Māhukona (lit., leeward steam or vapor,) a seamount on the northwestern flank of the island of Hawai‘i, is the most recently discovered shield volcano in the Hawaiian Islands. Māhukona is a nearby port on the Island of Hawai‘i. Māhukona Harbor was developed and expanded as a port for the sugar plantations in Kohala and as a landing for interisland steamers. In the late nineteenth century, sugar plantations were prospering on the Big Island.
Six plantations in North Kohala used a couple of crude landings along that rugged coastline for exporting their products. In winter, the use of the landings was often too risky due to large breakers, so the sugarcane byproducts were transported over the hill to Māhukona. Samuel G Wilder secured a charter for a narrow gauge railroad from the port of Māhukona for 20-miles to Niuliʻi. In April of 1937, Kohala Sugar Co bought out the other plantations, acquired all of the stock in the Hawai‘i Railway Company. Business gradually declined and in 1945 the Hawai‘i Railway was abandoned. Kohala Sugar closed in 1973.