Day 24 – Hiking King’s Highway

On Maui’s southern coastline you will find the King’s Highway. Hiking through the lava fields and past the ancient Hawaiian stonewalls, you cannot help but feel the power of the Hawaiian Goddess Pele and the sacredness of these amazing islands.

If you are new to my blog, turn up the volume & enjoy the music. Also, if you are unable to view the video here, click on –

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p2ZtfbS85Ss&feature=youtu.be

It was quite windy and nearly impossible to hold the camera steady for videoing. I hope you are able to get a sense of the uniqueness of this side of the island.

King’s Highway is also known as Hoapili Trail. You need good shoes and plenty of water. It took us about 2.5 hours round trip. There are actually 2 trails; the one we took today—along the ocean—and another one, just a short distance away; both of them are “paved” with lava rock. Steve wore hiking boots and was fine—I had on tennis shoes and my ankles got a workout.

At this rock wall you have the option of staying on the coastal trail or heading over to what I consider to be the rockier trail.

 

This is the second time we’ve made the trek and this time it was much easier. Years ago we hiked the upper trail and were lugging backpacks with food, sleeping bags and tents. (It was a work out!)

 

Some friends did the hike several weeks ago and saw quite a few whales. As far I know there weren’t any today, but then again, I was so busy looking at the trail, watching my every step, they may have been breaching and I just missed it all.

At the end of the trail you come upon anchialine ponds (which were mostly dried up right now). Also there were a number of coral rock walls that some kind people built as wind blocks; which we greatly appreciated! (They were the perfect spot to enjoy the view of the sea–on the video there is a photo of Steve sitting in one of them.)

It was great visiting this side of the island again; and it was the perfect day for it with high clouds and a nice wind.

WOW, couldn’t believe all the large homes that now line the narrow road leading up to La Perouse Bay.

For those of you interested in doing the hike, just get on the Kihei Road and keep going, past the Makena Golf Course, past Makena State Park, and past all the food carts. When you can’t go any farther—you’ll see the sign for the Makena Stable Trail Rides on your left and shortly past it the road ends.

Just down the road is the parking for King’s Highway

 

Turn right at the bend in the road and you’ll see where you can park. To the left is the trailhead. Since I keep my postings pretty short and sweet, here are two sites you can click on for a little more information.

 

http://www.mauimapp.com/information/hiking.htm  – scroll down to Hoapili Trail     http://www.ronhebron.com/hawaii/maui-hikes.html  – scroll down to La Perouse

Thank you to Steven for suggesting the music that is on the video.

 

Day 21 – Hosmer Grove, Haleakala Crater, Maui Hawaii

The past couple of week’s life has been quite hectic for us. It was hard to get away for a full day of fun, so Steven and I opted to head up Kula Highway to Haleakala Crater; stopping at the 7,000 foot (2133.6 meters) elevation for sunset and to hike Hosmer Grove.

Like many other things that we are doing this year, Steven and I had never hiked Hosmer Grove; we found the trail to be very short, as well as very beautiful. And it was great feeling a real chill in the air; in Jan/Feb the average high is 59 degrees F (15 Celsius) & the low 41 degrees F (5 Celsius). (Yes, I think even non Haiku-ers would think the air was nippy!)

Right after you drive past the Haleakala Crater ranger station, on your left is the road that leads to Hosmer Grove. At the parking lot you’ll find restrooms and a small camping area. The trail can be a bit precarious but in general the hike is easy. If you walk really, really, slowly it may take you 25 minutes, and that includes taking time to read the signs that are posted describing the assorted trees and wildlife.

I never thought I’d become a bird watcher…

Trust me, this is like the bird on the sign. It has a beautiful song!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Go to the left for a little bit of a longer walk – going to the right takes you back towards the parking lot.

 

When you come to the broken sign (see photo), you can take the trail to the left, which will loop back around to the Hosmer trail…giving you a bit more exercise.

 

 

 

A park ranger told me that you can also hike the 2.5-mile supply trail, which starts at the first parking lot you come to, and it will connect you to the Halemauu Trail, which leads all the way up the side of the crater to the Halemauu Trail parking lot–now that would be a hike. (Next time!)

Another option:  Up Halemauu Trail towards the Switchback Trail

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hosmer Grove campsite and trail head. 

By the way, the sunset was fabulous!

Maui Revealed says Hosmer Grove is a great place to see Moonbows, when the moon is full and there is a light mist in the air.  They are an amazing sight; we’ll definitely bundle up one evening and head back in hopes of seeing one.

 

If you are not into hiking, but enjoy nature and are sure footed (like I said, the trail can be precarious), you’ll enjoy the short hike at Hosmer Grove.

For more info on Hosmer Grove and the other crater hikes go to –

http://www.haleakala.national-park.com/hike.htm

http://www.nps.gov/hale/index.htm

Read more: http://www.gorp.com/parks-guide/hosmer-grove-outdoor-pp2-guide-cid402397.html#ixzz1kLDjkIJK

I love the past paragraph on the above posted site, it is a good reminder that we must care for these islands…for this planet – We humans brought this struggle to Hawaii’s native life; we bear the responsibility for preserving the unique ecosystems remaining within our National Parks. With deforestation of the world’s rainforests continuing at one acre per minute, we hold a vital piece of earth’s natural heritage.

Aloha, see you next Thursday!