Tuesday, April 28, 2015

that's a wrap

It's time to finally put the finishing touches on my Maui vacation which ended on April 18th.  I walked the beach a little later that last morning.  The lighting was different, I guess because the sun was a little higher up, but it was shaping up to be just another day in paradise for others.  I made sure to take in every last second of beauty before heading up to my condo to clean up and pack up.
All they ask upon leaving is that you just make sure all the doors are locked.  I sauntered over to my lanai doors for one last look at that view I had.  This morning's visitors were the breast cancer survivor rowers.   I saw their pink canoe down the beach each day but this was the first time I saw them rowing.  It was a lovely sight that pink in the blue.  
Good-bye Maui!

I made up this map showing the lay of the land and the ground I covered.  
a few of my favourite photos
Everyone I talked to about this magical Island prior to my arrival there, said there is something about this place.  I now know what you meant! 

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Reality Check

Hiking the Barrier Beach / Jewell Pass / Barrier Lookout / Prairie View Loop today was as ideal as it gets for checking back into reality hiking.  Maui seems like a dream now and I only have magical memories of hiking on that Island.  Today seemed magical in a whole different way.   All the things that go into making a fine time were at the forefront.  We started with a cool calm morning walking the shoreline of Barrier Lake.  I call it Barrier Beach.  Guess I am not fully back yet!
We planned on completing the loop in a counter clockwise direction but when we arrived, we quickly changed our mind and decided to enjoy the long stretch of wide open first before heading into the trees.  I knew those reflections would not be there mid afternoon.  Along the way, I had my first crocus sighting of the season.  My friends have already viewed many in the past weeks so were not as enamoured as I.   Those dew drops would not be there mid afternoon, so another good reason to be going clockwise.  
This was my first time on the Jewell Pass Trail since it had been reconstructed after that June Flood.  Long stretches were icy and slippery, no problem though for us, we of course had our microspikes with us.  It is that time of year when you don't leave those at home.  We reached the rocky outcrop Prairie View lookout spot.  We only saw a solo hiker along the Jewell Pass Trail but there loads of folks at this lookout. 
We quickly bypassed here in favour of making our way right up to the Lookout for lunch.  It was nearing noon and we were hungry.  Hungry for a more quiet place too.  We shared the summit with thankfully only a handful of summiteers.  This is my summit shot.  I am not ready to give up the flower in the hair thing.
Mr Lookout was home so no venturing up onto his veranda.  
The views were spectacular.  Right now at this point in time, I am loving my reality.  The sun was warm, there was no wind, I could see forever and my favourite kind of clouds even greeted us.  
enjoying our lunch time view
Our summit visit lasted about 45 minutes.  We didn't want to leave but the reality of it is, we had to get on with our day.  More folks were arriving and it was their turn to enjoy what we just did.  That picnic table was just vacated by two gentlemen and their best friends.  Now that's a prime dining spot.
On the way down, we took time to enjoy the views from that rocky outcrop.  
Barrier Lake looked like a jewel.   
At the end of our hike, I took a moment to admire the surroundings and was reminded of the beauty in my mountain playground.  Spring is here, the snow is melting, and I am excited for the upcoming hiking season.  I do love this kind of reality, it makes me feel like I am "on top of the world"!

