The unaccountably unaccountable can’t count .

It was nearly two decades ago that I first became aware that “new” science was negating “old” science in a way that did not properly refute the data gathered by scientists of “the past”.

For example, the Vikings of Greenland buried their dead in soil that now is permafrost. There is simply no way to dig graves six feet deep in permafrost, without blowtorches or jackhammers, neither of which the Greenland Vikings owned. Furthermore, in the early days of their colony they were able to grow barley for beer, which became impossible later in the four-hundred-plus years Vikings existed as an entity in Greenland. (The evidence for this is husks of barley found in various locations, in sites identified as early sites.) The conclusion that it was obviously far warmer in Greenland a millennium ago is also borne out by other evidence, including casual references in Sagas to Greenland Vikings swimming in waters that now would paralyze a man with hypothermia in less than five minutes.

In other words, scientists of the past had done their homework, and had traveled to God-forsaken landscapes, (or at least Viking-forsaken), and gathered quite a body of evidence it was much warmer a thousand years ago. While one might be able to quibble about one or two items in this body of evidence, to chuck the conclusions en mass would take the gumption of a complete con-artist,  or amazing and stunning new evidence gleaned from field work.

When no amazing and stunning new evidence was provided, and no field work was involved, I could not help but sniff the aroma of a colossal con. It is a smell I know all too much about, for I have lived among poor poets who have been amazing cons, and could get people to pay them for being losers. (It wouldn’t be so bad if they had written good poetry, but, as I said, they were poor poets.)

Originally I simply asked to see the evidence about Greenland Vikings, and to see the field studies, and got the run-around. At best I was directed to papers that had no actual field studies, or IPCC reports that ignored the actual field studies, or I was simply spoken to in a condescending tone. Because I was quite familiar with such run-arounds, (because poor poets like to impress rich widows with tales of how they hobnobbed with Bob Dylan and Joan Bias, and advised Simon and Garfunkel on their lyrics, and are smooth as oiled silk when asked to provide evidence), my suspicion only worsened, and I became more strident in my demands to see the evidence that showed it was not much warmer in Greenland in the year 1000 than it is during our current warm period.

When I finally hit the roof was when the Toronto Star proudly reported the Canadian Steve McIntyre had forced NASA to back down from its attempt to show modern warming was worse than the Dust Bowl. NASA’s adjusted adjustment looked like this:

GISS U.S. Temperatures (deg C) in New Order

Year Old New
1934 1.23 1.25
1998 1.24 1.23
1921 1.12 1.15
2006 1.23 1.13
1931 1.08 1.08
1999 0.94 0.93
1953 0.91 0.90
1990 0.88 0.87
1938 0.85 0.86
1939 0.84 0.85

Here’s the old leaderboard.

Year Old New
1998 1.24 1.23
1934 1.23 1.25
2006 1.23 1.13
1921 1.12 1.15
1931 1.08 1.08
1999 0.94 0.93
1953 0.91 0.90
2001 0.90 0.76
1990 0.88 0.87
1938 0.85 0.86

The reason I hit the roof was because up until this point I did not know “adjusting the data” was even allowed. I mean, when I do my taxes I always have to resist the temptation to “adjust the data”, but don’t adjust my data because it is my understanding that such adjustments are criminal behavior. It has been my experience that the IRS doesn’t give a hoot about “extenuating circumstances”.  (My wife’s father, for tax purposes, listed his daughter as a “partner”, and when he unexpectedly died the IRS didn’t want to hear me say I was unaware of this agreement; I had to pay the old man’s taxes, though we were dirt poor.)

To me, data is data. For over a hundred years countless people had gone to thermometers and taken the temperature, and sent it in to the weather bureau. Undoubtedly there were occasions when certain individuals looked out at foul weather and chose to fudge the data, however more often the individuals involved took fierce pride in their roles, and struggled out through appalling weather with flashlights, and before that lanterns, to squint at thermometers in Stevenson Screens. They were gutsy people. often in rough locals, and the data they gathered may not be perfect down to a hundredth of a degree, but it the best we’ve got.

