Mauna Loa Trail to Mauna Loa Cabin Backpack

Hilo, Hawaii 96721

Mauna Loa Trail to Mauna Loa Cabin Backpack

Mauna Loa Trail to Mauna Loa Cabin Backpack Professional Guide

Detailed Trail Description from our Guidebook

"Some of you will find it an irresistible temptation to climb to the top of a mountain that’s the world’s most massive volcano and also one of its most active volcanoes. You can do this trip more easily in four days (allowing five days if you want to take a layover day at the cabin in order to dayhike to the true summit). Or, more difficult, you can hike up in two days and hike down in one monumental day.

Begin your walk near the restrooms, where an interpretive sign shows the general layout of the park. Now you walk uphill a few feet on the paved path that leads away from here—not on the spur that leads to a metal pedestal (whatever it supported is gone). You immediately find yourself in a field of reddish-brown pahoehoe that’s sparsely shaded by kiawe trees. You may see wild goats out on the lava and game birds in the kiawe thickets, but they will flee as you approach. Interpretive signs along the path invite you to pause and consider the origin of this lava field and the uses to which some of its features were put. Most interesting is a large cave, just to the left of the paved path on a short spur. The cave was formed by a lava tube, and the old Hawaiians used it as a cool, roomy home."

Mauna Loa Trail to Mauna Loa Cabin Backpack Trip Reports

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9/8/2004
Afer reading several other reviews of this hike, I was expecting the worst, but it turned out to be very enjoyable. The solitude and sheer emensity of this volcano was awe inspiring. The only hard part of the climb was the 2 mile detour to Manuna Loa cabin. It had over a mile of A'A'A'A' Lava. Make sure you have alot of day lite left if you plan to summit and then make it over to the cabin, as it will take several hours. I did the hike in just under 3 days, logging 20 hours on the trail.
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Trail Information

Hilo
Nearby City
38.25
Distance
6,588 feet
Elevation Gain
Out-and-back
Trail Type
Difficult
Skill Level
14-16 hours
Duration
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park
Local Contacts
USGS Kipuka Pakekake
Local Maps