After a quite eventful lunch break, we continued our adventure with our first afternoon stop at Wai’anapanapa State Park just outside of Hana. The waves were rough as they crashed into the lava rocks and washed across the black sand beach.
There is a small lava tube and an uphill hike to explore.
The view from the trail was awesome.
We could have spent much more time at the beach, but the Road beckoned us to continue the adventure. On the way out of the beach area, we noticed a furry friend perched high above us in the bramble on a cliff.
The next stop to note on our adventure was probably the tallest waterfall we had seen all day.
The trip continued through Haleakala National Park. We didn’t go to the crater this time, but know that “The Trip to the Sun” is not for the faint of heart, as we had spiraled the 10,000 feet to the summit on a narrow road that encircled the crater on a prior trip to Maui and were rewarded with other worldly views and an incredible sunset into the clouds below us. One of the interesting things from the road was how the landscape changed from rain forest, to a forest that looked quite “Missouri-like” to a scrub desert in a relatively short amount of time as we went around the crater.
However, the view from below the crater is quite lovely, with the rock beach extending towards the never ending expanse of blue Pacific.
We had always heard that the road beyond Hana was very rough, but we found, for the most part, that it was very much like the Road to Hana. There was dirt and gravel at times and there were definitely some hairpin “don’t look down” kinds of curves with a mountain on one side (that required the side mirror to be folded in to protect it) and a steep drop to the ocean on the other. But, some of the road looked like this:
We ended up in Kula, where we had to pay to use an outhouse, cows were causing a traffic jam and we saw beautiful rainbows from a very windy overlook.
There it is! The end of the rainbow. And it’s in Maui. Are you surprised?
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