Vog stands for volcanic fog and in recent years, the vog coming from the volcanoes on the Big Island has been much more intense. The winds coming from the southeast, from the Big Island, bring in volcanic gases and dust that make Maui residents crazy.
|Voggy view of Kahakuloa, |
No alteration to photo except for a white vignette.
|Comparison view towards West Maui Mountains and Kahakuloa |
(vog above, normal day below).
Photos are not altered or filtered, but they are cropped.
|Comparison photos of Haleakala Crater on a clear day and a voggy dayPhotos are not altered or filtered, but they are cropped.|
The vog goes as far as Oahu in the northwest. Kauai is the farthest main island from the Big Island and their air quality is pretty clear. (But… they have other problems like pesticide drift from big experimental test fields. Let’s hear it for big agriculture!)
Vog brings headaches, congestion, fuzzy brain, irritability, throat irritation, coughing, difficulty breathing, tiredness, asthma and allergies. It makes the air quality hazy and hard to see, comparable to smog in LA. Landscapes disappear. Entire islands disappear. You thought it was bad enough losing your glasses, try losing an entire island!
|Photo of the island of Lanai on a voggy day.|
Some days it looks like the whole island is under a haze of pot smoke.
On the other hand, vog also creates some incredibly stunning sunsets. So...yeah it sucks, but it's also kind of pretty.
Is it possible to be allergic to Maui?
One person recently emailed me this question. I think so! My allergies can be worsened by vog. In addition, sugar cane burning occurs on Maui for nine months out of the year. The ashes and dust particles go into the atmosphere. The double whammy of cane burning and vog triggers all sorts of extra health problems for some people. In addition, Maui has plenty of natural pollen, mildew, mold spores, red dirt particles in the air. Some parts of the island may also experience chemical drift from chemicals used in the agricultural fields. (Sorry, but you asked!)
Originally I planned to cover both vog and cane burning in this post, but it’s too overwhelming. Vog now, burn later. Can you tell I've been overblogging?
(By the way, while I have your attention, three friends are running interesting projects:
Here's a shortcut to the archives for the A to Z Challenge and other blog posts.
The theme of this year’s A to Z Challenge is Living on Maui: A Beginner’s Survival Guide. While I can’t include everything in only 26 short blog posts, this is my foolish attempt.
If you are participating in the A to Z Challenge, please use either Disqus or Facebook to comment below. Please include your link so that I can visit you back, but it might be as late as May!