Snorkeling in Maui After 2018 Hurricane Season

By Michelle – (Toronto, Ontario, Canada)
I am wondering about snorkeling in Maui after the 2018 hurricane season. Can anyone report on the condition of the reefs in Maui after the storms that have passed through there this year? We are looking at planning a trip there for spring 2019.

Thank you.

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Nicole & Galen – Nov 5, 2018 – Effects of 2018 Hurricanes on Maui Snorkeling

Hi Michelle, we have not been snorkeling in Maui since this year’s storms have affected the island.

From our watching of the news, it sounds like most of the effect of the storms had to do with high amounts of rainfall which would lower visibility in the short term. The winds were not crazy high and it does not sound like the surf was either, which would be the cause of damage to the reefs.

Hopefully we have some site visitors who can answer your question from first hand experience.

Tom Turner – Nov 5, 2018 – Maui, September 2018

Hi Michelle, we spent nine days on Maui, the last week of September 2018. We were on the Big Island when Tropical Storm Olivia went over Maui on September 12 (which was also after Hurricane Lane went by the islands). We snorkeled 10 of the sites that Galen and Nicole describe in their Maui Snorkeling Guide. We found no damage that would be considered recent at all. We did deal with a lot of murky water, but the coral and the wildlife was fantastic. No need to be concerned about storm damage. Set up the trip and have a ball.

I need to take the time to write a snorkel report from our trip. As we get closer to winter and the weather deteriorates, I will block out the time to write the report.

Update: Here is Tom’s trip report.

Anonymous – Dec 2, 2018 – Day to Day

We were in Kihei for a month in October and November 2018. We had some storms while there. It was crazy, the water would look good and when I got in it would be cloudy. Other times, I wasn’t sure, and it was great.

The amount of turtles between Kamaole I and II bordered on ridiculous, literally dodging them. We snorkeled there, Honolua Bay (which had always been good but was cloudy and extremely muddy to get to), Black Sand Beach (which was pretty good), and finally our favorite, Ahihi Bay, many times. The last couple the water was really clear and tons of fish.

We didn’t see anything that looked like hurricane damage.

We also hike but have found the trails we liked are getting washed out by storms.

You will have a great time snorkeling!

Shawn – Jan 4, 2019 – Good Maui Snorkeling

Aloha! I live here on Maui & snorkel three days a week. We did not have any visible damage from any storms, however, this has been a fairly bad few months for visibility due to the storms churning up our waters quite a bit. I can’t remember if you said when you were planning on coming, but usually the north and west sides of the island are better in the summer and the south side of the island is better in the winter.

Tom Ray – Apr 9, 2019 – Damage to Reefs

I read these comments about no damage to the reefs but everywhere I go I see coral broken and scattered, silty bottoms a lot of places, one turtle instead of maybe 15 typically, way fewer fish, fewer eels and sea urchins. It’s still worth going by any standards, but the damage is there and quite a bit of it.

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