A Hint of Cooling

NOAA provides so much information about snow . . . data which nearly 40 years ago I gathered on snowshoes and snowmobile.  Jay Penney led the party when I started – and Jay had measured both the highest and lowest snowfalls in the Kootenai and Flathead drainages.  Younger and starting later, I only measured the lowest – and even that record didn’t last.

I don’t need to do the analysis – it’s at: This quote from the article starts us on the proper assumption:

You could probably forecast a colder-than-normal winter based on Autumnal Northern Hemisphere snow cover extent alone. It’s the largest snow extent in decades. Having so much snow on the ground means any arctic outbreak is going to be a little bit colder. But why should be like this?

The Finns show the amount of snow on a graph:

Here, in NW Montana, we were always reluctant to project the snowpack before March – but this  graph shows more snow cover – which correlates with more sunlight being reflected, and less heat building up in the soil.  It’s a fairly direct correlation.  Canadian data seems to support the Finns.  (Again, these are from the NOAA page)

The global picture:

It’s early in the winter.  Weather can change.  Still keeping an eye on the link might keep this winter from being a surprise. 

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