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Alternative-Hawaii

ISLAND OF MAUI

HALEAKALA NATIONAL PARK
SUMMIT AREA DRIVE GUIDE

The Volcano Summit, a Natural Wonder


Created by: Alternative-Hawaii.com
  • Approx. 76 miles round-trip from Start of Drive (Kahului at corner of Hwy 380 & 36).
  • Allow at least 4 hours for round-trip from Start of Drive including time spent at "stops".
  • Before starting trip to park, call 808-572-4400 (park headquarters) for program and other information (hiking, camping, cabins etc.).
  • For the weather forecast and sunrise time call the National Weather Service at 808-877-5111.
  • Effect of high elevation on pregnant women, young children and persons with heart and/or respiratory problems should be considered.
  • Access for disabled is provided at most "stops".
  • No food or gas available in the park.
  • Dress for altitude and/or activities. At high elevations weather is often cold and/or wet.
  • Drive carefully. Watch for cattle and/or bicyclists.
  • Descend volcano in low gear.
  • Report all accidents to park officials.
  • Stay on maintained trails to protect plant and animal life. Leave no scars on the land. Collecting any material from the park is prohibited.
  • For safety, please observe Cautionary Notes.
  • Set Odometer to Zero between "stops" below.
(Click on PHOTOGRAPH to view Stop on Tour.)

STOP 1: PARK ENTRANCE
START: KAHULUI AT HWY 380 & 36  
DIST/TIME: Approx. 26.5 Miles/50 Mins.
WATCH FOR: Sign - Haleakala National Park  
 ROUTE:
  • Turn right off Hwy 380 onto Hwy 36 E & go 2 miles to Jct. Hwy 36 & 37
  • Turn right onto Hwy 37 & go 7.9 miles to Jct. Hwy 37 & 377
  • Turn left onto Hwy 377 & go 6.1 miles to Jct. Hwy 377 & 378
  • Turn left onto Hwy 378 & go 10.5 miles to park entrance (right side)
Free brochure about Haleakala National Park.

Note: nominal admission charge. Park always open unless weather conditions are very severe.




STOP 2: HOSMER GROVE
LEAVE: PARK ENTRANCE  
DIST/TIME: Approx. 0.5 Mile/3 Mins.
WATCH FOR: First Left Turn after Entrance  
 ROUTE:
  • Go just beyond park entrance to first turn-off at sign for Hosmer Grove (left side)
  • Turn left and drive short distance (0.4 mile) to parking lot for Hosmer Grove

Elevation 6,800 feet. 30 minute, 0.5 mile walk through a magical forest. A free trail brochure describes plants and other resources found along the way. Home to many native and alien species of birds, plants and insects. One of the best spots on Maui for watching native forest birds.

Note: picnic areas, campgrounds. Restrooms.

Caution: trail is uneven and has high steps.





STOP 3: PARK HEADQUARTERS
LEAVE: HOSMER GROVE  
DIST/TIME: Approx. 1.2 Miles/4 Mins.
WATCH FOR: Mile Marker 11 (Right Side)  
 ROUTE:
  • Return to Hwy 378
  • Turn left and go to park headquarters

Elevation 7,000 feet. Exhibits, camping permits. Silversword (plant) display. Visitor information, books, gifts, film. Over a million visitors per year.

Note: open daily 8:00 AM-4:00 PM. Restrooms.





STOP 4: LELEIWI OVERLOOK
LEAVE: PARK HEADQUARTERS  
DIST/TIME: Approx. 6.3 Miles/15 Mins.
WATCH FOR: Mile Marker 17 (Right Side)  
 ROUTE:
  • Continue on Hwy 378 to Mile Marker 17
  • Go short way (0.5 mile) beyond Mile Marker 17 to overlook parking lot

Elevation 8,800 feet. 300 yard walk to overlook. Excellent views. If cloud conditions are right, the "Specter of the Brocken" can be seen at this overlook (a full-circle rainbow around your own shadow projected onto clouds below you).





STOP 5: VISITOR CENTER
LEAVE: LELEIWI OVERLOOK  
DIST/TIME: Approx. 3.2 Miles/8 Mins.
WATCH FOR: Parking Lot  
 ROUTE:
  • Continue up volcano on Hwy 378 to parking lot for visitor's center
Elevation 9,745 feet. Spectacular view. Visitor center containing cultural, archaeological, geological and ecological exhibits. Visitor information, books, gifts, film.

Note: open daily: 6 AM-3 PM (summer), 6:30 AM-3 PM (winter). Restrooms.




STOP 6: PUU ULAULA SUMMIT
LEAVE: VISITOR CENTER  
DIST/TIME: Approx. 0.6 Mile/2 Mins.
WATCH FOR: Parking Lot  
 ROUTE:
  • Continue on Hwy 378 to parking lot for the summit at Puu Ulaula

Elevation 10,023 feet. Awe inspiring view at the summit of the volcano. Misnamed a crater, the depression you see at the summit is actually a large erosional valley created by wind and water. Hiking trails and 3 cabins in the valley.

Note: site of Haleakala Observatory (a cluster of observatories run by the University of Hawaii and the U.S. Air Force - not open to the public). See also: Activity





STOP 7: KALAHAKU OVERLOOK
LEAVE: PUU ULAULA SUMMIT  
DIST/TIME: Approx. 2.6 Miles/8 Mins.
WATCH FOR: Sign - Kalahaku (Right Side)  
 ROUTE:
  • Leave Puu Ulaula Summit & and descend to sign for Kalahaku Overlook
  • Turn right to overlook parking lot

Elevation 9,324 feet. Great view. Rare Silversword plants (descendant of common daisy) can be seen at overlook in a special enclosure across from the first parking lot.

Restrooms.



END OF DRIVE - RETURN TO KAHULUI
(DESCEND VOLCANO IN LOW GEAR)



On to Lahaina / Northwest Coast Drive or,

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