Hawaii 2012

Maui (Kahului)

1 July 2012

Maui Information

Local Map

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Photographs and Commentary
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Welcome to Maui. Maui is made up of two volcanoes separated by a valley thus giving the island the nickname,"Valley Island." Haleakala, the southern volcano, is over 10.000 feet in altitude. The island is one of the few places in the world where you can go from sea level to 10,000 feet in about and hour and a half. Like the rest of the Hawaiian Islands the weather and foliage are dependent on the Trade Winds. The eastern, windward side is mostly rain forest with lush foliage, while the western, leeward side is dry and has sparse vegetation.

The ship docked at about 7:20pm. We were off the ship and sitting in a 12 passenger van at 7:50 waiting to go on the Road to Hana. The trip name is kind of misleading in that we complete a loop of most of the southern half of the island (see map below). The road contains over 900 curves (depending on who is counting) and a large number of one lane bridges. It skirts the east (windward/rainy) rainy coast. The road runs through a rain forest with many beautiful waterfalls. In this time of year, which is the drier time, the waterfalls may not flow at all unless there has been some heavy rainfall in the mountains. According to our guide, it had been raining quite a bit in the past week so we got to see the falls with a good flow.

After we were on the road for two hours, the driver commented that something must be going on to the south of us because there was very little traffic coming north. At 10:30 we stopped at rest area near a waterfall that had pools below it for swimming. We were only going to stay here about 20 minutes. It wasn't long before we found out that a huge mahogany tree fell on the road about 20 minutes south of our stop and took down phone and cable lines. The phone company was out on the road trying to repair it and only allowed passenger cars to go through. The word that was filtering north from the site was that it would be a couple of hours before they could even start putting new poles up. As a result of that message, may of the other guides decided that the ywere not going to make it through today and headed back Kahului. Our guide called them wimps and decided we were going to have an early picnic lunch and wait for a while. About an hour and half later we decided to risk heading south. It turned out to be a good gamble as we were one of only three vans that made it through. Our guide made all the scheduled stops and we wound up getting back to the ship around 6pm, almost two hours behind schedule.

It was a good, albeit long, day.

Hana Road Scenes

Photo by Susie

Pele's Finger, a lava flow eroded by the sea

I was watching this guy climb up this outcropping in the water and thinking, "is he nuts." One slip and he will be shredded by the volcanic rock. Well, he proved that he is a bit nuts by jumping off... he survived.

The square ponds are Taro patches. The Taro root is a staple of Hawaiians. It is grown in flooded patches.


Bamboo Forest

Banyan Tree

The landscape on the west side of the island is barren compared to the wetter east side

Wild Pineapple growing on the side of the road

Photo by Susie

Charles Lindbergh is buried in a small church yard on the southwest coast of Maui

The Delay on the Road to Hana

Remnants of the huge Mahogany tree that fell on the Hana Road and delayed our trip

Telephone company crew clearing the trees and elevating the lines so some traffic could get through. Our van barely had the clearance and the lines dragged on the roof as we went under them.

This is the spot where we waited for the road to open. If you have to be stuck somewhere, why not here?
As Seen on the Road

A fence made out of old surfboards... recycling Hawaiian style

Susie and friends at the Uluplakua Country Store

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