In order for congress to OK the huge expense of Doplar radar, the weather bureau had to agree to cut back on the expense of hiring so many people to measure the actual temperature. A lot of the folk who had worked long and hard gathering actual data were basically fired, so meteorologists could look at a flickering radar image in some warm and cozy room. More humble meteorologists will confess to you that initially they thought Doplar radar would allow them to track individual thunderstorms like hurricanes, but in actuality they gazed into a seething cauldron of storms appearing and vanishing like bubbles in a boiling stew. The less humble meteorologists liked being cozy, and looking at screens, and never having to go outside when you have a bad cold, and never having to read an actual thermometer.

I myself have often wished I could stay in where it is warm and cozy, but to feed my wife and five kids, and to pay my wife’s father’s IRS debts, I have had to go out and work even when as sick as a dog. I have a sort of code of honor, even if my doctor might disapprove of it. Sneer at it as “Puritan Work Ethic” if you will, but I figure some things are worth suffering for. Therefore it pisses me off royally when I see people altering the raw data, claiming they have some sort of “extenuating circumstances.”

It pisses me off even more when the people “adjusting” are living off the taxes I suffer to pay. (Not that I haven’t been so dirt poor that I have qualified for some bizarre thing called “Earned Income Credit”, which on occasion has given me a refund I certainly don’t deserve, but that is written into the law and the tax code, which constitutes a sort of raw data all its own. I am not breaking any law to obey the tax code.) The people “adjusting” raw data at NASA are suppose to obey higher and more scientific laws.  We pay them to be so adept they can shoot a rocket to Mars and put a lander where it should land, when a mistake of .01 degree could miss the planet by thousands of miles. In fact they have been less than perfect, and had to resort to mid-course-corrections, and that involved “adjustments.” But such “adjustments” involve data: Data says this should be the course and we are off-course that much, if our destination is point X on Mars. Therefore, to arrive at our destination we must adjust Y amount.

No such adjustments are allowed, when you are dealing with thermometers. What is the destination of a thermometer? Thermometers only report what is. However, if for some reason you feel the thermometer should be reporting Global Warming, then maybe your objectivity would be polluted by what kind people call ” bias”, but I call “the temptation to resort to corruption”.

As soon as I saw the above charts of how NASA was “adjusting” temperature I called foul. The reek of corruption was nauseating to me, and I stated the entire concept of “Global Warming” was a fraud. The date? August 8, 2007. I actually got snipped at “denier” sites, because I was too rabid. However the good part of this rejection was I  learned to be more civil, especially because in my research I discovered Steve McIntyre’s site at Climate Audit, which combined humor with civil procedure.

Unfortunately, as eight long years have past, it has become increasingly apparent that the people “adjusting” temperatures at NASA and NOAA  do not believe in civil procedure. Apparently they do not believe in even the United States Constitution. Now, when congress asks for their records, they feel able to tell congress to go get lost.

If their “adjustments” were valid (which I have never felt was possible) then they would be glad to bring proof of their validity before Congress and the American People. However they not only hold Congress in contempt, they hold the American People in contempt.

In other words, they do not believe we are all created equal. They do not believe a poor man should have the same vote as a rich man. Instead they seemingly believe (and I do not understand how anyone could be so idiotic) that their falsified data has more import than Truth.

They must be out of their minds. Even an engineer aged six knows falsified data cannot build a tree-fort that will stay on the branches of the tree where it is built. How can it? Where a thick stick is needed the kid is handed a thin stick, and told it is thick.

This entire “adjustment of temperatures” thing is past being a national embarrassment. It is now international. The United States is the laughing stock of the world.

It is high time we hold the people responsible accountable. After all, “Falsifying Public Documents” is a crime.

It is also high time we ask these liars what they are lying for. What is so worth “adjusting” the best efforts of men and women who recorded temperatures for the rest of us, in out of the way places in all weathers? What is worth defying congress for? What is worth betraying our Founding Fathers and the Constitution for?

