Posted on June 26, 2014 by Bob Berwyn
Wet summer possible across much of Colorado
FRISCO — El Nino may bring above average rainfall to Colorado this summer, Grand Junction-based forecasters with the National Weather Service said in their latest update. The cyclical shift in Pacific Ocean sea surface temperatures affects the path of moisture moving off the Pacific and across the western U.S.
Visit NOAA’s El Niño page, where weather experts are maintaining an El Niño blog to track the developing pattern.
NOAA maps show a classic El Niño pattern with a streak of warmer-than-average sea surface temps extending along the equator from the South American coast westward.
Based on computer model projections and comparisons with past years under similar emerging El Niño conditions, probabilities are tilted toward above-average precipitation for much of the summer, especially in late summer going into early autumn.
The biggest effects of El Niño are often felt during the winter months, but right now it’s unclear how strong this year’s El Niño will be or how long it will persist. Looking at the series of most recent El Niños, forecasters detect an overall trend of drier than average conditions, with periods of good snowfall scattered throughout the winter months.
Strong storms in late fall can put down a good base in the Colorado mountains, but El Niño winters are also often marked by long spells of dry weather in between stormy patterns.
Filed under: El Niño | Tagged: Colorado, El Nino, weather | Leave a comment »
Posted on June 13, 2014 by Bob Berwyn
Year-to-date readings also close to average
A temperature sandwich across the U.S. in May.
FRISCO — The average temperature across the U.S. was 1 degree Fahrenheit above the 20th century average, making it the 32d-warmest May on record, according to the latest report from NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center. Both the East and West coasts were warmer than average during May, while much of the central U.S. had near-average temperatures.
For the spring season (March- May), the average temperature was 0.2 degrees above the 20th century average, ranking the season near the middle of the pack for the 120-year period of record. Continue reading
Filed under: climate and weather, global warming | Tagged: climate, May 2014 state of the climate, weather | Leave a comment »
Posted on May 14, 2014 by Bob Berwyn
Temps for year-to-date still running below average
FRISCO — Despite a few cold snaps here and there, the average April temperature across the U.S. was remarkably close to normal, at .7 degrees Fahrenheit above the 20th century average, according to the latest monthly report from NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center.
Most of the country saw near-average readings for the month, with a narrow belt of above-normal temps along the West Coast and pocket of cold in the upper Midwest.
For the year to-date, however, the average temperature across the contiguous 48 states is .4 degrees below the 20th century average, making in the 36th-coldest January to April period on record, and the marking the coldest start to the year since 1993 — mainly due to very cold readings in the eastern U.S. Read the full report here. Continue reading
Filed under: seasons | Tagged: April 2014 climate, climate, global warming, U.S. climate, weather | Leave a comment »
Posted on April 5, 2014 by Bob Berwyn
Study offers new insight into long-distance avian migration.
‘We think that these behaviors represent a previously unknown cognitive ability …’
FRISCO — Some migrating birds may be able to sense weather patterns on a hemispheric scale, helping them optimally time their nonstop transoceanic flights.
Bar-tailed godwits, the ultra-marathon champions of migration, breed in Alaska and spend winters in New Zealand and a recent U.S. Geological Survey-led study suggests that these birds can sense broad weather patterns.
Careful monitoring of the birds suggest they time their departure to match the best possible atmospheric wind conditions possible within a two-week window. Remarkably, not only were the conditions optimal for take-off, but they almost always provided the best possible conditions for the birds’ entire flights, as far as 7,000 miles in eight days between Alaska and New Zealand.
Filed under: biodiversity, Environment | Tagged: bar-tailed godwits, Birds, Environment, migration, weather | 3 Comments »
Posted on March 15, 2014 by Bob Berwyn
A faint sheen of color above Buffalo Mountain marked sunset, with more moisture rolling in from the West.
Colorado’s north-central mountains favored by this winter’s storm track
By Bob Berwyn
FRISCO — Summit County remained a target for above average precipitation in February, with both official weather stations reporting surplus snowfall for the month. The Upper Blue in particular benefited from the storm track, with the snowpack now approaching record levels.
To date, the snowpack in the Blue River Basin is the third highest on record, according to National Weather Service meteorologist Chad Gimmestad, who said there is a moderate potential for spring flooding in the basin. Continue reading
Filed under: climate and weather, Colorado, snow, Snow and weather, Summit County snow and weather | Tagged: climate, Colorado, February 2014 weather statistics, snowfall, weather | 1 Comment »
Posted on March 7, 2014 by Bob Berwyn
Big parts of the West are experiencing a moisture deficit this winter, with drought continuing in California.
Northwest flow favors Colorado’s northern mountains
By Summit Voice
FRISCO — For the third month in a row, Colorado snowpack is tracking above average. February, ended with the snowpack at 116 percent of median, with snowfall to-date for the water year (starting Oct. 1) at 133 percent of average.
A series of wet storm cycles pummeled the mountains during the month, with the bullseye over the north-central region, where some stations reported nearly double the average monthly snowfall. The no-Niño weather pattern has left a moisture deficit in the southwest part of the state, where the Upper Rio Grande and the combined San Miguel, Dolores, Animas and San Juan basins, are still experiencing below normal snow conditions for this time of year. Continue reading
Filed under: climate and weather, Colorado, Snow and weather | Tagged: climate, Colorado, snowpack, water, weather | Leave a comment »
Posted on February 14, 2014 by Bob Berwyn
Colorado stands out as one of the few western states with above average precipitation during January 2014.
January 2014 cool and dry across the U.S.
By Summit Voice
FRISCO — The monthly summary from NOAA’s National Climatic Data Center tells a tale of two winters across the United States, with cold conditions and big snows in the eastern half of the country and record drought and warmth in parts of the West.
Overall, the nationally averaged temperature across the contiguous 48 states was 30.3 degrees Fahrenheit, 0.1 degrees below the 20th century average, making it the coldest January since 2011, according to the state of the climate report for January 2014. Continue reading
Filed under: climate and weather, global warming, seasons | Tagged: climate, January temperatures statistics, weather | 1 Comment »