Olowalu Cultural Reserve, located at the base of West Maui Mountains, is much more than a place to view ancient petroglyphs.
Click here to view video on YouTube – http://youtu.be/givyXL-TAb4
Since last weeks posting, along with flash flood warnings state wide, Oahu had a tornado…yes, a tornado, as well as a waterspout over the ocean. It also had hale the size of large marbles and golf balls. Like the rest of the islands Maui is soaked to the bone, so we’ve postponed our hike until the trail has a chance to dry out. Maybe next week. I’ll be ready!
It actually worked out well, in that we are both tired this week (too much work), so instead of hiking we headed over to the one and only bookstore on island. Since Borders went belly-up, Barnes & Noble in Lahaina is it! It may not sound like a fun day off to all of you, but we love going to bookstores and now days it’s not very convenient. (Depending on traffic it can take up to an hour to get there from our house.)
Over the years, I’ve probably driven past the Olowalu General Store a thousand times, and 80% of those times I’ve flashed on the petroglyphs that are carved into the rocks a few meters off of the highway.
This week we finally took the time to stop and check them out, and learned that the reserve is not just set up to protect the petroglyphs (which unfortunately have been vandalized over the years).
Here is a quote from their website:
“Olowalu Cultural Reserve was founded in 1999 as a community based, non-profit organization with the purpose of supporting and promoting the revitalization of traditional Hawaiian culture by providing cultural and educational experiences for Hawaii residents and visitors alike. The centerpiece of this effort is the Olowalu Ahupua’a which consists of seventy-four acres of land running from the base of the West Maui mountains to the ocean at Olowalu, Maui. This land once held a thriving, sustainable native Hawaiian Village and as such is rich in historical resources including numerous significant archaeological and cultural sites. It has been set aside and designated as a Cultural Reserve for the purpose of a culturally sensitive “sanctuary” providing a glimpse into Hawaii’s past making it an ideal environment for programs aimed at restoring and revitalizing Hawaiian customs and practices.”
Please click on their site to learn more - http://www.olowaluculturalreserve.com/
There is a small parking lot near the Olowalu Reserve sign; from there it is a very short walk on a gravel road, to view the petroglyphs. As you saw on the video, there is a sign marking the area. You are no longer allowed to climb up and view them close-up, which makes it a bit difficult to see the smaller designs. (At times I wasn’t sure which were from 200 years ago, and which were created by the current day idiots that are oblivious of the gift their ancestor’s had left behind.)
If you want a bit more of a walk, I recommend that you park right off of the highway on the far side of the open-air market, or behind it—not directly in front of the Olowalu Grocery Store.
We were back on the road in a half an hour…but with a new awareness of the islands history.
By the way, at the bookstore we picked up The Hunger Games Trilogy. Already finished the first book and I see why it has been made into a movie.