By Maui Now Staff
Crater Road (Rt. 378) and Haleakalā National Park’s summit road will close to visitor traffic while a slow moving convoy transports extremely wide loads to the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope near the volcano’s summit.
Park officials say the roads will be closed to visitors from 6 p.m. on Thursday, July 30, 2015 through 2 p.m. on Friday, July 31, 2015. The summit will not be accessible for Thursday sunset viewing and Friday sunrise viewing.
Back country permits will be available at Headquarters Visitor Center (at the 7,000-foot elevation), from 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Friday, July 31. However, backpackers planning to hike into the crater on Friday are strongly urged to obtain their permits a day in advance. Visitors who pay an entrance fee on Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday (July 29, 30, 31) will have a one-day extension on the usual three-day pass. The extension will apply to both the Kīpahulu and Summit Districts.
Although the park road to the summit will re-open at 2 p.m. on Friday, July 31, the Haleakalā Visitor Center (at the 9,740-foot elevation), will remain closed all day Friday.
The Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope (DKIST) Project is located outside of park boundaries. The convoy’s travel through the park is permitted via Special Use Permit from the National Park Service. The convoy will transport wide loads of various sizes and travel at 2 to 5 mph. The road precautions are in place due to the size of the convoy and narrowness of the roads.