Sunday, March 31, 2019

'Iao Valley

'Iao Valley

Here's a photoset from 'Iao Valley in the West Maui Mountains. It's kind of an amazing place: Lush green canyon, impossibly steep hills, clear rushing stream flowing through it. Apparently if you visit on a rainy day (which is most of the time), there are also a few waterfalls cascading down the sides of the canyon. The only disappointing thing is that there isn't much of a trail system here; there's a short paved path around a small garden of tropical plants, and 133 stairs to a small viewpoint with a view of 'Iao Needle.

Oh, and at the viewpoint there's a fence, a stern sign warning you to not go beyond this point, and an obvious trail leading off into the forest behind it. I've got a few photos of the sign but sadly didn't go any further; it's not that I'm intimidated by official signs, rules, and regulations, and I've hiked enough in Hawaii to know that these signs are usually just a CYA move on the state's part, because they're scared of getting sued if anyone gets hurt. I kind of wanted to hop the fence and keep going, but there were lots of other tourists there, and it seemed like most were there with small children (who seemed to enjoy running up and down the steps, to much adult dismay). And, well... I couldn't quite bring myself to blatantly violate The Rules in front of someone else's kids, being a bad example and corrupting the youth and whatnot. Maybe next time I'll go earlier, to avoid the crowds. Supposedly there isn't that much to see on the "secret" trail that you wouldn't have seen already on the official mini-trails; mostly I was looking to stretch my legs a bit after a 6 hour flight from Portland.

In keeping with my new policy of trying to post new photos sooner, these were taken the day before yesterday; I'll try to get to yesterday's photos (from the Hoapili Trail on the south side of Maui) later, but first I'm off to go drive up Haleakala and see the volcano, and I'll try to get to those photos within a day or two as well.