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Haleakala and other Maui hiking

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Haleakala and other Maui hiking

Postby DurangoJenn » Sun Mar 10, 2013 9:12 am

We're headed to Maui at the beginning of April and I'm looking for opinions about the best day hiking in Haleakala (planning to spend a day there) and anywhere else on Maui. I appreciate any suggestions and advice. Thanks.

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Re: Haleakala and other Maui hiking

Postby RockyMountainMustang » Sun Mar 10, 2013 11:41 am

Spend two days in Haleakala - it's the best way to see the park and avoid the crowds, you'll be glad you turned it into a 2 day trip.

For best tropical experience in the park, I recommend reserving a Waikamoi Cloud Forest Hike with the ranger station in advance. I think they only do this hike on Sat or Sun

The best trail is a 2 day trip to take Sliding Sands to Paliku Cabin, and then take the Halemau'u Trail (plus the Silversword loop) up to the Halemau'u trailhead, then you kind of have to hitchhike back to your truck up the hill, or hitchhike back into town, depending on how you got there. They may have a bus system now, it was quite a few years ago that I was there. If you can't do two, you can still see a lot of volcanoe by cutting out the Paliku portion of this trip and just hiking out of Haelmau'u the shortest possible way. Bring LOTS of water, it it HOT in the crater, there's a lot of elevation change, and it's the dry season and there likely isn't much if any water available in the caldera.


Maui Imports 2 329 (600x800).jpg
Pele's Paintpot, along the Halemau'u Trail
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Paliku
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Silversword loop
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There's also loads of trail in the West Maui mtns (hills, but whatev), they are all gorgoeous. I would definitely recommend going to red sand beach, not your typical beach, but really cool looking.

All of the above trails tend to be substantially less crowded than all the main beaches that people flock to, but those beaches are also nice if you're into that.

If you are only in Maui ONE day, I'd pick the Waikamoi and red sand beach hikes, and just drive up to the top of crater and look down. It's a lot of sand and cinder cones, Waikamoi and red sand beach are more unique IMO.

Also, this is the dry season - Kipahulu is cool, especially walking thru the (invasive) bamboo forest, but the waterfalls are going to be relatively dry this time of year.
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RE: Haleakala and other Maui hiking

Postby RockyMountainMustang » Sun Mar 10, 2013 11:47 am

More pics because it only lets me do 3 attachments at a time :)

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Red Sand Beach
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Waikamoi Cloud Forest
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Cinder cones in the caldera
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Re: Haleakala and other Maui hiking

Postby Adventure Seeker » Sun Mar 10, 2013 11:55 am

If you drive the Road to Hana and take a full day to do the entire road, there are several places you can pull off and do some short hikes. I know there is one area when shortly after you are on the actual road that you can hike to a waterfall. It's a been a a number of years since I have done that so I can't tell you exactly where, but a guide book or CD should tell you. That's how I found out about it. If you do that drive, I would recommend doing the entire road and not turning around.

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Re: Haleakala and other Maui hiking

Postby edhaman » Sun Mar 10, 2013 12:41 pm

The last information I have is that the Haleakala crater cabins are reserved far in advance through a lottery system.

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Re: Haleakala and other Maui hiking

Postby rkalsbeek » Sun Mar 10, 2013 2:38 pm

Also, if you are willing to drive the Road to Hana (full day event, but I highly recommend it), then you should go to the Haleakala National Park Kipahulu. Because it is a national park, you'll need to pay an entrance fee. Once in the park you can hike down to the 7 Sacred Pools, really awesome but also gets crowded. Or, you can do what I did, which is hike the Pipwai Trail to the Waimoku Falls. A wonderful hike that takes you through all kinds of different biomes and you really experience the diversity of Hawaii. It is a long hike, and can be crowded, but worth it. I hiked with my Dad, Brother, and sister and we hiked first to the falls, then down to the Sacred Pools, which I think is a nice way of doing it as the crowds at the pools disperse and it gives you a chance to relax after the hike.
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Re: Haleakala and other Maui hiking

Postby gcoldewey » Sun Mar 10, 2013 7:30 pm

Don't forget that you will be around 10k feet at the summit of Haleakala. One of the coldest hikes of my life was down into the crater one March. 35 degrees and a steady rain...and me totally unprepared. I had a gore tex jacket but no insulating layers and no rain pants. Would love to do it again under better conditions or with the proper gear.

