A white Christmas melts away

Christmas Eve looks to be wet and wild this year. Some of the reliable long range weather models have a strong low pressure system tracking just to our west on Christmas Eve. When a low passes to our west the counter clockwise winds draw in warm moist oceanic air from the Gulf Stream. This storm has a chance to be very strong by the potential of a strong air lift dynamic with heavy wind swept rain, severe thunderstorms, gale force winds approaching tropical storm force and temperatures approaching 60 degrees. If everything does come together there will be rapid melting with our snowpack creating flooding in areas of poor drainage. This active system will move out quickly Christmas morning with some arctic cold spilling in from the back side of the low pressure area causing a flash freeze where there’s standing water.

Stay tuned. I will issue updates.

Rare Christmas Star on Winter Soltice

On December 21st, Jupiter and Saturn will appear close in Earth’s night sky than they have since 1226 A.D. This December, Jupiter and Saturn will put on a show for star gazers that hasn’t been seen in roughly 800 years. Astronomers are calling it the Great Conjunction of 2020, On December 21st, coincidently the winter solstice – the two largest planets in our solar system will appear to almost merge in Earth’s sky. People may wonder what are those bright objects close together in the sky. For much of the year, Jupiter and Saturn have shared the same swatch of sky. Now you can find them both in the southwestern sky just after sunset, located some 20 degrees above the horizon at 6pm. Seekers of a celestial significance will likely see the whole event as some sort of sign related to the kind of year 2020 has been. But you don’t have to put any stock in astrology (nor should you) to revel in the astounding beauty of its conjunction.

The cosmic perspective is a precious reminder of our place in the solar system. And hopefully it makes us all feel a bit closer and more connected to our outer planets, even if the pandemic has us feeling apart than ever.