About Maguagua Falls
Maguagua Falls (or Maguagua’ Falls) was another precipitous waterfall that we had to go on a steep descent to get in front of in a bit of an upside-down hike (seemed like most waterfalls in Guam exhibited this kind of elevation profile).
According to my topo map, I estimate that the full height of the falls was probably on the order of 60ft or so, but we were only able to witness perhaps the uppermost 40ft of it as we were content to stop part way down.
Since it was situated near Mt Alutom, it was actually possible to do a hike that combines this waterfall with the Upper Sigua Falls and Alutom Falls, and that was actually how I visited the Maguagua Falls as sort of a “throw-in waterfall”.
Nevertheless, Maguagua Falls can easily be done as its own excursion, and that’s how I’ll treat it in this write-up.
Maguagua Falls As An Out-And-Back Hike
From the end of Turner Road, which was the same trailhead as that of the Upper Sigua Falls (see directions below), we had a couple of options to take.
First, we could take the 4wd track south towards Mt Alifan, or we could follow a rough 4wd track forking off to the left of the road’s end for 400-500ft towards another fork in the road, and then we’d descend to the right to continue going south.
In either case, we’d generally head downhill on a series of eroded red-dirt 4wd tracks, where the two approaches would converge after about 0.4-mile.
In another 1/2-mile, we’d then reach another trail junction marked by a handful of rock cairns as well as some creatively-placed rocks arranged in patterns (one in a circular symbol and another in an arrow pointing the way to Maguagua Falls).
So following the arrow at this point, the trail then continued its southward trajectory before descending steeply towards the brink of Maguagua Falls.
In one stretch, the decline was steep enough to make use of rope that was tied to some broken pipes (that may or may not be there).
Anyways, once we got down to the brink of Maguagua Falls, we had to make sure that we picked up an easy-to-miss trail after crossing its stream.
If that trail is missed, then we’d find ourselves right at the brink of the waterfall with no safe way down given the sheer cliffs.
Once on that easy-to-miss trail, we then had to pass through some swordgrass and then descending another steep rope-aided slope.
This tricky 60-80ft or so descent ultimately deposited us onto a rocky ledge between the two drops making up the Maguagua Falls, which was the end of the line as far as our excursion was concerned.
At this ledge, we enjoyed the views in both directions (up to the upper drop as well as over the brink of the lower drop) and the ambient sounds by the sounds of the waterfall with the odd splashing sounds made by a freshwater shrimp or possibly an eel.
According to the “The Best Tracks on Guam” book, it was possible to carefully rock scramble to the very bottom of the waterfall, but that was something we didn’t attempt.
Going back the way we came, the overall hiking distance was on the order of about 2.5 miles, and it would take on the order of 3 hours according to my trip logs.
The Option To Combine Upper Sigua Falls, Alutom Falls, and Maguagua Falls
As mentioned earlier, we managed to include the Maguagua Falls as part of a longer loop hike encompassing Upper Sigua Falls and Alutom Falls.
The early part of the loop is described in the write-up for Alutom and Upper Sigua Falls.
Then, we’d continue a very steep and challenging climb out of the base of the Upper Sigua Falls towards a 4wd track above the opposite side of the ravine from Mt Alutom.
Next, we’d follow the 4wd track west for about 0.2-mile before deviating from it and following faint use trails for about 0.3-mile to a large clearing at the end of a 4wd track containing rock cairns and rocks arranged in patterns.
From there, we’d do an out-and-back deviation south to the Maguagua Falls as described above (covering about 1/2-mile round-trip) before heading north for the remaining mile back to the trailhead at the end of Turner Road.
In doing this extended excursion, it took Chris and I about 4 hours (or about an hour more than just the out-and-back excursion).
Maguagua Falls reside near Mt Alutom in the villages of Yona or Piti in Guam. It may be administered by the Guam Department of Agriculture. For information or inquiries about the area as well as current conditions, you can try visiting this website.
The trailhead for Maguagua Falls is essentially the same as that for the Upper Sigua Falls and Alutom Falls, which can be accessed from some residences near the summit of Mt Alutom.
The way we’d make the drive from Tumon Bay would be to head south on Marine Corps. Drive towards the junction with Hwy 6 (about 9km).
Then, we’d turn left onto Hwy 6 and drive for 5km (going past Nimitz Hill) before turning left onto a connector road towards Turner Road.
Next, we’d turn right onto Turner Road and follow it to the end a little over 2km later, where there was some grassy pullouts opposite the residences.
Overall, this drive would take us about a half-hour.
One thing I want to mention about this hike is that it involved quite a few hazards and easy-to-lose paths so I did feel the need to hire a guide who was familiar with this excursion.
The person I hired was named Chris Choi who runs the Guam Trekking Tour, which also doubles as a Korean trekking group.
Finally, for geographical context, Yona was about 18km (under 30 minutes drive) north of Inarajan, about 19km (under 30 minutes drive) south of Tamuning, and 20km (about 30 minutes drive) south of Tumon Bay.
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