Tuesday, 30 December 2008

Enough!


Unbelievably, it's still raining, another few inches today and more to come, perhaps even some thunderstorms as well. I am going nuts and desperately need to see sunlight again, I don't cope well without getting a dose of vitamin D every so often. Then again, it would be nice to see anything, as HELCO once again lost power this evening just as I arrived back from work, so it was candlelight only for a while. The electric grid here is so unstable it reminds me of a third world country sometimes.

As for Mauna Kea, a few more inches of snow fell today and is still falling. Only observatory vehicles are allowed up but with the warning that they must keep an eye on conditions to avoid becoming trapped at the summit. I suspect no-one's taking up the offer. The snowfall is forecast to continue through the weekend. If that's the case, we'll be lucky to even find the observatories next week when and if this storm finally departs. Still, when the sky clears, Mauna Kea will be an absolutely spectacular sight.

Update (at 8:30pm HST): Half an hour ago the NWS issued a winter storm warning for the Big Island summits. That's quite rare as usually it's an advisory rather than a full-blown warning.
"THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN HONOLULU HAS ISSUED A WINTER
STORM WARNING...WHICH IS IN EFFECT UNTIL 6 AM HST WEDNESDAY. THE
WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY IS NO LONGER IN EFFECT."

"HEAVY SNOW SHOWERS ARE TO CONTINUE ACROSS THE BIG ISLAND SUMMITS
THIS EVENING THROUGH EARLY WEDNESDAY MORNING. THE SNOW LEVEL IS NEAR
11000 FEET AND ADDITIONAL SNOWFALL ACCUMULATIONS OF 6 TO 10 INCHES
ARE EXPECTED. LOCALLY HIGHER AMOUNTS ARE POSSIBLE WITH ANY
THUNDERSTORMS. ALSO...EAST TO SOUTHEAST WINDS UP TO 20 MPH WILL
RESULT IN LOCAL BLOWING AND DRIFTING SNOW."

"A WINTER STORM WARNING MEANS SIGNIFICANT AMOUNTS OF SNOW...
SLEET...AND ICE ARE EXPECTED OR OCCURRING. STRONG WINDS ARE ALSO
POSSIBLE. THIS WILL MAKE TRAVEL VERY HAZARDOUS OR IMPOSSIBLE."

5 comments:

Diane said...

Candlelight is never a bad thing (especially after 40 ;). I do hope you get your requisite dose of D soon, though.

Andrew Cooper said...

Our guys made it up for a few hours. A quick pass of doing just the essential servicing and pull out. They report up to eight inches of new snow on what was plowed road when they drove up.

Tom said...

Diane - I've always loved candlelight, even before turning 40, but how on earth am I supposed to have ice for the mai tais if we keep losing power? It's a cruel world sometimes...

Andrew - I may have this wrong (correct me if so) but I believe some of your instruments use dewars that need regular fills so there's urgency to get up there. All our instruments are on closed cycle coolers so the urgency isn't there unless the power goes out. Our biggest concerns are flooding, especially with the flat-roofed JCMT, but UKIRT also has problems since the building is quite old now and does have the odd leak.

Eight inches of new snow today? That's a bit of a worry since today was supposed to be the best day in terms of weather for the next few days...

Protege said...

That is a beautiful candle holder. I love candles, they are so fitting the climate where I live now.
Sorry to hear about all the unpleasant weather you are experiencing; I guess even tropical paradises have their share of bad weather.

I would like to wish you a very Happy 2009! I just heard on the radio that is it an "Astronomy Year", so I guess "your" year.;) This in celebration of 400 years since Galileo gazed at the sky with his first telescope.;)

Tom said...

Protege - no candle holder there at all, it's just a big lump of wax which looks wonderful - I really like the way it glows from everywhere! It was given to me by a very close friend so I only light it on special occasions or on emergencies like tonight!

I wish you and family a wonderful 2009!