Maui Trailblazer: Where to Hike, Snorkel, Paddle, Surf, Drive

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In both layout design and content, the very model of what a user-friendly outdoor guide should be. –Midwest Book Review

From the Publisher

From the Maui Weekly, January 11, 2006, “Turns out my favorite Maui guidebook has five siblings. It’s a family of great books. All the island Trailblazers (Maui, Kauai, Hawaii the Big Island and Oahu) are big on hikes, and really tell you everything you could possibly need to know to hike safely and enjoyably in each area described. They are equally complete in their snorkel site coverage and drives. In reading and using Trailblazer guides, you are encouraged to exercise your best judgement and show all the spirit of aloha you can muster.”

From the Author

Maui Trailblazer covers it all, from the top of Haleakala Crater to the white sand beaches of Wailea and around to the lush tropical Hana Coast. Tailored for explorers of all ages, from serious hikers to hard core surfers to families who just want to follow the sun and have fun.

From the Inside Flap

Maui Trailblazer is an offering to these islands, to all their plants and animals and living things in the sea, and to all persons who dedicate their lives to fulfilling the promise of Aloha.

About the Author

The authors have explored the western United States together for more than twenty years. This book joins five other popular guidebooks in the series: Kauai Trailblazer, Hawaii The Big Island Trailblazer, Golden Gate Trailblazer, No Worries Hawaii and Alpine Sierra Trailblazer.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.


Best For: Three beaches to get away from it all, without having to go far to do it.

Parking: For all beaches: Take Hwy. 36, the Hana Hwy. past its jct. with Hwy. 37 and mile marker 3. For Spreckelsville Beach: As Hwy. 36 bends to the right, turn left on unsigned Spreckelsville Beach Rd., a.k.a., Stable Rd. For Sugar Cove, Baby Baldwin: Continue as Hwy. 36 bends right, pass the senior center, and turn left on Nonohe Pl.

Hike: Sprecksville Beach (up to 2.5 mi.); Sugar Cove (up to 1.25 mi.); Baby Baldwin Beach (1.25 mi.)

Claus Spreckels came to Maui already a millionaire in 1877. He left 20 years later a multi-millionaire known as the “Sugar King” of Hawaii, after he bought up thousands of acres and built mega-irrigation ditches that captured stream flows on the north slope of Haleakala. Known also by some as a robber baron, Spreckels’ former compound, Spreckelsville, was where the Maui Country Club is today.

You’ll see several potholed spur roads to Spreckelsville Beach after you pass coco palms. Dunes and beach succulents appear on your right. The access roads are from .5-mile to 1 mile from the highway turnoff, before reaching homes at road’s end. Park off the pavement at the farthest, and walk through the pinkish sand dunes to the beach. To your left, less than .5-mile away is Kanaha Beach Park, TH29. To your right you can walk about 1.25 miles, passing rounded Papaula Point, to Sugar Cove. Small black-rock points intrude into the sand along the way. Be Aware: Jet traffic from the airport goes overhead. But this is Maui, with infrequent takeoffs, and this beach is devoid of car traffic. More Stuff: To your left, across from the beach access roads, is the bike path that goes to Kanaha Beach Park.

To Sugar Cove, drive to the bottom of Nonohe Place and turn left on Pa‘ani Place, which may be unsigned. Park at road’s end, near a sign for Shoreline Access 302. A short sand trail leads along a lava seawall to a .25-mile cove set below unobtrusive, high-end condos. You can walk left to Spreckelsville Beach—the reverse of the hike described above—but this beach is more a place to catch a few winks or count grains of sand. To Baby Baldwin Beach, go right on Nonohe at the bottom, and then turn left toward Shoreline Access, on Kealakai Place—instead of going to the golf course. The unimproved parking is at Wawau Point, where a mosaic of red banks, black rocks, and white sand make for an interesting stroll. The beach hike seamlessly connects with Baldwin Beach Park, TH31.

Snorkel: A finger from Wawau Point’s reef curls just offshore for several hundred feet at Baby Baldwin Beach, making a sandy-bottomed oval that can accommodate large numbers of swimmers. The beach is a well-known dipping pool for families, safe even during trade winds—although be mindful of the current flowing to your right as water returns out the open end of nature’s pool. Soft sand buffets the shore. Not many fish in the pool, but this is a five-star swimming spot.

Surf: Windsurfers catch the breeze off Wawau Point, near Baby Baldwin, but offshore rocks make this less popular than other spots not far away, both up and down the coast.

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