Windsurfing, surfing, Maui, The Gorge, and random rants.

Monday, May 23, 2011

It's Lahaina Noon !!

Since the world decided to keep on living, we made it to a very important astronomical milestone. That magical time that occurs just twice a year in the tropics - Lahaina noon. It's when the sun at high noon (according to the sun, not a clock) is exactly 90 deg over head. It's when poles and tall buildings (assuming they're straight) cast no shadow. So Wooh-Hooh! Here's to Lahaina noon, which unofficially occurred at Kanaha at 12:32pm on May 23, according to my precise coconut water can measuring system. Here you can see the results...

Not quite there at 12:31pm - still a wee shadow...

But at 12:32 - look Ma, no shadow!!  These pictures are taken from three different angles just to prove the point. (PS - you can't take a picture from straight above, otherwise the camera shadow covers the can. Duh!).

Well that's certainly exciting.  Personally I think Lahaina noon should be celebrated as much as all the other silly astronomical dates, such as winter solstice (shortest day, sun reaches lowest point in sky), spring and fall equinox (length of day and night are equal, sun is 90 deg over the equator), and summer solstice (longest day, and for those outside the tropics the sun reaches the highest point). The cool thing about Lahaina noon is 1) in the US it only occurs in the state of Hawaii which of course is the only state situated between the tropics.  So you got to be here to dig it. (why isn't the HI tourism dept promoting this big time?) 2) anyone with a can of soda can determine when it occurs.  Since most school kids drink like 20 sodas a day they should have no problem with this experiment.  It's not so easy to figure the other solstice dates unless you have one of those Egyptian pyramids where a tiny beam of light on exactly the right moment lights a magnifying mirror which ignites a flame which burns a rope and unleashes a giant boulder which chases Indiana down a steep path and so on.  3) Hey, you got no freaking shadow!  That should be cool enough.

So for the next two months the sun heads a bit north of us here on Maui, and the north side of buildings become the sunny side and all that moss starts to wilt. Like there is any moss here (hint: NOT!).  But speaking of moss, we will be back in Hood River in eight days.  The weather there this week calls for lots of rain, high temps around 59, river temp is only 54 and it's flooding as we speak.  Nice.  I'm sending some of my Lahaina noon sun vibes up there - hope that helps.

As for windsurfing, it's been spanking windy for the last three days or so and looks to continue all week and perhaps the rest of the summer. We had what may be the last decent  swell last Friday when sets of perhaps 10-12 ft showed up on the north shore.  I sailed lowers and I'm sure I won't see anything like that until our return to Maui in the fall. Missing it already!  Meanwhile a potentially decent sized (head high) SW swell is just showing up on the leeward shores.  You never know on Maui what will sneak past all the islands from that direction, but a few days of surfing sure would be nice.

Anyway, Lahaina noon - enjoy it!

1 comment:

Karin Haraguchi said...

(I am not sure if here is appropriate for these kind of question comment.)

Dear Mr. Jamin Jones

I am Karin HARAGUCHI of TV MAN UNION, a Japanese TV production company.
Now we are making a historical documentary program about Maui.

I have been looking for a picture of "lahaina noon",then I found your blog.

Sorry to be sudden, but could you do me a favor?
If you don't mind,may I use this picture of can in our TV program?
I really want to introduce those interesting things to many Japanese people.

Please tell me if that is possible.
my e-mail address is here→

I am looking forward to hearing from you.

Sincerely yours,

Karin Haraguchi

Copyright © 2011 Jamin Jones, All rights reserved.