Snow and ice shut down Haleakala National Park’s Summit District on Sunday, while downpours and strong winds took down power lines and trees, and high surf pushed boats ashore in West and South Maui.
The wintry conditions were brought on by a powerful storm tracking southward toward the Hawaiian Islands, bringing a band of enhanced moisture and predictions of up to 3 inches of snow on the summit of Haleakala, the National Weather Service said.
Shortly after noon on Sunday, the Summit District was closed due to snowy and icy road conditions, as well as power outages throughout the district, park spokesperson Nancy Stimson said. The closure was scheduled to remain in effect through at least 9 a.m. today, and today’s sunrise viewing was also canceled. Maui County officials also warned the public not to drive toward the summit.
Early Sunday morning, the National Weather Service had predicted intense snow showers, slippery road conditions and blowing and drifting snow at the summit above the 8,000-foot elevation level. Motorists were also warned of reduced visibility below a quarter-mile at times, with very windy conditions. A winter weather advisory was put into effect through 6 a.m. today.
A high-wind warning was also in effect for Haleakala through 6 a.m. today, with winds of 45 to 60 mph and localized gusts of over 95 mph predicted.