Military Group Visits

Military groups require special permission and must follow specific rules.

Procedure for requesting permission to hike:

  1. Requests must be submitted (see 2 below) at least one month in advance of the propposed hike date.
  2. All Military Hike requests be submitted by the Operations Officer at Pohakuloa Training Area (Ken Manuel, 808 969 2426,  This Officer will submit the group's request via our online request page and receive the confirmation or disapproval.  Any requests for military hikes received from other submitters will be returned, cc: the Operations Officer.
  3. Requests must include a copy of the RULES FOR MILITARY GROUPS USING THE MAUNA KEA SUMMIT ACCESS ROAD (below) signed by the Officer In Charge of the hiking group.
  4. The text of the request should include a proposed date and time to receive the Safety Briefing prior to hiking.  Our preference is that the whole hiking group be present for Safety Briefings if possible.
  5. Approval or disapproval will be sent via email to the PTA Operations Officer.  If disapproved (e.g., for capacity reasons) the PTA Operations Officer may resubmit the request for a different date.


Rules for Military Groups using the Mauna Kea Summit Access Road (these must be signed & sent to with the online request for permission)

  1. All vehicles used should be clean.  Any mud or dirt must be removed from the tires and undercarriage to prevent the introduction of alien species.
  2. Vehicles must not be driven off the roadway.
  3. All roads above Hale Pohaku have a 25 mph speed limit, including the paved portions.
  4. All personnel must stay on existing roads and trails.
  5. Hikers must hike on the left side of the road, facing traffic.  Under no circumstances will personnel hike on both sides of the road or in the middle
  6. All personnel must wear reflective gear/clothing that can be clearly seen by vehicles approaching from the front and rear.
  7. Due to afternoon traffic and road conditions all military group hikers must have completed hiking and be at the Visitor Information Station (or below) by 1530 (3:30 p.m.)
  8. The area to the West of the Summit Access Road is designated as the Mauna Kea Ice Age Natural Area Reserve and is off limits without a permit from the State of Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources.
  9. There are restrooms at the Visitor Information Station (9,300 ft) and port-a-potties at the summit.  Groups hiking to the summit must not leave any waste of any type on the mountain.
  10. No fires are allowed, including cooking and heating devices.
  11. High winds can occur suddenly and without warning.  All loose items and trash must be stored in closed containers.
  12. Some telescopes operate during the day.  Cellular telephones and radio signals can interfere with these sensitive instruments.  Radio signals and cellular phones should be used only for emergencies.
  13. Vehicles and personnel must watch for observatory and public vehicles.  Access up and down the road must not be obstructed by the operation.
  14. All rocks, plants, and artifacts must be left undisturbed.
  15. Hikers will leave nothing behind.  This includes memorabilia left on the summit!
  16. During the winter months, the road is frequently closed to the public because of ice or snow on the pavement.  Military groups will not be allowed access unless it is also open to the public.  The status of road closures can be obtained by calling 935-6268.
  17. A written statement from the group’s authorized representative indicating how they plan to address the conditions described above is required before permission is granted.

I have read the above and will abide by the conditions:



Name (printed or typed) & Title



Signature & Date


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