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Polar vortex in July

Flower between showers
Flower between showers
James George

A trough of cooler air has swept southward and that is creating daily afternoon rain showers. That may cramp your style if you plan to hike around. Sprinkles have come in the morning and afternoon some days as this condition persists. Topper Shutt provided an explanation as reported by USA Today whose HQ is just up the highway from Arlington Outdoor Examiner.

'Eye of the Storm' by Mary Phelan
Mary Phelan

“While the Northwest stays hot and the north-central U.S. stays cool, more showers and thunderstorms will blast portions of the southern and eastern U.S.

Chilly in the center: Cool temperatures more typical of September will spread over the northern Plains, upper Midwest and Great Lakes states Tuesday with highs only in the 60s and 70s.

Soggy South, East: Humid and stormy conditions are likely in the Southeast and along the Eastern Seaboard Tuesday. Severe storms are possible from New York City to the Carolinas. Flash flooding could swamp portions of New England and the Northeast.”

These conditions mean that you don’t have to water your flowers, but you may have to set the pots back upright after the wind and rain blow them over. The weather conditions make for some good sunsets. Photography opportunities are excellent.

Mary Phelan, an Arlington Artist Alliance artists painted “Eye of the Storm.” That is one impression of what is happening.

See the slideshow as it shows what I see in between the showers.

Topper’s report misses an important point that is brought forward by Emily Atkin at Think Progress. According to her there will be droughts in the west and floods here in the east. It’s global warming and climate change.

Now, I can hardly wait to head to the trails tomorrow to see what effect it has on the local streams. I bet the pond at Gulf Branch Nature Center is refreshed. That’s not a bad thing. I bet there could be some erosion along Donaldson Run. Do you think some gold deposits might show in local streams as a result. Oh, no. Don’t get that started. No metal detectors are allowed.

When the rain stops, the mosquitoes will flair. There will be West Nile Virus stations being set up in trees by streams and ponds to detect the presence. There will be fogging after that. You know the drill.
Then, how about lets finish the summer and harvest at the farmer’s market? I plan to visit Falls Church Farmer’s Market Saturday morning, early.

“It will be unseasonably chilly in the eastern part of the United States this week, due to a peculiar weather pattern that’s causing deep waves in the jet stream. One of those big waves is bringing cool air down from the northeast Pacific and the Arctic. This will cause nighttime temperatures to be, on average, in the 50s or 60s on Tuesday and Wednesday.

So is it the polar vortex, or isn’t it? That’s been the big debate among meteorologists and news outlets. But according to at least one scientist, that debate misses a more important point about the unusual weather pattern sweeping the United States — that it’s causing extreme weather in other parts of the country.

“We’ve got this cool air coming down over the eastern half of the country, and that’s gonna just be kind of nice,” said Jennifer Francis, an atmospheric scientist and research professor at Rutgers University’s Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences. “But along the east coast, we’re looking at storms and floods. On the west coast, we’re looking at heat and fires. And it’s all part of this jet stream pattern.””

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