HIKE TO THE LAVA!
-GO SEE THE FLOW WITH A PRO-
NOW OFFERING SMALL GROUP LAVA HIKES!
When eruption conditions allow, our professional guides can get you out to the surface flows both legally and safely. Because of ever changing eruption conditions we cannot guarantee any specific eruption viewings. Our private lava hikes have limited availability so we recommend booking at least 2 weeks in advance.
There is nothing luxurious about this hike - you will get dirty, sweaty and will likely be exhausted at the end, but it is worth EVERY SINGLE STEP! The hike can range from 6-mi (10-km) to 10-mi (16-km) round trip and on average takes 6-7 hours to complete. Kalapana, the area where our lava hike option takes place, is isolated and extreme and we are exposed to all kinds of weather conditions including intense sun and heavy rains. There is no trail and the hiking terrain is uneven, old volcanic flows although there is no major elevation gain/loss as of July 2016. We legally access private land outside of the National Park where the best flows normally occur. This hike requires each guest to be in very good to excellent physical condition due to the nature of the the terrain.
For safety reasons, the minimum age for our lava hike option is 12 years of age. In addition to your own professional guide, your private lava hike will include gloves, headlamps and hand held flashlights for each guest. Closed toe footwear is required as well as long pants. We strongly recommend hats, sunglasses, sunscreen and a minimum of 3L of water per guest.
In the event there is no activity both safely and legally accessible on your requested tour date, we will explore Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park as a backup tour. Please contact us with any specific questions you may have about our private lava hikes, and to find out if your requested date is available for this once in a lifetime opportunity!
Our lava hikes have gotten so popular that we have not been able to get all of our guests on the tour, so we are now offering small group lava hikes twice a week. If you have flexibility in your tour dates and want to take the lava hike at a reduced rate please contact us to find out which days these hikes will be conducted each week. We will also continue to offer our private lava hikes if that is your preference!
LAVA HIKE FAQs
1. Will we see flowing lava, and how close will we get?
Due to ever changing eruption conditions we cannot guarantee any specific access or lava viewings. When the lava is legally accessible our professional guides will get you as close safely possible to surface flows and lava ocean entry (when applicable).
2. Why should we hire a professional guide to hike to the lava?
While it is possible to in some cases access lava flows on your own, local state and federal authorities strongly recommend hiring a professional guide who knows the area well. There are serious dangers in the area such as toxic gases and unseen lava tube networks. Our private lava hikes offer you safety and expertise so you can focus on enjoying the lava flowing! Almost everyday someone gets lost, injured or worse in this very isolated area, however our guides know this area like their own backyards and will provide you with a safe lava viewing experience you will never forget.
3. How long is the hike and what is the terrain like?
This hike involves uneven volcanic terrain and requires closed toe footwear and long pants. Hiking times and distance can very depending on flow location, so please contact us to find out the current eruption conditions and lava hike length. You will be provided with gloves, headlamps and handheld flashlights if you choose to conduct your private lava hike after sunset.
4. What is the minimum age for the private lava hike?
Due to the distance and terrain involved, this hike is not appropriate for guests 12 years of age and younger.
5. What do we need to bring along?
We strongly recommend at least 3L of water person, and lightweight snacks for this hike. A medium size backpack is always handy to pack everything you need! Hats, sunglasses, sunscreen, bug spray and a rain jacket are also strongly recommended. Of course, bring your camera and your sense of adventure!