Hawaii’s Largest Freshwater Lake Boiled Away During the Kilauea Volcano Eruption


Located about 25 miles from Kilauea, Green Lake — locally known as Ka Wai a Pele — is the largest of the only two freshwater lakes on the Big Island. Prior to becoming the victim of the eruption, the 400-year-old lake was an idyllic swimming spot, some 200 feet deep. The volcano — one of the most active in the world — began spewing lava on May 3, 2018 and destroyed more than 600 homes. The flow created a huge plume of steam as it hit the Green Lake on its way toward the ocean. The lava was so hot that it boiled away all the water, sending up a thick white plume that reached high into the sky. Both tourists and residents mourned the loss of the lake, suggesting that it should be renamed Lava Lake. Today, Hawaii’s landscape has been forever changed because of the eruption.