Cloud Forest Bird Walk
Cloud Forest Bird Walk
The Cloud Forest Bird Walk traverses some of Mauna Loa’s richest remaining high elevation forest patches. We’ll see and hear many native bird species, which may include ‘apapane, ‘amakihi, i’iwi, oma’o, ‘elepaio, ‘io and perhaps even the rare and endangered ‘akiapola’au.
Tour Duration: 3 1/2 Hours
Total Distance: 4 miles (6.5 km)
Elevation Change: 200′ (61 m)
Difficulty: Easy to Moderate
Temperatures are cool, we may encounter showers and mist. Portions of the trail are uneven and rocky.
Old growth koa and mixed native forest, meadowland, rare native birds and other animals, unique native plants and wonderful views.
What to Bring:
Sturdy, closed toed walking shoes Warm clothing/ Jacket
Provided on this Hike:
Delicious picnic lunch in a forested setting. Rain suits
Tour Meeting Place: Trailhead
Maximum Group Size: 12 guests
Price: $110.00 USD per person
We’ll pass through several kipuka (forest patches) filled with mixed ‘ohi’a forest and large stands of old koa, separated by open meadow lands. The forest edges will give us good views of many hard to spot native birds.
Small wetlands, which pepper the meadows sometimes attract kolea, the Pacific golden plover. Families of nene, Hawai’i’s endangered native goose, can often be seen at meadow edges.
Wildlife, including mouflon sheep, goats, pheasants and other introduced game birds can also frequently be seen here.
Many unique native plants can be found in the forests and meadows, including the endangered ‘akala, Hawai’i’s native raspberry.
We’ll pass through a bit of forest and meadow, and then take some time to stop and look for birds at the kipuka edges. Your guide will help you learn to recognize various bird calls and behaviors, ensuring you’ll have the best chance to get a good look at these living gems.
i’iwi (Vestiaria coccinea) Photo: Don Metzner
We’ll take time to rest and enjoy a delicious picnic lunch at the feet of centuries old koa trees. Then we’ll continue through another densely forested kipuka where we’ll see some interesting native plants. Next, our trail will take us briefly through an ‘a’a lava flow from the late 1800’s, where we’ll see some specially adapted pioneer plant species.
From here, on clear days we’ll have great views of Mauna Loa’s summit. On misty days the landscape takes on an otherworldly beauty and the air rings with bird song. The Cloud Forest Bird Walk will be a day you’ll never forget!
Cloud forest bird walk
Location and Approximate Driving Times
From Waikoloa: 1 Hour
From Kailua-Kona: 1 1/2 Hours
From Hilo: 30 Minutes
From Volcano Village: 1 1/4 Hours
When we confirm your reservations we will be happy to provide detailed driving directions from your location.
Bird Walk Map Lava Land Hawaii