Day 52 – Blue Moon Crater Hike – Haleakala, Maui

A full/blue moon hike through Haleakala Crater. What a way to end my yearlong journey of learning to have fun!

Yep, that's where we're headed.

Yep, that’s where we’re headed.

 

Haleakala, Hawaiian for “house of the sun.”

 

 

 

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Kim and Wray - the beginning of the hike

Kim and Wray – the beginning of the hike

Driving up the crater we passed through a layer of clouds that were blanketing Kula, and into the sun, 10,000 feet above Maui.

Up top, the weather was perfect; the sky was clear, the colors from the setting sun were beautiful, and the rising full/blue moon was spectacular!

Happy to have experienced it!

We started our hike on the green dot and ended, it many hours later, on the red dot.

We started our hike on the green dot and ended, it many hours later, on the red dot.

Over the years I have hiked at Haleakala Crater many times; done day hikes, as well as staying at the cabins.

One time I started the hike at Switchback, then crawled up Sliding Sands…I fiercely do not recommend hiking that direction! (I know, who uses the word fiercely, but I really want to make a point.)

 

Blue Moon Rising

Blue Moon Rising

 

And now, I have finally done my once in a blue moon nighttime hike 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

Kim, Steven, Wray, Tanya, Jamie, Noah - at the beginning of our journey.

Kim, Steven, Wray, Tanya, Jamie, Noah – at the beginning of our journey.

 

Our trekking tribe consisted of Steven and me, Tanya and Jamie, Kim and Noah.

We started at 4:30 P.M.

 

About an hour later we bumped into Andy from Edmonton (unfortunately for him, he hadn’t read this blog and he was hiking up Sliding Sands);

Tanya, Jamie & Steven, starting down Sliding Sands

Tanya, Jamie & Steven, starting down Sliding Sands

he’d run out of water 5+ miles earlier, and was grateful to learn that Tanya had 100oz of water with her and she was more than willing to give some away, versus carrying it through the crater.

 

 

 

 

 

Tanya, and Andy from Edmonton

Tanya, and Andy from Edmonton

Our hiking companions were the best! We had the perfect mixture of laughter (very necessary on a hike like this) & silence (also necessary).

 

Steven and had never seen so many Silverswords.

Steven and had never seen so many Silverswords.

 

 

 

As you can see, the Silversword plants, found only in Hawai’i, were abundant.

 

 

 

KimRocks

 

We stopped at the bottom of Sliding Sands for a snack, then again at Holua cabin—where we connected with a group of hikers (they were staying the night at the cabin, hence the name cabin dwellers), and like Andy from Edmonton, they looked like they’d been dropped into the crater to do an ad for the Patagonia catalog; all very nice people, and all very beautiful. (Click the photo & see for yourself. Seriously, they were stunning; originating from Fiji, Australia, Delaware and Haiku.)

Cabin Dwellers

Cabin Dwellers

 

Click on the photos to enlarge.

 

Had dinner...time to head up Switch Back

Had dinner…time to head up Switch Back

By the time we reached the bottom of Switchback, it was going on 10:00 P.M., about our bedtime.

 

 

We watched as 15 year-old Noah (15 years-old, just wanted to stress that point in self-defense) practically jogged up the hill, with his mom, Kim, close behind; while the rest of us were ready to lie down on the trail and sleep, until the beautiful cabin dwellers came by to wake us on their climb out the next morning.

 

To bruise our tired egos a bit more, a couple that sounded British came bounding past us; they’d started hiking from Sliding Sands at 7:00 P.M. (if you recall, I posted that we started at 4:30 P.M.); oddly enough, they looked like models too—but I was too tired to take their photo.

Several hours later, Tanya, Jamie, Steven and your’s truly, dragged our bodies to the parking lot, where we found Kim and Noah, wrapped in blankets that we’d left in the truck, shivering, waiting for our arrival.

Noah & Kim tucked into the back of the truck.

Noah & Kim tucked into the back of the truck.

Kim said she wasn’t even sure if it was Steven’s truck, but they didn’t care, it was the only one with blankets and they were cold.

Online the temp said the floor of the crater was 49 degrees, and up top, where Kim and Noah had to wait…forever…it was in the high 30’s.

 

The end of not only a long day, but of my yearlong journey of learning to have fun...and I did :)

The end of not only a long day, but of my yearlong journey of learning to have fun…and I did 🙂

 

Right now, in this moment, Steven and I do not feel we will be making a trek through the crater again.

Over the years, we have done it enough times, and there are other hikes, other places we’d like to experience. Time will tell.

But, if you are up for it, it’s a spectacular hike, and we highly recommend it.

It took us two days to recover from all the fun that we had. Now I can walk up and down our stairs without my calves rebelling.

So, this is it…the end of my yearlong journey. If I never have a day of fun again, at least I know that I’d taken the time to do almost everything on Maui that I’d been missing out on all of these years.

