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Contact: Barb Maynes, Public Information Officer, 360-477-5326
Hawaii National Park, Hawai'i – Best known for its active volcanoes and stunning landscapes, Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park will this weekend welcome hundreds of scientists, students and Hawaiian cultural practitioners to the BioBlitz and Biodiversity & Cultural Festival.
Entrance fees will be waived on both days of the BioBlitz and festival, Friday and Saturday, May 15 and 16.
"This weekend will showcase the very best of Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park and we welcome everyone to enjoy and find their national park," said Superintendent Cindy Orlando. "Following our 'insider tips' will help everyone make the most of their park visit."
To best enjoy the park, visitors are encouraged to plan ahead and prepare for their visit.
- ″Expect heavy traffic before 5 p.m., when BioBlitz and cultural festival activities will be taking place. Be prepared for long waits and follow the directions of park rangers and parking attendants.
- ″Consider exploring Chain of Craters Road during the day and leave Crater Rim Drive for after 6 p.m.
- ″Use the free shuttle buses for traveling Crater Rim Drive, or travel by foot along Crater Rim Trail.
- ″If planning to view the glow from Halema'uma'u Crater after dark, wear sturdy closed-toe shoes and bring a flashlight – walking is required to reach the viewpoint at the Jaggar Museum observation deck. Parking is limited at Kīlauea summit and you may need to walk up to a mile one way along an unlit path.
- ″There is a $10 fee to enter the park, except for Fri., May 15 and Sat., May 16 when entrance fees will be waived for all park visitors.
- ″Before leaving home, check the weather forecast. Prepare for cold, wet and windy conditions. The temperature at the summit is often more than 20 degrees lower than along the coast.
- ″Check volcano visibility at USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory webcams.
- ″The use of unmanned aircraft (drones) is prohibited in all national parks without a special use permit.
The lava lake within Halema'ma'u Crater at Kīlauea volcano's summit has continued to drop and lava is no longer visible from the Jaggar Museum observation deck. Volcanic activity is still very visible however, particularly after dark, when a spectacular orange glow reflects off the crater walls and plume of gas, particulates and vapor.
Because of an increase in seismic activity along the east and southwest rift zones, all backcountry trails between Crater Rim Drive and the coast, as well as Kulanaokuaiki campground, are closed to overnight use. They remain open for day use.
For the most current volcano status report, check hvo.wr.usgs.gov/activity/kilaueastatus.php
There are still opportunities to participate in the BioBlitz and Biodiversity & Cultural Festival, and new registrations are welcome! To learn more and to register for the event, visit http://www.nationalgeographic.com/explorers/projects/bioblitz/volcanoes-hawaii-2015/
For more information about visiting Hawai'I Volcanoes National Park, visit https://www.nps.gov/havo.