They are “adjusting” a lot more than temperature records. They are adjusting the scientific and civil procedures many a young man has died for, because such procedures are the foundations of our freedom.

Ask them. “What is your “adjusting” for?”  In many cases the answer is horribly shallow. They are doing it for filthy lucre, and look no further. However others have some idea of utopia in mind, as they are dishonest. These especially need to be confronted. Ask them to explain the utopia that is worth lying to the American people for.

The best “peer review” was devised by our Forefathers, and inscribed into our constitution with a quill dipped into liquid gold.  It involves ordinary people demanding the privileged to explain themselves.  The leaders must explain the reasons for their policy.

We need to demand NASA and NOAA explain the reasons for their deceit.

LOCAL VIEW —signs and omens—


There are signs and omens all over the place, if you care for such things. I used to care, but have lost interest over the years, largely because I could see little advantage in glimpsing the future. I never got a glimpse clear enough to tell me what stocks to invest in, I suppose. Rather I’d get a vague sense of whether I was in for tough times or easy times, and there was no way to avoid either. Lastly, when tough times did come, they were never as bad as worry made them out to be beforehand, and actually turned out to be the times I brag the most about surviving, when reminiscing. (When I remember the good times it is often with the wistful sense I blew it, in some manner.)

The one time signs are helpful is when you are very discouraged, and in need of an encouraging word. Our fellow man sometimes can be pathetic, when it comes to encouraging us. Even the people trying to be kind will  propose some ridiculous diet or regime of exercise or ask you to contort yourself into yoga poses, when all you really need is a kindly glance. In such situations helpful friends can be downright depressing, and it is then that some sign, some bluebird landing on a nearby branch and singing, can be like a rope to a drowning swimmer.

Of course, if I became dependent on such signs I’d never get going in the morning. I have enough trouble getting started as it is, and if I needed a good omen before I proceeded I’d likely never get out of bed.

There was actually a time when I was young that I did demand life made sense, before I’d proceed, and I wound up very nearly paralyzed. I was deeply involved in the study of psychology, and at the slightest sign my behavior wasn’t adult I’d stop everything and analyse my every twitch. It was a good way to avoid getting a real job, and also acquainted me with the wonders of the subconscious, however in the end I had to get a real job even if life didn’t make sense.

At one point, before I got a real job, I was studying my dreams from every angle I could think of, and had a wonderful revelation. When you study dreams you, in a sense, make every action and every object within the dream be a symbol, and thus a sign. For example, if there is a road in the dream, it may symbolize “being-walked-upon”, (and you might even burst into tears when you have the insight that you feel trodden upon). The problem is that, before you get the first dream figured out, you tend to get tired and go to sleep and have another one. Studying all the symbols can get to be exhausting, and there is definitely no time left to look for a real job.

I had managed to arrange my life, as a young poet, in a way that allowed me to study dreams for days on end. Now I cringe, thinking of all the wasted time, but some good did come out of all the study. For one thing, I don’t waste time so much. I also suppose I understand the subconscious to some degree. However the revelation I wish to describe came after I had an overdose of dream-study, and decided I needed some fresh air, and went for a walk.

Because I’d been spending so much time analyzing objects in dreams, I was in the habit, and found myself analyzing the real objects in the real world as if they were symbols in a dream. I wasn’t trying to do it. In fact I was trying to stop. Yet I couldn’t. There wasn’t a leaf that fell that didn’t have some symbolic meaning. Maybe I didn’t know what the meaning was, but the meaning was there, as loud as thunder. I had wanted life to make sense, but now there was too much meaning, in every twig, in every birdsong, in every face in every passing car. It was a glorious and wonderful revelation, but I felt over my head and wanted it to stop. When it wouldn’t I went and bought a six pack of beer and got ossified, not to get high but rather to come back to earth. Then, when I awoke the next morning with a headache, I wondered why I had run away from the revelation. It was largely gone, though enough lingered to reassure me that life does make sense.

