HONOLULU, the United States, Dec. 3 (Xinhua) -- Heavy snow fell in mountain areas of Hawaii's Big Land, while a winter storm warning would be in effect through Saturday evening for elevations above 11,000 feet (3,352 meters).
Many local residents and visitors saw a rare view of snow capping the high peaks and slopes of Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa mountains. According to the National Park Service, a very thick blanket of snow was visible as low as 10,000 feet (3,048 meters). No threats to local life was reported so far.
The winter storm warning issued by the National Weather Service Friday evening meant more snow was on the way. The National Weather Report predicted that 20 to 30 inches (50 to 76 Centimeters) of snow could be possible through Saturday and a total of four feet (1. 22 meters) of snow could be on the tops of Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa by the end of this weekend.
The summit of Mauna Loa was closed by the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park Service on Friday due to snowy conditions. In addition, the road up to the Mauna Kea visitor station was shut down at an elevation of 9,200 feet (2,800 meters) as well.
That's a significant amount of snowfall, but not uncommon for the very high summits, meteorologists said, citing Mauna Loa and Mauna Kea both were nearly 14,000 feet (4,267 meters) above sea level.
Matthew Foster, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Honolulu, told CBS that he had to explain to some surprised out-of-state callers since Friday, saying that the snow fell in a small, remote area where there were mainly telescopes and scientists.
"We do have very high mountains here," Foster said.