By Bob Valen 

Damp October brings November snow

Weather Watcher


If the presence of snow indicates winter’s arrival along with less daylight, I’d say winter is here. So far, here at the home weather station, we’ve had 1.9 inches of snow with rapid melt-off. We’ve had three days of low temperatures below the freeze level, too. The coldest being 21.6°F. More of those to come, I’m sure. Here’s a tip of the hat to winter.

November can be cold and the records show that in 1985 we had a -10°F. Our mean temperature is 37.5°F. Mean precipitation is 1.25 inches and snowfall is 1.4 inches. The highest snowfall occurred in 1955 with 17.5 inches.

The last half of October was wet, bringing a total of 1.15 inches of precipitation. The mean for October is 0.71 iches. That moisture was welcomed following our dry summer. We had 12 days with lows in the 30°F range and our high for the month was a 78.6°F on Oct. 1. Our big wind gust was on Oct. 19, with a gust of 44 mph in the early evening.

As I followed Hurricane Sandy recently, I did a little research into the history of weather forecasts broadcasted by radio. We are fortunate here in the United States, as are many other developed countries, that we access to a number of weather-related information sources 24 hours day. Information is available via radio and television, and there are applications (apps) for smart phones and tablets like the iPad. Here in the United States, the first weather forecast broadcast on radio was in Madison, Wis., transmitted by the “new” radio station 9XM. These first weather forecasts were transmitted via Morse code, starting on Dec. 4, 1916. On Jan. 3, 1921, the first audio or voice weather forecast was made by this same station. Today that radio station is WHA 970 AM.

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When we have a clear night sky, you may want to look upward. Jupiter will be bright in the night sky through November. Also visible are Mars, Neptune and Uranus in the evening sky. If you want to view the last Solar Eclipse of the year, travel to Australia, where, on Nov. 14, a total eclipse of the sun will be fully visible in the morning. The Leonid meteor shower should peak early morning Nov. 17. Watch for a full Moon on the 28th.


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