Chain of Craters Road to Halape Backpack Trail

Hilo, Hawaii 96720

Chain of Craters Road to Halape Backpack Trail

Chain of Craters Road to Halape Backpack Trail Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"Halape is an extremely popular coastal destination for backcountry hikers along the Puna-Kau Coast. The coves around Halape are the prettiest along the Puna-Kau Trail and reportedly offer the best snorkeling, though swimming is always risky along this coast because of the rough water.

It’s easiest to do this trip in four days, stopping at Keauhou on the way in and out. However, you may prefer to make it in two or three days. Day 1 (41/2 miles): Two trails lead away from the roadend (see below). Neither is marked by name. You take the one that leads southsouthwest (to the right as you stand in front of the picnic shelter, facing the ocean). It’s the Kau Desert Trail."

Chain of Craters Road to Halape Backpack Trail Trip Reports

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10/29/2003
The hike down the trail was beautiful due to the scenery and shoreline views. Not recommended on hot sunny days though...either start off at dawn or hope for a cloudy day. It took us about 4.5-5 hours to reach the Keauhou Shelter with full backpacks for a two-nighter. The great part was that there is treatable water and a nicely built pit toilet. The shelter was covered in Carpenter Bees, although they do not sting, they are very busy and loud especially first thing in the morning.

The beach, where we camped out at was beautiful with tidepools all over the place and lots of fish at night to view...but, fishing at the Keauhou Shelter is only allowed by residents of the area. However, fishing is allowed at the Halape Shelter. Large ants roamed the beach, as well as our backpacks, tents, feet, etc.=) nothing got rid of them. Then there are the roaches that come out at night...by the thousands...but, also harmless!

This shelter as an overnighter+ is not recommended for people who don't like bugs...but if you can get over that, it is a beautiful spot! The trail was rugged in spots and marked by lava rock cairns with a few switchbacks.
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Trail Information

Hilo
Nearby City
21.33
Distance
120 feet
Elevation Gain
Out-and-back
Trail Type
Difficult
Skill Level
16 hours
Duration
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park
Local Contacts
USGS Makaopuhi Crater
Local Maps

Trail Log