Isobar looks at February weather 2013.03.06

Written by David Green.

By DAVID GREEN

Fourteen days with temperatures in the teens and below. Five of them in single digits. Eleven days when the temperature stayed below freezing. It was a wintery month last in February.

"It's become unusual to have below-average temperature months," said Morenci area climate observer George Isobar, "but we had one last month. The departure from normal was 1.5° below average."

There was a string of five warmer-than-average days from Feb. 10 to 14, he said, but only one days was significantly above average. However, that was preceded by five days with morning temperatures in the single digits, including the low of 3° recorded February 3. The high temperature for February was recorded February 18 at 50°.

February also turned out to be the snowiest month of the season with 11.7 inches.

"Our biggest snowfall was only 2.9 inches," Isobar said. "It just built up slowly over the month. We had a least a trace falling on 17 days."

Freezing rain fell on two days, and the frozen stuff wasn't all snowflakes, Isobar said. During the month there were some ice pellets and snow grains, and in the final storm of the month, a lot of rain that led to a slushy mess when snow followed.

"We were right on the edge of that storm," Isobar said. "Not too far to the south there wasn't any snow. North toward Clayton, more than twice as much snow fell than in Morenci."

There were plenty of windy days last month. The average wind speed in Toledo was 9.7 miles an hour. There five days with the strongest wind gust measured at 30 miles an hour and above. The peak gust came in at 49 miles an hour and another at 45. Trees and limbs went down in several areas of Lenawee County, but none were reported in Morenci.

MARCH—March started off on the chilly side, then moved into the snowy side, but that should moderate soon. Temperatures are expected to rise into the 40s at least through next Tuesday, and they should remain above freezing starting on Saturday.

“I like to point out that we’ve had some really big snowstorms in March,” Isobar said, “but that’s not the norm.”

The average snow total for March stands at about five and a half inches.

  • Front.splash
    Water Fun—Carter Seitz and Colson Walter take a fast trip along a plastic sliding strip while water from a sprinkler provides the lubrication. The boys took a break from tie-dyeing last week at Morenci’s Summer Recreation Program to cool off in the water.
  • Front.starting
    BIKE-A-THON—Children in Morenci’s Summer Recreation Program brought their bikes last Tuesday to participate in a bike-a-thon. Riders await the start of the event at the elementary school before being led on a course through town by organizer Leonie Leahy.
  • Front.drum
    on your mark, get set, drum!—Drew Joughin (black shirt), Maddox Joughin and Kaleea Braun took the front row last week when Angela Rettle and assistants led the Stair District Library Summer Reading Program kids in a session of cardio drumming. The sports and healthy living theme continued yesterday with a Mini Jamboree at Lake Hudson State Park arranged by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Next week’s program features the Flying Aces Frisbee show.
  • Front.art.park
    ART PARK—A design created by Poggemeyer Design Group shows a “pocket art park” in the green space south of the State Line Observer building. The proposal includes a 12-foot sculpture based on a design created by Morenci sixth grade student Klara Wesley through a school and library collaboration. A wooden band shell is located at the back of the lot. The Observer wall would be covered with a synthetic stucco material. City council members are considering ways to fund the estimated $125,000 project and perhaps tackling construction one step at a time.
  • Front.train
    WRECKAGE—Morenci Fire Department member Taylor Schisler walks past the smoking wreckage of a semi-truck tractor on the north side of the Norfolk and Southern Railroad tracks on Ranger Highway. The truck trailer was on the south side of the tracks

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