Road to Hana Closure?

Jan 15th, 2007, 09:11 PM
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Road to Hana Closure?

I keep reading that there is some type of closure on the road to Hana on Maui due to the earthquake awhile back - but I haven't seen anything on the official government websites.

Anyone have any details - and is it this merely a detour or something worse?

We're heading there at the end of February.
Three nights at the Ritz Carlton,
two nights at Hana Kai Maui Resort, and
two final nights at the Hyatt near Lahaina.
SFImporter is offline  
Jan 15th, 2007, 11:10 PM
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You can get to all the way to Seven Pools.

The road is closed a little past Seven Pools, which means you cannot go all the way around the southern route. Most rental cars are not allowed much past Seven Pools anyway.
dusty56438 is offline  
Jan 16th, 2007, 05:15 AM
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As Dusty said the road is closed past Kipahulu (look at a map) between Kaupo and Kipahulu. You can get to Hana and back, but many cannot go around the southern route any more. Many people did this trip as a loop. It was closed because of rockfall dangers. Do a search in the Maui News and you will be able to read all about it.

iamq is offline  
Jan 16th, 2007, 05:22 AM
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That should read "...but cannot go around the southern route anymore."


iamq is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2007, 02:19 PM
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We just returned from 10 days in Kapalua, Maui. We made the drive to Hana from the northern route through Paia, Hwy 36 to 360 (Hana Hwy). Some miles past Hana, the road was closed. There were huge cement barricades across the road. There were no road signs posted that the road would be closed, (later we would find out there used to be signs posted and were told that in all likelihood the locals took them down) so we had to turn around, not an easy feat on this road, and drive back the same way we came. We did, however, find out later that if the road had been opened, we would not have been able to continue the trip around the southern route of Hana and back up to west Maui because part of this road is off limits to most rental cars. We have been told the "back road" to Hana would be the southern portion of Maui from 'Ulupalakua heading towards Hana which is Hwy 37 then turns into Hwy 31 (Pi'ilani Hwy). That is the portion that has a 7 mile stretch of unpaved road and limited ground clearance over rocks, etc. that can wreck the undercarriage of a car, plus another 18 miles of potholes. We also heard that if you get stranded, you are on your own because that's the route you sign on the rental agreement that you won't drive. I'd check with the car rental company and perhaps the Auto Club. Here is some more info re that area I just found
I can't seem to find anything regarding the road closure we encounted just a few miles south of Hana. We were nowhere near the closure reported above. There is something else I feel I must share…….
I know there are always a "few bad apples" in every situation and I am sure not all of Hana is represented here, just as there are some very inconsiderate tourists, but we were very sorry we wasted our day making the drive to Hana. It was very unpleasant and we told others who were thinking of making the drive, not to bother. (which I am sure certain locals would be happy to hear) During our drive to Hana we were greeted by a driver coming towards us in a truck on the narrow road who yelled out "Aloha" and just as we turned to look at him and smile, at the same time threw stones at us, we were in a Mustang convertible with the top down! We couldn't figure out what we did. Then another time, a teenage boy stood in the road and yelled "slow down". We were going approximately 5-10 miles an hour! At other times, there were cars and trucks that drove towards us over the yellow line on the road, as if playing "chicken". I am sure all this was just to scare us. There were bumper sticker style signs everywhere, one said, "Welcome to Hawaii, Now Go Home" and another read, "No Hawaiian, No Aloha" Once we returned to our hotel, I asked the concierge about this and she remarked that another guest a few days before said he had tomatoes thrown at him while driving in Hana. I was very curious about this.....did all tourists anger the people of Hana, or had there been certain "incidents" that led to this hostility. I did find out that Oprah Winfrey bought property here a few years ago, and perhaps the locals were afraid all mainlanders would move to Hana, but I read that she was just building a house, (not a minimansion) and that the people of Hana seemed fine with her as a neighbor, as she was being a good conservator of the land and not overdeveloping it. I couldn't really find anything else that would explain the events that happened to us. My suggestion to anyone else who reads this post is to skip Hana and drive and visit all the other wonderful scenic places in Maui, as there are many. One of our favorites is the route from Waihe'e to Kapalua. This is Hwy 340 to 30 and goes around the northern portion of west Maui. The views of the ocean and valley are just breathtaking! Some of the road is narrow, and one section is strickly one lane, (we did have to back up) but for the most part it is a pleasant easy drive with lots of turn-offs to view and take pictures. I do not remember at what point when we passed Waihe’e we noticed there were no gas stations, and said we were glad we had filled up in Kahului, but make note, as this drive is strictly scenic and that is the beauty of it.
An_old_Moondoggie is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2007, 03:11 PM
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I've stayed in Hana twice and have traveled that road many times and have never encountered anything like what you describe. i'll have to remember to keep the top of our convertible up when we do our overnight at the Hotel Hana Maui next monthy.

