Area Closures, Advisories, Drones/Unmanned Aircraft & Other Policies
October 19, 2017 - Accessibility improvements scheduled for Mauna Loa Lookout area.
Vehicles will have limited access to Mauna Loa Lookout for eight weeks, from Oct. 30 to Dec. 31, while workers improve the parking lot, toilet and picnic area for visitors with disabilities. more>
October 19, 2017 - Due to high winds and falling trees near Mauna Loa Road, the road will be closed until further notice.
The backcountry trails on Mauna Loa will remain open as the forecast from the National Weather Service indicates wind speeds below the trigger points for a closure. However, hikers cannot drive to the trailhead on Mauna Loa Road and are urged to exercise caution as winds in certain areas might be above the forecast speeds due to terrain.
August 18, 2017 - Due to drought conditions, water supply levels are lower than we like to see them. Please help to conserve where possible during your visit. Superintendent's Water Restriction Request Letter (pdf - 77KB).
December 12, 2016 - Closure of a portion of Eruption Area
Until further notice a portion of the area near the coastal lava flow known as 61g and described below will be closed by direction of the park Superintendant. The closure is based on the potential for airborne debris being projected up to 300 meters from a collapsing lava bench. Flying debris is a safety concern for the public and employees. This closure will be in effect until there is no longer a danger.
Area to be closed: A 300 meter section within the boundary of Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park that is marked with posted signs notifying the public of the closure, where possible will be augmented by a rope barrier. Due to the constant shifting of lava benches and ocean entries, this area is subject to change and is therefore only referred to by the current location of posted signs.
March 4, 2016 - Temporary Closure of the Kahuku Unit Upper Paddocks: The Kahuku road and upper paddocks are temporarily closed to the public at the cross gate due to Rapid 'Ōhi'a Death (ROD). Ten trees have been confirmed to be infected with ROD in the lower paddocks below the cross gate. Currently ROD has not been found in the upper paddocks. The closure is necessary to prevent the spread of ROD to the upper paddocks. The Forested Pit Crater trail and Kona trail are not accessible.
May 7, 2015- All areas immediately adjacent to Jaggar Museum extending from the developed parking lot and visitor use areas are closed due to hazardous conditions. These include steep cliffs, earth cracks and trip hazards. Areas will be delineated on the ground with signs, barrier devices or a combination of these and may be extended or changed based on assessments of NPS personnel and approved by the Superintendent or her designated representative.
Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park Policies
Drones / Unmanned Aircraft Policy
Superintendent's Compendium 2016 (pdf - 4.6MB)
Status of the Park: Park is OPEN - Some Closures are in effect:
Currently the Chain of Craters Road is OPEN and the trail to Puʻu Huluhulu is OPEN. Both the Nāpau Trail beyond Puʻu Huluhulu and the Naulu Trail are OPEN (permit required).
Be aware that high levels of SO2 and/or smoke could occur at anytime. This is a very active area and subject to sudden closure.
The following restrictions remain in effect:
Portions of the Park are Closed
Advisory on Potential Closures:
The prevailing northeast tradewinds generally blow fumes from the volcano away from visitor areas. However, during times of weak winds or winds from the south (the opposite direction), volcanic fumes may impact visitor areas, prompting the park to close. Please be flexible and alert.
What should you do when you notice hazy/smoky/smog-like conditions (VOG)?:
Park rangers monitor air quality and will advise visitors when the situation prompts a closure. When a closure is ordered, please leave the area in an orderly manner with everyone's safety in mind. See: Visitor Alert - SO2 Advisory
Last updated: October 20, 2017