Wintry Weather on the Summit

2013-09-23 21:34:29.000 – Mike Dorfman,  Weather Observer

Intern Tom Padham After De-Icing

Today was by far the most wintry day of my shift since late last spring. In addition to hourly observations from 5 PM to 5 AM, I also must make my way to the top of the tower every hour to make sure our instruments are ice-free. Each trip to the top of the tower results in jackets and rain pants becoming stiff with rime and subsequently melting, however my wonderful EMS gear kept me warm and dry through it all. Even while taking the observation, I had to stick my upper body, along with the snow board (a black cloth-covered board used to determine type of precipitation) into the wind, allowing even more ice accrual on my jacket.

One interesting thing that I noticed last night however is the presence of vapor trails coming off the corner of this board in high winds. Although not nearly as prominent, they reminded me of vapor trails instantaneously forming and disappearing behind plane wings. It was an incredible sight that I hadn’t seen anywhere else.

With wind speeds ramping up and fog clearing tomorrow, keep an eye towards the summit! You might even be able to see a little white!


Mike Dorfman,  Weather Observer

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