Unknown Hana Highway Waterfall

by Jose Luis Sanchez Esteban
(Madrid, Spain)

Being in Maui some time ago I drove along the wonderful Hana Highway. I'm a waterfall lover and specially appreciated the large amount of them I found there. But there's one, which picture is included, I couldn't identify.

It's between Upper Waikani and Lower Wailuaiki ones and can be seen at the left side from the downward road but not easily: you must look at the right place and at the right time, since I only discovered it just the next moment after leaving it behind.

Then I had to keep on driving down the road to find a safe place to park, to walk up again till the point from which I saw it, and then after a short hike I had a full sight of the waterfall as in the picture.

But I've been unable to put it a name. First I thought it was Lower Waikani but ruled it out when I learnt it only can be seen in the distance from the town of Wailua. It's impossible that I was the first and only person to discover it so close to the road.

Then I considered the chance of being a possible “Middle” Wailuaiki, since it'is closer to Wailuaiki than to Waikani, but although I heard something about it I'm not sure at all that such “Middle” tier really exists.

Maybe with this information plus the waterfall picture you can help me to know which one it is. Thanks a lot in advance.


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Feb 25, 2013
Some notes
by: Jose Luis

Thanks a lot for your comment. I should like to enclose the pictures of which I think Upper Waikani, Upper Wailuaiki, & Lower Wailuaiki Falls are but I don't find how to do it in this post

I've checked the times and there were 11 minutes from Waikani to the "Unknown" waterfall (considering I had to follow driving, see the falls, go down for a bit, park, coming up and a short walk), and just 4 minutes (considering I had to come back to the road, then downwards to my car and continue driving) between it and Lower Wailuaiki.

By the way I pictured which I consider to be Upper Wailuaiki after than Lower (I was pretty impressed when discovering this waterfall just after the unknown one).

None Wailuaiki Falls are marked on the map, only Waikini and curiously Kopiliula, that are barely seen in the distance from the road.

But Lower Wailuaiki must be in the West branch of the stream, if the Hana Highway book map is correct. What should be logical is the unknown one in the West branch and Wailuaiki in the East, but I pictured them in the other order.

The only chance is that I saw Wailuaiki from the place I stopped to picture the unknown and then I came back upwards. But don't think there was time enough for doing so.

Feb 24, 2013
I'm Stumped
by: World of Waterfalls

The waterfall photo you've posted certainly doesn't look familiar. I've attached a map export from Topo of the approximate area you're describing.

I noticed on the map that there are actually 2 Wailua Iki Streams (West and East) and they both pass under Hana Hwy and dump into Wailua Iki Bay.

Unfortunately, I didn't mark the falls that had the feature photo of the Hana Hwy page that has been called "Lower Wailua Iki Falls". So I still don't recall if it's on East or West Wailua Iki Stream.

Could you have photographed a waterfall on the other Wailua Iki Stream? Or could you have photographed the Wailua Iki Falls from the opposite side of the gulch (still makai side of the highway)?

Even with your writeup, I can only guess that the map I've attached here contains the falls you're trying to identify.

Wailua Iki Stream Map

(if the map is hard to read, if you use Firefox, you can right click and "Save Image As" to your hard disk, then open it up in a photo software to blow it up or zoom)

Something worth noting is that Wailua Nui Stream (which combines East and West Wailua Nui Streams upstream from the Hana Hwy) is actually the stream responsible for both Upper and Lower Waikani Falls.

Hope this helps. I'm totally stumped.

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