The third day was a little bit disappointing. We planned a long hike Mauna Ulu – Napau – Kealakomo (~18 km) to the closest point (currently open to public) allowing a view of the smoking Pu`u `O`o crater. The hike was nice at the beginning but soon the rain started and didn’t stop during the whole hike. On the way we have seen some old craters (Pu’u Huluhulu and Makaoouhi) and hike through the lava flows …and Cris was using her head to open the path through the rain forest. However, once at Napau we couldn’t see anything because of the low clouds and rain. Although forbidden, we could have hiked a little bit more towards Pu`u `O`o but the weather did not look to improve so we decided to go back. We finished the whole hike in 4 hours and then we hitchhike back to our car. By the way Napau campsite is a joke: 3-4 small clearings in the middle of the wet fern forest and a pit toilet. Don`t plan to use it except for an emergency.
In the afternoon we went to the coast and had a warm swim at Ahalanui in the volcano heated tide ponds and stopped also at Kapoho tide pools (not too impressive). Since it was raining a lot we decided to spend the night in Hilo rather than in the camping as planned.