Warning: Cannot modify header information - headers already sent by (output started at /home/hawaiiac/public_html/blog/wp-content/themes/thesis_184/custom/custom_functions.php:68) in /home/hawaiiac/public_html/php/all_sites_common_functions.php on line 2244

Maui Weather History – Climate, Temperatures

by tr on April 11, 2013

By Alan Dickeson

maui weather
(Photo copyright by University of Hawaii) Source »

When I got off the plane in February of 1975, I wasn’t sure exactly what kind of Maui weather conditions I would encounter during my first Hawaii vacation. I had heard that Maui weather would lull me into a fugue of ambient bliss, which it thankfully did soon with balmy breezes and abundant sunshine.

I remember thinking way back then, Maui was like heaven. But the real surprise about Maui’s climate didn’t sink in fully until a few years later.

While my first Maui vacation only lasted about a week, I would’ve never guessed I would move back to Maui 21 years later in 1996. After living on Maui constantly since then, I’ve come to understand and love the many variable weather conditions that help define Maui as a top-rated, resort destination.

1996 was the year my landlady in upper Kula, Maui, spoke words I’ll never forget (written here exactly as she spoke, omissions and misspellings are intentional), “It nevuh rain anymo. When I was a girl growin’ up in da 30s, Kihei lush green all year. Da Makena rain cloud always der and went from Kula to Molokini, evee day. Almost evee single day. Kula had streams wit fresh watuh all da time.”



maui climate

(Photo copyright by Ron Dahlquist) Source »

One couldn’t help but remember any words this venerable, wise woman uttered. At age 75 (in 1996), she was like a pillar of Maui’s yesteryear, a gracefully aging woman, with spring in her step who was born in the house right next to my rental. (And that house is still there, standing like a monument to another era, surviving over 95 years of wind, rain, and sunshine).

No doubt, she was keenly aware of the changing weather patterns of Maui which have come and gone over the years. Fortunately, the current Maui weather climate is one that is kind to tourists seeking sun and surf on the golden beaches of Maui.

But there’s more to Maui’s weather than the sunny south and west shore beach locales that adorn websites and travel brochures around the world. There is actually a melange of 11 ‘microclimates’ that combine to complete the fascinating, Maui weather picture. Diversity is the rule, though at first glance, Maui weather conditions look very routine. For example, did you know that Hawaiian kahunas specifically named over 150 separate types of cloud formations?

One can find every type of weather imaginable on Maui, including diverse variations that support rain forests, desert-like areas with cactus, grasslands, and even sub-alpine terrains. It’s no surprise when you consider Maui has infinite changes in elevation from sea level all the way up to the summit of Haleakala which often towers above the clouds at 10,023 feet, making Maui weather temperatures vary considerable from place to place.

Another huge factor in Maui weather is the “tradewinds.” The tradewinds earned their name for being the steady, northeasterly breezes that allowed ships to more easily sail to Hawaii bringing goods, supplies, food and all implements worthy of trading. They blow steadily about 50% of the time in winter months, and 90% of the time in the summer.

maui temperatures

(Photo copyright by Ron Dahlquist) Source »

Indeed, they help keep the island’s temperature mild, but it is obviously Maui’s position in relation to the equator that also has a big impact. Less well known is the fact that warm ocean waters contribute significantly to Maui’s consistently warm temperatures.

In general, there are only two seasons on Maui. One could be called awesome and the other a cooler version of fabulous! I’m referring to the ‘warm’ (May-Oct) and ‘cool’ (Nov-April) seasons. The main difference is that during the warm season, there’s little chance for any significant rainfall. The exception to be mentioned here is north shore of Maui, where it can and frequently does rain nearly every day to some extent year round, even if just a passing shower.

The temperature range averages from around 70 to 85 degrees (F) in the warm season on Maui. Of course, hurricane season also begins in June and runs through November, but it is a rare occurrence for a hurricane to actually threaten Maui. In the cool season, average temperatures range from the upper 60s to around 80 degrees (F).

After living on Maui for 17 years, I realize how much I love the wonderfully delicious array of Maui weather conditions that exist in such close proximity. If you need a break from Kihei’s steady sun and breezes, you can drive for 45 minutes up to Kula and enjoy dry, calm, cool, and usually, cloudy conditions. You can even grab a jacket and gloves and head up the picturesque Highway 378 above Kula for a breath of really fresh, mountain air, and foliage like you’d expect to find somewhere like in Colorado.

hawaii weather

(Photo copyright by Erik Aeder) Source »

From the south shore, you can also take a drive over to the ocean-side, north shore in 35 minutes, and be on the edge of the warm, rain forest with rainbows and waterfalls. It’s even easier to get to Iao valley in the center of the island for a swim in the refreshing waters of Iao stream.

My favorite Maui weather has always been found in the mornings at south shore beaches. Before about 10:30 a.m., from Sugar Beach all the way to Makena, before the tradewinds really kick in for their daily performance, the water is calm, crystal clear, and perfect for swimming and snorkeling.

For more detailed daily Maui Weather Information, see Glen James’ website where you can always check out and see local radar, weather maps, forecasts and current conditions, including surf. You can even write a note on the site that is frequently answered by the actual weatherman that same day. There are now many good resources offering Maui weather news, like Weather.com, Google.com and Yahoo.com.

I remember one morning back in 1996, while loading the car up with beach gear before sunrise, when that same landlady walked up the long driveway towards us and asked, “You boyz goin’ holo holo Oneloa?”

(“Holo holo” means to take a trip; Oneloa is the beach next to the bigger Makena beach in South Maui).

“Yes, we want an early start before the wind and waves kick in,” I replied enthusiastically, pulling a stocking hat down over my ears and rubbing my hands for warmth. Don’t forget, we were in upper Kula, at a chilly elevation of 4500 feet.

“It’ll be hot down der latuh,” she smiled, “You boyz bettuh geet goin’.”

Hawaii climate

(Photo copyright by Ron Dahlquist) Source »

After jumping in the car, we started rolling down the driveway until she raised her hand for us to stop. I remember it was chilly enough we could see brief, tiny puffs of her breath forming vapor as she spoke.

Leaning her head almost into the car through the window, she waved her pointed her finger back and forth and said, “Don’t turn your back on kanaka o kai (the ocean).”

We just smiled and replied, “Mahalo and much aloha.” We knew exactly what she meant. And you should too. And for the best Maui weather forecast, don’t forget it lives right here at HawaiiActive.com.

{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment


Previous post:

Next post: