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IQ Weather Extra: A Long Autumn OR A Cold Winter?

Global weather patterns are strongly influenced by the location and strength of warm and cold pools of ocean water. Remember that approximately 71% of the Earth is covered with water, and that water retains heat.

When that heat is released into the atmosphere, warmer areas of sea water promote lower pressure in the air above. And, the ocean water temperature patterns change slowly. This results in the areas where weather patterns become “anchored” until the underlying ocean water temperatures change.

By observing changes in the ocean water temperature patterns, we can see where areas of low and high pressure may be anchored now, and where they may shift. This helps guide us in our long ranger forecasting thought process.

This year, we are seeing a cooling of the water off the North Pacific coast of the United States, while seeing a warming trend along the Northeast coast. Here is a picture of the ocean patterns one year ago…

And the patterns today.

Compare the...

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IQ Weather: Heading To The Heart Of Storm Season

Storms are a big part of springtime weather! And we are heading into a more active part of the spring storm season. That means the weatherperson on TV will be talking about the threat of hail, heavy rains, high winds, and even tornadoes.

For some, storm season is a time of worry and fear. But at IQ Weather, we believe that understanding storms helps to overcome some of those fears.

In our lesson on storms, we talk about some of the signs that indicate when storms are about to become severe in your neighborhood. We also talk about why some parts of the storm that look the scariest…are really not the most dangerous part of the storm!

Here is a small excerpt from our lesson on storms:

“Hail size is also a good indicator of the strength of a storm. The larger the hail, the stronger the updraft inside a storm!  Updrafts that are capable of producing softball sized hail can exceed 100 mph!  And, the larger the hailstone…the faster it falls to the...

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