by: Neal Kasamoto (2011)
Caution: this is a fairly dangerous hike, go at your own risk! Trails are narrow and slippery covered by loose pea sized cinders and ironwood needles with a fairly high dropoff. See the warning sign in the picture below.
The Red Sand beach hike is in Hana on the Island of Maui. You are hiking around the edge of a volcanic cinder cone which has eroded and is now a open to the ocean forming a baywith a red sand beach.
You hike down the side of the cinder cone decending toward Kaihalulu Bay on a narrow and slippery trail covered with small loose cinders. Cinder cones are basically piles of loose material with fairly steep sides, so the footing on the trails is challenging. It appears that there was another “higher” trail but it looks like it has been washed out. You can already see some signs of red sand on the Kaihalulu Bay shoreline.
The trail is rather narrow and steep and footing can be tricky.
You hike down to the peninsula at the edge of the cinder cone and back down the inside of ther crater to the bay and the red sand beach. From the peninsula the red sand beach is still hidden from sight. I still had my doubts if the sand was really red.
Now as you hike on the trail on the inside of the crater you can see the red sand!
Yes the sand is really RED! It is formed by the erosion of the red cinder cone with a high iron content forming the red color. I’ve always been skeptical if the sand was really red, but it is! There is a “black sand” beach in Makena where the sand is really gray-brown so I had my doubts. It was amazing to see such a RED colored sand! So Cool!!!