February 2017 Issue

Winter Weather Patterns

The sunís reduced heating of the atmosphere minimizes vertical cloud development, but thereís still plenty of moisture in the air to create fog and reduce visibility.

Winter is upon us. This doesnít mean we have to strike a baleful note of doom, though it should remind many of us that winter generally brings more cloudy skies to North America. In 2015, an Alaska-based climate blogger, Brian Brettschneider, examined cloud coverage data from selected weather stations in the National Climate Data Center's (NCDC) Global Historical Climatology Network (GHCN). He created a series of maps showing the cloudiest parts of the U.S., the distribution of cloud cover by month and the cloudiest months for each first order reporting station.

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