Linville Gorge

February 2010

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North Carolina Climate, the monthly newsletter of the State Climate Office of NC, covers a monthly climate summary for January with impacts to agriculture and water resources, information on our groundhog climatology, and an overview of the SCO's participation in the 2010 American Meteorological Society (AMS) meeting in Atlanta, GA.
PDF version available for printing.

 

Climate Summary

Departures from Normal
Temperature and Precipitation by climate division
Departures from Normal for January 2010 - based on preliminary data.

January 2010 was cold across North Carolina, with several winter storm events that impacted the state. The first week of January brought a near-record cold spell while the end of January brought snow, sleet, and freezing rain to many parts of North Carolina. Fortunately, power outages and property damage was generally limited. Many residents in western NC are still dealing with the aftermath of damages from the winter storms in late December 2009.

Overall, temperatures were much below-normal for North Carolina in January 2010, which statewide ranked as the 16th coldest January since 1895. Precipitation amounts were generally above normal across the state, but not as wet as in previous months. Overall, January 2010 statewide precipitation totals ranked as the 26th wettest since 1895.

 

Impacts to Agriculture and Water Resources

The cold temperatures in early January didn’t cause too many problems for small fruit crops, which typically are not vulnerable to cold weather during this time of the year. Most strawberry producers use a range of protection techniques to prevent damage, and blueberries are generally not at risk during this time of the year. Otherwise, continued wet conditions and surplus soil moisture prevented much work in the fields.

The drought conditions from recent year seem like a distant memory to many. Wet conditions continue to ensure reservoirs are full and groundwater is recharging. Drought conditions are not likely to be of any concern until late spring or early summer if NC again experiences dry weather.

MPE Precipitation
Precipitation for January 2010
Based on estimates from NWS Radar
Data courtesy NWS/NCEP

MPE Precipitation Percent of Normal
Precipitation for January 2010: Percent of Normal
Based on estimates from NWS Radar
Data courtesy NWS/NCEP

 

Groundhog Day

Sir Walter WallyIn our continuing collaboration with the Museum of Natural Sciences, the SCO has made a "groundhog climatology" available that depicts how Sir Walter Wally’s predictions have faired for various cities across the state of North Carolina. This page shows not only how accurate our furry friend’s forecasts have been in the past, but keeps up with the current year as the six-week period progresses. Average temperatures are calculated for each week, and are compared to the normal temperatures for the same time period. Positive temperature differences suggest temperatures are above normal (warmer weather), while negative temperature differences suggest below normal temperatures (cooler weather).

Information describing other animal and weather folklore are included on the groundhog climatology page beneath the section for Sir Walter Wally’s forecast record. Also provided are the most recent satellite and radar images over the southeastern U.S., and the Climate Prediction Center’s climate outlook over the next few months.

 

Annual AMS Meeting

SCO Staff and Students at 2010 AMS MeetingIn mid-January, several SCO staff and NC State graduate students traveled to Atlanta for the 2010 American Meteorological Society meeting. Five graduate students affiliated with the SCO put together posters or gave presentations on their research and the products they have developed as a result of this research.

Lara Pagano gave a presentation on a comparative study between the two dispersion models FLEWPART-WRF and HYSPLIT, conducted to identify the sensitivites of each model and the operational benefits of utilazing them for smoke emission forecasts. Lara also created a poster showing how FLEXPART-WRF is being used by the Cucurbit ipmPIPE team at NC State to predict the atmospheric trajectories and dispersive patterns of airborne fungal spores, and provide guidance for the risk of new fungal outbreaks.

Heather Dinon gave two presentations at the AMS Meeting on her research. In her first presentation, Heather discussed the development of a reference crop evapotranspiration climatology for the southeastern U.S. using the FAO Penman-Monteith estimation technique. Her second presentation involved the evaluation of a technique to estimate solar radiation over the southeastern U.S. for use in agricultural models.

Adrienne Wootten put together a poster with information about the implementation of a range for the National Climatic Data Center's daily normal temperatures in North Carolina. She also gave a presentation on her evaluation of the National Weather Service's Multi-Sensor Precipitation Estimates for the southeastern U.S.

