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Moloka'i Forest Reserve




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General Information

Description - The Molokai Forest Reserve is managed by the Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources. It is a wet summit plateau rising beyond otherwise almost desert-like condition of western Moloka'i's lower elevations. It is home to several species of native and imported wildlife including axis deer, pigs and birds.

Attractions - Moloka'i Forest Reserve offers lush forests, wildlife and spectacular overlooks. Probably the best overlook in the reserve is the Waikolu Valley Overlook on the left of the road about 4 miles from the entrance. Check out the crude map on steel and the woodwoking shop near the entrance at what was once the Molokai prison. The Forest Reserve Road serves as a nice mountain bike route and can also be hiked.

Waikolu Lookout and Picnic Area consists of a picnic area with toilet facilities (but no water) and a lookout on the southwest rim of Waikolu Canyon. The lookout includes a magnificant panorama of Waikolu Canyon from the verdant cliffs of the upper gorge with waterfalls and plunge pools. Sea cliffs and offshore islands can be seen at the mouth of the canyon. The view is often obscured in the afternoons when tradewind clouds envelop the upper canyon.

The roads and trails beyond the Waikolu Lookout are under the jurisdiction of the Nature Conservancy of Hawaii, Kamakou Preserve. A 2.6 mile, narrow and often muddy four wheel-drive road leads from the lookout, to the trailhead for the Pepe'opae Bog Trail.

Recreation - This area is known for its mountain biking over a network of trails. Take a good map and ask the locals for directions and trails.

Climate - Molokai has a warm year round temperature that fluctuates little between the seasons. The average yearly temperature is 74 degrees F. Winter months bring more rain and stronger water currents to the island. The eastern portion of Molokai receives notably more rain than the western portion, which lies in the rain shadow of the Kamakou highlands.

Location - The forest reserve is on the highest part of Molokai, The entrance is about 10 miles from Kaunakakai reached by going 3.5 miles from Kaunakakai on 460 and another 6.5 mile on Maunahue Road which passes Homelani cemetery.


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More Information

Contact Information:
Department of Land and Natural Resources, Division of State Parks, P.O. Box 621 , Honolulu, HI, 96809, Phone: 808-587-0300

Additional Information:
Molokai - This small island (38 x 10 miles) was formed by the junction of two shield volcanoes. Today it is home to many Hawaiians due to the Hawaiian Home Lands Act.

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