Monday, August 25, 2008

The Road to Hana


A trip to Maui would not be complete without driving the road to Hana. It's the journey, not the destination...as they say. There are several things to keep in mind before starting your journey to Hana.

Start early
Fill your gas tank (no gas stations)
Bring food (no place to eat until you get to Hana)
Stop often
Take a lot of photographs
The road is poor, narrow and winding
The ground is muddy
Rocks are slippery
Steep cliffs are dangerous
You'll see amazing natural sights
You don't want to be driving it at night



The trip is well marketed. There's even a CD to listen to on your way, and a place to buy boxed lunches before you go. They say you can get to Hana in 2 hours if you rush...5 hours if you stop a lot and really take your time.


Well...what a memorable trip it was......617 turns and 56 one-lane bridges. Here's how it all began...

I wanted to be on the road by 6 am. It's never easy getting everyone out the door. We started our trip at 7:15am, after stopping at Burger King for a quick breakfast and buying a Rubik's cube(don't ask) at Walmart. I suggested the bug repellent be purchased too, but someone felt it wasn't necessary.


Even though we didn't leave when I wanted to, this was early compared to the recommended 8:30 leave time.


Our first stop was the town of Pa'ia...the last "commercial center" before you get to Hana. It's here where we filled our gas tank and purchased our boxed lunches. This town was a favorite hippie residence in the sixties.

We stopped at the general store for some mosquito spray (I insisted)..but they didn't carry it..."any bites we'd get couldn't be worse than cancer-causing chemicals." We decided to forge ahead, rather than turn back.
The Picnic Company is where we got our boxed lunches.


We took a few minutes to check out Ho'okipa beach (famous to surfers and windsurfers since it's known for huge waves) There were cars packed in the pull-off...no room, so we looked at it through the car windows. It was too early to see any surfers. We figured we'd check it out on the return trip home.
Here's the official Hana Highway marker. Sitting on top is Devil Squirrel. We take him on all our trips and photograph him on special landmarks.

All along the 52 mile road to Hana, there are stands selling fruit, banana bread and smoothies.




Our next "official"stop was Twin Falls. There are no road signs indicating where you are. You just have to look for landmarks and cars pulled off to the side. The hotel gave us an information sheet indicating recommended stops...and we had the CD. Even with this information, finding everything was hard.

There's about a half mile (so they say) hike before the falls. Along the way, there are wonderful flowers, trees and plants. In the picture below, my daughter has found a little hide-away.

Here's a little waterfall...
It was hot walking the trail. Finally, we got to the sign we were looking for...


After a short walk, we came to an old canal system. We had to take a few steps down...
We could hear the rush of water, but couldn't get an unobstructed view. That required a walk through the water. Too bad we didn't have water shoes. (that wasn't on the before you go list) The rocks were slippery. My son zipped through ahead of everyone. I guess my feet are sensitive because it took me awhile. Most people went barefoot...slowly.
But once we got there...look at the amazing view...


You can see my son behind the waterfall. It was like a scene from a movie...magical...

So much for the french pedicure my daughter got the day before...


This first little side trip took us two hours. We realized it was going to take a lot longer than five hours. We had only just begun...we had no idea what was ahead of us....
...to be continued...


2 comments:

Lola Enchanted said...

Wow, looks like a wonderful place! You look so lovely in the water with the red dress up alittle! Very pretty! Looks like a scene from a movie!!!~

Enjoy your Tuesday!

Elizabeth said...

Oh..if only I were that young again. We look a little alike...but that's my 16 year old daughter with the pretty dress.

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