Hawaii Volcanoes National Park makes progress toward Sept. 22 reopening

  • A team including National Park Service geomorphologist Eric Bilderback log earthquake damage and assess stability along Crater Rim Trail. NPS Photo/Jon Christensen.

Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is completing emergency repairs and making progress toward reopening parts of the park by 10 a.m. on Sat., Sept. 22, National Public Lands Day, park officials said in a news release.

As of today, 32 buildings have been inspected, nonpotable water has been restored to nine buildings, and 20 miles of trail have been assessed by the National Park Service geomorphologist.

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On Sept. 10, a team of engineers from the Federal Highway Administration will begin assessments on park roads.

Following a lengthy closure due to months of hazardous volcanic and seismic activity at the summit of Kilauea, the park is preparing to reopen the following areas on Sept. 22 by 10 a.m.:

— Kilauea Visitor Center (closes at 5 p.m.)

— Hawaii Pacific Parks Association store at Kilauea Visitor Center (closes at 5 p.m.)

— Crater Rim Trail between Volcano House and Kilauea Military Camp

— Sulphur Banks Trail

— Crater Rim Drive to Steam Vents

— Kilauea Iki Overlook and parking lot

— Devastation Trail and Pu‘u Pua‘i

— Crater Rim Drive to Keanakako‘i Crater, for pedestrians and bicyclists only

— Mauna Loa Road to Kipukapuaulu; open to pedestrians and bicyclists past Kipukapuaulu

— Sections of Escape Road from Highway 11

— Chain of Craters Road

The Volcano Art Center Gallery and Kilauea Military Camp also plan to open on Sept. 22. Limited services may be available at Volcano House.

A new Hawaii Volcanoes National Park “Recovery” webpage is now available to share updates and photos with the public: https://www.nps.gov/havo/recovery.htm.

For the first time in many years, there is no molten lava to see in the park. The recent eruption saw the disappearance of the summit lava lake and lava flows from Pu‘u ‘O‘o have ceased.

The entrance station will open by 10 a.m. on Sept. 22, and the park will go back to being open 24 hours a day.

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An initial interior inspection was completed on Thurston Lava Tube, but additional assessments are needed, according to the release.

See Saturday’s Tribune-Herald for more.

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