro Climates. One location can be experiencing a 3 inch per hour downpour of rain, while another just a mile or two away is sunny. No kidding, I have experienced it first-hand.
However, If you have a 4-wheel drive vehicle and seasoned back country driver, a trip to the end of the Trail Road is nothing short of thrilling. And, if you are an experienced, physically fit, off-trail scrambler and climber, the edges of the Miloli’i cliff on the Na Pali Coast are magical.
On this day, the weather conditions are almost ideal. Rain of a material nature has not occurred for a number of days. The temperatures are in the low 70’s at the start of the Trail Road (3,578 feet elevation). The weather is currently Partly Sunny. This means travel on the Trail Road for its entire 5.2 mile distance (one way) with a 2,000 foot vertical drop can be negotiated to completion in a straightforward approach. On this day, the condition of the travel route is as good as I have seen.
I chose to park the truck 3.2 miles into the route. This allows me to take in all the scenery on the remaining 2.0 miles and 1,250 vertical foot drop to the cliffs in a more casual fashion. This portion of the Trail Road is exceptionally steep, narrow, and with a high degree angle of banking.
This approach let’s me capture images of flowers.
On the trail, there are a number of markers and homages to people who have passed away.
PMRF operations on the Na Pali. In the background are Ni’ihau and Lehua islands.
— Jeff’s Thoughts and Other Worthless Trivia —
Travel on the ridge line to Miloli’i Vista can prove to be well worth the effort. However, it can also prove to be exceedingly dangerous and lead to death. The same can be said for the coastal waters, beach, and cliffs.
A local man died from a fall where I stood capturing images appearing in this Post.
A Helicopter was blown into the Miloli’i Cliff, killing 6 passengers and the company’s Senior Pilot.
A well known local educator and photographer fell 300 feet to his death while climbing the Miloli’i Cliff.
A couple of things I do to mitigate the risk: I always bring a hiking stick and wear hiking cleats on my boots. I mean always.