Unified Interior Regions

Hawaii

The Pacific Region has nine USGS Science Centers in California, Nevada, and Hawaii. The Regional Office, headquartered in Sacramento, provides Center oversight and support, facilitates internal and external collaborations, and works to further USGS strategic science directions.

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Fissure of lava fountains erupting from Mauna Loa's upper southwest...
June 2, 1950

Fissure of lava fountains erupting from Mauna Loa's upper SW rift z...

Fissure of lava fountains erupting from Mauna Loa's upper southwest rift zone, June 2, 1950. Plumes of volcanic gas rise high into the air. Aerial photograph taken by the Air National Guard.

A fast-moving ‘s‘ā flow erupted from Mauna Loa in 1950 as it advanc...
June 2, 1950

A fast-moving ‘A‘ā flow erupted from Mauna Loa in 1950 as it advanc...

Aerial photograph shows the Ka‘apuna lava flow erupted from Mauna Loa in 1950 as it advanced through the forest at about 3,000 feet elevation on the morning of June 2. This rapidly moving ‘a‘ā lava flow traveled from the Southwest Rift Zone vent to the ocean in about 17 hours. Earlier flows from this same eruption reached the ocean in as little as three hours.

Aerial photograph of the 1942 Mauna Loa lava flow spreading downslo...
April 28, 1942

Aerial photograph of the 1942 Mauna Loa lava flow spreading downslo...

Aerial photograph of the 1942 Mauna Loa lava flow spreading downslope toward Hilo; smoke from burning trees in center of flow. Scattered cinder cones at the summit of Mauna Kea, top of photograph.

Aerial view by the Naval Air Service of the 1933 Mauna Loa eruption...
November 22, 1935

Aerial view by the Naval Air Service of the 1933 Mauna Loa eruption...

Aerial view by the Naval Air Service of the 1933 Mauna Loa eruption from a fissure across the rim and floor of Moku‘āweoweo Crater.

video thumbnail: Mauna Loa Volcano Hawaii -- 1930s Eruption (Part 1 of 5)
December 31, 1929

Mauna Loa Volcano Hawaii -- 1930s Eruption (Part 1 of 5)

Part 1 of 5

Remarkable silent film, 16mm Kodachrome movie film. Probably the first color film ever made of a volcanic eruption. Mokuaweoweo Crater eruption filmed probably in late 1935 by Harold T. Stearns, a USGS Hydrologist-Volcanologist. The lava fountains are hundreds of feet high, the erupting fissure inside the crater is about two thousand feet long. The

video thumbnail: Mauna Loa Volcano Hawaii -- 1930s Eruption (Part 2 of 5)
December 31, 1929

Mauna Loa Volcano Hawaii -- 1930s Eruption (Part 2 of 5)

Part 2 of 5

Remarkable silent film, 16mm Kodachrome movie film. Probably the first color film ever made of a volcanic eruption. Mokuaweoweo Crater eruption filmed probably in late 1935 by Harold T. Stearns, a USGS Hydrologist-Volcanologist. The lava fountains are hundreds of feet high, the erupting fissure inside the crater is about two thousand feet long. The

video thumbnail: Mauna Loa Volcano Hawaii -- 1930s Eruption (Part 3 of 5)
December 31, 1929

Mauna Loa Volcano Hawaii -- 1930s Eruption (Part 3 of 5)

Part 3 of 5

Remarkable silent film, 16mm Kodachrome movie film. Probably the first color film ever made of a volcanic eruption. Mokuaweoweo Crater eruption filmed probably in late 1935 by Harold T. Stearns, a USGS Hydrologist-Volcanologist. The lava fountains are hundreds of feet high, the erupting fissure inside the crater is about two thousand feet long. The

video thumbnail: Mauna Loa Volcano Hawaii -- 1930s Eruption (Part 4 of 5)
December 31, 1929

Mauna Loa Volcano Hawaii -- 1930s Eruption (Part 4 of 5)

Part 4 of 5

Remarkable silent film, 16mm Kodachrome movie film. Probably the first color film ever made of a volcanic eruption. Mokuaweoweo Crater eruption filmed probably in late 1935 by Harold T. Stearns, a USGS Hydrologist-Volcanologist. The lava fountains are hundreds of feet high, the erupting fissure inside the crater is about two thousand feet long. The

video thumbnail: Mauna Loa Volcano Hawaii -- 1930s Eruption (Part 5 of 5)
December 31, 1929

Mauna Loa Volcano Hawaii -- 1930s Eruption (Part 5 of 5)

