Friday, January 25, 2008

A Forecast We "Deer"ly Need is on the Way!

Courtesy of Diana Cable

This picture shows how animals have been reacting to the frigid air that has rocked the Midwest twice in one week with sub-zero temperatures. Diana Cable's friend from Iowa captured her cat talking to a couple of friends through the window. We always tell folks to make sure to remember the pets and bring them in during this type of weather. It has been so cold it looks like the deer are not just looking for food, but for a nice warm place. We "deer"ly need some warmer weather, espcially after waking up with wind chills on Thursday morning close to 30 below zero in Francesville. You can see below why there were plenty of school delays.

Frostbite was possible in as little as 25 minutes even in Lafayette. I did a couple experiments to see just how cold it was and if you look closely you can see I made a cloud of snow in the picture by throwing a cup of boiling water in the air. This is one of my favorite tricks especially since there are no big snowstorms in the forecast at least through early next week. I felt a little better by at least making a little snow. This experiment usually works when temperatures are in the single digits or lower. A few e-mailers are disappointed that we have not had a big snow and the big reason is that those cold numbers you see above have pushed the storm track well to our south and this cold, dense air has not allowed much Gulf moisture to move anywhere close to home. That is one of our key ingredients that is missing. With warmer temperatures on the way this weekend and next week the moisture will return. The question is when will it work with another blast of arctic air to produce a good snow? Things could get interesting in a hurry by the middle of next week, but with the type of pattern we are in we will have to be patient. In the short-term, we we will have a better chance of thunderstorms than snowstorms.

Since the cold certainly has taken hold our weather team did another experiment outside on Thursday morning. Our blog question of the day is how long does it take to freeze a water bottle with 8 ounces of water in it with a temperature of 1 degree?

Weather Team 18's Kelly Greene has the proof in hand by holding up our frozen bottle. We put the water outside at room temperature and it froze in only 32 minutes. Now that is too cold! Other viewers also got in on making the most of this cold weather by having fun with science as you see below.

Dear Mike,

A neighbor and I have wanted to test your frozen bubble theory.
Our outdoor temperature was 0, the bubbles were blowing and had to be in the air for awhile to freeze. But if the frozen ones landed on the snow you could watch them deflate and pick up a bubble casing. Guess it would have helped in winds were not to strong.



Great job joy! The good news is this weekend we can take the kids back outside to the playground and blow bubbles without them freezing! The 40s will feel like a heat wave and it will feel an amazing 60 degrees warmer by Monday compared to Thursday morning. What comes down this time of year certainly goes back up...just like the stock market. But beware of winter's bearish return as we finish out January. I am ready!

This new computer weather system I have been working on the last couple of weeks really lives up to the hype. It is so nice to know I can track rotating thunderstorms with you and have their movement and severity updated while I am live on the air. If there are any new warnings they automatically pop up. This is crucial when forecasting Indiana weather and more importantly we can finally fly into your neighborhoods which will help keep everybody safer. Look for our new and improved weather system on the airwaves come February. Tonight I built a fly-thru into West Lafayette and picked out some familiar cars in our parking lot! The Groundhog finally has some competition, especially after you see what this thing can do! Have a great weekend. I will be in the office working on this top secret project today and be back on the air Monday. See you soon!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Mike...please tell us those thunderstorms forecast will not bring HEAVY rains!

I am really anxious to see that new forecasting tool!

Mary Anne in Remington, where the morning low was -6*