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Columns

April 23, 2009

Weather Watch

By MARK HANOK



It’s really uncanny how the very dry weather pattern has continued in this area despite the succession of major storms that have moved to the west and south.



When will meteorologists who forecast the weather in this area finally learn that there really is a correlation between upside-down temperature patterns, severe thunderstorms and tornadoes in Texas and the Deep South, and dry weather in the Cooperstown area and the Western Catskills?



When the weather pattern is very unusual and there’s a major storm not far to the west, the weather is usually better than predicted in our area.



Most meteorologists consistently underestimate the dry air associated with deep upper-level lows over the Great Lakes, and the dry slot that punches well to the east of these major storm systems. Although most residents of this area may be convinced that it’s been a cool April, this is an excellent example of how the perception can be very different from the actual weather.



In fact, temperatures in Otsego County have averaged about a degree above normal.



Even after the rain on Monday night and Tuesday evening, precipitation is still less than half of normal in Otsego County, and there’s no significant rain in sight through all of next week.



It looks like April will turn out to be the fourth consecutive month with below normal precipitation. The next week will represent a change in the weather pattern, we’ll go from very dry to extremely dry, and temperatures will average 10 to 20 degrees above normal.



We’ll get a preview of summer this weekend and early next week, as a large area of high pressure becomes well-established over the southeastern states and we get a west to southwest flow of very warm air.

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