Sean Heuser put together a poster of his masters thesis, which dealt with the changes in local vegetation on the effect of glacial melt for the tropical glaciers of Mt. Kilimanjaro. John McGuire also presented a poster, which depicted the modeling of favorable conditions for peanut diseases. Using existing disease advisory criteria, various forecasting models were tested against observations in 2008 to determine the models’ effectiveness for forecasting disease onset.

Several of our graduate students also helped organize the 9th Annual Student AMS Conference, which over 475 atmospheric undergraduate students from across the nation attended. With professional speakers, college representatives, networking activities and a career fair, students gained lasting experiences that will help guide their future in the atmospheric sciences.

 

Statewide Summary for January 2010

As part of the monthly newsletter, the SCO provides a basic summary of monthly conditions for all locations that have an automated reporting station. A daily version of this product is available online at:
http://www.nc-climate.ncsu.edu/cronos/review

Station
Avg Daily
Max Temp
Avg Daily
Min Temp
Total
Rainfall
Avg Daily
Wind Speed
Max Daily
Wind Speed
Vector Avg
Wind
Aurora, NC (AURO)
49.5° F
(-3.7° F)
4 mi
30.7° F
(-0.7° F)
4 mi
4.7 in
5 mph
32.4 mph
2.4 mph
Northwest (310°)
Buckland, NC (BUCK)
47.6° F
(-1.3° F)
15 mi
26.6° F
(+0.1° F)
15 mi
2.8 in
2.7 mph
22.6 mph
0.9 mph
Northwest (312°)
Burnsville, NC (BURN)
39.3° F
(-6.8° F)
8 mi
21.5° F
(-0.2° F)
8 mi
3.2 in
6.8 mph
38.9 mph
3.7 mph
Northwest (315°)
Castle Hayne, NC (CAST)
51° F
(-5.2° F)
0 mi
31.4° F
(-1.9° F)
0 mi
3.8 in
4.7 mph
24 mph
2.4 mph
Northwest (322°)
Clayton, NC (CLAY)
47.9° F
(-2.1° F)
3 mi
29.5° F
(+1.4° F)
3 mi
3.8 in
5.8 mph
28.9 mph
3.3 mph
Northwest (314°)
Clayton, NC (CLA2)
49.2° F
(-0.8° F)
3 mi
25.9° F
(-2.2° F)
3 mi
4.5 in
3.6 mph
19.5 mph
2.3 mph
Northwest (314°)
Clinton, NC (CLIN)
48.6° F
(-3.7° F)
0 mi
29.2° F
(-2.5° F)
0 mi
3.8 in
5.2 mph
28.5 mph
2.3 mph
Northwest (304°)
Durham, NC (DURH)
49.7° F
(+0.5° F)
6 mi
27.1° F
(-0.8° F)
6 mi
3.9 in
3.5 mph
39.8 mph
1.4 mph
West Northwest (303°)
Fletcher, NC (FLET)
41.7° F
(-4.3° F)
0 mi
22.2° F
(-0.8° F)
0 mi
5.5 in
5.8 mph
43.1 mph
4.8 mph
North Northwest (348°)
Franklin, NC (WINE)
33° F
(-14.7° F)
11 mi
18.5° F
(-5.5° F)
11 mi
5.5 in
9.5 mph
34.3 mph
5.1 mph
Northwest (311°)
Goldsboro, NC (GOLD)
48.3° F
(-5.4° F)
5 mi
27.9° F
(-5.1° F)
5 mi
3 in
7.1 mph
35.4 mph
3.4 mph
West Southwest (258°)
Greensboro, NC (NCAT)
45.9° F
(-1.3° F)
