KAPALUA NATURE SOCIETY OFFERS WEST MAUI MOUNTAIN HIKES
Above Kapalua, towering over the manicured golf courses and vast pineapple plantation, are the hauntingly beautiful West Maui Mountains, crowned with rainbows and streaming with waterfalls. Some valleys have never been explored and their waterfalls are unnamed. In protected wilderness areas, some of the last stands of Hawaii's endemic flora continue to flourish and rare birds continue to sing in the trees.
The Kapalua Nature Society offers two exclusive hikes into portions of the majestic West Maui Mountains:
Maunalei Arboretum & Puu Kaeo Nature Walk
Maui Pineapple Companys field naturalists lead participants on a historical journey through nearly a century of plantation management activities including pineapple; cattle ranching; coffee production and a 70-year old arboretum established in 1926 by D.T. Fleming, manager of the former Honolua Ranch. Mauka (mountain) and makai (ocean) views of Honolua Valley offer glimpses of Koa and Ohia as well as many other native and exotic trees. The length of the hike is approximately 1¾ miles (roundtrip) and takes 4-5 hours. This hike is rated "moderately difficult."
Manienie Ridge Hike
This breathtaking and educational hike along a ridgeline trail combines mauka and makai views of Honokohau Valley, Manienie Gulch and Anakaluahine Gulch. Led by Maui Pineapple Companys field naturalists, hikers experience an interpretive walk through lowland shrubland. The Ridge hike is approximately four miles (roundtrip) long and lasts for 4-6 hours. This hike is rated "difficult or challenging."
On both hikes, birdwatchers may spot the four remaining native bird species of West Maui: the Hawaiian Owl (Pueo), and three Hawaiian Honeycreepers ('Amakihi, 'Apapane and I'iwi).
The hikes are currently offered on Saturdays. Cost per person is $59, Non-Kapalua guest; $54, Kapalua guest and $45 for Kapalua Nature Society members and includes lunch and beverage. Minimum number of people is two, maximum nine. Minimum age to participate is 12 years old.
The Kapalua Nature Society was established in 1995 by the Kapalua resort to coordinate the resorts various environmental programs. This unique organization is managed by Kapalua Land Company, Ltd. and is comprised of resort employees and members of the community.