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Kilauea Craters Trail is a 8 mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near Volcano, Hawaii, Hawaii that features beautiful wild flowers and is rated as moderate. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.

Length 8.0 mi Elevation gain 1,328 ft Route type Loop
Hiking Nature trips Walking Bird watching Running Views Wild flowers Wildlife No shade No dogs
Description
Waypoints (10)
Contact
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Getting There

Hiking inside the desolate crater of possibly the world's most active volcano. The volcanic activity that created the Hawaiian island chain hasn't yet finished working on what's know as the 'Big Island' called Hawaii. If you need evidence, look no further than the lava flows and gas eruptions that spill from the Kilauea volcano located on the south-east side of the Big Island. You'll find Kilauea at Volcanoes National Park where there's plenty to see even without stepping far from your vehicle. However, being hikers we'd suggest leaving your car by Thurston Lava Tube and setting out on an eight-and-a-half mile trek into the Kilauea pit crater itself, along the huge expanses of lava and taking in the Halema'uma'u crater-within-a-crater on the way. There's something other-worldly about walking across a desolate 4-mile wide crater over huge expanses of strangely patterned lava flows. Steam and sulfuric gases venting into the air are stark reminders that you're standing on top of an immense volcano, but the sight of flowers and other vegetation rising out of the cracks reassure you that the lava you're standing on is decades old. Elevation gain: - 800ft (from 3,500 - 4,100ft) Alternatives: - Consider the short walk through Thurston Lava Tubes located at the trailhead of this hike. - There's a shorter (5.2 mile) out-and-back route to Halema'uma'u Crater which begins and ends at the Kilauea Visitor Center.

National Park Service - Hawaii Volcanoes National Park http://www.nps.gov/havo/index.htm

- Volcanoes National Park operates a day-use fee. - Check the park's website for details on any temporary closures of park trails due to volcanic activity.

Directions from Park Entrance: Follow Crater Rim Road to the Kilauea visitor center. The trailhead begins from the visitor center parking area.

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Reviews (30)
Photos (938)
Recordings (22)
Completed (153)
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Morgan Hayden
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Hiking

I live just outsIde HI Natl Park and hike here a great deal. Currently the Kiluea Iki Crater Trail (the part on the right section of the map) is open (4.2 miles) as is the Byron Ledge Trail which skirts the big crater’s edge (center of map.) However, the “legs” which spanned laterally across the Kiluea Caldera floor to Halemaumau (left part of map) are closed because all but a small portion of them were consumed when the caldera floor collapsed in June/August 2018. You can still see remnants of Crater Rim Drive and the parking area that slid down a few hundred feet. The yellow line on the map reflects Crater Rim Drive and the now missing portion of it.

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Daniel Carpentier
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BackpackingClosed

trail is closed. use iki trail instead

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Tony Fachaux
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Hiking

Great hike, very easy with an amazing landscape when you are in the middle of the crater! It took us 1h40 with plenty of breaks for pictures.

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Valérie Galien
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Intéressant à voir!!

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Lori Kunz
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Hiking

Loved this hike. I only hiked down from the Lava Tubes trail. It was voggy and late in the day. The descent through the rainforest onto the crater was surreal. We are heading to the big island again in January. I sure hope this trail opens up again. It appears to be closed.

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Jessica Driskill
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Hiking

You can no longer get close to the active crater. With signs posted everywhere to warn you not to go any further. It was still an amazing part of our 13mile hike, and wish that one day we can come back.

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Dan McClure
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excellent family hike

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Kay Neufeld
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Amazing views. When your on the rim of the crater, you are so high up people appear as ants that are inside of the crater. Climbing back up was a bit of a challenge only because I was not use to such a humid environment. Very rewarding hike. Active steam vents within the crater were amazing.

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Marlene Robbins
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Just marvelous. You start at parking lot and drop down through verdant tropical forest for half hour, that then opens onto massive lava plain. The trail is marked by ahu (stone cairns), important to keep track of in foggy conditions. Pass by numerous massive rock formations, steam vents and plants reemerging from lava fissures. Take the side path half way across to see the reddish depression that looks like a cave. Sit and enjoy the quiet and breeze while you ponder the miracle of earth. The walk across the lava field is about 45 minutes with a rest, then climbs back up through the birdsong filled forest back to parking lot. We emerged by Thurston Lava Tube so saw that, too. Ten minute walk back down to our car. Just the best!! Moderate hike for experienced hikers, harder for newbies. Take water, hat, camera, snack bar for a rest break.

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Michael Maughan
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Hiking
First to Review

There are so many trails around the crater rim. Some sections were closed when we went, so this only covers those areas that were open (mostly on the East side). The Good: - Great views for most of the trail! - Vegetation changes from rocky to lush and back. - Steam vents along one section are fun and warm you up on a colder day. - Trail intersects many other trails. Explore! - Parking spots all along the trail so you can start and stop where you like. - Easy. Everyone can hike this trail. The Not So Good: - No water. Bring your own. - Some areas are in full sun. Plan accordingly. - Some sections are closed due to volcanic activity. Check with the rangers. Bottom Line: All trails around here are fun. Pick one and explore!

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Amy Thompson
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Hiking
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Steve Walden
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Hiking
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Steve Walden
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Hiking
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Kuulei Stephenson
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Hiking
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Tom Phanthavady
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Hiking
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Rebeccah Ervin
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Carlo Cremonesi
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Hiking
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Ivonne Deliz
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Hiking
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Ivonne Deliz
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Hiking
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Ryan Phipps
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Jana Gems
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Roxana Medina
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Carolyn MacIntyre
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Jennifer Holschuh
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Linda Hoang
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Hiking
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Craig Miller
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Hiking
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Terry Scheihing
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Daniel Sherby
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Cameron Calabrese
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Walking
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Richard Kent
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