Today we decided to make a big day of it and do a huge road trip around the island. We started out at 4:00 a.m., with the intent of driving to the summit of Haleakala, the main volcano on Maui. We thought we were early enough, but the parking lot at the peak was still full (and the road closed) by the time we got there. Crazy. The weather didn't cooperate anyway - it was super cold (close to zero) and totally clouded over. The sun started to break through after we started our drive back down.
After the short stop at the summit, we worked our way back down the mountain. We then headed to the coast, and did the Road to Hana, in reverse. The Road to Hana is one of Maui's signature attractions. Most people do it in the opposite direction as we were, as the road near the base of the mountain is very rough, and most rental cars aren't allowed there. We had rented a Jeep, and thought it was worth the risk.
Our first big stop was at the Pools At Oheo Gulch in Haleakala National Park. Also called the Seven Sacred Pools, there is a beautiful series of waterfalls that flow into the ocean. At some times of year, the water flow is low and you can swim in the pools. It was not the case for us, as the water was raging, and they were closed for safety.
After checking out the pool for a bit, we were back on the road, for the short drive into Hana. It's a cute little town, but there's not a lot there (other than a very expensive hotel), so we had some lunch and continued on.
As described, the road from Hana back to the main part of the island is a twisty, turning highway full of hairpin turns, one lane bridges and locals that drive way too fast for what that road is. We made a number of stops to check out the scenery.
Just outside the town of Hana is Waianapanapa Black Sand Beach. As you might expect, the sand is black - really black.