Haleakala National Park Summit Sunrise Reservations are now required to visit the park for Sunrise.

November 11, 2018

  • Reservations. A reservation is required for each vehicle entering the park from 3:00 a.m. to 7:00 a.m. You may book a reservation up to TWO MONTHS in advance. For example, on January 1 you can book tickets through March 1. Currently the Recreation.gov is working on our reservation system and the TWO DAY in advance tickets are not available. TWO DAYS before arrival, at 4:00 p.m. HST (Hawaii Standard Time), another batch of tickets will also be available for reservation . For example, beginning at 4:00 pm Monday afternoon you can book a reservation for the Wednesday morning sunrise.

Meeting set to gather testimony on summit overcrowding and NPS online reservations:


JAN 17, 2018

Haleakala National Park is putting its sunrise reservation program, implemented nearly a year ago to deal with overcrowding at the summit, through the environmental assessment process and will be holding a public meeting on it from 5 to 6:30 p.m. today at the Mayor Hannibal Tavares Community Center in Pukalani.

Viewing the sunrise at the peak of 10,023-foot Haleakala, the “House of the Sun,” is among the more popular visitor activities for the island, but the growth had overwhelmed the available parking at the four sunrise viewing spots, said the draft environmental assessment released this month. There was an average of 21 percent more vehicles arriving for sunrise, the most popular time at the park, between 2015 and 2016. In September 2016, noncommercial vehicles regularly exceeded the 150 available parking spots by an average of 100 vehicles each morning, it said.

Concerns were raised in fall 2016 about the safety of visitors and park staff and for sensitive natural and cultural resources at the summit, the draft report said. On Feb. 1, the park implemented a pilot reservation system to limit the number of noncommercial vehicles to no more than 150 vehicles from 3 to 7 a.m. Those interested in seeing the sunrise currently are required to purchase a $1.50 reservation online up to 60 days in advance and to show photo ID and pay the entry fee.

The majority of the reservations are released 60 days in advance but some reservations are held until two days in advance to allow for more “spontaneous trips,” the draft report said.

The reservation system has “dramatically reduced crowding at the summit during sunrise hours, along with the safety concerns and resource damage,” the draft report said.

The “emergency restrictions” were intended to be temporary while the park studied the issue to come up with the best long-term solution, the draft report said.

The purpose of the environmental assessment is to analyze three possible actions to manage sunrise summit visits for the safety of visitors and park staff, to protect sensitive natural and cultural resources and to improve the visitor experience, the draft report said.

“Implementation of a well-thought-out plan” will keep visitor numbers at levels that can be safely accommodated by the existing infrastructure, the report said. Keeping vehicle numbers to those levels means less incentive for visitors to park off-pavement and potentially damage native plants and cultural resources or to drive recklessly to find a parking spot. Smaller crowds at viewing spots mean fewer people wandering off established trails during times of limited light, which will result in less risk of accident and damage to resources.

The three alternatives under consideration are:

– Removing the reservation system.

– Continuing the reservation system with some modifications. Those could include increasing the number of reservations each morning to account for no-shows, adjusting the ratio of reservations available 60 days and two days in advance, creating a waitlist, allowing people to release their reservation online if not to be used, and preventing visitors from reserving more than one day within a certain time period to prevent hoarding.

– Closing at capacity. This would be a “first come, first served” policy with the first 150 noncommercial vehicles allowed into the park. The entrance would be closed until after sunrise hours.

Two possible alternatives were dismissed — building more parking and overlooks and using a shuttle system, such as at Zion and Yosemite national parks.

The building of more spaces and viewing platforms was rejected because construction would have negative impacts on wildlife and plants and archaeological sites. In addition, more visitors would diminish the overall experience for visitors, the draft report said.

The shuttle system idea was rejected because it is currently not feasible economically, with costs such as purchasing and maintaining buses and the construction of infrastructure for the shuttle system, including a fueling station, maintenance yard and a new parking lot for visitor vehicles, too high for the park to handle.

The shuttle system “represents a more long-term potential solution to a larger problem of visitor transportation management,” the draft report said. When the park works on a transportation plan for the summit, the shuttle system may arise again as an option.

At the public meeting, park staff will provide information, answer questions and accept comments. Public comments also will be accepted online or via email or postal mail through Feb. 20.

Online comments may be posted at the National Park Service Planning, Environmental, and Public Comment website, parkplanning.nps.gov/sunrise.

Comments can be mailed to Haleakala NP, Sunrise Visitor Management EA, Attention: Linette King, P.O. Box 369, Makawao, 96768; or emailed to HALE_Superintendent@nps.gov with the subject line “Sunrise Visitor Management EA.”

Comments will not be accepted by fax. Bulk comments in any format submitted on behalf of others will not be accepted.

The draft environmental assessment can be found at parkplanning.nps.gov/sunrise.

* Lee Imada can be reached at leeimada@mauinews.com.


Montage Kapalua Bay welcomes back the Champagne Hale at Cliff House, a pop-up bar and lounge featuring Veuve Clicquot Rich.  Set atop picturesque Kapalua Bay, guests and locals are able to experience island lifestyle at its finest. The Champagne Hale, with "hale" being the Hawaiian word for house or home, was created to encapsulate the natural beauty of the surrounding area and the spirit of Maui. A historic venue nestled on the cliffs of Namalu Bay, Champagne Hale at Cliff House offers the perfect spot to unwind after a day at the beach, pool or exploring the island; the lounge is filled with lush greenery and celebrates island living with a Veuve Clicquot twist.

This year’s celebration of Dr. Sun Yat-sen, recognized as the Father of Modern China, will also pay tribute to Lahaina’s Chinese families during the Sun Yat-sen Chinese Heritage Festival on Friday, Nov. 10, from 5 to 9 p.m.

The Lahaina Restoration Foundation and Wo Hing Society will present an array of cultural, art and musical activities at Wo Hing Museum and Cookhouse in Lahaina. The museum will open at 10 a.m., offering free admission all day.

January 01, 2020

Restaurant week Wailea

Biannual dinner deals start Sunday in celebration of signature resort cuisine

It’ll cost you way more than a Happy Meal. But if you are craving a gourmet multi-course feast served in one of Wailea’s top restaurants at a discounted cost with Maui Food Bank as the beneficiary, then it’s time to pick up the iPhone and make reservations or jump online to www.opentable.com.

This time around, South Maui’s hugely popular biannual dinner promo “Restaurant Week Wailea” may be savored at, count ’em, 22 participating resort restaurants starting Sunday and running through Nov. 11.

“It’s an unfortunate truth, but some people in our very own community just don’t get enough to eat, so raising funds is important for hunger charities such as Maui Food Bank,” says Geno Sarmiento, corporate executive chef for Tri-Star Restaurant Group’s Nick’s Fishmarket and Manoli’s Pizza Co., both of which are participating.

In fact, all of the restaurants will once again create some remarkable three-course, chef-inspired prix-fixe menus for $29, $39, $49 or $59 per person. The cost depends upon the individual restaurants — and beverages, tax and gratuity are in addition to the meal.

Severe storms with damaging winds and heavy rainfall struck Hawaii early Tuesday morning from a storm that formed north of the islands.

The Maui Police Department tweeted early Tuesday that there was an island-wide power outage from the storms and that Maui Electric was working to restore power. Maui has a population of about 150,000.

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