The Maui Sunriders Haleakalā bike tour experience is a truly amazing life experience that everyone should have on their bucket list. Even if you’ve never been before, our knowledgeable guides and other friendly locals are happy to point you in the right direction and help you get the most out of your trip. To help get you started, we’ve teamed up with one of our recent Maui Sunriders adventurers, Cam, who has written more about her journey in her own blog. Read on to discover five pro tips that we’ve put together to make your Maui bike tour unforgettable!
Vans take you up Haleakalā to begin your Maui bike adventure
1. Pay Attention on the Van Ride up to the staging area at 6500′
Before your Maui downhill adventure can begin, your tour group will travel by van 25 miles up Haleakalā. During the ride, our friendly tour guides will give some fun information about the volcano as well as directions for the descent. In these peaceful hours before dawn, Cam recommends that you “try not to doze off, some instructions are important so you know how to get back to our starting point.”
2. Take Steps to Avoid Motion Sickness if Necessary
Most people will find the ascent up the mountain to be a perfectly relaxing ride, but if you are sensitive to motion, take steps in advance to keep ahead of the car sickness. Cam recommends taking motion sickness medicine and sitting closer to the front of the van if you anticipate any problems.
3. Dress in light layers for the ride and Pack Warm Clothes and Blankets if you plan to go up on your own for sunrise or sunset
For the start of the bike ride it can often be in the low-mid 60’s. If the skies are looking blue and we’re expecting sun, riders can get away with shorts and a shirt. Maui Sunriders provides wind/rain jacket and pants that will help if there is any wind, showers/rain, or simply a little chilly at the start. If the day is looking overcast or chance of showers, we recommend pants or leggings and light layers that you can remove and put in the backpack we provide for you. If your not sure what to wear – you can always bring extra layers up and if you decide that you don’t need them…you can give them to your driver/guide and the can drive them back down to the shop for you inside one of the vans.
If you plan to go up to the summit on your own for sunrise or sunset, remember that it can be very cold at before dawn and after the sunsets (below 40 degrees Fahrenheit) so pack accordingly! Bring a winter jacket and enough layers to stay warm. Maybe even bring a few extra blankets to wrap up in.
4. Take Lots of Photos, but Stay in the Moment!
Get creative with your photography! There are plenty of great angles… go wide angle, zoom into the sun, and experiment with different perspectives by taking shots close to the ground or framing other objects for reference. Whatever you do, remember to enjoy the moment and don’t stay buried behind your camera. As cam reports, “photos will never do justice, you need to see it in person yourself!”
A beautiful gazebo overlooks the gardens at the Lavender Cafe
5. Take Advantage of Places to Stop on the Way Down
You have until 3:30 p.m. to return your gear to the Maui Sunriders shop so there’s no rush! There are lots of quaint places to grab a meal with good food and spectacular scenery, and at Maui Sunriders, we provide bike locks in your backpacks so you can take advantage of many of the great spots along the way. Cam stopped at the Lavender Cafe for macadamia nut pancakes, fresh coffee, and a walk around the beautiful lavender-filled gardens. Further down the road, she also recommends a place called Komodas Bakery that offers fresh-baked donuts, as well as several farm stands along the way. Bring cash so you can take advantage of their delicious fresh fruit!
(Sunrise and gazebo photos courtesy of Cam. Read her entire blog at www.camchowda.com)