Visiting winter in the Topa Topas after the fire

Though it’s been three months since the Thomas Fire, those of us in the burn zone can still see the blackness on the burned hillsides all around Ojai, all the way up to the ridge of our local mountains, the Topa Topas. Every winter for twenty-five years I have gone up to our mountains afterContinue reading “Visiting winter in the Topa Topas after the fire”

What I Wanted (was winter)

That’s my interpretation of the basic meaning in a poem from Tracy Herd via Poetry Daily: What I Wanted was such a plump, bountiful landscape of snow, more than I’d ever dared wish for. That was back when we had proper winters, long ago, when lawns and driveways vanished: there were no boundaries. Fences, walls,Continue reading “What I Wanted (was winter)”

Uh-oh CA: Ridiculously Resilient Ridge is back

Despite a couple of mild rains, we haven't seen any sizeable precipitation in some time. Craig Miller of KQED in San Francisco explains why: You might’ve noticed a conspicuous absence lately: rain. In fact, with a scant few days remaining in the month, much of Northern California is on track for a record-dry January. TheContinue reading “Uh-oh CA: Ridiculously Resilient Ridge is back”

NOAA: Arctic Warming = cold winters for Eastern US

Today the National Atmospheric and Oceanographic Administration released the Arctic Report Card for 2014. The Arctic is warming twice as fast as the rest of the planet, but the first consequence of that warming, according to our national experts, is very very cold winters for the eastern United States.  To quote:  The warming Arctic atmosphereContinue reading “NOAA: Arctic Warming = cold winters for Eastern US”

Why are Americans so extreme?

Heather Havrilesky wants to know what it is about extreme fitness that fascinates Americans: A blond woman in a hot pink spandex tank hoists a sledgehammer over her shoulders, then slams it down with a dull thud onto the big tire in front of her. Beside her, another woman swings her sledgehammer even higher, grimacingContinue reading “Why are Americans so extreme?”

El Niño 2014 October forecast: Glass little over half full

NOAA released its October outlook for our winter, based on ocean temperatures, and continues to find a 60-65% chance of the appearance of the boychick. Here's my fave set of graphs today, from another site, and here's my fave single graph: These are tempeartures taken across a section of the equatorial Pacific, the vast belt acrossContinue reading “El Niño 2014 October forecast: Glass little over half full”

La Niña dry winter prediction fails in 2010, experts agree

This fall experts, including the Forest Service, were predicting a strong La Niña condition likely to produce a dry winter, with heat and Santa Ana winds. The oceanic pattern developed, but the prediction?  Bzzzttt! Wrong. Here in Ventura County, we're at roughtly 150% of normal, and got pounded by about six inches of rain over theContinue reading “La Niña dry winter prediction fails in 2010, experts agree”

Thin ice in the Arctic means cold winters back East?

Put perhaps as simply as possible, that's the speculation among some experts about the cold snowy winters experienced this year in many Northern hemisphere climates, such as New York. Here's the most concise, detailed explanation I've found so far, from Climate Central: Recent scientific studies have shown that the dramatic warming that has been occurringContinue reading “Thin ice in the Arctic means cold winters back East?”