Mauna Loa Cabin via Observatory Trail Backpack

Hilo, Hawaii 96721

Mauna Loa Cabin via Observatory Trail Backpack

Mauna Loa Cabin via Observatory Trail Backpack Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"For those in a hurry but still determined to see more of Mauna Loa than Trip 11 allows, the Observatory Trail offers a shorter route to Mauna Loa Cabin (but not to Red Hill Cabin) than the Mauna Loa Trail but with a greater risk of altitude sickness, especially if you stay overnight. That’s because you start higher and gain elevation faster.

Also see As a dayhike, below. Day 1 (Just under 6 miles): Take a moment to enjoy the view from the trailhead: Mauna Kea towers across the saddle, and huge, irregular patches of lava of different textures and tints plaster Mauna Loa’s slopes like pieces of a giant jigsaw puzzle. You’re hiking on an active volcano, so the following trail description could change. In that case, follow the Park Service’s cairns, not the description below."

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Trail Information

Hilo
Nearby City
11.75
Distance
2,100 feet
Elevation Gain
Out-and-back
Trail Type
Difficult
Skill Level
6-8 hours
Duration
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park
Local Contacts
USGS Kokoolau
Local Maps