We often hear this question when visitors book their Haleakalā bike tour. And it is good that people ask because the answer may be different than some might expect. Our bike rides begin at 6500′ and isn’t quite as cold as the Summit of Haleakala.
We recommend that Haleakalā bike riders wear layers of clothing that can be taken off as they make their way down the mountain into warmer temperatures. When you get all the way down to Paia, you’ll probably only need a T-shirt and shorts. Long pants and a jacket are provided with the rain/wind gear included in the biking equipment and sometimes that is all people need. Of course, closed-toe shoes are recommended for all of the Haleakalā bike rides. You may be thinking, ‘where will I put all these clothes as I ride down the volcano?’ Well, for that very reason, we provide backpacks for our Haleakalā bike riders to carry their clothes.
If your planning on catching a Haleakala Sunrise or sunset on your own, don’t forget to pack a sweatshirt and warm layers! At 10,000 feet above sea level, the temperature can get pretty cold and windy. At sunrise, temperatures generally are in the 40-degree range. On the peak of this Maui volcano, the weather can be unpredictable too. We generally recommend that visitors wear the warmest clothes they have with them, especially during the winter months. But it will be pretty cold even in summer. Some also bring hats, scarves, and even blankets, but make sure you bring a hat that won’t easily be blown off. It’s recommended that those at high altitudes such as at the summit, drink plenty of fluids, basically doubling their intake of water, refueling their electrolytes and eating plenty of carbohydrates to avoid altitude sickness.
The sunrise above the clouds at Haleakalā’s 10,000 ft. summit has been said to be one of the most memorable things you can experience, and we would have to agree. But just remember that at sunrise, the summit will be cold. It will be beautiful and worth the chilly temperatures, but bring warm clothes, particularly layers of clothes for this once-in-a-lifetime experience.
First image courtesy of M – Pics at FreeDigitalPhotos.net