Flash-flood watch, high-surf advisory extended

The Maui News

A flash-flood watch and a high-surf advisory have been extended to today and Friday, respectively, according to the National Weather Service.

And while there is a winter weather advisory for the summits of Big Island mountains, there has been no snow on Haleakala, a national park official said Wednesday.

There have been photos posted of a white dusting at the summit of Haleakala in the past week. Park spokeswoman Polly Angelakis said Wednesday that there has been no snow, but the summit of Haleakala, towering 10,000 feet above sea level, has experienced frost and ice.

“Frost (moisture from the air that freezes into ice) often looks like snow,” she said, adding that frost has been forming for about a week and a half.

The frost and ice melt away during the day, Angelakis said.

It is cold enough to snow, though. Angelakis said that low temperatures are hovering around 27 degrees, below the freezing point.

The flash-flood watch for Maui has been extended to this afternoon, the weather service said. Lots of moisture will continue to flow over the island from the east, dropping rain along windward slopes. The areas, already saturated from days of rainfall, are susceptible to flash flooding.

A flash-flood watch means that conditions may develop that lead to flash flooding.

A high-surf advisory for north- and east-facing shores of Maui and Molokai and west-facing shores of Molokai are in effect until 6 a.m. Friday, the weather service said.

North-northwest swells are expected to produce the advisory level surf for north- and west-facing shores. Surf along north-facing shores are expected to reach 18 to 22 feet today. Surf along west-facing shores are forecast to hit 8 to 12 feet today.

Rough seas whipped up by strong trade winds are building the surf along east-facing shores. Wave heights should hit 5 to 8 feet today.

The surf is expected to generate strong breaking waves and rip currents.

The forecast for today through Friday is mostly cloudy with showers likely over windward and mountain areas and scattered showers over leeward areas. Winds are expected to blow out of the east at 15 to 25 mph. High temperatures should hit 79 to 84 degrees with lows of 70 to 75 degrees.