Due to that one event, forty years ago, I don’t scoff at people who gaze at stars, seeking astrological sense, or at teas leaves, or at the lines in palms, or at the entrails of goats. God really is in everything, even in the most dark, deplorable, and dismal situations. That is how the poet Wilford Owen was able to write, from the hideous trenches during World War One, “I too have seen God in mud.”

While I don’t scoff at those who seek to read things, I don’t have the time to follow them. Knowing the future doesn’t matter as much as how you behave when it gets here. The only time I adjust my behavior due to someone seeing the future is when I hear a storm may come, in a weather forecast, (and even then the forecast is often wrong. Also, these days, it is often absurdly sensationalized).

Rather than attempting to figure the Creator out, and know what He is up to, I tend to rest assured He knows what He is doing, even if I don’t particularly like it. This seems to open my eyes to beauty I’d otherwise miss. I don’t particularly like cleaning up after a snowstorm, but that doesn’t mean I can’t lean on my shovel and admire the view.

In this manner I’m able to admire the recent eclipse of the full moon, and the current conjunction of Venus, Jupiter and Mars in the morning sky, without getting all worked up and worried about  what it all means. I can watch the leaves change and fall without getting all worked up about the onset of winter, (though I don’t forget to stack the wood).

The glory of what I call “Sugar Autumn” is ending, as we move into the less brilliant but still  beautiful foliage of “Oak Autumn”. In parts of the woods without oaks, it is starting to be “Under-story Autumn,” where the tall maples have lost their leaves, but the young ones beneath are just starting to change.

Understory Autumn IMG_0813

It seems that the Creator set up the ecosystem around here in a way that gives the young trees a little time to enjoy the sun free from the shade of their elders. The sapling maples  pop their leaves out a week before the taller ones in the spring, and lose their leaves a week after the taller ones in the fall. I’m sure a scientist can explain the reasons for this happening, but it doesn’t take anything away from the fact it is a wonderful design, and does allow the young time to grow, or at least subsist, until the old decide enough is enough and politely remove themselves from the sky by becoming increasingly rotten and the home of woodpeckers, or perhaps becoming firewood.

That is the sort of thing I contemplate, as I gaze upon Creation, and it seems wiser to me to appreciate beauty in this manner than to become worried, and in a sense to get in a fight with Creation. Too many people spend their entire lives avoiding what may never happen, and isn’t all that bad when it does happen. The reasons people give for the lessening of their lives are many, but it still remain a lessening. Some of the best advice I ever got may be the crudest, “Get over it.” For there are many ways to look at the moon.

And then the moon went on, westward through trees
Now bare of leaves, with a glance back towards me
Inviting. How could I follow? What frees
My feet to walk where the moon walks? What plea
Would it hear? All I could do was stand and yearn.

Once in a dream I walked those pearled highways
But for fool’s reasons felt I should return:
My mundane friends frowned on what disobeys.

Now like a grounded dodo I stand sad
As all wear armor and only in dreams
Does one walk nude in public. This world’s mad
And burdened by leaden get-rich-quick schemes.

But the moon’s not burdened. Midst the mad glow
Of cities it beckons those in its shadow.


I am not sure how much of the buoy-operations to the north are dependent on solar power, but things tend to close down when the darkness descends. The thermometer also descends, and perhaps batteries do not work as well, once temperatures drop below -20°C. Or perhaps there is simply much less to see, when it is dark all the time. In any case, the data received from our various polar cameras tends to decrease as darkness descends, and we must wait impatiently for the light to return in the spring.

Unfortunately the light may not return next spring. (Forgive me, I can feel a rant coming on.)

