Better And Better

If you don't draw yours, I won't draw mine.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Climate is what you expect; weather is what you get.

I'm a minor weather geek. Minor, in that I simply can't bring myself to turn on the Weather Channel and leave it on. Geek, in that I want more than the National Weather Service forecast that most of the media use, which is too regionalized.

I've taken to checking most of my raw data from various local personally-owned weather stations that are online through the disturbingly-named WeatherUnderground.com (and who the hell thought that was a good idea for a site name?!?). You put in your zip code, and it spits out, on the bottom, a list of privately-owned weather stations, and their rapid-fire updated history, so that you can see your micro-weather around you.

Yesterday, we had started the day kind of muggy, with a strong south wind blowing up warm moist air from the Gulf. I went into the P.D. last evening to finish preparing an accident report and type in a few call sheets. After an hour, I stepped out to my car to get my clipboard, and was blasted by cold air coming in twice as fast from the north. When my partner came in at 9pm, he looked baffled. "What just happened here?" The temperature had dropped 22 degrees in an hour. I mentioned that the wind had turned.

"Well, it's been windy all day," he said. "That's not the problem." He was shivering in his chair.

"It's not that the wind is blowing-- it's from where it's blowing," I said, and showed him this graph:



I love graphs. They spell out everything for you. Right at 8:00 PM, the wind turned from due south to NNW, and the temperature dropped through the floor. It always surprises me when other people don't notice the direction of the wind.


This morning, it was only down to 21 degrees farenheit, but with a steady 21mph wind gusting to 35 mph, it was brisk, of the like that most folks don't associate with Texas. I've GOT to better insulate this old place.

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8 Comments:

At Monday, December 15, 2008 9:31:00 AM, Blogger alan said...

I've always laughed at the name too. They either didn't know, or they know and think it's cute.

 
At Monday, December 15, 2008 11:21:00 AM, Blogger Crucis said...

KC dropped 46 degrees yesterday. From 60 degrees @ 9AM to 14 by 6PM. I just wore a light jacket to church and nearly froze when I left for home.

BTW, you may want to check out APRS. There are automated Weather Stations that use APRS to report data to the NWS.

 
At Monday, December 15, 2008 11:24:00 AM, Blogger 5150Wife said...

I like the weatherunderground site too, but not the name.

You're lucky it didn't hit you til 8pm. It hit here about 2pm. This morning it was 18 degrees, windchill of 4 degrees. BRRRR!

 
At Monday, December 15, 2008 11:38:00 AM, Anonymous Jason said...

I detect sprinklings of Ron White.... :)

Well done sir. Well done.

 
At Monday, December 15, 2008 2:42:00 PM, Anonymous Bob@thenest said...

That's my primary weather info source, too.

I'm glad to know I'm not the only personal weather station junkie -- don't have one myself because every time I get ready to buy one I instead get another brick or three of ammo -- but I look at the local ones often. Just decent data, no talking heads.

 
At Monday, December 15, 2008 4:58:00 PM, Blogger Crucis said...

Here, near KC it dropped to 4 overnight. When I went out a noon, it had gotten all the way up to 10.

 
At Monday, December 15, 2008 6:56:00 PM, Anonymous LabRat said...

...Huh. We HAVE a personal weather station, and I'd never known that data was being used like that.

 
At Monday, December 15, 2008 8:22:00 PM, Blogger George said...

You can all thank the Great White North for that wind/temp change thingy. Of course, we're all held hostage by the jet stream.

Regards.

 

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