Air Temperatures – The following high temperatures (F) were recorded across the state of Hawaii Tuesday…along with the low temperatures Wednesday:

83 – 76  Lihue, Kauai /
84 – 71  Honolulu, Oahu /
8263  Molokai AP
83 – 62  Kahului AP, Maui / 
82 – 68  Kona AP, Hawaii
8168  Hilo, Hawaii /

Here are the latest 24-hour precipitation totals (inches) for each of the islands Wednesday morning:

0.25  Mount Waialeale, Kauai
0.12  Poamoho RG 1, Oahu
0.10  Molokai
0.00  Lanai
0.01  Kahoolawe
0.58  West Wailuaiki, Maui

0.43  Saddle Quarry, Big Island

The following numbers represent the strongest wind gusts (mph) Wednesday morning:

10  Mana, Kauai
17  Palehua, Oahu
09  Molokai
17  Lanai
31  Kahoolawe
07  Kula 1 Maui
18 PTA Range 17, Big Island

Hawaii’s MountainsHere’s a link to the live webcam on the summit of our tallest mountain Mauna Kea (~13,800 feet high) on the Big Island of Hawaii. Here’s the webcam for the (~10,023 feet high) Haleakala Crater on Maui. These webcams are available during the daylight hours here in the islands, and at night whenever there’s a big moon shining down. Also, at night you will be able to see the stars, and the sunrise and sunset too…depending upon weather conditions.
The first cold front of 2020…is approaching from the west
(click on the images to enlarge or animate them)

Higher clouds remain offshore well southeast
Clear to partly cloudy…cloudy areas locally
Showers over some parts of the state…and offshore
Looping image

  Please click this link…to see current Watches, Warnings and Advisories

Hawaii Weather Narrative

Broad Brush Overview:
A high pressure system far to the northeast of the islands, and an approaching cold front northwest of the state will cause wind speeds to decrease, becoming light and variable. The weakening cold front approaching the islands will spread clouds, showers, and gusty trade winds across the area later tonight through Friday.

A strong high pressure system in the wake of the front, will keep wet trade winds in place through the weekend. These trades continue through the first half of next week at moderate speeds, with signs of an upper level low lurking northeast of the island chain…possibly affecting the extended period rainfall chances.

Details: A high pressure system located far northeast of the islands, will interact with a low pressure system and its associated cold front northwest of the state, keeping the state in a light east to southeasterly wind flow. Wind speeds will remain light enough to allow localized sea breezes to develop along western slopes.

As we reach Thursday and Friday, this weakening cold front will move into the area from the west. The models continue to show bands of showers and northeasterly trade winds developing out ahead of the fronts arrival. The cold front reaches Kauai Thursday afternoon, with increasing low clouds and showers spreading eastward from Kauai to Maui through the overnight hours.

Look for increasing trade winds peaking Friday in the strong to locally windy range. These wind speeds may exceed the wind advisory thresholds and may require a wind advisory by Friday morning…for wind favored areas of each island. Colder air moving in behind the cold front will drop high and low temperatures statewide by a few degrees through the end of the week.

Looking Further Ahead: As we push into the weekend, a strong high will build into the Central Pacific, keeping gusty trade winds blowing. Wind directions will veer towards the east as the high passes through the area. A developing upper level low east of the Hawaiian Islands, and lingering moisture from the old frontal band…will keep unsettled weather around through Sunday.

From next Monday through mid-week, the models show an unstable low developing east to northeast of the state. However, model solutions are very inconsistent with the strength and location of this system. This means that for now, the confidence in precipitation coverage and rainfall amounts in the extended range forecast remains poor…going into the first half of next week.

However, it looks like moderate to strong trade winds will continue through next Wednesday with a high degree of confidence. Keeping unsettled weather in the forecast for the first half of next week, as the expectations are that the models will continue to improve on the forecast location of this unstable upper low. More forecast rainfall details will be provided as the forecast time period gets closer.

Here’s a near real-time Wind Profile of the Pacific Ocean – along with a Closer View of the islands / Here’s the latest Weather Map

Marine Environmental Conditions: A slowly declining northwest swell continues moving across the area., which will gradually lower through Friday. A smaller northerly swell is expected to arrive Thursday night, then linger through the weekend. A rather small northwest swell is expected Sunday through next Monday. Surf along east facing shores will remain elevated through the remainder of the week into the weekend, due to upwind swell sources, as well as the expected increase in trade winds later this week.

Winds will continue to drop off a bit through through early Thursday although increase once again later Thursday, and on through the weekend, as high pressure builds in to our north. Seas will also remain elevated across most areas.
Happy New Year!

World-wide Tropical Cyclone Activity

Here’s a link to the latest Pacific Disaster Center’s
Weather Wall

>>> Atlantic Ocean: There are no active tropical cyclones

Latest satellite image of the Atlantic

>>> Caribbean Sea: There are no active tropical cyclones

>>> Gulf of Mexico: There are no active tropical cyclones

Latest satellite image of the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico

>>> Eastern Pacific: There are no active tropical cyclones

Here’s an animated color enhanced satellite image of the central and eastern Pacific

Here’s the link to the National Hurricane Center (NHC)

>>> Central Pacific: There are no active tropical cyclones

Here’s the link to the Central Pacific Hurricane Center (CPHC)

>>> Northwest Pacific Ocean: There are no active tropical cyclones

>>> South Pacific Ocean: There are no active tropical cyclones

>>> North and South Indian Oceans / Arabian Sea: 

Tropical Cyclone 05S (Calvinia)

JTWC textual warning
JTWC graphical track map

Why Hangovers Feel So Awful
Debaucherous evening last night? You’re probably dealing with veisalgia right now.

