Hana, driving in the opposite direction?

Old Jun 26th, 2004, 05:46 PM
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Hana, driving in the opposite direction?

We have driven the Hana Highway twice but never made it passed Waianapanapa State Park. We stopped too many times along the way. Has anyone driven to Hana in the opposite direction from Ka'anapali. It seems to be that we would get to Oheo Gulch, perhaps before the crowds and have the ocean side drive back to the hotel. Any opinions? We will have an SUV.
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Old Jun 26th, 2004, 05:54 PM
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I am VERY interested to know this, too! We're going to Maui in a little over a week and I was JUST talking to my husband about this today - we thought it might be nice to be at Oheo Gulch before the crowds and go against the traffic, but the highly-revered MR book doesn't recommend driving that way. I'd love to know why!
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Old Jun 26th, 2004, 06:08 PM
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The one concern I would have would be the traffic coming the opposite direction on the one lane road past the seven pools. More cars would be coming at you where driving the conventional way not many cars would be approaching. I didn't mind the condition of the roads as much as not knowing if a head on collision was coming on the next curve.
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Old Jun 26th, 2004, 06:10 PM
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On a good day it takes us about 2-2.5 hours to get from Kihei to Kaupo, and that is without any stops and knowing the road intimately. If we get behind a ranch vehicle it can take much longer. Recently DH was stuck behind a truck from the ranch that was hauling cinder blocks. He was behind him for close to 40 minutes, averaging 10 mph. The road from Kaupo to Kipahulu is mostly unpaved and very slow going. I'd say it would probably take you about 3.5 - 4 hours going either the northern or southern route to get from Ka`anapali to Kipahulu, without stopping. `Oheo Gulch is pretty much in the the middle.

They are replacing a bridge this year, just west of Kipahulu. I'm not sure of the construction schedule

If you are planning on going the north route back, remember that most people turn around at some point and do not take the southern route, which means you will be with them coming back. It gets dark on the north side early, so you will be driving in shadow, and nearly all of the turn-offs are on the mauka side, not on your side of the road.
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Old Jul 2nd, 2004, 07:38 PM
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I agree with bdfamilyman and gone2maui. We had seriously thought about driving opposite too, in the interest of saving time. I am so glad we didn't. We found the road along the southern shore beautiful, but I wouldn't want to be on the cliff side heading east on those blind curves.

Now that you've seen some of the earlier stops along Hana Rd on your previous trips, you could just pick & choose your favorites, leaving more time for Oheo Gulch. (Unfortunately for us, Oheo Gulch was closed for swimming this last Tuesday because of heavy rainfall.)
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Old Jul 2nd, 2004, 09:14 PM
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We drove this way a few years back, and found it navigable in a Jeep with no trouble, and don't remember any road issues near the 7 pools at all. As a previous poster indicated, it's a long drive just to get to Hana coming from the south. If you want to do this, I'd highly recommend staying overnight in Hana. It's too far & too much driving to see the sights of the Hana Highway and do the drive from south in the same day.
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Old Jul 7th, 2004, 10:18 AM
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I would recommend driving it the regular way (clockwise), since there are a lot of spots where you need to yield to traffic. You'll need to do this a lot of you're coming from the opposite way.

We did the whole loop (passing Oheo Gulch), and arrived at our condo before sunset, so you should be able to see the other end without any problems. Since you've seen the first part already, you could just bypass it and stop later.
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