Saturday, December 27, 2014

It was a Warm, Green Christmas in 2014!

There was no white christmas this year in the Tri-State region. In fact it was one of the warmest Christmas eves and Christmas days in decades! It was also one of the wettest as well! The graphic below was released by the New York City National Weather Service office. It shows the records, as well as official temps and rainfall for the area's weather station. Bridgeport, CT is the closest station to my hometown. However, check out how warm it got at LaGuardia airport in New York! It got up to 63 degrees on Christmas day, that beat the record by 6 degrees from 24 years ago in 1990! 

It was also one wet, Christmas Eve with it being the wettest on record at Islip, NY and Kennedy, NY. 

Thursday, December 18, 2014

One of the Best Tornado Videos of the Year! Double the Trouble - Sister Tornadoes in Nebraska 6/16/2014

Looking back at some of the videos I saved to my "Watch Later" list on YouTube, I discovered this amazing video from June 16, 2014. It's double the trouble with this violent dual tornadoes spinning up in the plains. It happened from from Stockton to Pilger, Nebraska . The storm chasers at, a severe weather blog, caught this incredible storm on video. These two tornadoes are a part of the same Tornado Family, which means they are separate tornadoes forming form the same supercell, taking a parallel path. 

The same system was caught on camera by other chasers, including the chasers at It's an amazing site to see one tornado but to see two right next to each other is incredible! 

Friday, December 12, 2014

A Scene from The Day After Tomorrow? Tornado Strikes Los Angeles (Video & Photos)

It's a scene straight out of the movie The Day After Tomorrow, a tornado has struck Los Angeles! Well, it's not quite the same as the dramatic movie but it was a tornado that struck the city of Angels this morning (12/12/2014). What is believed to be the tornado was caught on camera below. Disclaimer: Taking video in a situation like this is extremely dangerous, you should be taking shelter and only recording or photographing from a secure location.
The Los Angeles National Weather Service confirmed that the storm was in fact a EF-0 Tornado. Stating
             WINDS SPEEDS RANGE FROM 65 TO 85 MPH." 
As you can see below in the radar image tweeted out by The Weather Channel, the storm itself was very small but still impressive for the area. Tornadoes are not all too common in the southern California area but they're not unheard of either! According to The Tornado History Project, there have been 42 reported/confirmed tornadoes within the Los Angeles COUNTY since 1952! 
Even a water spout was caught on camera off the coast of Newport beach on 12/12/2014!

And in case you forgot what the tornado looked like in the film The Day After Tomorrow, here you go! 

The short lived tornado in LA on December 12, 2014 is apart of the larger storm system that has also brought surfing to the mountains as winds have produced seven foot waves in Lake Tahoe! 

Surf's Up on Lake Tahoe!! Pineapple Express Brings Surfing to the Mountains! (video & photos)

Lake Tahoe, the sixth largest lake by volume in the United States following the five Great Lakes. It resides in the Sierra Nevada, snuggled along the California and Nevada state lines. The lake is a high elevation lake with a depth of 1,645 feet. Pretty impressive right? 

The lake itself is a well known tourist attraction in the summer months, but as the snow begins to fall the surrounding mountains steal the show. However, it wasn't the amazing skiing conditions that made the news this week, it was the surfing that was going on hundreds of miles from any ocean! 

As the pineapple express finally returned to California, bringing with it, beneficial rains, snow. The storm has brought some other impacts, like mudslides and surf on Lake Tahoe! The GIF below shows the wind direction and intensity (closer the lines are the faster the winds) of the storm system as it enter the California coast. These winds blew over Lake Tahoe from the south to the north, the length of the lake. This long fetch created the perfect conditions for surfing at the lake's north end! 
The video above and the Twitter photos below show the  awesome event and the surfers taking advantage of the conditions to catch some waves! It's so cool! 

Blending the Seasons! Plants Don't Know If it's Fall, Winter or Spring!

As the nor'easter finally begins to wrap up and slowly but surely move away from the northeast, it seems some of the plants have the seasons mixed up. As some snow flurries fell yesterday afternoon, I took a quick stroll around the backyard with the dog and decided to take a few photos with my phone. As I walked across the melting snow (just a dusting from the night before) I noticed some snow on the arborvitaes, which looked very festive with Christmas coming up. Then out of the corner of my eye, I noticed a color that was neither brown, nor white or green. A color that should not be found in nature this time of year. This color was a yellow flower. Specifically, a forsythia flower, a trademark of spring. It must bloomed last week when temperatures briefly peaked around 60 degrees. It wasn't even just one flower, there were multiple blooms! There was even some forsythia leaves on the branches.  
In all the photos I took, you can see the dusting of snow in the background. Nature is defiantly confused on what season it is! There's spring blossoms, winter snow, and of course it really is still autumn! 

