Visitors watch the sun rise at 10,000 feet in Haleakala National Park in Maui, Hawaii. (John McDonnell/Washington Post)

With financial negotiations all but halted, President Obama was headed out of Washington on Friday evening for his annual winter vacation in Hawaii.

Obama is likely to have a short trip this year; aides said he is scheduled to return Wednesday, a day after Christmas, to resume discussions with congressional leaders on how to avert the fiscal cliff.