The stubborn clouds of the past several days have finally broken up, allowing some weak December sun to shine through. Despite the mix of clouds and sun overhead, temperatures will remain cool all day, only reaching the mid to upper 40s for highs:
Those temperatures will drop to near freezing tonight, with a very slight chance of a sprinkle or flurry as the next system makes its way through. Futurecast is decidedly unimpressed with our precipitation chances overnight:
Cold weather settles in for the rest of the week…highs Thursday will top out around 40°:
It will feel substantially colder than that, though — northerly winds at 10-15 mph will keep the wind chill around freezing all day!
We’ll start off near 20° for lows both Friday and Saturday mornings. When temperatures drop to that level for the first time in a while, it’s time to think about the 4 P’s: plants, pipes, pets, and people.
– Plants: Odds are you’ve already brought them in or given up on the garden for the winter, so I’m not too worried about this one.
– Pipes: Make sure your outdoor faucets are winterized, but you don’t need to worry about your indoor plumbing at this point.
– Pets: Don’t let the cold air catch your furry friends without preparation! Outdoor animals need a shelter and some blankets to snuggle up in. Or you can make them indoor animals for a couple of nights.
– People: Check your furnace, if you haven’t already, and make sure your chimney is clear if you’re going to use the fireplace for additional heat.
Another significant shot of Arctic air could head our way by the latter half of next week — that’s a LONG way off in forecasting terms, but the long-range forecast models have been consistently pointing toward that trend:
However, those forecast models have been inconsistently depicting the specifics of how cold it will be, how long it will last, and whether or not we’ll see any wintry precipitation. We’ll keep an eye on it…
- We’ll be far from alone in the Arctic outbreak late next week — it might be substantial enough for the national networks to start obsessing about the “polar vortex.”
- I emphasize “might” in the previous link, because you have to be careful when looking several days into the future — we look at trend forecasts, not specific forecasts.
- It’s not often that I say nice things about the Weather Channel (see: naming of winter storms), but they made some noise yesterday.
- A good article that gets into the danger of data “cherry-picking,” small sample sizes, and other factors that muddy water when it comes to reporting on climate science.
- Google’s data centers around the world will soon be entirely powered with renewable energy sources.
- NASA’s new satellite will circle the globe repairing other broken space robots.
- “Dark galaxies” are a relatively new astronomical discovery — huge galaxies in terms of size, but with very few stars. Now astronomers are trying to figure out how they form.
- Parts of your brain fall asleep and wake back up all the time — even when you think you’re fully awake.
- Why the sound of fingernails on a chalkboard is so grating. (Besides, “it just IS.”)
- The weight of all the human-made objects on Earth is astonishing.
- As of now, the Trump family doesn’t have any pets…but there’s a strong candidate to become the “First Pup” very soon.