Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano Eruption Of 2018

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Address Kilauea Overlook, Pahoa, HI 96778
Information, photos, donation sites, and more on Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano eruption of 2018.

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• General: Educational • General: Guide

Matt Anderson's Take
In May of 2018, lava from the Kilauea Volcano started flowing on Hawaii's Big Island. This guide to the Hawaii Kilauea Volcano Eruption Of 2018 will be continuously updated with information and photos of the ongoing eruption so we can help bring awareness to the situation that residents of the Big Island are facing. The majority of photos here are courtesy of the USGS.

Hawaii Volcano Eruption & Lava Flow Facts


As you can see from the image above, the lava flow is located on Hawaii's Big Island only and is not impacting any other islands. Within the Big Island, only a small area on the far east side contains actual flowing lava. While this is having a major and devastating impact on local residents and their homes (over 700 homes / buildings have been destroyed), it's generally not a touristy area to begin with and not something travelers will have to deal with.


Note that the Hawaii Tourism Authority says, "There is absolutely no reason at this time for travelers to change or alter their leisure or business plans." So, if you're traveling to any of the islands there is nothing to worry about. If you're traveling to the Big Island, where the eruption is taking place, you aren't going to be near the volcano (it's not near any of the major resort areas at all) which is the world's most continuously active shield volcano with 35 years of volcanic activity. Out of the island's 4,028 square miles, only a remote area of less than 10-square-miles is affected - Leilani Estates and Lanipuna Gardens Subdivisions in Puna. As a precautionary measure, two thirds of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park (some 40 miles away) has been closed indefinitely as a precaution should a steam explosion occur in the crater. As of September 2018, some parts of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park are once again open.

How Can I Help?

If you'd like to help the victims of the eruption we will list a few of the ways you can help, volunteer, or donate here (note that we are not affiliated with any of these organizations):

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - October 15, 2018


Vog levels are dropping due to lower sulfur dioxide emissions on Kilauea and that leads to far better views and clarity. This shot shows a view of the field of lava that erupted from the lower East Rift Zone a few months ago.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - October 4, 2018


What a great, wide-angle shot of Fissure #8 in the center of the photo.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - September 6, 2018


A shot showing the lava from the Fissure #8 crater.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - August 21, 2018


Lava flowing into the ocean near Ahalanui.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - August 21, 2018


Amazing aerial shot of the Fissure #8 cone.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - August 13, 2018


Here's an amazing shot from the USGS showing the Pohoiki boat ramp being blocked by black sand bar. As the molten lava flows from Kilauea to the ocean, it then shatters into small glassy fragments that get carried along the cost by the ocean currents. This is how black sand beaches get formed.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - August 7, 2018


Small lava pond that has formed inside the cone of Fissure #8.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - August 1, 2018


Aerial view of Isaac Hale Beach Park / Pohoiki.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - August 1, 2018


The photo above shows what happens when lava surrounds trees. As the lava cools against the tree trunks a column of rock is formed while the tree is burned away on the inside. All that's left is the rock hard and cooled lava surround. You can find a lot of examples of this at Lava Tree State Park as well.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - July 31, 2018


Another amazing shot from the USGS showing the lava river from Fissure #8 reaching the ocean. Pele - The Volcano Goddess has clearly been very busy this morning!

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - July 28, 2018


Looks like an overflow from Fissure #8 may have started this fire. Just a reminder of how the danger of lava can ignite fires that can do far more damage than the lava itself.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - July 26, 2018


Lava from Fissure #8 continues to erupt and flow into a channel that heads to the northwest.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - July 17, 2018


Amazing sunrise over the lower East Rift Zone at Kilauea. That lava river comes from Fissure #8 and eventually reaches the ocean and makes the Big Island grow even bigger.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - July 13, 2018


Very cool photo of Pu'u O'o, which is a volcanic cone in the eastern rift zone of Kilauea Volcano.


