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blueBlack Pink Pillbox Trail (AKA Pu'u O Hulu Trail)

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Trail

0.6 mile 1.0 kilometer point to point
54% Runnable
Intermediate/Difficult

Elevation

Ascent: 664' 203 m
Descent: 0' 0 m
High: 767' 234 m
Low: 102' 31 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 19% (11°)
Max Grade: 50% (27°)

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Trail shared by Shawn Tamasaka

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With views of mauka (mountain) and the makai (ocean), what more can you ask for...

Shawn Tamasaka

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Runner Notes

This is a very technical trail due to good-sized rocks and a narrow tread.

Description

This trail is also known as the Pu'u O Hulu Trail by locals. From the start of this technical trail, you are immediately running over increasingly larger rocks. The grade is extremely steep along most of this trail, only easing near the top. At the halfway mark up the climb, we turned around and noticed a majestic view toward Makaha—this was the perfect place to stop and enjoy the inspiring view. As we traveled further, we came across a tree growing on the side of the hill. I called it the “tree of genealogy”. Can you imagine the history this tree has seen?

As you reach your first pillbox, you’ll see an iron rod sticking out of the ground. That rod held a
WWII .30 caliber MG machine gun. Continue running up further to the pink pillbox (be cautious going up or down this section of the trail because of loose gravel) to enjoy a panoramic view from Ko Olina to Kaena. On a clear day you may see Mt. Ka’ala, which is the highest peak on O’ahu at 4,026 feet. The reason the pink pillbox was painted pink was to support cancer awareness.

Note: Though it may look like the trail continues on from here, it does not. The way becomes dangerous and a fall would have devastating consequences. It is not recommended to explore beyond this point.

Pu’u O Hulu (hill of Hulu), aka Pink Pillbox, was originally established on April 27, 1923 as a military fortification. Several pillboxes were made here all facing the makai (ocean). All the pillboxes were connected by tunnels, and a mess hall and kitchen were built on the other side of Hulu. The pink pillbox was armed with 7-inch MK2M4-6 Naval Guns but was later outfitted with 6-inch guns. Construction halted on May 31, 1945 (The Coast Defense Journal, August 2006 vol. 20 Issue 3).

This is definitely a run worth taking.

Flora & Fauna

Towards the top there are a lot of flies, so stay where the trade wind can blow on you and chase the flies away!

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Trail Ratings

  4.3 from 4 votes

#1

in Oahu

#5826

Overall
  4.3 from 4 votes
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Rankings

#1

in Oahu

#29

in Hawaii

#5,826

Overall
87 Views Last Month
2,519 Since Jan 21, 2018
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