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Hawaii's big island gets snow in June

By Shawn Price
Hawaii's big island gets snow in June
An unusual combination of cold, unstable air and thunderstorms created a rare June snow on Hawaii's highest peak of Mauna Kea late Monday and early Tuesday. More rain is expected but the snow is likely to disappear soon. Photo by U.S. National Weather Sevice Honolulu.

HONOLULU, June 15 (UPI) -- An unusual combination of conditions brought snow to the peaks of Mauna Kea on Hawaii's big island, forecasters said.

Hawaii's tropical weather doesn't extend to the state's highest peak, but late Monday, a cold pool of air made temperatures drop below freezing. About the same time, thunderstorms moved over the island, high enough to bring Mauna Kea a dusting of snow.

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The unusual event -- it does occasionally happen in winter -- provided some unique pictures of the mountain's observatory for June.

Forecasters said the wetter than usual trade winds will continue through Wednesday with rain expected.

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