12 mi
26.6° F
(-1.6° F)
12 mi
4.1 in
4.8 mph
28.4 mph
2.1 mph
Southeast (136°)
Hamlet, NC (HAML)
50.5° F
(-2.1° F)
4 mi
28.2° F
(+0.1° F)
4 mi
4.8 in
5.2 mph
63.1 mph
2.6 mph
Northwest (314°)
Hendersonville, NC (BEAR)
33.2° F
(-15.5° F)
7 mi
19.8° F
(-6.1° F)
7 mi
4.2 in
16.3 mph
48.5 mph
12.1 mph
West Northwest (293°)
High Point, NC (HIGH)
46.1° F
(-3.7° F)
2 mi
24.6° F
(-5° F)
2 mi
4.7 in
3.8 mph
19 mph
2.1 mph
Northwest (315°)
Jackson Springs, NC (JACK)
48.1° F
(-1.6° F)
0 mi
29.2° F
(-1.7° F)
0 mi
6.8 in
6.3 mph
29.8 mph
2.8 mph
Northwest (315°)
Kinston, NC (KINS)
49.2° F
(-6.7° F)
5 mi
31° F
(-2.2° F)
5 mi
3.8 in
3.4 mph
37.1 mph
1.5 mph
West Northwest (296°)
Laurel Springs, NC (LAUR)
36.5° F
(-4.4° F)
1 mi
19.1° F
(+0.6° F)
1 mi
4.8 in
6.1 mph
31.1 mph
4.6 mph
North Northwest (326°)
Lewiston, NC (LEWS)
47.3° F
(-3.8° F)
0 mi
28.4° F
(-1.4° F)
0 mi
3 in
6.6 mph
29 mph
3.4 mph
West Northwest (303°)
Lilesville, NC (LILE)
50.1° F
(-1.4° F)
9 mi
29.7° F
(-2° F)
9 mi
4.6 in
4.7 mph
49.9 mph
2.3 mph
Northwest (326°)
Mount Mitchell, NC (MITC)
29° F
(-5.2° F)
1 mi
15.7° F
(-1.6° F)
1 mi
6.9 in
0.1 mph
43 mph
0.2 mph
East (100°)
Oxford, NC (OXFO)
46° F
(-2.3° F)
0 mi
27.6° F
(0° F)
0 mi
3.1 in
3.6 mph
22.8 mph
1.8 mph
Northwest (316°)
Plymouth, NC (PLYM)
48.4° F
(-5.6° F)
2 mi
29.6° F
(-3.5° F)
2 mi
4.9 in
8 mph
37 mph
3.6 mph
North Northwest (330°)
Raleigh, NC (LAKE)
48.1° F
(-3.3° F)
0 mi
27.8° F
(-4.2° F)
0 mi
3.8 in
6.2 mph
30.6 mph
3.6 mph
Northwest (315°)
Raleigh, NC (REED)
47.6° F
(-1.2° F)
3 mi
28.6° F
(-1.5° F)
3 mi
4.5 in
6.4 mph
26.9 mph
3.9 mph
Northwest (318°)
Rocky Mount, NC (ROCK)
47.8° F
(-3.5° F)
0 mi
29.5° F
(-1.3° F)
0 mi
3.3 in
5.2 mph
34.4 mph
2 mph
Northwest (315°)
Salisbury, NC (SALI)
47.3° F
(-0.8° F)
0 mi
23.8° F
(-2.2° F)
0 mi
4.3 in
3.7 mph
25.9 mph
2 mph
North Northwest (329°)
Siler City, NC (SILR)
47.3° F
(-1.9° F)
5 mi
23.6° F
(-5.2° F)
5 mi
3.1 in
5.5 mph
27.8 mph
2.9 mph
North Northwest (333°)
Taylorsville, NC (TAYL)
45.5° F
24.5° F
5.1 in
3.2 mph
46.8 mph
2 mph
Northwest (315°)
Waynesville, NC (WAYN)
41.2° F
(-5.8° F)
0 mi
20.8° F
(-0.8° F)
0 mi
3.5 in
2.3 mph
29.7 mph
1.2 mph
Northeast (41°)
Whiteville, NC (WHIT)
50.8° F
(-5.7° F)
0 mi
30° F
(-2.5° F)
0 mi
4.4 in
3.9 mph
32.1 mph
1.9 mph
Northwest (319°)
Williamston, NC (WILL)
48.5° F
(-3.5° F)
4 mi
29.2° F
(-2.7° F)
4 mi
5.2 in
4.8 mph
24 mph
2.5 mph
West Northwest (295°)
Legend:
Parameter
Parameter's value approximated from hourly data.
( +/- Departure from normal )
Distance to reference station

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