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Blog Action Day

Ok, so mount_oregano (mi amiga) posts that today is Blog Action Day to post about the environment. It's here at http://www.blogactionday.org. Gee, what's a Weather Dude's wife to do? Post about the weather, of course.



We are 14 inches down in rain for the year here in our weird little (almost WV, almost MD) corner of VA. That's about half our normal rainfall. And not a cloud in sight. Normally, in summer drought conditions, we expect tropical storms and the remains of hurricanes to break the cycle. Not happening this year. 14 inches is a full year's rain and more for some areas. But it's not very much for this corner of the map. I like rain. And I'm not used to living without it. And the Dude tells me this is not going to be a winter to expect a lot of snow.

The well guy was here last week. Because the water kept shutting off in the middle of a shower. In a drought, this is a disturbing thing. A year ago when this happened, there was a pinhole leak and water was going everywhere in the basement. Not so this time. And the problem had worsened in conjunction with the lack of rain. Talk about freaking us out. Because our well is only 85 feet deep when neighbors have wells 300-500 feet deep. But ours had a flow of 25 gallons per minute when it was dug 30 years ago. And it was found with peach divining rods, which the deeper wells weren't. And the previous owner had been the Chief of Groundwater for the USGS and you would think he would pick a house with a good water source, the way the Dude picks houses well above floodplains and away from hurricanes, tornadoes and earthquakes.

Long story short, the well guy found that the brass nipple into our pressure tank was solid with iron oxide crud. Huge sigh of relief all around. And when he turned the water back on, the tank filled merrily. So we have water. For now. I have never in my life been quite so aware of water or the lack thereof.

And this weekend, I discussed the end of the Canadian ice roads with Canadian author Karl Schroeder. The season is shorter and shorter each year when the Canadian lakes freeze hard enough to haul heavy loads on them. And Connie Willis remarked in July that the summer weather in Colorado was no longer predictable and wasn't all this just proof of global warming?

Well, the Dude is Teh Weatherdude. Really. Not your garden variety weatherdude, but the real McCoy. Scratch him and he oozes raw weather data, arrows spilling out of him in every direction. And he knows about trofs and fronts. No wait. Miss E already knows about fronts and trofs too. Well then it's something about that little PhD thingie he got a while back and that he does this for a living and has for many years. His response is that though he firmly believes that global warming is happening, unfortunately, the data is still within the realm of what has gone before, climatologically.

But meanwhile, we are 14 inches below normal for the year.

Frog Out

Comments

( 10 comments — Leave a comment )
(Anonymous)
Oct. 15th, 2007 07:14 pm (UTC)
Weather trivia
Assuming we don't get rain today, and that looks like a pretty safe assumption, we will be -14.68" below normal, based on the Dulles climatology. We have had 19.04" of precipitation to date, the driest year through 15 October on record at Dulles, with records that date back to 1971. This is the sixth driest year on record thus far at Washington National based on 21.64" of precip; records there date back to 1871. You can see the climatology for yourself at

http://www.weather.gov/climate/index.php?wfo=lwx

So.. anyway you look at it, it is dry. And the forecast is for slightly above normal temps for the winter and equal chances of precip. We are entering a La Nina pattern this winter, which isn't known for significant snow storms in the mid-Atlantic region.

Winter outlook is here: http://www.noaanews.noaa.gov/stories2007/20071009_outlook.html
birdhousefrog
Oct. 15th, 2007 07:19 pm (UTC)
Re: Weather trivia
I assume none of my readers requires further proof that he is, indeed, Teh Weatherdude.
kelly_yoyo
Oct. 15th, 2007 08:21 pm (UTC)
Re: Weather trivia
I worship teh Weatherdude!!
tcastleb
Oct. 16th, 2007 06:56 am (UTC)
Re: Weather trivia
Nope, nope, that's quite enough proof for me. :>)
jehanni
Oct. 15th, 2007 08:05 pm (UTC)
Proof indeed.
I, too, like rain. And my garden likes rain, which of course, it is not getting. Worse (for my plants), I've migrated to an area of the country that is clay, not loam, so when they don't get rain, their roots are baked into solid brick, which I visualize like Han Solo getting frozen in carbonite in the Empire Strikes Back.


mount_oregano
Oct. 16th, 2007 04:12 pm (UTC)
Madrid has frequent droughts, and even in normal times we often go a month or two without rain in the summer -- the joys of a Mediterranean climate. This spring was oddly wet, though. One evening, on my way to my writers' group, I had to spend some time standing on the bench in a bus shelter in front of the Prado Museum during a flash flood. At that moment I was not liking rain.
(Anonymous)
Oct. 16th, 2007 04:25 pm (UTC)
More weather trivia
To add to yesterday's discussion, an excerpt from the morning's forecast discussion from the Sterling Weather Forecast Office...

.NEAR TERM /UNTIL 6 PM THIS EVENING/...

-- Changed Discussion --
IN THE "BLV IT OR NOT" CATEGORY...DCA HAS HAD 32 CONSECUTIVE DAYS
W/O MEASUREABLE RAIN (LAST MEASURBABLE - .15 ON SEP 14). TMRW WL TIE
THE RECORD...WHICH ENDED SEP 8 1995. AND IF NOTHING MEASURED THU THE
RECORD WL BE BKN. W/ RDG HANGING TOUGH ON E CST A TIE LOOKS LK A
GOOD SHOT. WE DO HV POPS IN THE FCST THU...SO WE`LL WAIT AND SEE ON
BREAKING THE RECORD.

THIS AFTN DEBATED ON WHAT TO DO W/ CLD CVRG WORDING. THERE WL BE
SUNSHINE...AND THERE WL BE HIGH CLDS...SO OPTED TO KEEP THE P SUN
WORDING. RDG HOLDING TOUGH ON THE CST TNGT. EXPECT TO SEE STARS E OF
THE MTNS THIS EVE BEFORE THE CLOUDS HV MUCH IMPACT OVRNGT.

TEMPS REMAINING 7-10 DEGS ABV NRML TDA/TNGT.

WOODY!
-- End Changed Discussion --

Translation -- Washington National (DCA) has gone 32 days without rain and will tie the record for consecutive days without precipitation tomorrow and break the record Thursday, if it doesn't rain. However, there is a chance of rain in the forecast. Meteorological jargon, acronyms and official contractions litter the forecast discussion so it can some time to get used to the shorthand.
birdhousefrog
Oct. 16th, 2007 04:37 pm (UTC)
Re: More weather trivia
See? This is what I live with.

Obviously The Dude had a liberal arts education at one point (which is where we met). Your typical forecast weather dudling is obviously not required to pass any spelling tests. If you sort of squint your eyes and pretend it's Middle English, you can actually read it.

Froggie
(Deleted comment)
birdhousefrog
Oct. 17th, 2007 11:07 am (UTC)
Dowsing is real. One of our neighbors has lived here all 30 years since the properties were developed. Originally, our house and another property were owned by two Chekoslovakian sisters and their husbands. (After that, our property was owned by the Chief of Groundwater for the USGS.) Almost all our landscaping is from the original owners. And yes, they used peach divining rods. Cool part is that it's a good well. And his well is 500 feet deep. Just looking at my USGS bedrock map, I think he put his well in a crazy location considering his property drops down to a swampy area.

Oz
(Anonymous)
Sep. 22nd, 2008 02:14 am (UTC)
Interesting post..
Great post!, guy
( 10 comments — Leave a comment )