Friday, July 24, 2015

Vid of Hawai'i Volcanoes lava flow to ocean

Perhaps one of the most dramatic sights at any of America’s national parks are the lava flows at Hawai'i Volcanoes National Park. As the hot liquid rock streams down black rock, some of it falls into the splashing waters of the Pacific Ocean, releasing a gush of scalding steam.

Sitting on the southeast side of Hawai'i’s big island, the national park is home to two active volcanoes that continue to expand the state’s land area. The lava is called Pāhoehoe, an often ropy or billowing lava whose surface upon contact with the cooler air congeals and solidifies into basalt.

Here’s a video of one such flow at Hawai'i Volcanoes:

For safety reasons, the lava flows into the ocean are closed to the public. Still, a number of day hiking trails allow visitors to see the dramatic affects of volcanic action in making the Big Island. A particularly good one is the Kilauea Iki Trail, which heads from a lush green rain forest into a gray volcanic crater formed in 1959.

Also see:
Best trails for seeing Hawaii Volcanoes National Park’s wonders

Learn more about national park day hiking trails in my Best Sights to See at America’s National Parks guidebook.