Not just for the birds – Kipuka Puaulu Trail in the HI Volcanoes Nat. Park Bird Sanctuary

Posted by on Oct 6, 2015 in Big Island, Big Island Hawaii, birding, Hawaii, Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, Hike, hiking trails | 0 comments

This trail is through a beautiful, natural bird sanctuary in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park on the Big Island of Hawii, but even if you are not a birder, like Randy and I, it is one of the most pleasant hiking trails we have been on. It is a short, easy 1.2 mile walk, with a pretty even grade. It is so shady with old growth trees that is a wonderful respite from the hot lava flows. And it is so educational, both culturally and botanically, with signs showing indigenous plants and which indigenous  birds feed on them. For real birding, an early hike or late afternoon would be prime time to see the birds, but don’t forget your binoculars, because those trees are really tall. For the average bird appreciator, as we consider ourselves to be, we saw a few birds and heard a few beautiful calls on our mid-day hike. We saw kalij pheasants in the undergrowth and scared a couple of Erckel’s francolins coming around a corner. Having the Leilani Bed and Breakfast makes it difficult for us to get there during prime time as those are our breakfast and check-in hours. But we have not enjoyed a hike on this island more than this. There are others that are a tie, but for ease, comfort and interest, this one is a winner for us. There is a self-guide tour brochure for $2 available at the beginning of the trail that we found most interesting and provided information we didn’t know after 11 years of living here! It took us a lot longer than usual to hike this trail because there were so many stops of interest. Hope you have a grand time on this hike as well. BTW there is a nice bench half way through the trail, so pack a lunch if you like!