Friday, April 17, 2015

Kapalua Coastal Hiking

I can't help but wake early and get on with just another day in paradise.  I woke to a sky full of stars and then when the sky began to lighten and the sun come up, I said Good Morning Maui.  With a big pink cloud casting a pink reflection into the ocean, this mixed in with the palm trees, yup I thought just another day in paradise.
As my Kona coffee was brewing, I glanced over a map that has been my go to map, and discovered there is a walk/hike called the Kapalua Coastal Trail.  Perfect, this takes me to an area I only previously drove by.  I parked at DT Flemming Beach and began from there.  Not five minutes after I began, it poured for a few minutes and then cleared just as quickly, offering up this view.
Then about 15 minutes later it poured again for a few minutes and I thought O.K. does this mean another rainbow!  Sure enough!  One lady told me this happens all the time in Kapalua.  That was it for today though. 
I went from hiking on a paved path, to a boardwalk, then onto a dirt trail that meandered through a lava rock section. It was refreshing to stand on the rock (at a safe distance) and feel the mist from the crashing waves.  
                                                     This is a short detour off the main trail.
                                         Just like yesterday, a trail that leads me right out to the ocean.
                                                                  The rock formations are amazing. 
Parts of the trail pass by luxurious looking resorts. The grounds are perfectly manicured, the views are exquisite.  I still prefer my own little piece of paradise down the road. 
                                                                        just another view
So many colours here that just pop.  That rocky outcrop on the right is where folks cliff dive. I watched two guys do back flips and somersaults into the ocean below.
The trail goes from grassy and green, to bouldery and brown.  The rocks are jagged and one section is called Dragon's Teeth.  
                                                                           crashing waves
I came to an inlet where movement in the water caught my eye.  There were two sea turtles, what looked like were a mother and its baby.  I watched for close to thirty minutes. They were rather fascinating and seemed to be putting on a show.
                                                         This was the inlet where they were.  
                                                                  just another gorgeous view
This was an out and back trip.  As I was nearing the end, I took one last look up the boardwalk before heading down through the Ritz Charlton property then back to my car.  I covered about eight kilometres and every inch of the way was breathtaking.  I truly enjoyed this coastal hike and savoured every second.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Hiking Waihee

This morning my tree watches over a solo kayaker.  I wanted to be down there at eye level but after what happened yesterday, I thought it best to save that until later in the afternoon.  I wanted to accomplish hiking the Waihe'e Ridge Trail today. It was one of the most beautiful mornings yet here.  I had to remind myself to live every moment and don't ever take this for granted.             
I was out the door early and was the second car in the parking lot.  They say go early before the clouds roll in.  I can see this area from my dwelling and it always looks covered in cloud.  Everything was straight forward from getting to the trailhead to following the trail.  I realized as the morning went on, this is a popular place.
It is straight up right away, which means views right away.  This pictured played a trick on me when I first looked at it. That is the ocean down below with clouds reflecting in it.  Upcountry is to the right.
                                                           It looks like I came right from the ocean.
This place makes me think of a rainforest.  It is so lush and green, the humidity level skyrocketed and the trail was damp with mud in sections.  I enjoyed the blue sky while I had it, because I knew I would be hiking up into clouds.
                                                                color along the way
                                                                      Yes, those are stairs.  
The summit is up there somewhere.  This section was a golden mud-fest.  I was thankful I had my big boots on and my poles with me. Even with those I was still slipping.
                                                                      the valley below

I made it to the summit.  It had signs, a picnic table, a fence but no scenery.  I was prepared for this and knew I better bring some color.  I didn't stay long. As I was leaving folks started to come along.
                                                              view on the way down
                                         I don't know what this flower is but it reminded me of a lei.  
I can see why this hike is popular, the scenery is splendid.  The ocean now looks so blue and the cloud is just hanging over it.
                                                                       lovely view
That's the last of the trail straight ahead that will lead me to the ocean, just kidding, it will take me back to the trailhead.
                 The side of the trail is lined with a fence.  I like how it is framing Haleakala.
I will be taking some of Waihe'e home with me.  It was the perfect length of hike for this hot humid weather.  It is not a far drive to home, and I will still have time to walk my beach. 

I brought my GPS along for my beach walk because I was curious how far I have been walking in the sand.  This afternoon I covered just short of 4 kilometres.  Today the beach looked worn from the weather.  There was a high surf advisory out for last night and it washed away some of the sand making for a short walking section and then about a foot drop off.  The beach was fine at the Kihei Canoe Club.
This is the washed away section.  Even today the waves were coming quite close to the grassy areas. This windsurfer came in for a wild beach landing. You can see the white streak he made.  I really enjoy Sugar Beach, it's quiet and there is a long long stretch to walk. Time for dinner and then to come back out for the sunset show.
This view is facing in the same direction as the photo above, I am just not as far along on the beach.  The evening shades are so different and I love how the pink reflects in the damp sand.
A short few minutes later and now facing in the opposite direction the evening is golden.  This time I relaxed in the lawn chair on the edge of the beach and watched the performance right to the end.
                                                               Good Night Maui!