Oneawa Hills aka. Friendship Garden Trail


This is one of those hikes that’s been on my to do list for a long time.  I hiked Friendship Garden’s short trail 3 years ago with my hiking buddy Michelle.  At the time we spotted the trail heading up the ridge and said we wanted to come back when we were in better shape.  We never got around to it since I got busy with my diving adventures and she started working full time.

Another friend recently contacted me and said she had done part of this trail and wanted to finish it.  So we set out from friendship garden for our little adventure into the hills of Kaneohe on a Saturday morning.

The trail starts in Friendship Garden in Kaneohe.  It’s a privately maintained Chinese garden which is a great place to meditate and just enjoy nature.  The trail into the hills starts along the upper loop and goes up a crumbly slope to it’s first view.  After the lookout it goes up some more crumbly ground and continues back into the hills toward Kapa’a Quarry.

As the name implies, there are several ups and downs on this trail but nothing too severe.  Our route would total 5 miles including some bushwhacking to the veterans memorial cemetery where we would catch a ride back to the trailhead.

We intended this trail as and out and back hike until my friend became tired and her knee started to bother her.  About that time we met 2 other ladies on the trail and they offered a ride back to the start.  Looking at satellite imaging I determined that we were more than half way to the other end and convinced my friend to come and meet up with me.  As time went on we would lose our ride and have to call in reinforcements from town.  Luckily her friend was willing to give us a ride.  It was an adventure neither of us will soon forget but the views were worth it.

Others who have written about this hike have called the quarry beautiful.  I don’t know if I agree with that assessment.  It’s basically a big water-filled hole in the ground where rock is mined for commercial use.  I’m just not sure that I would consider such an industrial site beautiful.  Interesting or neat would be the words I would use.  The best views, in my opinion, are the ones looking back out to the coastline.

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When all was said and done the hike took a little over 6 hours and totaled about 5.25 miles.  Under normal circumstances would probably take around 3 hours to complete done one direction and about the same if you were to hike in to it’s highest point an back out.

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