The stark contrasts of our island are easy to see. Cool waters of the deepest blue hug warm golden beaches and shimmer invitingly in the tropical sun beneath daunting mountain peaks. For some, the rugged landscape is merely scenery, making for stunning photographs and a beautiful backdrop. For others, the mountains, knife-like ridges, and deep shaded valleys are an adventure waiting to be challenged head on. If you wish to leave the beaches behind, and if hiking these stunning ridge trails is “too slow” for you, than mountain biking Oahu is the adventure you seek!
Glorious Mountain Biking Oahu Trails Galore
Carved from volcanic eruptions over millions of years, the sweeping landscape of O`ahu is perfect for mountain biking Hawaii adventures. Our island has trails for beginners to experts, whether you prefer paved paths to mountain lookouts or barely-there trails descending at breakneck speed through forests and ridgelines, there is a ride for every age and every skill level. Our friends at MTB Hawaii are the perfect resource for scouting out and planning your trail rides, but here are some of our favorites.
Peacock Kealia Loop
Beginning at Dillingham Airfield at the northwest tip of the island, this trail can be done as a 14 or 21-mile loop. It features intense climbs, some paved sections, and the steepest, gnarliest downhill on the island. For advanced riders, this is a favorite of seasoned bikers.
A 3-mile out & back trail, this one is all about the workout. Climb 1.5 miles to a scenic overlook, and then prepare yourself for the steep descent and multiple switchbacks that will have you literally on the edge of your seat.
Maunawili Ditch Trail
A rigorous and difficult ride, this 19-mile trail features 9 miles of switchbacks and single-track trails high in the Ko`olaus overlooking Kailua.
The Old Pali Road
Set out on the ghost of highways past and explore the old road that used to be the “shortcut” from windward O`ahu to Honolulu. Replaced decades ago by the new elevated highway, these 10 miles of “highway” wind over ridges while clinging tightly to the sharp towers of the Ko`olau’s peaks. A moderate ride, part of the fun is admiring how the jungle is reclaiming this “civilization” that man forgot, though the lofty views of the mountains and the Windward coast are not too shabby either.
If you are new to mountain biking Oahu, don’t enjoy lofty heights and steep descents, or if you’re traveling with younger trail-bike enthusiasts we recommend the North Shore Bike Park. While the access requires an admission fee, it has well groomed, hand-crafted trails covering 2 miles and is perfect for beginners.
Get Your Gear Here
Obviously bringing your own bike to O`ahu presents certain logistical challenges. The Bike Shop Hawaii, Hawaii Rides in Wahiawa, and North Shore Bike Rentals all have your rental needs covered and are well situated for exploring the North Shore’s abundant trail offerings. Other rental shops have beach and street bikes available, and there are miles of quiet roads and walking/biking trails around Beach Villas Hawaii’s rental properties in Ko Olina. So whether you are craving an adrenaline rush or a leisurely cruise around the beach, check out all of O`ahu’s mountain biking Hawaii options and plan your next Oahu vacation today!