August 3, 2020
Following guidance from the White House, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and state and local public health authorities, Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park continues to increase community access in phases. Entrance fees have resumed as of Monday, June 15, 2020, and the following areas are now open for outdoor enjoyment and exercise:
- Chain of Craters Road is now open all the way to the coast. Road work continues, and motorists should expect temporary delays and flaggers
- Backcountry overnight camping at ‘Āpua Point, Ka‘aha, Keauhou, Halapē, Red Hill Cabin, Mauna Loa Cabin, and other backcountry sites under the following conditions:
- Backcountry permit required
- One permit per group will be issued per day for inside the cabins
- Cabins will rest 24 hours between groups
- 3-day limit per cabin
- Camping outside cabins is allowed with permit
- First come, first served
- Backcountry Office is open for in-person permits daily, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., and phone permits are available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., call (808) 985-6178.
- Mauna Loa Road is closed to vehicles due to fire danger, but permit holders will be given access
- Hilina Pali Road to the drive-in Kulanaokuaiki Campground
- Kulanaokuaiki Campground for overnight camping
- Self register at the campground self-registration station
- Tent pads, campsites and picnic tables are first come, first served
- Hilina Pali Road past Kulanaokuaiki is open to hikers and bicyclists (closed to vehicles due to fire danger)
- Kīlauea Visitor Center lānai and restrooms. Park rangers are on duty daily and available for questions on the lānai
- Crater Rim Drive to Kilauea Military Camp, and to Devastation Trail parking lot
- Most Kīlauea summit area trails, including Byron Ledge Trail (newly repaired following the 2018 eruption and summit collapse), Sulphur Banks, Steam Vents, Devastation, Crater Rim and Halema‘uma‘u trails
- Pu‘u Pua‘i overlook and parking lot
- Old Crater Rim Drive to Keanakāko‘i area (no vehicles)
- Kīlauea Iki Overlook and trail (one-way counter-clockwise loop only)
- Pu‘uhuluhulu and trails near Mauna Ulu, including Nāpau and Nāulu trails
- Ka‘ū Desert, Mauna Iki, Keauhou, Ka‘aha and Puna Coast trails
- Mauna Loa Road to Kīpukapuaulu for vehicles, bicyclists and hikers, including Tree Molds and Kīpukapuaulu Trail. (The pavilion, picnic area and restroom remain closed).
- Mauna Loa Road past Kīpukapuaulu is open for hikers and bicyclists to Mauna Loa Overlook at 6,662 feet, but is closed to vehicles for wildfire prevention.
- Escape Road, for bicycling, horseback riding and hiking.
- The Kahuku Unit, Saturdays and Sundays, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. (no entrance fee)
- Businesses in the park that meet local and federal public health requirements will also reopen with limited services, including Volcano House, Kilauea Military Camp, Volcano Art Center Gallery and the park’s non-profit partner, Hawai‘i Pacific Parks Association. Contact the businesses directly for details.
With public health in mind, all other areas in the park are closed at this time, including Kīlauea Visitor Center, Nāhuku (Thurston Lava Tube). Although ranger-guided hikes and programs are currently suspended, park rangers are available to answer your questions daily on the Kīlauea Visitor Center lānai.
“Services are limited, and visitors should bring everything they might need for a safe visit including water, meals, and hand sanitizer. Above all, visitors should pack their patience, avoid crowds, and have alternate destinations planned should parking lots be full,” said Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park Acting Superintendent Rhonda Loh.
Visitors are urged to recreate responsibly by planning their visit in advance and acting with care while in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park:
- Practice social distancing. Maintain at least six feet of distance between you and others.
- Wear a face covering when social distancing cannot be maintained.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use your hand sanitizer.
- Cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- If you feel sick, please visit another day.
- Let wildlife be wild. Do not feed nēnē, the Hawaiian goose, and look out for them on roadways and in parking lots.
The health and safety of park users, employees, volunteers, and partners continue to be paramount. While these areas are accessible for the public to enjoy, a return to full operations will continue to be phased and services are limited. Park users should follow local area health orders from the Governor of Hawai‘i, practice Leave No Trace principles, avoid crowding and other high-risk outdoor activities.
The CDC has offered guidance to help people recreating in parks and open spaces prevent the spread of infectious diseases. We will continue to monitor all park functions to ensure that visitors adhere to CDC guidance for mitigating risks associated with the transmission of COVID-19 and take any additional steps necessary to protect public health.
Details and updates on park operations will continue to be posted on the park website www.nps.gov/hawaiivolcanoes and social media channels. Updates about NPS operations will be posted on www.nps.gov/coronavirus.