ROLLING HOME: BEHIND THE SCENES
In an attempt to extend our summer a little longer we planned a last-second trip to Maui. We were going out to Maui to shoot a couple small tourism pieces and decided put together a personal video “Rolling Home: Maui” documenting our time exploring Maui by Westfalia Van. Our friend Billy was flying in from the UK one day before us but suddenly the news was filled with warnings about 2 hurricanes about to “Flatten Hawaii”. We assessed the travel warnings and decided that we would pack more rain gear but would definitely still do the trip.
We took a bumpy flight into Maui and after meeting Billy we headed East to grab our Westfalia Van. By 9pm we were loaded in our Westfalia and with the sun long gone we set out to find a place to park our home. Because of the insane Hurricane warnings that night the national parks were closed so not patrolled at all. We drove for 1 hour into the wind and darkness and pulled up to a random spot about 40 feet from the ocean (pictured above). Kris was in a Hammock, Billy in the downstairs bed and me crammed in the pop-top. We essentially had hour naps in-between the insane hurricane-wind gusts that felt like they might tip over our old camper. We woke up the next morning to a beautiful sunny day and set off to go find some jumping cliffs we heard of.
On day two we decided to go buy everything we thought we might want for the trip. Within an hour the van was jammed with all of our bags, cameras, 3 surfboards that we bought, diving gear, our food and a cooler of beer leaving almost no room for activities. The rest of the trip we spent hanging outside the van and not cooking meals that would make the kitchen explode (ex. pancakes, french toast). We linked up with a sailing tour company to shoot a promo and set out on a 5 hour diving expedition in their boat. They took us across to the island of Lanai where we anchored dove at 3 different spots with insanely clear blue water and a good variety of fish (pictured below). After the diving trip we cruised down to one of the local surf breaks cooked an early dinner on the BBQ and caught a nice surf before the sunset. The Hurricane warnings were still high and Canada issued a travel advisory. Mean while on the island things were pretty mellow and the sun was still burning up the West Coast.
Over the next few days we realized how unreal diving is and spent 4-6 hours in the ocean daily between that and surfing. After too many long long days in the ocean we decided to take a break from the salt and drive the road to Hana; a 2hr winding road through an epic rain forest (Jurassic park intro was shot here). Along the way we stumbled on a bamboo forest leading to a big watering hole with cliff jumps and rope swings. The fresh water was a refreshing change from the salty ocean. After a fun session Kris took a knee to the face trying the double off the rope swing so we left before one of us got destroyed. We continued down to the town of Hana skating some of the road along the way and trying to piece together lunches in the back of the moving van. Along the Hana we spotted a palm tree with some perfect coconuts and decided it was time to grab a few. With the machete in hand and no real plan I started climbing the tree to poke a few off the top. A couple bloody nipples and feet later (always wear a shirt) we had 2 coconuts down ready to go and cracked em open.
Living in the Westie we slept somewhere completely different every night which always led to funny times and was a unique way to see the island. Exploring the island by van & sleeping in hammocks under interstellar-like sky's led us to way more adventures and weird situations then staying in a hotel ever would. Between excessive amounts of time exploring underwater, sun-burnt surf sessions and massive drum circles at nudist beaches, the entire trip blended into what seemed like one massive day. If there are 3 things we learned they are; Watch a youtube tutorial before climbing a palm tree, keep feet away from sea urchins, when in doubt find a vacant Pineapple farm and sleep there.