Maui was formed from two volcanoes joined together by a valley. When locals refer to "Upcounty," they are talking about Haiku, Makawao, Pukalani, and Kula which lie on the slopes of the larger volcano, Haleakala. The smaller volcano is called the West Maui Mountains which are largely uninhabitable due to the steep slopes.
After living in and painting Paia for eleven years, in 1996 we moved up to Makawao Town when a fire almost destroyed the building that housed The Eddie Flotte Gallery on Hana Highway. Thereafter, places that were a short walk or drive from my house in Makawao began manifesting in my paintings.
Upcountry Maui has a flavor all its own. This is the home of the "paniolo" or Hawaiian cowboy. Makawao town still has hitching posts for horses in front of many of the stores and it is not uncommon to see people on horseback traveling from place to place. Upcountry is rural, with farms and ranches and livestock gracing the views.
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