A Morning Walk on Thompson Road

This morning we decided to walk along Thompson Road, located across the street from Grandma’s Coffee House, in the community of Keokea. If you are not familiar with Keokea, it is just past Kula, but before Ulupalakua Ranch in beautiful upcountry Maui. We arrived just after 6:30AM and there was still a chill in the air, so we donned our light jackets, grabbed a cup of coffee, and began our stroll.

There are usually plenty of people walking, jogging, biking, horseback riding, and people having their pets walk them along Thompson Road, so there is no shortage of people watching to be done while exercising, but the real beauty upcountry is the scenery. The lava rock walls, the green rolling hills, and the panoramic views from the slopes of Haleakala looking across to the West Maui Mountains, seeing the isthmus below connecting the two volcanoes, and seeing both the north and south shores of Maui at the same time are just some of the reasons to walk along Thompson Road.

If the scenery doesn’t cooperate due to rain, low clouds, or the vog, there is always the wildlife that you may find along the way to keep you entertained. Horses, cows, birds, bees, deer, pheasants, butterflies, and even pu’eo (owl in Hawaiian) have all made an appearance during our walks along Thompson Road.

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One lane road, rock walls, green rolling hills. All the elements come together perfectly along Thompson Road.

As you begin the roughly three mile loop along the one lane road, you walk through a wooded area and stumble upon an abandoned truck and what appears to be someone’s ramshackle home. This would be considered the less than desirable section of the Thompson Road neighborhood. Although, if it were for sale, I’m certain you would be looking at a million dollar piece of real estate.

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This set-up has been at the beginning of Thompson Road for years. Not sure who, or what, lives here.

In a few more weeks the trees along Kula highway will explode in blooms of bright purples. Springtime is truly a special time upcountry on Maui.

Just a few weeks away from jacaranda heaven.
Just a few weeks away from jacaranda heaven.

Clearing the wooded area, the rest of the one-lane road is expansive ranch land, with amazing views from mauka to makai (from the mountains to the ocean).

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A three-shot panoramic of Thompson Road.

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Wild berries along Thompson Road.
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These blooms know how to throw some color into their lives!
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Morning glories love the lava rock walls along Thompson Road.

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With the panoramic bi-coastal views, sometimes I have to remember to look down to see the millions of little worlds at our feet. I almost missed this ladybug, which was next to us while we were making friends with some horses.

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Ladybug macro.
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Cattle egrets are plentiful in the pastures along the road.
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It is tough working with amateurs sometimes, they tend to blink at all the wrong times.
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This horse was a real pro, giving me her best side. Look at that view!
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Using a horsehide canvas for a selfie.
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Straight Outta Kula.

We ended our walk with a delicious breakfast at Grandma’s Coffee House, which was a nice way to bookend our morning in Keokea. While eating breakfast, we ran into a friend who visits Maui once a year, so it made the start of our day even more special.

I am looking forward to our next day off together, so that we may explore more special places on Maui.

Vincent Lorusso Written by:

A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives. - Jackie Robinson

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