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Hike, Explore & Protect Kahuku This Fall

Kahuku_556
A panoramic view of Ka Lae from Kahuku
NPS Photo/Michael Szoenyi

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Date: September 20, 2012
Contact: Jessica Ferracane, 808-985-6018

Hawaii National Park, Hawaiʻi - Free programs offered by Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park introduce the captivating landscape, biodiversity and history of the park's southernmost section to hikers. Here's what's in store for visitors this fall:


Palm Trail.
The new Palm Trail is a relatively easy 2.6 mile loop traversing through scenic pasture along an ancient cinder cone with some of the best panoramic views Kahuku has to offer. Along the way are relics of the ranching era, sections of remnant native forest and amazing volcanic features from the 1868 eruptive fissures. A guided hike of Palm Trail is offered Sept. 15 and 29 from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Drive through the Kahuku gate, which is located on the mauka side of Highway 11 near mile marker 70.5. Park and meet at the visitor contact tent, near the ranch buildings. Boots, raingear, long pants plus water and a snack are recommended. No advance registration is required.

People and Land of Kahuku is a two-mile, three-hour expedition through pastures, a quarry, an airstrip and the 1868 lava fields of Kahuku. Rangers will explain how people lived on the vast Kahuku lands, from the earliest Hawaiians through today. Walk in emerging native forest, hear about Kahuku's history of violent earthquakes and eruptions and the residents who survived them, and find out how Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park plans to restore the native ecosystem and protect Kahuku's cultural sites. The guided hike is offered Aug. 26, Sept. 9, Sept. 22, Oct. 14 and Nov. 10 from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Drive through the Kahuku gate, which is located on the mauka side of Highway 11 near mile marker 70.5. Park and meet at the visitor contact tent, near the ranch buildings. Boots, raingear, long pants plus water and a snack are recommended. No advance registration is required.

Kīpuka ʻAkihi is a challenging 1.5 mile, five-hour adventure to see some of the rare plants and wildlife that inhabit this treasured kīpuka. Participants must be prepared to scramble over fallen trees, lava rock, and slippery, wet terrain. Wear sturdy hiking shoes, long pants, sunscreen and a hat. Bring raingear, garden gloves, a day pack, insect repellent, lunch and water. This forest stewardship program provides opportunities to help protect this rainforest by pulling up invasive kāhili ginger and other invasive non-native plants throughout the kīpuka. No advance registration is required. This expedition into Kahuku's isolated refuge of rare plants is offered Aug. 25, Sept. 23, Sept. 29, Oct. 21 and Nov. 24 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Drive through the Kahuku gate, which is located on the mauka side of Highway 11 near mile marker 70.5. Park and meet at the visitor contact tent, near the ranch buildings.

NEW! Lunch with a Ranger. Bring a bag lunch and join Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park rangers for lunch on select dates in Kahuku. Rangers will guide an open discussion over lunch on topics ranging from land management and conservation issues to environmental and cultural history. Check the activities board at the visitor contact tent for the day's topic and location. Lunch with a Ranger happens at noon on Oct. 7 and 20 and Nov. 11 and 18.

-NPS-

Did You Know?

Rainforest at Nahuku (Thurston Lava Tube)

In recognition of its outstanding natural values, Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park has been honored as both an International Biosphere Reserve (1980) and a World Heritage Site (1987).