Fog and Clear Skies

2007-03-24 19:06:43.000 – Mike Finnegan,  Summit Intern

Good day for a nap

Today is quite a change from yesterday. For one, it’s Saturday instead of Friday. But even more outstanding than that is the fact we can see further than a couple hundred feet. We spent yesterday in the fog while images from the west-facing webcams showed clear skies except for a cloud layer on top of us. It was not all so bad though; being in the fog does make taking an observation quite easy and gave us a chance to practice our rime-whacking techniques up on the tower. After getting a midnight snack with Jon, we came up to do our presumed fog-ob…walking outside we found ourselves in the clear. Having not planned on this, we hadn’t left ourselves much time, so Jon grabbed the sling psychrometer and took the ob while I ran inside, collected the inside data, and changed the thermograph and Hays wind chart. Now that’s some teamwork…

At 11:00 this morning visibility had increased to 100 miles, temperatures were in the low twenties, and winds were howlin’ out of the northwest at a steady 7 miles an hour. I had the opportunity to talk with some nice folks from Bangor, ME up for their first winter hike. We talked about the sling psychrometer and how the difference between the wet bulb and dry bulb temperatures are used to determine the dew point, how the band of altostratus off to our west over the New York/Vermont border would make its way towards us to bring us snow tonight, how the short length of the airplane’s contrail above us told of the dry air in the upper atmosphere. There’s always something to learn outside – you just have to get out there and look.

Well, it’s now 11:45…time to go see what has changed since last hour.

 

Mike Finnegan,  Summit Intern

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