ElevationAscent: 5,406' 1,648 m
Descent: 0' 0 m
High: 6,373' 1,943 m
Low: 968' 295 m
GradeAvg Grade: 15% (8°)
Max Grade: 51% (27°)
Current trail conditions
Popular runs nearby
3.4 mi 5.5 km • Out and Back • 727 ft Ascent 221.55 m Ascent
Singletrack Hāna, HI( 29 )
Haleakala Crater - Sliding Sands Trail to Halemau’u Trailhead
11.4 mi 18.3 km • Point to Point • 1,725 ft Ascent 525.93 m Ascent
Singletrack Kēōkea, HI( 2 )
Ahihi Cove to "The Dumps"
0.8 mi 1.3 km • Out and Back • 17 ft Ascent 5.26 m Ascent
Singletrack Kīhei, HI( 2 )
Iao Valley State Park
0.4 mi 0.7 km • Loop • 90 ft Ascent 27.42 m Ascent
Singletrack Wailuku, HI( 8 )
1.0 mi 1.6 km • Point to Point • 231 ft Ascent 70.43 m Ascent
Singletrack Napili-Honokowai, HI( 9 )
Run this trail?
Add details to help others plan their adventure.
“A strenuous undertaking through beautiful rainforest, most suitable for experienced backpackers.”— Megan W
From the 3-way intersection with the Halemau'u Trail and the Lau'ulu Trail, take the Kaupo Trail south across the flat crater floor before dropping off the lip and heading down the volcano's hillside through brushy, steep terrain. It was originally thought that this "gap" in the crater rim wall was blown out in a spectacular Mount St. Helen's-style eruption, but recent research has shown that it was formed instead by wind and rain erosion.
You'll almost certainly have all the solitude you seek on this remote, infrequently used trail. Enjoy watching for wildlife while crossing ancient lava flows, dry dense native vegetation and pristine forests. Be prepared for a tough, rocky path that can sometimes be hard to find. Intense switchbacks are interspersed with somewhat level sections and constant ocean/Big Island views in the distance.
Just as you leave behind the prominent ridgeline that has been looming above, the trail crosses a fenceline from National Park land into private property. Trail users have permission to continue through, but please be respectful. The remainder of the route is on old doubletrack through ranch land. The grade steepens considerably near the Kaupo Cutoff and Kaupo Side Loop. You may inadvertently take one of these options due to the increasingly vague trail markings here. Proceed through pastures looking for the NPS markers to stay on track. The trail ends upon reaching the more established-looking dirt road and trailhead, but it is another few miles on the Kaupo Gap Road to reach the Piilmani Highway 31.
Heed the warnings and be prepared for cold and unpredictable weather. Also, be aware that the high altitude will cause dehydration and fatigue much faster than at sea-level. As of this writing, no food is available for purchase inside the park, so bring your own.
Land Manager: National Park Service - Haleakalā