(ABOVE) Timelapse videos recorded on December 23 by three different Mauna Kea webcams – two on Canada France Hawaii Telescope and one on Gemini – with audio from the 6 p.m. Mauna Kea Ranger phone message.
- Snow fell on Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa on Hawaii Island on Tuesday. The summits (above 11,500 feet) are both under a National Weather Service Blizzard Warning, in effect until 6 p.m. HST Wednesday.
- The road to the summit of Mauna Kea was closed to the public at the Visitor Information Station all day Tuesday and will likely be closed Wednesday due to the high probabilities of ice and snow on the summit. The National Weather Service says snow accumulations up to 8 inches are possible with deeper drifts.
- Hawaii Volcanoes National Park closed the summit of Mauna Loa until further notice.
This message was posted to the Mauna Kea Weather Center website at 6:22 p.m. HST:
Currently the road to the summit of Maunakea is closed at the Visitor Information Station (VIS) due to patchy ice and snow as well as poor visibility on the steep and dangerous summit roads.
Monday night a couple of inches of fresh snow fell on the summit above 13,000 feet, but it’s not enough to ski or snowboard. There are rocks clearly visible everywhere. Due to the rain and sleet we got this afternoon, snow on the summit cinder cones is likely to freeze solid overnight.
The weather forecast is calling for continued high probabilities of ice and possibly snow on the summit of Maunakea this evening so the road is going to remain closed overnight and possibly for all day tomorrow (Wednesday, 12/24) as well.
Early tomorrow morning a ranger will conduct a summit road and weather inspection, and this message will be updated at that time. As conditions change throughout the day tomorrow, rangers will update this message, so please check back here, or you may also call 808-935-6268 to hear a recorded message about the latest summit road and weather conditions.
Mahalo and have a great, safe night. Happy Holidays, Mauna Kea Rangers on Dec. 23
Hazardous weather is also expected over the Big Island summits where a Blizzard Warning remains in effect. Periods of snow are occurring… But strong winds have yet to materialize. Models continue to advertise very strong winds developing tonight and further strengthening tomorrow. Snow chances will be decreasing on Wednesday… So the Blizzard Warning may be dropped on Wednesday in favor of a High Wind Warning. National Weather Service discussion on Dec. 23 at 8:30 p.m. HST