Another Dusting of Snow Forecast for Haleakalā
Update: 4:45 p.m., Monday, Feb. 10, 2020
The National Weather Service has extended the Winter Weather Advisory for Haleakalā Summit in effect until 6 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020.
Periods of snow and freezing rain above 8,500 feet are expected through tonight. Showers will continue to move over Maui through much of the night, leading to additional snow accumulations of up to two inches and ice accumulations of less than one quarter of an inch.
The NWS advises the public to plan on slippery road conditions leading to road closures. Blowing snow will significantly reduce visibility at times, with periods of zero visibility. Travel to the summit should be avoided until conditions improve.
The Summit District of Haleakalā National Park closed again as of 1 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 10, 2020 and will remain closed until further notice due to winter weather conditions and power outages. Due to these hazards, all sunrise reservations for Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020 are cancelled.
“We strongly advise people against traveling on Haleakalā Highway to the park as the gates to the park will be closed due to the winter weather conditions. Once conditions improve, and are safe for our staff and visitors, the Summit District of Haleakalā National Park will reopen,” said Superintendent Natalie Gates in an afternoon update.
A winter weather advisory has been extended to 6 a.m. on Tuesday for the summits of Haleakalā on Maui and Mauna Loa and Maunakea on Hawaiʻi Island.
The National Weather Service says additional snow accumulations of 1-3 inches and ice accumulations of around one-tenth of an inch is in the forecast, with winds gusting as high as 120 mph.
A brief period of snow and freezing rain is expected today which may accumulate on roads and structures.
A high wind warning is also in effect until noon for Haleakalā and until 6 p.m. for Molokaʻi, Kahoʻolawe and Lānaʻi, as well as the lower elevations of Maui. Forecasters with the NWS say northwest winds of 35 to 50 mph are expected, with localized gusts over 75 mph.
Travel to the summit is not recommended until winds have subsided. The public is also advised to plan for slippery road conditions with blowing snow to significantly reduce visibility at times.
A Winter Weather Advisory means that periods of snow, sleet, or freezing rain will cause travel difficulties. Be prepared for slippery roads and limited visibilities and use caution while driving.
At around 8:20 a.m., photographer Lyle Krannichfeld tells us the road to the Kalahaku Overlook had opened after being closed earlier in the morning. He noted that conditions had changed rapidly and observed what he called “very foggy,” conditions with snow falling (but not sticking), and lots of ice on the ground.
At around 10:42 a.m., rangers at Haleakalā announced the temporary closure of the summit road. At 11:24 a.m., the park issued an update saying Haleakalā Highway within the park has reopened to the Summit Visitor Center but remains closed to the Summit.