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Maunawili Falls is a great place to swim and jump into the deep pool beneath the falls. The falls themselves are only about 35 feet (10 m) but only a small part can be seen from the rocks at the end of the pool. Many cliffs are available to jump into the pool ranging up to about 60 feet (18 m). Be aware however, that the bacteria Leptospirosis has been said to be lurking in these waters. The hike is about 2.6 miles (4.1 km) roundtrip with an elevation change of about 400 feet (121 m) and is fairly easy to follow. It does cross a stream several times but with little difficulty.
There are several signs telling you that you are bordering private property and I must say that this is impressive to me. In many places I've been before private homeowners do not allow access to these kinds of locations. This is one great exception. Please respect the rights of these homeowners and do not vandalize their property or venture off the trail to restricted areas.
Updated Mar 14, 2008
Leptospirosis is an extremely common bacteria that is typically found in fresh tropical waters which have been contaiminated by urine from infected animals. This infection has symptoms of high fever, severe headache, chills, muscle aches, and vomiting, and may include jaundice (yellow skin and eyes), red eyes, abdominal pain, diarrhea, or a rash.
The risk of acquiring Leptospirosis can be reduced by not swimming or coming into contact with contaminated water. Protective footwear may also be a good idea. If contracted, Leptospirosis is treated with antibiotics. Having typed all of this. I swam in the Muanawili falls pool and did not get a Leptospirosis infection.
Updated Mar 18, 2008