Hilo Forest Reserve
The Hilo Forest Reserve(FR) is comprised of approximately 64,000 acres of public land and was established by Governor’s Proclamation on July 24,1905 for the purpose of watershed protection. The reserve is comprised of nine sections in north-east Hawai’i, which are listed in the table below.
The Laupāhoehoe section of the Hilo Forest Reserve was included in the recently finalized Laupāhoehoe Forest Management Plan. Situated on the moist windward flanks of Mauna Kea, the Laupāhoehoe Forest is home to a thriving native ecosystem filled with rich cultural history. Under the state of Hawaii Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR), Division of Forestry and Wildlife (DOFAW), the Laupāhoehoe Forest consists of two state-managed parcels of land: 4,449 acres of land designated as Forest Reserve (FR), and 7,894 acres designated as a Natural Area Reserve (NAR). The extent is also designated as a demonstration forest for the Hawaii Experimental Tropical Forest (HETF), which provides opportunities for long-term research and learning for the management of tropical forests.
The portion of Laupāhoehoe that is Forest Reserve not only serves to protect key forested watersheds and native species but to also provide recreational opportunities for hiking, traditional and cultural practices, and hunting. A management plan was created specifically for the Laupāhoehoe Forest, addressing a management vision within a time frame of fifteen years. The plan covers aspects from a brief history of the forest area, a description of cultural and natural resources, and proposed management actions for the area.