As the sun was preparing to set, my partner-in-crime pulled off the winding, narrow paved road. Wearing my University of Wisconsin-Madison hat, long johns, thick gloves, and an outer layer of rain gear to keep me warm, I took out two folding chairs that are always in the back of our van for a picnic or tailgate. I carried them into the pasture beside the road, carefully stepping to avoid the cowpies. With quickly dropping temperatures, clouds coming in, and the playlist of mooing cows, was I in small-town Wisconsin?
Nope, we were about to witness the Geminids meteor shower on the slopes of Haleakala in Maui.
Although the combination made me feel that I was back in the Midwest, I was only a half-hour drive from the swaying palm trees and surf break of Pa'ia or the sunset-blessed shores of Kihei. As a repeat and current resident of Hawaii, I've come to love its lush tropical, waterfall-filled hikes as well as the contrast of its dramatic coastline with its pristine Pacific waters. With limited travel options off the island over the last year, however, I was in search of how to travel close to home, off-the-beaten-path for another perspective of Maui.