Snow hangs on to the evergreen branches, creating a festive holiday scene! 

Halloween pumpkin partly eaten by squirrels and covered in a dusting of snow! 

Forsythia flowers blooming with a dusting of snow in the background.  

Even new forsythia leaves have sprouted! 

Sound Effect Snow? 12-11-14

After the surprise Ocean Effect Snow in New Jersey the other day and talking about how unusual it was, another unusual event happened today! This time it was sound effect snow from Long Island sound. 

As this week's nor'easter slowed down and te upper level low caught up to it, we have seen the cold air and moisture wrap all the way around the storm. Even to one point where it was raining in Maine but snowing ins Philadelphia!!!! Crazy! 

As this storm has sat and spun over us, the winds have shifted from the north east to the west and even south west. Usually this wind direction brigs warmer and drier air but being stuck under the trough of low pressure, with all layers of the atmosphere being close to or bellow freezing, there's been NO warming. 

With this south west wind, cold air and relatively warm Long Island Sound, a very faint snow band formed over the sound north into Massachusetts. The wind direction was perfectly aligned with the length of Long Island sound, creating enough fetch and warm water to form the snow showers and flurries. 

I've circled the sound effect snow band on the radar image below. It's faint compared to the ocean effect snow from earlier this week and nothing compared to the Buffalo lake effect storm from November 2014 but it's still very interesting!

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Jersey Shore Ocean Effect Snow! 12-8-2014

You always hear about Lake Effect Snow (especially after the incredible event south of Buffalo, NY in November 2014) on occasion you'll hear about Ocean Effect Snow near Cape Cod. But it's not as common to hear about it in New Jersey and Long Island! Yet it happened on December 8, 2014! 
Here's a radar image via RadarScope of the ocean effect snow. This snow develops the same way as lake effect. As cold air flows over warm water, the warm water feeds moisture into the cold air, where it condenses into snow and mix precipitation. Due to geography and the typical wind patterns out if the west or north, normally coastal New England and Mid-Atlantic will not experience ocean effect snow. However, the winds out of the northeast on December 8th as well as stubborn low level cold air made for the perfect set up to have Ocean Effect Snow move into the Jersey Shore! 

Below are some tweets that captured the snow lightly accumulating in New Jersey! 

Monday, December 8, 2014

Summer on the Shore - Photos of Charles Island in Milford, Connecticut

So apparently I uploaded these photos to blogger months ago but never got around to finishing the post. So on the evening of a nor'easter, I figured why not post some nice photos from the warm summer evenings we're already missing here in New England. 

These photos were taken with my iPhone one evening in August in Milford, Ct. From this beach you can see our local island, Charles Island. On this particular evening a thunderstorm was moving by just inland, making for a beautiful sunset and some rumbles of thunder! 

What's really cool about Charles Island is the fact that at low tide there is a sandbar that connects the island to the shore (so cool!). However, don't run out to the island just yet! Although it's possible to walk to the island at low tide, the walk takes awhile and many have been caught by the strong water currents flowing back in. 

The island itself has an interesting past, including tales of pirate's treasures and Native American burial grounds, as well as a curse!  Everything that has been built on the island in the last 300 years has burned down, including a hotel! 

The island is a protected bird sanctuary from May to October when many birds are nesting on the island. The island has also been impacted by Tropical Storm Irene, as well as Superstorm Sandy. The exposure to Long Island Sound has taken many trees down as well as causing some erosion. 

Saturday, December 6, 2014

What Famous Paintings Say About the Weather (Photos)

Check out these famous paintings and what they're actually thinking about the weather and climate change. 

"American Gothic" - They don't have smiles on their faces because they're battling a multi-year drought that's causing their farm to fall apart!  
Look at the hair! Now it could be just the hair style of the time or it could be the humidity...just saying!  Portrait of Anne Marie Louise Thelusson by artist Jacques Louis David

At the rate that sea levels are rising, they might not have thought through on building so close to the water in Seaport with the Embarkation of the Queen of Sheba

Vincent Van Gogh's famous Painting "The Starry Night" is actually a painting of Undulatus Asperatus clouds. These rolling clouds didn't have a name back in his day. They sometimes look ominous but usually follow after bad weather has passed!