AfterDanceUs

I want to thank Kim, Noah, Tanya, and Jamie for making our trek through the crater so enjoyable; it’s always nice to share the pain with people that are willing to laugh their way through it.

Next week there will be one more posting…just when you thought you were rid of me :)

Until then, Aloha Nui Loa

 

 

DAY 41 – Hiking in Haiku

Happy Summer Solstice!

We were planning on going to the Father’s Day Classic Car show, but it was canceled this year. Then we were going to hike in the bamboo forest, but when we first headed-out the weather appeared to be threatening rain any minute and the winds were strong, so we opted to drive 6 minutes from our house and trespass onto private property and go for a hike. (Yeah, I know…not cool, but no one lives there.) Apparently Steven has dreamed of purchasing this land for sometime and wanted to check it out.

View heading up the hill we were hiking.

View heading up the hill we were hiking.

Starting from the gate, which is on Hana Hwy, the road goes up and up and up, starting at the 50-foot elevation, to about 800 feet. There are spots where you have great views of the ocean as well as Haleakala; but due to the high cloud cover, the sky and sea look pretty gray on the video. On our way back down the hill, the skies began to clear.

 

Round trip it took us 2.5 hours. Just the right amount of moving around for an otherwise lazy day. Yes, we had a lazy day! Now this is truly a miracle, and the prefect Father’s Day gift for Steven…and I got to enjoy the rest of the lackadaisical day too …yeah!

Hala Trees - a.k.a. Tourist Pineapple Trees (pineapples don't grow in trees) - a.k.a. Dr. Seuss Trees  - to learn more about these trees, click HERE

Hala Trees – a.k.a. Tourist Pineapple Trees (pineapples don’t grow in trees) – a.k.a. Dr. Seuss Trees – to learn more about these trees, click HERE

Afterwards we were planning on going to see the movie Men In Black, but I didn’t have the heart to wake Steven from his well deserved nap. Maybe on another day.

As far as Steven’s dream of someday purchasing the land. I really don’t think I’m ready to own 100 acres. After hiking it, I don’t think he is either.

To learn more about the Hala Tree, click on this link – HALA TREE INFO

Day 36 – Makawao Forest Reserve


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Mark & Rayne

Mark & Rayne

Had been planning on hiking through the bamboo forest to several waterfalls, but the weather wasn’t cooperating, so we followed the sun upcountry to the Makawao Forest Reserve to hike the Kahakapao West Loop Trail (approx 6 miles), with our friends Rayne & Mark.

 

 

Trails are very well marked

Trails are very well marked

This is the first time I’ve ever hiked in the reserve; though, last fall, this is where I went horseback riding– on the East Loop, with my friend Karin.arrowCU

 

 

 

 

It’s a beautiful place to hike; a slow steady climb up; Eucalyptus, Tropical Ash and Cook Pine trees surround you. Very peaceful.

 

 

 

vista

Only one area with a view, and even that you have to walk off the trail to enjoy.

We headed up in the late afternoon, so the temperature was perfect.

 

Hmmm, they said they were having fun

Hmmm, they said they were having fun

On the way back to rainy Haiku, we were greeted by a magnificent rainbow—from the photo I took, you couldn’t tell how dynamic it was, & I opted not to post it; so you’ll have to use your imagination.

If all goes well, next week I’ll be riding a bike…. yeah, it’s been years!

For more info on the Forest Reserve, click HERE

 

Day 35 – Hiking Upcountry…on private land

Yes, it is private land, 6,000 feet up in elevation and not open to the public, but fortunately for me, my friend Kathy has access to it, so along with her two dogs, Lilly and Picasso, we headed up late one afternoon.

Hike all the way up the hill, and beyond.

Hike all the way up the hill, and beyond.

If unable to view video, click HERE

 

We were hoping for a grand sunset, but as you can see from the photos, the clouds settled in, which held a beauty all its own.

 

It was a lovely hike; ended up needing the hooded sweatshirt I took with. The cabins are from a time long ago, though they are still used as hunting cabins. What a great place to hideout and write! (I can dream.)

cabin

Sorry I can’t tell you where it is, but there are so many other wonderful places to hike on the island that I’m sure missing out on this one will be all right with everyone.

It was mellow and peaceful and reminded me of something I’d read by Maui’s slam poet, Kealoha (translation: “The Love”), about the need for adults to incorporate recess & playing back into their lives. In fact the article was so moving to me that I went online and sent him an email, thanking him for his inspiring words. For more about him, here is a link to his website, http://www.kealohapoetry.com

Kealoha is an internationally acclaimed poet and storyteller who has performed throughout the world — from the White House to the `Iolani Palace, from Brazil to Switzerland. 

W+dogs2As I write this weeks posting, it is my wish that my weekly outings are encourage others to go out and have fun…do not just live vicariously through me. Take the time for recess, like you did when you were a kid. It doesn’t have to be a daylong event, just jump around, swing your arms in the air and smile from deep inside.

Until next week ~ Aloha