Part 5 of 5

Remarkable silent film, 16mm Kodachrome movie film. Probably the first color film ever made of a volcanic eruption. Mokuaweoweo Crater eruption filmed probably in late 1935 by Harold T. Stearns, a USGS Hydrologist-Volcanologist. The lava fountains are hundreds of feet high, the erupting fissure inside the crater is about two thousand feet long. The

Ejected tephra from Halemaumau at Kīlauea Volcano, May 31, 1924...
May 31, 1924

Ejected tephra from Halemaumau at Kīlauea, May 31, 1925

This scene west of Halemaumau looks toward the rim of the caldera, southwest of Uēkahuna Bluff. New ballistic blocks and ash from the 1924 eruption coat the floor of the caldera.

Airplane landing field at Kīlauea Volcano strewn with blocks from s...
May 22, 1924

Airplane landing field at Kīlauea strewn with blocks from several e...

Prior to the eruption of 1924, this area was swept clean and used as a landing field for airplanes. This view looking toward the north rim of Halemaumau shows the air field littered with ballistic blocks from explosions in the 1924 eruption.

Explosion from Halemaumau at Kīlauea Volcano as viewed from Uēkahun...
May 18, 1924

Explosion from Halemaumau at Kīlauea May 18, 1924.

This was probably the strongest explosion of the eruption. Rocks and debris fell among spectators southeast of Halemaumau, causing one fatality. A torrential downpour and an electrical storm followed.

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USGS
January 18, 2001

The Hawaiian Islands are home to thousands of plant and animal species found nowhere else in the world. Protecting these native species against the many threats to their survival - including habitat destruction and invasions of alien species—is a significant challenge, but also an important goal.

USGS
January 11, 2001

If we had a dime for every time we've heard a visitor ask, "When is the volcano going to erupt?," we wouldn't be rich, but at least we could go out to dinner some place nice. As it is, we just sigh and launch into our usual explanation. The volcano is erupting, we say, but it's not the kind of eruption you were expecting.

USGS
January 4, 2001

Watching lava flow across the ground surface and into the ocean can be mesmerizing and exciting-the experience of a lifetime. Don't let it be the last experience of your lifetime. Here are tips on how to return to your car unbloodied and upright.

USGS
December 28, 2000

By anyone's reckoning, New Year's Day either starts a new millennium or ends its first year. What have Hawai`i's four active island volcanoes done during the past 1,000 years?
 

USGS
December 21, 2000

For the past two weeks, numerous reports of increased seismic activity heralding a possible large eruption at Popocatepetl Volcano in Mexico have been in the news. A disturbing commentary in the reports was that residents living on the slopes of the volcano were hesitant to comply with the government's order to evacuate.
 

USGS
December 14, 2000

It's been 60 years since Harold Stearns first recognized that Hawaiian island volcanoes evolve through stages we call shield, postshield, and rejuvenated volcanism.

USGS
December 7, 2000

Two months ago, we discussed early findings suggesting that Kīlauea had an explosive eruption far larger than we dared think. The study has progressed since then, and the early findings have been confirmed and extended.
 

USGS
November 30, 2000

Last week we wrote about the large Kalapana earthquake of 1975. In the article we discussed the importance of repeated geodetic observations that monitored the accumulation of strain before the earthquake and allowed HVO researchers to forecast the event.

USGS
November 23, 2000

Wednesday, November 29, 2000, will mark the 25th anniversary of the magnitude 7.2 Kalapana earthquake that struck the Puna and Ka'u districts of Hawai'i County. The 1975 earthquake is the second largest ever documented in Hawai'i, overshadowed only by the 1868 great Ka'u earthquake, which has been estimated to be of magnitude 7.9.
 

USGS
November 16, 2000

The Kalij Pheasant is an unparalleled success among game birds introduced in the 50th State. Because Hawai`i has no native upland game birds, people have imported a total of twelve species of pheasants, quail, partridges, peafowl, and wild turkeys from all over the world. Last to arrive was the Kalij, released in 1962 at Pu`u Wa`awa`a Ranch.

USGS
November 9, 2000

Anyone who has been close to an active flow or steam vent knows that the heat coming from one of these features is intense and, at times, overwhelming! It will come as no surprise, then, that thermal monitoring of volcanoes and their products plays an important part in volcanology.
 

USGS
November 3, 2000

Kīlauea has been erupting for nearly 18 years, and there is no sign of it stopping anytime soon. But all previous Kīlauea eruptions ended, and there's no reason to think this one is any different. What can we expect when the curtain finally falls?