Often-cited ‘wettest spot on Earth’ has dry year
Mount Waialeale on Kauai is fortunately an exception for the state
KAPAA, Kauai » Mount Waialeale, the "wettest spot" on Earth, is not living up to its nickname this month.
Mount Waialeale, which sees about 350 days of rain each year and more than 45 inches of rain in an average December, has received about an inch and a half so far this month, according to the rain gauges listed on the National Weather Service Web site.
Dry Mount Waialeale
Rainfall figures for the mountain for December:
Normal: 45 inches
Lowest: 3.07 inches
So far this year: 1.5 inches
SOURCE: NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE
According to that Web site, the record low rainfall for Mount Waialeale is 3.07 inches, set in December 1983. With no major rain forecast for the next week, that record is likely to be broken this year.
But the state need not worry about a drought, according to year-round statistics.
While Kauai has been on the dry side throughout 2005, receiving only 68 percent of its normal rainfall so far this year at Lihue Airport, the rest of the state has been normal. Honolulu, Kahului and Hilo airports have received 98, 99 and 101 percent, respectively, of their normal rainfall, according to the Weather Service Web site.
Honolulu Airport had 0.37 inches of rain this month, below the average of 3.18 inches but way above the record minimum of 0.06 inches, set in 1976.
According to the weather service monthly outlook for January, trends point to a normal -- meaning a bit more rainy -- month.