One of the many hidden gems on the Big Island of Hawai’i is Pu’u Wa’awa’a Ahupua’a, a state forest reserve with a volcanic pumice cone on the north rift zone of Hualalai. The summit of Pu’u Wa’awa’a stands at 3,967 feet (1,209m) in elevation and the base is just over 1 mile (1.6 km) in diameter — which is short enough in round trip distance and altitude to make for a wonderful day hike.
The cool thing for me — upon reaching the summit of the Pu’u Wa’awa’a cone — was looking to the north and seeing the summit of Mauna Kea (13,803 feet/4,207.3m) some 24 miles away. Being a native of eastern Idaho, I’m no stranger to volcanoes (think Craters of the Moon National Monument), but the volcanic cones on Hawai’i are in a completely different league of their own.
Should you ever find yourself on the Big Island and wanting a change of pace from all the usual tourist haunts, try this one. It’s highly recommended.
Pu’u Wa’awa’a Ahupua’a
Pu’u Wa’awa’a State Forest Reserve
Kailua-Kona, The Big Island, Hawai’i
Leica D-LUX 4 digicam