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Re: Haleakala and other Maui hiking

Postby DurangoJenn » Sun Mar 10, 2013 9:40 pm

Thanks for all of the info and suggestions so far. Beautiful photos, RockyMountainMustang. TFS. I would love to spend more time in the park, but I'm the hardcore hiker in the family and so it's probably going to be one day. I've got a national parks pass, just need to remember to pack it. Sure hope to get over to Hana. We've got a condo in Kihei for the week we're on Maui. Polipoli Spring State Recreation Area sounds like it's got some good hiking and a different feel to it than the rest of Hawaii, so want to try to get there, too. I might even see the beach one day. :wink:

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Re: Haleakala and other Maui hiking

Postby screeman57 » Sun Mar 10, 2013 9:55 pm

+1 on preparing for cold up there--it snowed on me overnight in the crater once.

If bringing backpacking supplies is a possibility, I'd suggest an overnight at Paliku. But don't stay in the cabin if you can help it (might not be an option anyway, as has already been suggested).
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Re: Haleakala and other Maui hiking

Postby powhound » Mon Mar 11, 2013 5:26 pm

+1 on the Pipiwai trail to Waimoku Falls. There are many other waterfalls/pools along this very jungley stream that the trail follows. Allow extra time to explore these. You will pass an area with Guava trees, by a fence line to your left. It caught our attention by the sweet smell in the air. Ah...fresh fruit to munch on while hiking! The trail goes by/under a Banyan tree that is so incredible it looks fake... like something at Disney. Some cool bridge crossings. A bamboo grove that is amazing. And then you are at the main event. A 400 ft. waterfall. All in two miles. Wow.

While on the road to Hana getting there, stop for a quick pit stop at Wai'anapanapa State Park. Check out the black sand beach and take a plunge in the freshwater caves (use mosquito repellant!) You can do this in an hour or so.

I have been to that side of the island three times. I would recommend leaving really early to get ahead of the daily parade of cars heading that way. Twice had to drive back in the dark which sucks after a full day when you are tired. The twisty beautiful road to Hana that you came in on, is no fun in the dark and rain with its never ending hairpin turns. Take the road around the south side of the island back. It was closed the last time I was there in 2007 due to earthquake damage but I think it is open again.

Also, invest in the guidebook "Maui Revealed". I've been to all four major islands using this series of books and have had many great adventures following their spot on recommendations.

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Re: Haleakala and other Maui hiking

Postby CCSARCAP » Tue Mar 12, 2013 5:42 am

Jenn,

My wife and I did several hikes on Haleakala this past fall along with the 23 mile bike ride down from the park entrance.
If you want a nice hike with no crowds :-) go past the visitor's center and then another 1/4 mile of a mile you will see a road on the left with a gate across it. The tar road changes to dirt quickly and there is no traffic on it. This is about 200 yards before the observatory. You do not see this on a map as it is just off park boundaries so it's not publicized. We hiked about 5.5 miles down the old road and were able to look into several volcanoes. During the total 11 miles we saw no one. That was the best part.

Bob
Bob

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Re: Haleakala and other Maui hiking

Postby kimo » Thu Mar 28, 2013 9:02 am

Over the years, I've hiked every marked trail in Haleakala NP except for the Pipiwai Trail in the Kipahulu district. There are some great suggestions in this thread. If you want to make a day of the crater from the top, I would offer two suggestions:

1. Drive to the summit house to enjoy sunrise. After sunrise, descend the Sliding Sands trail into the crater. Turn left at the cut-off to Holua, and then turn left again at the junction with the Halemau'u Trail. Take the Silversword Loop cutoff. Continue on the Halemau'u Trail to the Holua cabin. The trail then ascends the pali to the Halemau'u Trailhead. From there, you'll have to thumb a ride back up to the summit. Walking on the park road is kapu.

2. If you don't want mess with thumbing a ride, catch sunrise at the summit house, drive back down to the Halemau'u Trailhead, and then follow the trail down the pali to Holua. Continue to the Silversword Loop. From there, depending on your time and energy, you can wander around the cinder cones. Reascend the Halemau'u Trail to your vehicle at the trailhead.

I have a trip report up with a variation of that route. Unfortunately, my old photo host went belly up so the photo links are broken. If I can find time to edit the report and get the photos relinked in the next day or two, I'll let you know.

My top-of-the-list suggestion for a Maui hike would be to have your family drop you at the summit for sunrise. You would then hike down the Sliding Sands to Paliku. From Paliku, you would descend the Kaupo Trail to the ocean at Kaupo. The day hike covers 21 miles with over 10K vertical loss. You will hike through a variety of natural ecosystems. Your family will have to spend the day driving to Kaupo to pick you up. This is very doable in a day, but your family will have to be cooperative. This can also be done as an ascent from Kaupo with sunset on the summit. We did this hike up and down this past winter....I have a trip report about 50% complete but no way I can finish it before you leave in early April. My photos are here if you want to check 'em out:
http://kimoboeche.zenfolio.com/p859526497

Let me know if you want more information on the Haleakala "super hike." Aloha.

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