Thursday, January 15, 2015

Weather is a Changing

Pale January lay
In its cradle day by day
Dead or living, hard to say.
     Alfred Austin

Almanacs were kept ready to hand to gain an idea of what the next day's weather would bring because of its influence on the health, and welfare of livestock, crops, gardens, and chores.
Kentuckians and Ono Countians, in particular, lace their conversations with remarks about or references to the weather, even greetings may begin with, "How's the weather treating you?" This is not from lack of things to discuss when friends meet, but from the fact that changes in the weather are frequent and extreme. It depends on which way the wind blows.
Ono County lies where two climate zones intersect at the far western edge of Mid-Atlantic (Region 9) and the northern section of the Southern (Region 7) according to the map in the Harris Farmers Almanac.
This makes predicting the weather unpredictable. The Weather Chanel agrees as they have announced on more than one occasion that weather forecasting for Kentucky is 'impossible.'
On a recent trip back from town when Nash Black passed over Greasy Creek the temperature on the digital thermometer in their Jeep rose five degrees. A sure indicator of the sharp climate dividing line between the northern and southern areas of the county.

Bakers Almanac for 1903
"If the temperature falls suddenly there is a storm forming south of you; if it rises suddenly, a storm is forming north of you. The wind blows from region of fair weather toward where the storm is forming.
"Cirrus, or curl clouds, move from where the storm is in progress. Cumulus, called Ball of Cotton, Day or Summer clouds, move from a region of fair weather to where a storm is forming. Where cirrus clouds are moving rapidly from north or north-east, there will be rain inside 24 hours; when these curl clouds are moving rapidly from south to south-east, there will be a cold rain on the morrow, if in summer, and if in winter there will be a snowstorm.
"The wind always blows in a circle around a storm, and when it blows from the north the heaviest rain is east of you; if from the south, the heaviest rain is west of you; if from the west the heaviest rain is north of you.
"The wind never blows unless rain or snow is falling within 1000 miles north or north-west of you.
"These rules were issued by the Farmer's Club of American Institute. Study them and be your own weather prophet."

Elroy Harris suggests that the most accurate method of learning of current weather conditions is to walk out on the porch and stick out your hand.

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