More commonly known as a hangover, this unpleasant phenomenon has been dogging humanity since our ancestors first happened upon fermentation.

Those nasty vertigo-inducing, cold sweat-promoting and vomit-producing sensations after a raucous night out are all part of your body’s attempt to protect itself from injury after you overindulge in alcoholic beverages. Your liver is working to break down the alcohol you consumed so your kidneys can clear it out ASAP. But in the process, your body’s inflammatory and metabolic reactions are going to lay you low with a hangover.

As long as people have suffered from hangovers, they’ve searched in vain for a cure. Revelers have access to a variety of compounds, products and devices that purport to ease the pain. But there’s a lot of purporting and not a lot of proof. Most have not been backed up well by science in terms of usefulness for hangover treatment, and often their effects don’t seem like they’d match up with what scientists know about the biology of the hangover.

Working overtime to clear out the booze

Hangovers are virtually guaranteed when you drink too much. That amount varies from person to person based on genetic factors as well as whether there are other compounds that formed along with ethanol in the fermentation process.

Over the course of a night of heavy drinking, your blood alcohol level continues to rise. Your body labors to break down the alcohol – consumed as ethanol in beer, wine or spirits – forming damaging oxygen free radicals and acetaldehyde, itself a harmful compound. The longer ethanol and acetaldehyde stick around, the more damage they can do to your cellular membranes, proteins and DNA, so your body’s enzymes work quickly to metabolize acetaldehyde to a less toxic compound, acetate.

Over time, your ethanol levels drop through this natural metabolic process. Depending on how much you consumed, you’re likely to experience a hangover as the level of ethanol in your blood slowly returns to zero. Your body is withdrawing from high levels of circulating alcohol, while at the same time trying to protect itself from the effects of alcohol.

Scientists have limited knowledge of the leading causes of the hangover. But they do know that the body’s responses include changes in hormone levels to reduce dehydration and cellular stress. Alcohol consumption also affects a variety of neurotransmitter systems in the brain, including glutamate, dopamine and serotonin. Inflammation increases in the body’s tissues, and the healthy gut bacteria in your digestive system take a hit too, promoting leaky gut.

Altogether, the combination of all these reactions and protective mechanisms activated by your system gives rise to the experience of a hangover, which can last up to 48 hours.

Your misery likely has company

Drinking and socializing are cultural acts, and most hangovers do not happen in isolation. Human beings are social creatures, and there’s a high likelihood that at least one other individual feels the same as you the morning after the night before.

Each society has different rules regarding alcohol use, which can affect how people view alcohol consumption within those cultures. Drinking is often valued for its relaxing effect and for promoting sociability. So it’s common to see alcohol provided at celebratory events, social gatherings and holiday parties.

In the United States, drinking alcohol is largely embraced by mainstream culture, which may even promote behaviors involving excessive drinking. It should be no surprise that overindulgence goes hand in hand with these celebratory social events – and leads to hangover regrets a few hours later.

Your body’s reactions to high alcohol intake and the sobering-up period can influence mood, too. The combination of fatigue that you experience from sleep deprivation and hormonal stress reactions, in turn, affect your neurobiological responses and behavior. As your body is attempting to repair itself, you’re more likely to be easily irritated, exhausted and want nothing more than to be left alone. Of course, your work productivity takes a dramatic hit the day after an evening of heavy drinking.

When all is said and done, you’re the cause of your own hangover pain, and you’re the one who must pay for all the fun of the night before. But in short order, you’ll forget how excruciating your last hangover was. And you may very soon talk yourself into doing the things you swore you’d never do again.

Speeding up recovery

While pharmacologists like us understand a bit about how hangovers work, we still lack a true remedy.

Countless articles describe a variety of foods, caffeine, ion replenishment, energy drinks, herbal supplements including thyme and ginger, vitamins and the “hair of the dog” as ways to prevent and treat hangovers. But the evidence isn’t really there that any of these work effectively. They’re just not scientifically validated or well reproduced.

For example, Kudzu root (Pueraria lobata), a popular choice for hangover remedies, has primarily been investigated for its effects in reducing alcohol-mediated stress and hangover. But at the same time, Kudzu root appears to inhibit the enzymes that break down acetaldehyde – not good news since you want to clear that acetaldehyde from your system quickly.

To fill this knowledge gap, our lab is working with colleagues to see if we can find scientific evidence for or against potential hangover remedies. We’ve focused on the benefits of dihydromyricetin, a Chinese herbal medicine that is currently available and formulated as a dietary supplement for hangover reduction or prevention.

Dihydromyricetin appears to work its magic by enhancing alcohol metabolism and reducing its toxic byproduct, acetaldehyde. From our findings in mice models, we are collecting data that support the usefulness of dihydromyricetin in increasing the expression and activity of enzymes responsible for ethanol and acetaldehyde metabolism in the liver, where ethanol is primarily broken down. These findings explain one of the several ways dihydromyricetin protects the body against alcohol stress and hangover symptoms.

We are also studying how this enhancement of alcohol metabolism results in changes in alcohol drinking behaviors. Previously, dihydromyricetin was found to counteract the relaxation affect of drinking alcohol by interfering with particular neuroreceptors in the brain; rodents didn’t become as intoxicated and consequently reduced their ethanol intake. Through this combination of mechanisms, we hope to illustrate how DHM might reduce the downsides of excessive drinking beyond the temporary hangover, and potentially reduce drinking behavior and damage associated with heavy alcohol consumption.

Of course, limiting alcohol intake and substituting water for many of those drinks during an evening out is probably the best method to avoid a painful hangover. However, for those times when one alcoholic beverage leads to more than a few more, be sure to stay hydrated and catch up on rest. Your best bet for a smoother recovery is probably some combination of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug like ibuprofen, Netflix and a little downtime.