The south side of Maui differs dramatically from its north side. In the rain shadow of Haleakala, it is mostly baren west of Kaupo and east of Ulupalakua. The environement transitions from a subtropical rainforest, to grasslands, bare lava fields, and then highland forest. There are no significant settlements between those two towns, and only very light traffic. The south road has a short unpaved section and sometimes only one lane, but it is nevertheless passable by a regular car in normal conditions.
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