Isobar's weather review 2013.02.06

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

What do you remember most about January's weather—all those days in the 50s or all those days in the single digits? Or both of them—the way it changed from warm to cold to warm to cold?

"There's nothing unusual about a January thaw," said George Isobar, who collects weather data in Morenci for the National Weather Service, "but two January thaws is a little odd. We started the month off with single-digit temperatures, then they came back starting Jan. 21. Now they're here once more in early February—all sandwiched around some really mild days."

The high of 63° on Jan. 30 broke an old record set in Toledo. Actually it smashed the old record. The previous high temperature for that day of 56° was set way back in 1880.

Sixty degrees was recorded on the 12th in Morenci, also, plus there were two days in the 50s and three in the upper 40s. Despite the really cold days to balance things out, the mean temperature for the month figured out at 2.5° above average.

There were six single-digit mornings, including two with 0° readings. Twenty-seven mornings started off below freezing.

Precipitation ended about an inch above normal at 3.02 inches, but it wasn't snow that made much of a difference.

"We had only 2.3 inches fall for the month," Isobar said. "There were four inches on the ground the first few days of the month, but all of that fell in December."

The biggest snowfall—1.1 inches—fell on the 25th, but it didn't last long with 1.2 inches of rain falling in the next few days. The long-term average snowfall for January is about nine inches.

If it's not the temperature swings you remember about January, maybe it's the wind, Isobar suggested. The average windspeed measured in Toledo was nearly 10 miles an hour for the month and there were gusts above 20 on every day but four. The strongest gust measured came Jan. 20 with 56 miles an hour. The final two days of the month brought gusts in the 40s.

Freezing rain and ice pellets fell on Jan. 27 and 28, canceling school throughout the region.

FEBRUARY—"It really felt like winter on the weekend," Isobar said. Snow all day Saturday, a wind chill in single-digits by evening, then snow continuing into Sunday.

Some years February finishes as the snowiest month of the year, he said. In 1982, for example, 16.6 inches fell in February and 1988 had 15.7. There was more than 16 inches in 1994 and 10.5 as recent as 2007.

"We certainly have a good start toward this month becoming the snowiest of this season," Isobar said. "Then again, it wouldn't take much to achieve that status. And who knows, maybe the February thaw is on the horizon."

How is this for a what’s-coming-up report? Judy Whaley spotted half a dozen robins Saturday at her rural Fayette home on County Road N.

“Let’s assume those are travelers,” Isobar said, “and not the ones that hang out in the woods all winter.”

  • Front.geese
    ON THE MOVE—Six goslings head out on manuevers with their parents in an area lake. Baby waterfowl are showing up in lakes and ponds throughout the area.
  • Front.little Ball
    Fayette's Demetrious Whiteside (left)Skylar Lester attempt to keep the ball from going out of bounds during Morenci's recent basketball tournament for fourth and fifth grade teams. Morenci's Andrew Schmidt stands by.
  • Front.tug
    MORENCI pep rallies generally end with a tug of war. The senior class entry, shown above, did not advance to the finals. Griffin Grieder, Alaina Webster, Kyle Long and Jazmin Smith are shown at the front of the rope, giving it their best effort.
  • Accident
    FAYETTE resident Patricia Stambaugh, 64, was declared dead on the scene of a single-vehicle accident Friday morning south of Morenci. Rescue units were called around 9 a.m., but as of Tuesday, law enforcement officers had not yet determined the time of the accident. According to Ohio State Highway Patrol, Stambaugh was driving west on U.S. 20 when her Chevrolet Malibu traveled off the north side of the road and down a steep embankment, coming to rest in Bean Creek (Tiffin River).
  • Athletic Fields
    SPORTS COMPLEX—Fayette’s outdoor athletic facilities will include three ball fields for summer recreation leagues at the southwest corner of the school. The baseball and softball fields, along with the running track, will be constructed on the east side of the school. Outdoor athletic fields were not part of the new school project from 2007, but voters approved a $1.4 million levy for a school addition and the sports fields last August. Both projects are scheduled to be complete by July 20.
  • Front.teacher Leading
    PRESCHOOL MUSIC—Fayette band director Jeffrey Dunford spends the last half hour of the day leading the full-day preschool class in musical activities. Additional photos are on page 7 of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.F.band
    TROMBONISTS Jake Myers (left) and Max Baker perform Friday at the annual Senior Citizens Luncheon at Fayette High School. The National Honor Society and the FFA chapter teamed up to serve a meal to area seniors and to provide musical entertainment. Both the school band and choir performed. Additional photos are on page 7 of this week’s Observer.
  • Front.poles
    MOVING EAST—Utility workers continue their slow progress east along U.S. 20 south of Morenci. New electrical poles are put in place before wiring is moved into place.

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