2012 Duke's Beach House XTERRA 10km - Hula Grill XTERRA 5km - Kimo's Keiki K
Oct 27 2012
Ritz Carlton, Kapalua, Maui HI
Team Unlimited, LLC.
Runners competing in the new XTERRA Kapalua Trail Run on the west end of Maui can expect many changes from the “old” south course at Makena. Where Makena was a dusty, rock strewn, sun-beating-down, grind-the-beach trail, the new course at Kapalua is green, in and out of the forest, yet still very challenging.
The start is similar to years past only in that it begins on a big, green lawn – this time at the fantastic Ritz Kapalua resort hotel. It is an easy run on golf course bike paths for the first half mile. The fun starts as the course passes under the highway through a short tunnel and heads up the mountain.
You'll face about 3 kilometers of uphill, wandering through an overgrown golf course, along dirt trails, through Oleander forests and alongside 60-foot high ironwood evergreens, to an unexpected mountain lake at the 650-foot level.
Your uphill is not finished as we'll take you on some old pineapple field roads for another mile up and around the lake and then to what we are calling the downhill delights. You will lose that altitude running a slalom through the old Kapalua Village golf course, which is now overgrown -- fabulously treed and with high green bermuda grasses -- then suddenly into the open with fantastic views of the Pacific.
Don't look out too long or you'll stumble. As you return to the 250-foot level there is a 200-meter technical, steep downhill into a gully next to the golf course, where you'll jump over and duck under fallen trees and end up in a huge, rocky dry creek – at least we hope it will be dry.
Then through thick elephant grass, into a Cook pine nursery, up a short rope-assisted scramble to a paved road that curves and climbs 100 feet to the head of a neat, narrow single track downhill with switchbacks that drop all the way down to the beach road. We simply had to throw in a calf busting 250-meter beach run back to the resort. Ahh, but the race isn't over yet until you climb the final 300 meters along a hedge protecting an ancient Hawaiian Heiau to the finish.