Visitor Information

Activities and Permits

The Center for Maunakea Stewardship is responsible for the proper use, management and protection of the many unique and significant resources of the Maunakea lands. Public and commercial activity is managed to ensure safe, appropriate and continued access to this valued place. Please be aware of the rules and permits that may apply to your visit and activities here.

Permit requirements are established under Hawaiʻi Administrative Rules (HAR) Chapter 20-26, "Public and Commercial Activities on Mauna Kea Lands". Please contact the Center for Maunakea Stewardship for more information on permit applications.

Activities Requiring Permits

Hiking and Biking

Bikers riding to the summit These activities are discouraged if inclement weather is occurring or in forecast. Please only bike or hike when conditions are safe and complete a Registration Form. Hand form to a Ranger or leave in the VIS registration box if there is no Ranger present, then sign-out when done.

Hiking: Hikers must stay on designated trails (HAR §20-26-21(10)). Designated trails on Maunakea include the Humuʻula Trail, the Summit Access Road, Lake Waiau trails, and Poliahu. Puʻuwēkiu, the true summit of Maunakea, is a sensitive area. Casual visitors are asked to enjoy it respectfully from a distance.

Biking: Use of two-wheel vehicles propelled by pedals requires written permission (HAR §20-26-30(1)), accepted via registration form. Only ride on designated roadways including the Summit Access Road.

Filming Permits

Filming sunset

All individuals or groups wishing to film on Maunakea for the purpose of sale, video production, television transmission, or to publicize the visuals and other information in electronic or printing form must first acquire a permit from the State of Hawaiʻi Film Office .

Film activities include still photography, video (including interviews and sound recordings), digital cameras, high definition digital recorders, etc. Please contact the Center for Maunakea Stewardship for more information on film permits.

Commercial Use Permits

Commercial tour vans at VIS

Only UH-permitted commercial tour operators are allowed to conduct commercial tours on the university-managed lands on Maunakea. Currently, UH is not permitting additional tours. Please contact CMS for more information.

Research Permits

Two researchers sit on Maunakea rocks looking for Wekiu bugs

If you would like to conduct research on Maunakea, please contact the Center for Maunakea Stewardship.

Military Groups

PTA soldiers hiking to summit

Military groups require special permission and must follow specific rules. Please contact the Center for Maunakea Stewardship for more information on military activity on Maunakea.