John was born in Baton Rouge, LA, and grew up near Birmingham, Alabama. As a teenager, his family moved to Madison, Wisconsin, and later to a small town in northeast Iowa. John traces his early interest in weather to the difference in climate between Alabama and Wisconsin. He is a graduate of Iowa State University with a degree in meteorology. Like any meteorologist, John is intrigued by extremes of weather, especially arctic air outbreaks and winter storms. John has been known to say he prefers his summers to be hot but in winter, he prefers the cold. When away from work, John enjoys long-distance running and reading. John has been a meteorologist at WDAY since May of 1985.
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A new service from the Finnish Meteorological Institute called Arctic Now makes available a large amount of Arctic water data, including the extent of sea ice, snow accumulation and snow water content.
(WDAY/WDAZ) Another round of heavy, wet snow threatens much of the region. Heavy snow is expected to begin early Friday across western North Dakota, spreading into the Devils Lake and Jamestown areas by mid afternoon, and into the Red River Valley Friday evening and Friday night.
In this season of rain, snow, rain or snow, and even rain mixed with snow, there is one significant difference between the two main kinds of precipitation worth noting. Rain falls faster. An average-size raindrop falls at about 25 to 30 feet per second. This means a raindrop observed on Doppler radar some 5,000 feet over Fargo will reach the ground about three minutes later, give or take. A snowflake, however, has various degrees of feathering to its structure, and falls much more slowly.
On television, we show storms as an "L" on the weather map, often surrounded by isobars (lines indicating air pressure). This can create the impression that a storm is some sort of an entity. But a storm has no skin, no exoskeleton and no real external boundaries. There is only one thing that storms (precipitating ones, anyway) have in common.
The moment of the vernal equinox is 11:15 a.m. today, Tuesday, March 20. From a practical standpoint, the term "equinox" is imprecise, because the day and night are not actually equal in length due to refraction of light and because we measure sunrise and sunset by the top of the sun and not the middle.
Although spring is sputtering at the moment, its eventual arrival is not in doubt. Summer will happen, too, and bring at least a few warm, sticky nights.
We don't think much about weather on other planets, but any world with an atmosphere has weather. Earth's weather is unique because the chemistry and physics of our atmosphere allows water to exist as a gas, liquid, and solid all at once.
The monthly forecast from the National Climate Prediction Center issued Thursday, March 15, indicates a high probability that April will be colder and wetter than average in our region.
Have you noticed how snow loses its flakiness and changes into icy granules this time of year? The metamorphosis happens at the molecular level.
Today, March 15, is the calendar day with the greatest temperature range in the Fargo-Moorhead record.