We have been witness to a golden age in Arctic Sea-ice research, when enormous amounts of money became available to those willing to endure the risks of the arctic, ranging from swift death due to falling into sub-freezing salt water, to being lunch for a polar bear, and mere discomforts such as subfreezing winds and walking in tundra so thick with mosquitoes that toilet paper is unnecessary.  The gutsy scientists who have gone out into the field to do these studies have gathered amazing data, and also have devised amazing gizmos and gadgets that study sea-ice from beneath the water and overhead from outer space, and all this intense work allows the lazier sort of scientist, and even the layman like myself, to laze in a warm room by a warm computer and think they have the slightest idea what the arctic is like.

Sadly, all the money for research was not without strings. Sinister characters who care little for Truth, (called politicians), lurked in the background, and they did not wish to see science discover things that were unknown, but rather knew exactly what they wanted science to confirm; namely: “The Death Spiral”.

At the risk of sounding suspicious, I feel the entire “Death Spiral” idea was more political than scientific, and was an attempt to generate a threat that would justify galvanizing the public, and instituting the sacrifices one associates with a war.  During a war the public is willing to sacrifice many freedoms, because they know survival is at stake.

Unfortunately for the sinister characters, not only was there a failure of the “Death Spiral” to manifest, but there was no way to “adjust” the pictures coming from the Pole. (There also seemed to be a certain stubbornness on the part of arctic scientists, [perhaps due to the courage it takes to endure the harshness of arctic field studies], when it comes to being bullied by benefactors to a degree where actual data is altered.) In any case, seen from the political side, the vast amount poured into arctic sea-ice research had very little bang-for-the-buck, and in fact was having a negative effect,  It was in fact making certain politicians, and their spokespeople,  laughing stocks. This simply isn’t done, in polite circles in Washington D.C. You are suppose to know which side your bread buttered upon. And if you fail produce a square wheel when they say a square wheel is wanted, and instead are honest and say a round wheel is better, guess what happens to your funding?

There are rumors that the O-buoy pictures we are getting will be the last, because the funding is being cut. I will conclude this rant by expressing my compete disdain for the people responsible, because I assert the O-buoy program produces actual data and actual results which have actual bearing on Truth, whilst the people who will not see their budgets cut produce nothing that has the slightest bearing on Truth, (unless it is to be a shadow that highlights brilliance.)

To return from my rant to the facts of the matter, there is little to report for the next four months except it is wicked cold and wicked dark, and the ice is growing outwards, and growing in thickness. Very little of the information we ponder comes from the cameras and buoys locked into the ice, as they largely enter a period of suspended animation. Even the visual satellite view sees a expanding black hole that extends out to the arctic circle on the solstice, and then only begrudgingly retreats. Our lying eyes must take a vacation, as we become increasingly dependent on conceptual stuff such as “microwave imagery”, which require a degree of tweaking by the dreaded bugaboo called a “modle” before producing the maps we study.

Because there is little to report for the next four months, these Arctic Sea Ice posts will likely become shorter, and more sparse.  I’ll continue to post the DMI maps, and perhaps annoy people by naming storms, however my posts will become less wordy, as my energy will be directed more towards Local View posts, which are likely to become interesting as a major gas pipeline is proposed to basically destroy my little town, and I may be able to document the destruction of much beauty, and also how Washington D.C. responds to an entire community of quiet geeks being turned into frothing NIMBY’s.

What I likely will do is continue to update the Arctic Sea Ice posts for two weeks before starting a new one. It will be hard to find them among all the Local View posts, and therefore you may want to in some way bookmark them, if you are interested in the updates.

I’ll start this post with the news from “Faboo”, which is my name for this year’s North Pole camera. Faboo’s lens has been obscured with frost, the co-locate Mass Balance Buoy has stopped reporting, and we hadn’t received any weather and GPS data from Faboo in days. Meanwhile we knew from maps a big surge of milder, Atlantic air rushed up that way. Now at last all the stored data has been downloaded.


Last Thursday Faboo hinted it might be ending its “wrong way” drift and starting south, and indeed on Friday it did drift as far south as 84.501°N at 0300Z before resuming the “wrong way” drift to the north and west, finishing the period at  84.551°N, 7.375°W, which placed us another 5.19 miles NW of Fram Strait, where we are supposedly heading. Temperatures were very mild, rising from a low of -2.6°C at midnight to -0.2°C at 1500Z (which was tantalizingly close to a thaw and cleared camera lens) before slipping back to -0.8°C at 2100Z and the end of the period. Winds were apparently very light, though the anemometer may have spent some time hoarfrosted to a standstill.