I may get flamed for saying this, but my guess is locals started getting fed up just about the time people started showing up holding a blue tour guide called Maui Revealed, and started trampling through private property, blocking driveways, leaving litter and otherwise leaving their mark on this piece of paradise. And it continues to this day.


iamq is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2007, 04:13 PM
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Oorah Winfrey has a house in Hana, but also bought a great deal of property and was planning to make a large developement with condos. I think her diet guru was also involved in it. Thankfully, a great deal of local resistance made her abandon the project. It would have irreparably altered on the few great places left. Oprah is not well liked on Maui.
Jan 22nd, 2007, 04:16 PM
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Interesting, I have heard that Oprah is very well liked as she has done some great conservation work......whats da truth?
Jan 22nd, 2007, 05:44 PM
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I didn't run into any unfriendly locals on the road to Hana, but I did have a guy purposely dent my car in Lahaina when he saw it was a rental car. I know this because he did it right in front of me, then laughed and left. So there are occasional random acts of stupidity toward tourists. It wouldn't stop me from making any drive if I wanted to, though. Just use common sense, as you should in any unfamiliar place.
Postal is offline  
Jan 22nd, 2007, 06:18 PM
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These are the articles I read re I was really curious if all this had to do with the actions of some of the locals. Of course, who knows what has happened inbetween any of these articles.....but it appears she wasn't buiding anything big, just a house or two. I had heard though that the 12 bedroom home was already being run as a B&B and that she wanted to keep it as that or as a small hotel.

iamq - you are probably right....I usually get back to the islands every 4 or 5 years and find things really changed, especially when I think how they were the very first time I was there in 1970! When I saw them this year, I was totally shocked at the growth on Maui and Oahu is just plain shameful.
An_old_Moondoggie is offline  
Jan 23rd, 2007, 05:20 AM
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Just be sure to pull over when someone is flashing their lights. Some people are trying to get to work.
On the northeast of maui we watched a clueless young driver almost cause a head-on as a local had enough and passed him on a blind bend.
NE is a very pretty drive, but is truly one lane. We too had to back up and let a truck by. The road to Hana is wide and calm in comparison.
boovt is offline  
Jan 24th, 2007, 12:41 PM
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Seems incongruent to return repeatedly to a place as a tourist and then curse development aimed at accommodating the needs and wants of other tourists. If no one wanted to go as a tourist there would be no developments for them.

I've never experienced any unpleasantness from any local along the Road, on a detour, or in the town itself. Just mind your manners.
Lex1 is offline  
Jan 24th, 2007, 12:44 PM
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I, too, would not recommend going all the way around the northeast side of Maui, especially from Kahului around to Kapalua. several miles of the road is white knuckle all the way. It is beautiful, but, IMO, not worth it. You can go pretty far around the north side from Kapulua. Once the road begins to narrow, i would turn around.
uconn1990 is offline  
Jan 25th, 2007, 06:39 AM
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This clearly was stated at me:

Author: Lex1
Date: 01/24/2007, 04:41 pm
Seems incongruent to return repeatedly to a place as a tourist and then curse development aimed at accommodating the needs and wants of other tourists. If no one wanted to go as a tourist there would be no developments for them.

I've never experienced any unpleasantness from any local along the Road, on a detour, or in the town itself. Just mind your manners.

Not that its any one's business, but my trips back are to stay with FAMILY. On this last trip, 3 days of 10 were business and warranted staying at a hotel...........and my comments were to clearly say that I feel for the locals of any town or state, when big development starts infringing upon one's lifestyle. I too live in an area that has become overrun with tourists. Our property taxes are high because "movie stars" have bought up property and just move in for the summer, food prices have skyrocketed, traffic is terrible, etc. Yet I would NEVER, ever think of throwing stones at someone or yelling at them for just being there. My comment was just a clear and simple one of how I can feel for all those who live on Oahu and Maui, nothing more!

I guess ignorance is everywhere.
An_old_Moondoggie is offline  
Jan 25th, 2007, 07:37 AM
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Once again, you CAN'T go all the way around south Maui, in a circle through Hana. There is a bridge out west of the Seven Falls, and the road is closed at that point. You can reach Hana by the ever popular Hana Highway on the east side of Maui.
Jan 25th, 2007, 05:41 PM
Join Date: Feb 2006
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We drove it (and almost vomited) yesterday. It was not closed as far as we went. -a
Doctoressa is offline  

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