Saturday, December 10, 2011
We missed out on an unusual lunar eclipse this morning. There were too many clouds and it took place after our sunrise. But out in Colorado spaceweather.com captured it beautifully for us right before the earth's shadow covered the entire moon. What was unusual about this eclipse was that folks in western North America got to see the eclipsed crimson red moon at the same time that a fiery red sunrise was taking place. This picture about covers our skylights here at home today since we will be stuck in stubborn cloudiness throughout the day thanks to a cold front that continues to push through the area.
The good news is we will not have to cancel any plans. The few sprinkles around this morning will move well offshore by this afternoon. The chilly breezes will be the big story with highs struggling into the lower 60s. At least it is starting to look and feel like the holidays so make sure to feed off that holiday spirit. That is exactly what we were doing this morning on Good Morning Jacksonville with our wonderful guests from the Seasons in the house, Ready Set Cupcakes, Eden Kendall at the Kids party at the Prime Osborn, great gift ideas from PromotionalCodes.com and we had Ringling Brothers talking about their Dragon Circus coming to town in January. I put on the red Rudolph nose as you see and Len Kiese was all smiles as usual. It will not be the prettiest of day but we should not be complaining because most of the country is in a deep freeze with our Indiana friends in Lafayette reporting a low of 12 degrees! There will be some payback though because the warmer temperatures in Florida compared to the rest of the country is going to allow a second weather system to develop this weekend and it we will go from chilly to soggy.
Now this model may be a little robust on rain amounts but even if it is I do think many areas in our coastal counties will see at least an inch of rain which would make this the strongest nor'easter here at home in two months. The lowest rain total I could find on the several different models just into First Coast News is .62" which I think is underdone. You have to go way back to October 10th to find the last time we were socked with a soaking rain over one inch in Jacksonville. This nor'easter has some extra upper-level support to help crank it up so I do not expect it to fizzle like our last few nor'easters and areas well inland will even see some rain. To say we need rain is an understatement. We have had four consecutive months of below normal rainfall and so far in December we are looking like we are trying to go for five in a row. This dubious streak has reinforced our drought conditions. So we really do need the rain. Now the question is when.
Well today it looks like we are in the clear except for a few rain showers well offshore for the deep sea fishing. Tonight I think it should remain dry for the Holiday Regatta of Lights. Expect the sailboats, trawlers, shrimp boats and many other marine boats to light up Matanzas Bay between the Bridge of Lions and Castillo de San Marcos. It will be a nice compliment to the 3 million lights on land! But nature will start lighting up the radar during the day on Sunday as a northeast wind starts to howl. Some wind gusts could hit 35 mph along the beaches! The farther south and east you go the more showers. I think rain will cover at least 50% of our area and I would take the ponchos to the Jags game. The nor'easter turns nasty Sunday night into Monday morning with almost everybody seeing rain except the far western areas! This nor'easter will be one to watch not only for its powerful punch but because it could bring in tides well above normal since it is occurring during the full moon. We will keep a close eye on it. Make sure to have the galoshes ready and I will have your two minute advantage! Have a great weekend and I will see you soon.