Haleakala Crater Spectacular Experience

 

Today we drove to the Haleakala crater. It takes about two hours if you don’t stop, but believe me, you’re going to want to stop a lot. We got lost a couple of times but that just meant we saw some extra things.

The drive up to the crater is one of the most amazing experiences I’ve ever had. We started at the base. It looked like just about everything else we’ve seen but that quickly changed. One of the things I have always wanted to try with my art is to paint fog. The thing is, we don’t get fog in the southwest suburb of Denver where we live. All of a sudden, we reached a place on the mountain

A beautiful brick church we saw when we got lost in Wailuku

A beautiful brick church we saw when we got lost in Wailuku

that was covered in beautiful, floating, fog.

We continued up the mountain, from sea level to over 10,000 feet, through switchback after switchback. Each one seemed to reveal something else to behold. I would say to Tom, “Pull over, pull over!!” and then the poor guy would try to find a safe place to pull over so we wouldn’t roll over the cliff.

At one point I looked to the right and realized we were above the clouds. I’ve seen that out of an airplane window but never out of a car window. We couldn’t find a place to pull over when the clouds were at their peak but I took many shortly after. Fluffy white clouds. And then I saw a cloud that looked like a space ship. That beautiful cloud stayed that way for a long time so I think it was created by the trade winds and held there.

Finally we reached the summit. From there we could see the back side of the crater. I didn’t know what to expect and I don’t think I could have guessed what it would look like. Basically, it looks like the craters on the moon to me. The darker blue in the background is not the ocean. We were high enough to see a change in the stratosphere. The little bit of white in the upper right side is a cloud. My camera caught the true color of the dirt. So barren but so beautiful.

It was a great excursion, especially because we could do it ourselves and stop whenever we wanted to. If you’re ever in Maui, I highly recommend it.

Until next time,

Susan L Stewart

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