The first eight miles took us quickly out of Kahului and south through the center of Maui. Mostly flat stretches mixed with long, slow inclines took us past fields of sugar cane, slowly becoming visible as the sunrise melted over the land, from Mt. Haleakela onto Puu Kukui to the west (below).
The sound of the surf at Ma'alaea Harbor and the view of Kahoolawe told me I was approaching the gorgeous Pali section. The highway here encourages asphalt surfing—up, down, left, right, swoosh swoosh swoosh (not so much swoosh on the ups). The Honoapiilani Highway would make up almost the rest of the course. In these miles I remember the hand-holding newly-weds, Reggae Lady, and the Jack Russell Terrier listening to CSNY.
I fantasized breaking six hours.
That changed because the sun stayed up, all morning and well into the afternoon.
Temps into the 80's by mid-morning drained my stamina and brought on the blisters. I spent maybe 15 minutes or so on belated preventive care at mile 16, plus posing for a photo with Nick (high school cross country runner who liked my 50 & DC goal).
I could still shoot for finishing in, oh, 6:30.
Hula dancers (taking a break) at Papawai Point
Maui Taiko, worth a couple of minutes out of the race
Maybe Nick's cross-country team trains here
Lahaina Village, about mile 23, brought homes, an art show, some welcome shade, too many tourist-trap shops, hearing Shall We Gather at the River in Hawaiian at First United Methodist, and a short but very unwelcome bridge. I had the energy to run more but blistering deterred me. My shoulders felt the burn as well (what happened to the fresh SPF 45 I applied at mile 16?)