Meet your guide and group at a prearranged spot to embark on your full-day bird watching adventure.
Travel together in a comfortable vehicle to the start of the Puu Oo Trail. This historic cattle drive route is located at the 6,000 foot (1800 meters) level of Saddle Road on Mauna Loa's northeastern side.
Cross the 3 to 4 miles (5 to 6 km) of trail, surrounded by the misty clouds that are common on the windward side of the island. Listen for the calls of the birds as you enter the Kaohe Game Management Area, then travel up the western side of Mauna Kea to an elevation of nearly nearly 7,000 feet (2,100 meters).
Keep an eye out for species like elepaio, omao, amakihi, apapane and iiwi. Use the provided binoculars to look for the elusive akiapolaau, easy to identify by its multipurpose beak. At the gate to the Mauna Kea Forest Preserve, climb down from your vehicle and take in some scenic vistas before proceeding on foot.
Following your expert birder guide's lead, focus on spotting specimens of the critically threatened palila.
After a full day of searching for Hawaii's indigenous bird life, return to your meeting point for drop-off.