Up North near Honokaa, this small, technical, all mountain trail system will put a smile on your face.
Upon arriving at Kalopa you'll find plenty of parking. The trail head is one of the most well maintained I've seen. Their are organized log cabins and camp grounds, restrooms and well marked parking areas. It's also heavily wooded with a definite tropical Hawaii vibe.
The basic route is to take the 'Jeep Road' straight up the middle to the top. Although the trail is called Jeep Road, it's far from it. Expect a good technical climb to the top. Once at the top you may choose to ride either the left or right trails (facing the posted signs). Both take you back to the bottom. Left is more steep and technical. It's a slower riding trail. Heading right takes you to a fun, flowy singletrack back to the bottom. I enjoyed both the right and left sides a great deal but if I was pressed for time and could only ride one, I'd go right!
Honestly I could ride these trails all day long and never get bored. On Oahu there is a tendency to make everything to easy. If folks can't easily ride over something, it gets removed. What happens is that over time trails become stale. Not so on the Big Island. If a tree falls down at Kalopa, they build a bridge over it or at the least throw some logs in front of it. I don't think anybody has ever removed a root :) Does this make it more technical? Absolutely. But it also makes it more fun. Newer riders can slow down a bit to tackle the tricky parts while more advanced riders can speed up and hone their skills. As you progress and get better the trail doesn't get boring, it gets more interesting!
Hit this place up if you get the chance.
Clicking on the link above you bring you to Google Maps where directions to the trail are plotted in from Honolulu Airport.
Download the GPX file and use your favorite software to upload trail data to your GPS. Right click on the link and select "Save Link As..." in order to download it.