This paper is the first to compile the accounts of Western explorers to Hawai‘i who used volcanic heat. During the 1800s, Western explorers used volcanic heat when climbing and surveying Kīlauea and Mauna Loa volcanoes in Hawai‘i. The explorers cooked food on steam vents and lava streams. They drank condensed water from volcanic steam and bathed in a warm basin and warm springs. They warmed themselves near steam cracks and a lava stream, lit cigarettes with Kīlauea’s lava lake, and collected rocks. To confirm the presence of volcanic heat, this study uses geothermal resource maps and data from the Hawai‘i Play Fairway project. The areas where the explorers used volcanic heat have a probability of volcanic heat of 0.7 to 1.0, and elevated temperatures in nearby water wells indicate heat sources. Kīlauea and Mauna Loa erupted numerous times, and the surrounding areas experienced volcanic steam releases and lava flows. The explorers used volcanic heat to facilitate not only their survival but also the Western exploration and scientific investigation of Kīlauea and Mauna Loa volcanoes.
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Research Article| October 29 2021
WESTERN EXPLORERS AND VOLCANIC HEAT IN HAWAIʻI
Earth Sciences History (2021) 40 (2): 607–624.
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ALICE KIM, NICOLE C. LAUTZE; WESTERN EXPLORERS AND VOLCANIC HEAT IN HAWAIʻI. Earth Sciences History 1 July 2021; 40 (2): 607–624. doi: https://doi.org/10.17704/1944-6187-40.2.607
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