Yesterday I woke up at 4:20 am and headed out to meet a friend for an early morning hike along Maui's Pali Trail. After nearly two decades of residing off and on on Maui, this was a trail I had never previously hiked - with the rumors of it being so dry, hot and exposed, it never held much appeal to me. With the early start and an added sense of adventure, I was finally game.
Surprisingly awake, or delirious, we started our trek on the Maalaea side at 5 am in the pre-sunrise darkness. The trail was rugged as we made our way up the 1600 feet of elevation gain. Had it been mid-day, it would had been semi-awful, but with the early hour and the high winds, it was quite nice.
Near the high point of the hike, we made our way through the Kaheawa wind farm. Since 2006, twenty windmills operated by First Wind have been generating nearly 10% of Maui's electric power, enough energy to power about 11,000 Maui homes annually. They are near completion of adding on 14 more wind turbines, enough to power an additional 7,700 Maui homes annually.
The image above are some of the new wind turbines and they continue up the slopes of the mountain. In this case, a longer exposure and passing clouds help create the feeling of wind, and makes for a more dynamic image of some much appreciated clean energy.