Oct 12, 2009

Early Midwest Freeze And Clouds

Most of the Midwest has already had a freeze, and about two-thirds has hit 28 degrees or colder.Freezes are being reported about 200 miles beyond the median freeze line for Oct 12.
To put it another way, the median freeze line is actually close to the 28 degree line. This would suggest that lows are about 4 degrees colder than normal along that line, which is true - but the highs have been 8-18 degrees below normal in those same areas.
The reason highs are affected more is that clouds accompany such a strong cold airmass. In fact, most of the entire country was cloudy today.It has been suggested that increases in cloud cover amplify the cooling effect of a decrease in solar activity by reflecting radiation away. This certainly seems plausible given how cold and cloudy it has been, and given the fact that the sun has been very quiet for over two years now.

Europe is also having unusual cold and snow with Austria having its earliest snow ever.
And Poland, The Czech Republic and Slovakia might see blizzard conditions by Wednesday morning.

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