Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park

We made several stops at Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, the first was at the active crater. Our first stop was at the new Halema’uma’u Vent. The smoke plume behind the group comes from this vent.

We also visited the Kilauea Iki Crater. This was amazing as we could see people walking the trail through the crater. They were very tiny from our vantage point.

Kilauea Iki, a collapsed crater, has a hiking trail through the middle. From the overlook, the hikers looked to be the size of ants.

The Thurston Lava Tube is named after a local haole, Lorrin Thurston (also the newspaper publisher and a leader in the overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy). Mr. Thurston discovered the tube in 1913, and it is over 400 years old. Lava tubes are channels created during lava flow, that then serve as conduits for additional lava.

Kristen C. and Tara C. enter the tube.

Another stop was at a deep crater, Puhimau. There was a short walk from the road to the overlook, with the trees suddenly opening to reveal the massive rock wall on the other side. It was a dramatic sight, and many gasps were heard. This crater creates an echo, and a few students tried it out.

One other stop was a lava flow field from the 1980s. It was amazing to see plants growing in the lava. We walked very carefully across the field as there were many slanted services and sharp edges.

Lehua flowers growing in the lava field.The lava field.