• Halema`uma`u Just Before Dawn

    Hawai'i Volcanoes

    National Park Hawai'i

What's Going on With the Volcano?

The eruption of Kīlauea volcano continues at two locations. In the park, the vent within Halema'uma'u Crater is easily viewed from the overlook at the Jaggar Museum. The second location is the Pu'u 'Ō'ō vent located 10 miles (16km) east of the summit, on the remote east rift zone of Kīlauea. This area is not accessible to the public. There is no lava flowing into or towards the ocean.
Halema‘uma‘u lights the morning sky

Halema‘uma‘u Lights the Morning Sky - Photo taken from the overlook by the Volcano House on January 30, 2014 @ 6:25 a.m. - Click for full size image

NPS Photo

Fumes and glow from the lava lake within the vent at the summit of Kīlauea may be seen from the Jaggar Museum overlook and other vantage points along Crater Rim Drive.

During the day a robust plume of volcanic gas is a constant and dramatic reminder of the molten rock churning in a lava lake within the crater. After sunset, Halema'uma'u continues to thrill visitors and park staff with a vivid glow that illuminates the clouds and plume (weather permitting).

Park rangers are on duty at the Jaggar Museum to assist the many visitors drawn to the site which has been erupting within the crater since March 2008.

Halemaʻumaʻu web cam (opens in new window).


HOT LINES for Eruption Information

The June 27th lava flows from Pu'u 'Ō'ō are outside of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park's eastern boundary. The flows are inaccessible by foot or by car and the area is closed to the public.

Resources for more information about the lava flows:

USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory
by phone at: (808) 967-8862
by web at: http://hvo.wr.usgs.gov/activity/kilaueastatus.php

County of Hawai'i Civil Defense
by phone at: (808) 935-0031 (7:45 am - 4:30 pm)
by web at: http://www.hawaiicounty.gov/active-alerts/


December 21, 2014 - 9:06 AM HST

Activity Summary: Kīlauea Volcano continues to erupt at its summit and within its East Rift Zone. A lava flow front consisting of north and south branches remains active, although the southern branch has been stalled since Friday. The northern branch of the flow front has slowed over the past several days, advancing ~78 m (~85 yds) since yesterday morning according to Civil Defense. Summit tilt, and tilt at at Puʻu ʻŌʻō are both currently flat.

June 27th Lava Flow Observations: HVO, along with Civil Defense, is monitoring a flow front progressing towards the Pāhoa Marketplace. Civil Defense reported this morning that the leading edge of the active flow had advanced about 78 m (85) yards since their Saturday morning flight, and is currently about 0.6 miles (1.0 km) up slope from the intersection of Highway 130 and Pāhoa Village Rd. This number reflects an overall decrease of advancement rate during the past several days. The descent path of this branch, if it continues to be followed, will take the flow to the Pāhoa Marketplace. Saturday's HVO ground crew reported that the active flow front was about 100 m (110 yards) wide by midday and was moving sluggishly through rough, hazardous terrain. Saturday's HVO observations also showed that the southern branch of the active flow front remained stalled as it had been since Friday. In addition to the active northern flow front, breakouts from the lava tube on December 5, about 2.6 km (1.6 mi) from Puʻu ʻŌʻō reported as active on Thursday's HVO overflight, appear to still be burning vegetation.

Satellite Image of Area Around Flow Front

December 19, 2014 - Satellite Image of Area Around Flow Front

Courtesy USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory

This map uses a satellite image acquired in March 2014 (provided by Digital Globe) as a base to show the area around the front of Kīlauea’s active East Rift Zone lava flow. The area of the flow on December 18 at 11:15 AM is shown in pink, while widening and advancement of the flow as mapped on December 19 at 8:30 AM is shown in red

Advancement of the flow continued at a slower rate, compared to earlier in the week, and the flow moved about 120 meters (130 yards) since yesterday’s mapping. A southern branch of the flow on this map, following the main steepest-descent path, was stalled when mapped this morning. The more northerly advancing branch was 0.9 km (0.6 miles) away from the back of the Pahoa Marketplace, measured in a straight line. Tick marks show distance above Pahoa Marketplace measured along the main steepest-descent path. The flow will probably reconnect with the steepest-descent path at around the 0.4-mile-mark, if it continues.

Full resolution map (opens in new window)

The blue lines show steepest-descent paths calculated from a 1983 digital elevation model (DEM; for calculation details, see http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2007/1264/). Steepest-descent path analysis is based on the assumption that the DEM perfectly represents the earth's surface. DEMs, however, are not perfect, so the blue lines on this map can be used to infer only approximate flow paths. All older Puʻu ʻŌʻō lava flows (1983–2014) are shown in gray;the yellow line marks the active lava tube.

December 18, 2014 - Large scale lava flow map

December 18, 2014 Large Scale Lava Flow Map

Courtesy USGS - Hawaiian Volcano Observatory

This large-scale map shows the distal part of Kīlauea's active East Rift Zone lava flow in relation to nearby Puna communities. The area of the flow on December 16 at 11:15 AM is shown in pink, while widening and advancement of the flow as mapped on December 18 at 11:15 AM is shown in red.

The leading tip of the flow had slowed, but had also widened and split into two branches. Both branches continue to advance downslope toward the Pahoa Marketplace, and the closest was about 1.0 km (0.6 miles) away. Other breakouts were active about 2.0 km (1.3 miles) behind the tip of the flow and within the crack system near the True/Mid-Pacific geothermal well site.

Full resolution map (opens in new window)

December 16, 2014 - small scale lava flow map

December 16, 2014 Small Scale Lava Flow Map

Courtesy USGS - Hawaiian Volcano Observatory

This small-scale map shows Kīlauea's active East Rift Zone lava flow in relation to lower Puna. The area of the flow on December 9 at 2:30 PM is shown in pink, while widening and advancement of the flow as mapped on December 16 at 11:15 AM is shown in red.

A relatively narrow lobe of lava continues to advance downslope toward the Pahoa Marketplace. The tip of the flow was at 19.498695 , -154.969467 (Decimal Degrees ) at an elevation of 220 m (720 ft). This is about 1.5 km (0.9 miles) from the upslope edge of the Pahoa Marketplace, as measured along the path of steepest descent that the flow has been following. Several other breakouts were active farther upslope along the narrow lobe, as well as within the crack system and on the upper part of the flow field northeast of Puʻu ʻŌʻō.

Full resolution map (opens in new window)


The lava lakes in the Puʻu ʻŌʻō crater and Halemaʻumaʻu crater, as well as other views may be viewed on webcameras made available by the scientists at USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory. Daily updates by staff that monitor Hawaiʻi's volcanoes provide visitors with the most recent observations on volcanic conditions.

Halema`uma`u vent - June 2, 2011 - web cam view

Webcam view of the lava lake within the summit vent in Halemaʻumaʻu on June  2, 2011.

USGS Webcamera

Links to More Information:

USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory
Scientist's Daily Updates
Air Quality Monitors
Earthquakes - Hawaiʻi
Earthquakes - Worldwide


If you are interested in more information about the Kīlauea east rift zone, we invite you to watch the video cast of USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory geophysicist Mike Poland from our After Dark in the Park presentation on August 23, 2011. Mike discusses the volcanic history of the area. It's one hour in length and can be viewed here

Pu`u `O`o view from Pu`u Huluhulu before the collapse
Scott Rowland of The University of Hawaiʻi captured this shot of Puʻu ʻŌʻō from the Puʻu Huluhulu lookout the evening before Puʻu ʻŌʻō collapsed and the west flank eruption began on August 3rd 2011.


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