Mauna Kea Summit Trail

Ascend Hawaii’s tallest peak on Mauna Kea Summit Trail, Big Island, for breathtaking panoramas, unique alpine landscapes, and stargazing at renowned observatories.

Mauna Kea Summit Trail is a Hiking Trail located in the city of Kamuela on Big Island, Hawaii
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Things to Know About Mauna Kea Summit Trail

  • Overview: Mauna Kea Summit Trail, located in Kamuela on Big Island, Hawaii, takes you to the highest peak in the state. This must-see attraction offers breathtaking views, unique landscapes, and a chance to experience the diverse ecosystems of Hawaii.
  • Highlights: The main highlight of Mauna Kea Summit Trail is its elevation of 13,796 feet, making it the tallest peak in Hawaii. From the summit, visitors can witness stunning panoramic views of the island, including glimpses of Mauna Loa and Haleakalā on clear days.
  • Activities: At Mauna Kea Summit Trail, visitors can enjoy hiking the trail to the summit, stargazing at the world-class observatories, and exploring the unique alpine environment with its rare native flora and fauna.
  • Information: Mauna Kea Summit Trail is open year-round, with the Visitor Information Station (VIS) open daily from 9 am to 10 pm. There is no entrance fee to access the trail, but donations are accepted at the VIS. The best time to visit is during the dry season from April to October, as winter months may bring snow and icy conditions.
  • History & Significance: Mauna Kea is considered sacred by Native Hawaiians, who believe the summit is the meeting place of the gods. The mountain also holds cultural and historical significance as the site of ancient shrines, burial grounds, and adze quarries.
  • Tips & Insights: To enhance your experience at Mauna Kea Summit Trail, be sure to acclimate to the altitude by spending time at the VIS before attempting the hike, and dress in layers to accommodate the changing temperatures. Additionally, remember to practice respectful behavior and adhere to cultural guidelines in order to preserve the sacredness of the site.

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