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Footprints on the trail

March 21, 2014
Fossilized footprint. Photo: NPS HAVO

Fossilized footprint. Photo: NPS HAVO

Walking or canoes were at one time the norm for travel in Hawaii before other modes of transportation were introduced. Land and ocean trails were familiar to everyone and were frequently used even when natural phenomenon might slow travel down. Trails were essential for movement of people and resources over well-worn paths across the landscape. Ala Kahakai National Historic Trail is a combination of ancient and historic trails on the island of Hawaii from Upolu Point in North Kohala, down the west side of the island and around South Point to the eastern boundary of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

At Hawaii Volcanoes NP, you can see footprints fossilized in the Kaʻu Desert ash. The footprints head in two directions and their proximity is near pre contact sites such as temporary habitation sites, petroglyphs, trails, and volcanic glass quarry areas. Later travelers in the 1800’s moved along these same routes led by Hawaiian guides who knew from their families about the pathways. Discover more about the Story of the Footprints area, Keonehelelei.

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On what trail will you leave your footprints? Get outside and hike today.

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