Our next flight brought us four more time zones closer to home. We flew to Honolulu, spent the night and stayed at a timeshare condo in Kehei on Maui. It was an extremely busy, fun filled week, during which Nan finished a paper submission in her spare time.
We arrived on Saturday and spent the rest of the day familiarizing ourselves with our surroundings and stocking up for the week.
We drove to Lahaina on Sunday. It has picturesque timber-frame buildings, and spectacular views across to the islands of Lanai and Molokai. The tree on the right (yes, that's one tree!) is in front of the old court house. A crafts market is held under it daily.
We also drove up the Ioa Valley which is nestled in between two volcanic peaks on the western half of the island. It is definitely rain forest, although we were there after a period of drought. So, what looks like a waterfall above, is actually dry!
The main attraction at the end of the valley is Ioa's needle which is one of the symbol's of Mauii. This is what you see as you hike the nearby trail.
This is about as close as you can get to it from the trail.
Haleakala is the name of the volcano on the right half of Maui. We took an early morning tour up there. You can see some of the many centers of eruption above.
This silver brush is an endangered species that grow on the upper regions of Haleakala. It once covered the area and attempts are being made to make that so again.
Our main goal in making this trip was to bicycle down the volcano (26 miles). It was fun, scary and a bit tiring but we're glad we did it. Would we do it again? Not sure.
On Tuesday we went hiking with "Uncle Ron", the activities director for our condo. He took us to a beach by the last lava flow on Mauii.
We saw the remains of the King's Highway which ran from here to Hana and was walked in bare feet over the stamped down lava.
The beach on the right is a mixture of lava and coral.
The ruins of one of the buildings from an ancient Hawaiian village are shown on the right. It was here that we learned that it is very bad luck to take chunks of lava away from where they fell and that the postal service in Hawaii receives many tons of returned stones that people have taken away as souvenirs and then felt compelled to return. Uncle Ron recounted his own personal experience with bad luck (he cut off his wife's finger! - Yow!) that was tied into removing a stone from these very ruins.
We took a boat ride on Wednesday to do some snorkeling. It was a lovely day. We did get to see some sea turtles. Walt's ready to go in his lycraman outfit. :-)
We did our last tour on Thursday, a full day tour around Haleakala on a narrow almost single-laned two-way road, full of twisty and windy cliffside perchs. The tour bus made several stops along the way for us to photograph the views, such as the typical Hawaiian waterfall.
You can get some kind of idea about how high the road is from these two shots. See it nessled on the edge in the left shot?
We also visited Lindbergh's grave.
This flower is known as the South African tulip.
There were stops at wild lava based beaches. One even had black sand.
And, we stopped at the Seven Pools where we could take a dip if we wanted too. These shots are from the bridge, looking downstream on the left and upstreem on the right.
Hawaii is famous for their flowers. Here we see plumeria on the left and protea, imported from South Africa, on the right.
And what would be a Hawaiian trip without a sunset? This was taken from the beach across the street from our hotel.
Back to Part II of the Final Episode - Australia's east coast
On to Part IV of the Final Episode - San Francisco
Schaller's and Walt Bankes' Sabbatical Page