The Northeast Rift Zone is a geological feature located on the Big Island of Hawaii, specifically on the slopes of the Mauna Kea volcano. The rift zone is part of a larger volcanic system that includes Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa, two of the world’s most massive shield volcanoes.
The Northeast Rift Zone is a series of fissures and cracks that run in a northeast-southwest direction, extending from the summit of Mauna Kea down its northeastern flank. This rift zone is the site of numerous volcanic vents and lava flows, some of which have erupted in historical times.
In fact, the last eruption of Mauna Kea occurred along the Northeast Rift Zone in about 4,600 BC. During this eruption, lava flows traveled down the rift zone and extended for several kilometers, creating a rough, uneven surface.
Today, the Northeast Rift Zone is an important area for scientific research and monitoring. It is home to several observatories, including the Keck Observatory, which houses some of the world’s most advanced telescopes. Scientists use these telescopes to study the stars, planets, and galaxies, helping us to better understand the universe around us.
In addition to its scientific significance, the Northeast Rift Zone is also a popular destination for hikers and outdoor enthusiasts. There are several trails that lead through the area, offering spectacular views of the volcano and its surroundings.
Overall, the Northeast Rift Zone from Mauna Kea is a fascinating geological feature that holds both scientific and recreational significance. Its volcanic history and unique landscape make it a must-see destination for anyone visiting the Big Island of Hawaii