Here's a great photo of Kilauea. Those buildings in the lower part of the image are the Jaggar Museum and USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory. All of that gray, lunar-like landscape is the result of many thin layers of ash that have blanketed the area from many ongoing explosions.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - July 11, 2018


Pahoehoe style lava flow from Fissure #8 along Nohea Street in the Leilani Estates.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - July 9, 2018


The photo above shows Fissure #8 and the now famous Leilani Estates. It's easy to see why people in this area have some serious worries and are really hoping that Pele - The Volcano Goddess is kind to their homes.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - July 4, 2018


A USGS scientist is shown observing the lava from Fissure #8 in Leilani Estates.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - June 30, 2018


Fissure #8 lava flow feeds into a channel that travels around 8 miles to the ocean. The smoke plume in the background is the starting point.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - June 26, 2018


The photo above shows the lava from Fissure #8 entering the ocean in an area that's about 0.6 miles long.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - June 21, 2018


Massive lava flow from Fissure #8 the Lower East Rift Zone.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - June 17, 2018


The photo above is from a flight over the Kilauea Volcano Lower East Rift Zone and shows the incredible lava fountain from Fissure #8.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - June 15, 2018


Another amazing photo showing the Fissure #8 lava fountain in action.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - June 13, 2018


Fissure #8 showing off an amazing lava fountain.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - June 10, 2018


Fissure #8 continues to erupt while a lava river reaches the ocean at Kapoho Bay. The lava river is between 110 and 300 meters wide.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - June 5, 2018


Fissure #8 lava flow front completely fills Kapoho Bay.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - May 28, 2018


Amazing lava fountains from Fissure #8. It's been reported that the height of these fountains were reaching heights of 200 feet.


This is what happens when lava from those fountains gets airborne and then carried by the wind and dropped down on a road below. Those airborne lava rock fragments are known as Tephra and you don't want to be around when they're falling from the sky. This shot is in the (now famous) Leilani Estates subdivision.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - May 27, 2018


The photo above shows Pahoehoe lava moving west from Fissure #7 with an amazing fountain lava in the background.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - May 24, 2018


Two flows of lava reach the ocean with the eastern flow splitting in two right before it enters the ocean which creates two lave entry points (three points total).

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - May 22, 2018


Lava flows have made it all the way to the ocean.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - May 21, 2018


In the photo above we see an aerial view of the eruption happening at Fissure #22 with channels of lava flowing to the south. Photo courtesy of Volcano Helicopters.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - May 20, 2018


The lava from Fissure #20 reaches the ocean which creates a white plume called "laze" (lava haze) as it enters the water. The hot lava instantly boils the sea water as it enters which causes various chemical reactions to take place and release seawater steam, hydrochloric acid gas, and even tiny shards of volcanic glass. Dangerous stuff for sure.


Lava flows from Fissure #20 into a crack in the ground.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - May 19, 2018


The photo above shows an aerial view of the lower East Rift zone of Kilauea Volcano.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - May 17, 2018


Major cracks on Nohea Street in Leilani Estates.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - May 16, 2018


Lava continues to spatter the area between Fissure #16 and Fissure #20.


Here's a close up view of a rock that shot out of the Overlook Crater during an explosion. The rock was about 2 feet long before it broke on impacting the ground, several hundred yards away.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - May 15, 2018


The photo above was taken from the Jaggar Museum in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and shows a huge ash plume rising from the Overlook Crater.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - May 14, 2018


Fissure #17 is shown above and still erupting.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - May 13, 2018


Above you can see sticky a'a lava slowly flowing from Fissure #17.


The photo above shows Fissure #17.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - May 12, 2018


This aerial view shows Fissure #16 which is just 500 meters northeast of the Puna Geothermal Venture.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - May 10, 2018


A geologist is inspecting a huge crack in Old Kalapana Road, one of many that appeared along roadways in the area.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - May 9, 2018


Above, a column of ash rises from the Overlook Crater at the summit of Kilauea Volcano with the photo being taken from the Jaggar Museum. Scientists believe that a rockfall from the steep crater falls triggered the explosion.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - May 7, 2018


In the late morning, steam rises from Fissure #9 on Moku Street in the Leilani Estates subdivision while rumbling noises are heard.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - May 6, 2018


A lava flow moved across and blocked Makamae Street in Leilani Estates in the morning hours.

Hawaii's Kilauea Volcano - May 5, 2018


Fissure 7 started around dawn and remained active for several hours. Large bubble bursts and spattering occurred in various areas. A short lava flow even erupted from the fissure which moved northeast and crossed Hookupu Street.


Photo above shows Fissure #7 advancing to the northeast on Hookapu Street in Leilani Estates on the lower East Rift Zone of Kilauea Volcano.

Photos courtesy of the USGS.
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Matt Anderson
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Dave
Joined: Apr 2016
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We were on the island when Madam Pele awoke. The first two major earthquakes we felt in our condo on Ali'i Drive in Kona! As awesome as it would have been to see, we stayed away from the area because there are so many people that are effected and prayers are being sent from Illinois to all of you!
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