Air Temperatures
The following maximum temperatures were recorded across the state of Hawaii Tuesday:

Lihue, Kauai –                      81  
Honolulu airport, Oahu –       81 

Kaneohe, Oahu –               84
Molokai airport –                  81
Kahului airport, Maui –      84  (Record highest temperature for Tuesday / 92 – 1953)
Kona airport –                     81
Hilo airport, Hawaii –            82

Air Temperatures ranged between these warmest and coolest spots near sea level – and on the highest mountain tops…as of 5pm Tuesday evening:

Kaneohe, Oahu – 81
Molokai airport
– 77

Haleakala Crater –  48 (near 10,000 feet on Maui)
Mauna Kea –         43
(near 13,800 feet on the Big Island)

Hawaii’s MountainsHere’s a link to the live web cam on the summit of near 13,800 foot Mauna Kea on the Big Island of Hawaii. This web cam is available during the daylight hours here in the islands…and when there’s a big moon shining down during the night at times. Plus, during the nights you will be able to see stars, and the sunrise and sunset too…depending upon weather conditions. Here's the Haleakala Crater webcam on Maui…although this webcam is not always working correctly.

Tropical Cyclone activity in the eastern and central Pacific – Here’s the latest weather information coming out of the National Hurricane Center, covering the eastern north Pacific. You can find the latest tropical cyclone information (once the season begins June 1) for the central north Pacific (where Hawaii is located) by clicking on this link to the Central Pacific Hurricane Center. A satellite image, which shows the entire ocean area between Hawaii and the Mexican coast…can be found here.  Here's a tropical cyclone tracking map for the eastern and central Pacific.

 Aloha Paragraphs

  Strengthening trades tonight into Wednesday, still a few
on Kauai from the cold front tonight…then a
modest increase in windward showers Wednesday 

As this weather map shows, we have high pressure system located to the northeast of the Hawaiian Islands…with a ridge offshore just to the northeast of the islands. At the same time, we find a weak cold front just to our north…which has reached Kauai. Our local winds will begin increase again from the trade wind direction tonight into Wednesday onwards.

The following numbers represent the most recent wind gusts (mph), along with directions as of Tuesday evening:

08                Lihue, Kauai – ENE 
09                Honolulu, Oahu – S
00                Molokai 
18                Kahoolawe – SE
17                Lipoa, Maui – NE
09                Lanai – NE

21                South Point, Big Island – ENE

We can use the following links to see what’s going on in our area of the north central Pacific Ocean
.  Here's the latest NOAA satellite picture – the latest looping satellite imageand finally the latest looping radar image for the Hawaiian Islands. 

Here are the latest 24-hour precipitation totals (inches) for each of the islands as of Tuesday evening:

0.43               Puu Lua, Kauai
0.01               St. Stephens, Oahu
0.00               Molokai
0.00               Lanai
0.00               Kahoolawe

0.00               Maui
0.01               Kealakekua, Big Island

Sunset Commentary:
  The low clouds associated with a late season cold front reached Kauai last evening, and remained over that island today. These clouds brought generally light showers, although the rest of the state didn't benefit from this light frontal precipitation. At the same time, this frontal boundary interrupted the usual trade wind flow, with lighter than normal wind conditions remaining in place over the Hawaiian Islands, with the exception of the Big Island…where they began to show up. This kept the area from Oahu down through Maui County in a convective weather pattern Tuesday. 

Meanwhile, the latest satellite image shows a north to south oriented band of showery clouds to the east of the island chain. It's associated with a low level trough of low pressure, which are both moving westward towards our area. It will bring light showers mainly to our windward sides, arriving first over the Big Island later tonight, then Maui County and Oahu Wednesday…and finally to Kauai Wednesday evening. At the same time, this trough will usher in a surge of stronger trade winds…or perhaps even ahead of its arrival. These trades may necessitate small craft wind advisories through Friday, before the trade winds ease up some this coming weekend into early next week. As far as rainfall is concerned for the weekend, it shouldn't be much of an issue, with generally light to very light amounts along our north and east facing windward coasts and slopes.

Here in Kula, Maui at 530pm, skies were clear to partly cloudy with light breezes, and a warm air temperature of 75.4F degrees. As this satellite image shows, the cold front is now draped over Kauai. It's rather weak as far as cold fronts go, although it still has a few showers embedded in it…which will fall over Kauai for a bit longer. As we get into Wednesday, that showery cloud band will arrive over the windward sides, along with the increasingly stronger trade winds into Wednesday night. The showers will ease up along those windward sides Thursday, although we'll see a few right on through the weekend in those areas. The leeward sides should remain quite nice, with good beach weather prevailing throughout. ~~~ It's 815pm here in Kula, and I just felt the first soft push of trade winds arrive, jingling my wind chimes softly. I'll be back early Wednesday morning with your next new weather narrative, I hope you have a great Tuesday night until then! Aloha for now…Glenn.

Tropical cyclone activity:
The 2012 hurricane season in the eastern Pacific begins today. We find the first tropical cyclone of the 2012 hurricane season…moving away from the mainland Mexican coast. It's called tropical storm Aletta, and is located approximately 775 miles south of the southern tip of Baja California. Here's the NHC graphical track map for tropical storm Aletta (1E), along with this satellite image.  Aletta should gain a bit more strength, although certainly not reaching hurricane strength…before starting to weaken rather quickly Wednesday onwards.  There is absolutely no threat to the Hawaiian Islands, and actually the storm may turn back towards the northeast. 

Vast groundwater resources have been revealed in Africa by the first continent-wide quantitative maps. But the resources may not be easily accessible because of political and technical challenges and costs, say experts. The new groundwater maps, published last month (19 April) in Environmental Research Letters, are based on an extensive review of available maps, publications and data.

They show the continent has a total underground water storage capacity of 0.66 million cubic kilometres — more than 20 times the freshwater storage capacity of lakes on the continent. The largest aquifers are in northern Africa, mostly in Algeria, Chad, Egypt, Libya and Sudan.

The study says that "many countries designated 'water scarce' have substantial groundwater reserves," and concludes that boreholes for community hand pumps would be feasible in these. But although some media reports have suggested that the discovery could mark the end of water shortages on the continent, experts say it is not that simple.

"The study makes it clear that these groundwater [aquifers] are far from population centres," Mohamed Gad, professor of hydrology at the Desert Research Center in Egypt, told SciDev.Net. Most of the aquifers in North Africa are also very deep underground, at 100—250 meters, making them costly to develop, he added.

Gad said North African countries need to develop extraction technologies, have the political will, and find new funds to make use of the groundwater. "North African countries need to resume negotiations about the management of the shared groundwater, as most of the aquifers in this region are crossing borders between more than two countries," he said, adding that "countries like Algeria, Libya and Tunisia already have an agreement for the preservation of the groundwater resources, but countries like Egypt, Libya and Sudan still have challenges managing shares".