The Warm Before The Storm

Step outside, and you’d think it was mid-April, not mid-February. The temperature topped out at 63 degrees (with a stiff southern breeze) and the skies were sunny. Moose Mutt and I spent 90 minutes out walking the rail trails, and after the girls got home from school I went up to the gas station and washed my SUV. Now Candy is all bright and shiny. But that won’t last long.

Why, you ask? Well, within 48 hours a strong low pressure system is supposed to pass through here, leaving us with 6″ to 9″ of snow. The lovely southern breeze of today is filling the atmosphere with moisture from the Gulf of Mexico, and the National Weather Service has put us under a Winter Storm Watch. Since I washed my truck it’ll probably be closer to 9″. Isn’t that the way it’s supposed to work? Or does that only apply to rain?

Anyway. So it’s supposed to snow, and snow big, but I don’t consider 6″ – 9″ to be “big”. The 27″ they got out in New York last weekend, now that’s a BIG snow. Iowa hasn’t had a interstate-closing, factory-stopping, close-the-schools-for-three-days snowstorm since the early 1970’s and I for one am starting to get a little bored. Why don’t we get blizzards here in Iowa any more?

I know I’m not the only one who thinks this way. The noon news meteorologist on our local ABC affiliate feels the same way. When reporting on the “possible” incoming snowstorm yesterday, he said he’d love to see us get 27″ of snow all at once, just so he could see what it looked like. Well, Joe, I’m with you. I want to see that, too. And I think I could dig my driveway out of that much snow with my trusty John Deere. It would take a few extra passes, but I think I could do it.

Whoa! Someone just went past our house on a motorcycle. Taking advantage of the nice weather, no doubt.

In two days he’ll be out on his snowmobile. Yeehaw!

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2 thoughts on “The Warm Before The Storm

  1. Ten years ago we had about 3′ of snow all at once. Whomp. My car was completely covered, well, all but one outside mirror. We weren’t dug out for days. I lived alone at the time and I sure wasn’t going to do any digging.

    Missed two weeks of school with that one.

    That notwithstanding, it was hell to be stuck in my townhouse. And if I’d had kids, I’d have gone crazy. It was hard enough with five dogs, one of whom wouldn’t step outside when it snowed. Luckily she was only a 4-pounder and not a big problem.

  2. Aunt N: well, not being a meteorologist I can’t give you a technical answer, and I have no idea of why Iowa doesn’t get the big storms anymore.

    As for New York, however, it seems that storms from Iowa or the upper Midwest or even the mid-South or West seem to move across to the coast and then explode (technical meteorological term), suck up the Atlantic moisture and zoom up the coast.

    Depending on how much cold air is available and whether or not the front holds the storm to the coast or not New York either gets rain (too warm to snow), rain changing to a few inches of snow (main storm moves either further inland or out to sea), or the occasional foot or more (hugs the coast). Since I was lucky enough to be in Florida when this one hit I can’t give you their explanation of why a projected 8-14″ became 27″ but I’m sure of one thing – they were right and it wasn’t their fault.

    Frankly, Iowa is welcome to it.

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