Archive for December, 2007

Merry Christmas to All!

Tuesday, December 25th, 2007

Happy Holidays!

Wishing everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy and prosperous New Year! Judging from my web server stats, it would appear that folks enjoy the weather data from Goose Lake Weather. I’m hoping the blog entries are somewhat interesting as well. I have a few projects planned for the Goose Lake Weather station in 2008 including the possibility of a lightning detector, soil temperature measurements and more. Stay tuned. As always, comments/suggestions are appreciated.

Happy Holidays!

-Bill

Winter Returns

Sunday, December 23rd, 2007

Midwest Surface Analysis

A strong cold front passed through early this morning associated with an intense low pressure system. Temperatures dropped from 52° at 1 AM to 17° at 6 AM! Check out the temperature and pressure graphs. A wind advisory remains in effect today as strong winds around the low pressure will continue to usher in much colder temperatures with windchills below zero at times.

Temperature and Pressure Plots from Goose Lake Weather

Where Did the Snow Go?

Saturday, December 22nd, 2007

We lost our snowpack practically overnight — well at least in the last 48 hrs. How did this happen? Warm moist air over the colder snow and ground created foggy conditions over the last 2 days. Advection (horizontal transfer of air by wind) of warm moist air over a snow pack is the most efficient way to melt the snow. Why? When the moist air condenses on the snow it releases heat, a process known as the latent heat of condensation. This heat is imparted to the snowpack and helps to increase the melt rate considerably — even more so than a rain on snow event. With an active weather pattern continuing however, we can still keep our fingers crossed for a white Christmas.

Winter Solstice

Thursday, December 20th, 2007

The winter solstice will occur at 12:08 AM Saturday Dec 22nd. More information can be found here. Daylight length will very gradually begin to increase again.

Freezing Fog

Wednesday, December 19th, 2007

Freezing Fog Freezing fog is currently occurring in the area with visibility down to below 1/4 mile. Freezing fog is defined as:

A suspension of numerous minute ice crystals in the air, or water droplets at temperatures below 32°, based at the Earth’s surface, which reduces horizontal visibility; also called ice fog.

Departing Winter Storm

Sunday, December 16th, 2007

The winter storm deposited 4.3 inches of snow here late yesterday and overnight. Winds gusting to 33 mph this morning are causing some blowing and drifting and windchills are in the single digits.

New Snowfall

Intensifying Winter Storm

Saturday, December 15th, 2007

NWS Chicago Radar
An intensifying winter storm has prompted the issuance of a Heavy Snow Warning for our area. The radar was beginning to show an increase in coverage of the snow that was moving up from the southwest. Be careful if you have to drive tonight and Sunday.

Winter Rainfall Measurements

Thursday, December 13th, 2007

covered rain gauge

You may have noticed that my rainfall readings did not update in real-time while we received rainfall during this last event. I’ve covered the gauge with a cap because the gauge is not heated. When it snows, rain will collect in the gauge and melt when it warms. The melt could be several days after the snowfall. So to prevent this, I’ve covered the gauge. I do take rainfall readings manually each morning around 6 am. If snow falls, the manual gauge will collect the snow. I’ll then bring in the gauge to melt the snow to determine the liquid water equivalent. I’ll then add this to the accumulated monthly and yearly totals that you see on the web page.

More Ice on the Way

Monday, December 10th, 2007

Another ice storm is headed for northeast Illinois. Grundy county is currently under a Freezing Rain Advisory. It could be messy for the morning commute tomorrow. Fortunately temperatures should rise above freezing by noon and help melt off the ice.

The map below is from the NOAA Hydrometeorological Prediction Center and indicates the potential for freezing rain.

Probability of Ice Accumulation

Snow Rulers now Available for CoCoRaHS Observers

Friday, December 7th, 2007

Snow Ruler
Snow rulers (marked in 1/10 inch increments — the CoCoRaHS and NWS standard) can now be purchased through the Weather Your Way store. Lucy now also sells replacement parts for the CoCoRaHS rain gauge as well. It’s nice to have a spare outer cylinder in order to swap it out when bringing one inside to melt the snow.