Thursday, December 25, 2014

Archive: October, 2010

POSTED: Monday, October 11, 2010, 6:06 PM

With top winds measured at 60 m.p.h., a storm off the Honduran coast has become "Pauline," and tomorrow it is likely to become the season's ninth hurricane. The Mexican government has issued a hurricane warning from Punta Gruesa to Cancun, including Cozumel. However, it appears that yet another hurricane won't threaten the U.S. coasts, nor is its potential all that impressive. The latest forecast path keeps it just off the coasts of Belize and Yucatan before looping eastward and then southward later in the week. The National Hurricane Center expects the 16th tropical storm of the season to peak as a category 1, with top winds at just over 80 m.p.h.

POSTED: Monday, October 11, 2010, 3:21 PM

This afternoon the atmosphere is about as quiet as a government office on a federal holiday.

Evidently that's about to change, with perhaps hailstones tonight and an old-fashioned nor'easter later in the week with gale-force winds, pounding rains and even wet snowflakes nearby.

The government's Storm Prediction Center (which is open today), has issued a severe-thunderstorm watch for all but extreme South Jersey, in effect until 10 p.m.

POSTED: Friday, October 8, 2010, 11:42 AM

Once again a fairly healthy breeze should be blowing in from left field tonight at Citizens Bank Park, and that's not going to hurt Roy Oswalt or Bronson Arroyo.

Otherwise, the atmosphere should be more than kind to the fans at the onset of one of the most magnificent weekends of the fall.

But should the Phillies survive in the playoffs, don't expect the good run of weather to persist. It almost certainly will get chillier, and the serious coastal-storm season could get under way at almost anytime.

POSTED: Thursday, October 7, 2010, 11:46 AM

The period from March 1 through Sept. 30 was far and away the warmest such period ever in Philadelphia.

 As Glenn Schwartz at NBC10 points out, all seven of those months officially were among the warmest in the period of record, dating to 1874. That includes June, which had the highest average June temperature ever.

Not surprisingly, the average temperature for the 214 days -- 69.3 -- is in a class by itself. It beat 1991's 67.9 by a full 1.4 degrees. That's mighty impressive considered the other four years on the top 5 list are clustered tightly just fractions of a degree from one another. They are as follows -- 1991, 67.3; 1995, 67.4; 1921, 67.3, and 2002, 67.

POSTED: Wednesday, October 6, 2010, 11:23 AM

Breezes blowing in from left field at Citizens Bank Park may have some effect on hitters this week. But before this is all over, winds howling at 100-plus m.p.h. in the upper atmopshere may also come into play in baseball's postseason.

Major League Baseball now has Game 7 of the World Series scheduled for Nov. 4, and it is highly possible that the tournament venue will be Philadelphia and-or New York.

Recall the powerful storm that in 2008 that resulted in the two-part deciding game of that World Series. The weather savvy were surprised -- surprised that major storms didn't interrupt the World Series more often.

POSTED: Wednesday, October 6, 2010, 10:18 AM

Pitchers firing mid-90s fastballs into the chilly October twilight probably don't need much help. But it appears that nature is about to give it to the Phillies' Roy Halladay and the Reds' Edinson Volquez whether they need it or not.

The latest forecast has a subtle tweak from yesterday's outlook. It's now calling for winds from the west at 7 to 9 m.p.h. during the game. That would be blowing in from left field. That's not going to stop a line drive from going over the fence, but it might be enough to hold up a deep fly to left.

The wind outlook for the Friday game is almost identical. So in a hitter's park, don't be surprised if runs are scarce. As for rain, a shower is possible during the game, but it shouldn't last long. Friday is looking splendid.

POSTED: Wednesday, October 6, 2010, 5:22 PM
Earlier, we mentioned that the deeper the Phillies and Yankees make it into the playoffs, the greater the likelihood that a nasty coastal storm would coincide with a scheduled game in Philadelphia or New York. We are on the threshold of the nor'easter season, and Game 7 of the World Series is scheduled for Nov. 4. Minneapolis doesn't have to worry about coastal rainstorms, but wintry weather does tend to arrive a little earlier out that way. On Nov. 4, 1910, the temperature fell to 3 below zero, Fahrenheit. On Nov. 1, 1910, Minneapolis had 18.5 inches of snow. Next year, Major League Baseball promises that the World Series will be over by Oct. 27. That would probably work out better for Minnesotans. The Minneapolis temperature has never gone below 13 on that date, and it has never snowed more than 3 inches.
POSTED: Tuesday, October 5, 2010, 5:01 PM
Rain totals in Philadelphia for the last six days now are pushing 6 inches, with more elsewhere in the region. Therein resides a certain symmetry. Before the rains started late last week, the accumulated rainfall deficit since April 1 was right around 6 inches. The effects of the dryness and the summer's record heat were evident on the browning trees and on all the lawns covered with premature, brittle leaf-fall. Among the stressed-out species were sugar maples, tulip poplars, and bald cypresses, according to William Elmendorf, a forestry specialist at Penn State. Some of the damage may be irreversible in terms of taking leaves out of play for the annual fall-color extavaganza. "In some cases, the die may already be cast," said Paul Meyer, executive director of Penn's Morris Arboretum, in Chestnut Hill. But it won't be a complete wash-out. The late-breaking rains should help apply the brakes on the leaf-fall. "It will slow it down some," he said. Elmendorf believes that the trees will get a jolt from all the fresh rains, but that they may not reap that harvest until the spring. In any event, Meyer assures, fall will be fall, and do expect plenty of color. Foliage connoisseurs can look to 1995 for encouragement. That year, heavy October rains helped break a serious drought, and leaves were hanging tough deep into November. That is not to say it will happen again. Like love and the atmosphere, the onset, duration and vibrancy of fall colors are subject to maddening variables. Said Meyer, "I don't think anyone really knows what's going to happen." But it almost certainly will become more colorful around here by the end of the month.
About this blog

Everyone talks about the weather, and here we write about it.

When we’re around and conditions warrant, we’ll keep you updated about what’s coming, but we will do our best always to discuss weather and climate developments in context and remind you that nothing in the atmosphere happens in a vacuum.

Tony Wood has been writing about the atmosphere for The Inquirer for 26 years.

Reach Tony at twood@phillynews.com.

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