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of the many highlights of our recent trip to Kauai & Maui (in
addition to getting married) was our trek to Hana, on the island of
Maui. The Road to Hana has long been immortalized in song and in
legend. While the road has seen some significant improvements since the
last time I was there over 20 years ago, it remains a scenic,
treacherous and breathtaking adventure.
80 miles from where we were staying in Kaanapali just north of Lahaina,
Hana Town lies some 52 miles south of the old plantation town of Pa'ia
- the last outpost for gas or food until Hana. That 52 miles is home to
some of the most beautiful scenery, lush tropical greenery, turquoise
ocean, brilliant flowers - not to mention 617 curves, 56 bridges (all
one lane) and hundreds of squeezils.
road reminds me a lot of my home in Colorado with it's narrow winding
roads, blind corners, distractingly beautiful scenery and crazy tourist
drivers. In spite of all the warnings, it appears that many people
consider the drive for its destination, not the journey itself. Each
confrontation with an oncoming driver is a challenge to be won, each
one lane bridge is one way - their way, the epitome of the ugly
American - and we're not even out of our own country! Trust me, you're
going on the Road to Hana for the road part, not the Hana part. Hana's
a nice little town but it's not what you're going there to see (no
offense to the Hanaians). Take your time.
with the top down and Brudda Israel Kamakawiwo'ole in the background,
it's easy to forget the rat race and just be in the moment - it's an
aloha thing. We did have a destination in mind so we didn't stop much
on the way down. You can stop every mile or so to see another
spectacular sight but we wanted to make it to Waimoku Falls, which is
another 8 - 10 miles of one lane road past Hana in the Haleakala
National Park. Even leaving at 8 in the morning and making no stops, we
didn't reach the park until after 11:00. From there it's a 2 mile hike
to Waimoku past the Seven Sacred Pools and numerous falls. The
trail is steep in places and winds over gnarled roots, mossy rocks,
past pillars of Banyan and through an amazing Bamboo Forrest that runs
for nearly 1/2 mile. The bamboo is as big around as your arm and spikes
30' - 40' in the air. It is so dense that it's almost dark on the path
and when the breeze blows through, the sound is like 10,000 drummers
doing rim shots. There's a track running through the bamboo because the
ground is so spongy from the regular rainfall and the fact that no
light gets in to dry it up.
the way you can pick wild sweet guava to munch on and the variety of
plants is incredible. Anthuriums and Orchids in every color of the
rainbow, Bird-of-Paradise, Red Ginger, the deeply scented Plumeria,
Pink & Rainbow Shower Trees and Hanging Lobster Claws, all
serving as home to a myriad of birds that emit everything from melodic
songs to bloodcurdling squarks.Â The sights, sounds and smells
are almost too vivid to be real. It's like a Disney ride except you
have to walk and sweat. It's so hyper-real you almost expect to peek
through the trail-side trees and see a painted backdrop with rainforest
sounds piped in and mechanical birds with brilliantly dyed plumage.
the Seven Sacred Pools, Waimoku Falls is a 400 foot tall tower of water
ranging from trickles to mist to rivulet across nearly 300 horizontal
feet of moss & fern covered wall . It is a refreshing end to an
arduous hike - as Lisa enjoyed one ofÂ the quieter pools. The
walk down was much easier even though we still faced an 8 mile drive on
1 lane road back to Hana. A quick burger and Pog at Hana Ranch and we
set our sights on the road home, arriving just at sunset.
heard from numerous people that they have avoided the Road to Hana
based on it's old reputation of danger outweighing the beauty. While
there was undoubtedly a time that was true, today the road is paved and
most of it is 2 lanes wide. As we were advised, I would also suggest
making a straight run to Hana in the morning - seeing Waimoku or the
Black Sand Beaches there and then taking your time coming back north.
It's a more leisurely trek that way and you won't be all wasted by the
time you hit Hana and then still have to fight your way back. Either
way, it's a day well spent and you will see scenery the likes you will
find nowhere else. A truly unforgettable trek.Â
Disclaimer: ActiveRain Corp. does not necessarily endorse the real estate agents, loan officers and brokers listed on this site. These real estate profiles, blogs and blog entries are provided here as a courtesy to our visitors to help them make an informed decision when buying or selling a house. ActiveRain Corp. takes no responsibility for the content in these profiles, that are written by the members of this community.