On Saturday there was little wind, as temperatures crashed amazingly over twenty degrees, and Faboo went as far west as 7.531°W at 0300Z before starting east, and reached 84.586°N at 0900Z before heading south to 84.576°N at 1500Z and then rebounding north to end the period at 84.583°N,  7.228°W. Despite all these antics, Faboo barely budged, ending the day 2.41 miles northeast from where it began. However it was Saturday’s temperature antics that were most likely to raise eyebrows. The high was at the start of the day, -0.9°C at midnight, and the low was at the end of the period, -23.2°C. For temperatures to crash like this with winds below 5 mph surprises me.

On Sunday Faboo resumed a more normal southeast drift, ending the period at 84.561°N, 6.913°W, which was 2.55 miles the “right way”, towards Fram Strait. The anemometer may have frosted up, for neither wind nor wind direction were reported, and temperatures stayed very low most of the day, achieving a low of -25.4°C at 1500Z, before rising sharply to -16.7°C at the very end of the period.

(It should be noted that other North Pole Cameras, by this time, have been down in Fram Strait and heading south, sometimes at more than 20 miles a day.)

DMI MONDAY MAPS  (Will discuss tomorrow.)

DMI3 1019 mslp_latest.big DMI3 1019 temp_latest.bigDMI3 1019B mslp_latest.big DMI3 1019B temp_latest.big


DMI3 1020 mslp_latest.big DMI3 1020 temp_latest.big


DMI3 1020B mslp_latest.big DMI3 1020B temp_latest.big

“Flingson” continues to sit atop the Pole, looking a lot like a mid-latitude low with no line of latitude to travel along, because 90° North is just a dot. It has the classic warm sector, and the classic cold front, which we saw pass over Faboo when the temperature dropped 25 degrees. Because it can go no further north, it is in essence serving as a chimney for the planet’s warmth, uplifting and venting it into the darkness of outer space. A pipeline of warmth swings up through the north Atlantic, cold to the west and milder to the east, and along this flow a series of lows is forming, Which I’ll just call “Fling3”, (south of Svalbard), “Fling4”, (southwest of Iceland), and “Fling5”, (southwest of Greenland towards Newfoundland).

I’m expecting this series of lows to create a strong northerly flow behind them, and start the more normal flow of ice down the east coast of Greenland. This is partially due to the fact that, in the autumn of 2013, I got excited about the North Pole camera dawdling to the north, and wondered if it might be sucked into the Beaufort Gyre rather than being flushed south through Fram Strait, and as soon as I made these speculations the normal flow flushed the buoy south. Having made of fool of myself once, I’m less eager to predict Faboo might get sucked into the Beaufort Gyre this year.  Here’s the old post where I speculate, back in 2013:

The difference between the two years (so far) seems to be the storm track this year goes right up to the Pole, whereas two autumns ago it went marching west-to-east along the Siberian coast. While the above maps do show a northerly flow start to be established in Fram Strait, it isn’t that strong, and by the final map the flow is meandering and even has some southerly elements.

The temperature maps above show that the air being sucked north from Siberia ahead of the warm sector is cold, the reason being that Siberia itself is snow-covered and generating a cold all its own, which shows up quite clearly in the Dr. Ryan Maue map from the Weatherbell site. Temps 20151021 gfs_t2m_arctic_1

This maps shows that it is even colder to the south of the warm sector than it is to the north. The land breeze, which was warm in the summer, is now frigid and starting to build coastal sea-ice.

Another interesting thing in the above maps is the Fling4, southwest of Iceland. So far this autumn that has been a place where storms lurked, with their east winds ramming inland over Greenland, rather than north winds running parallel to the coast. Having these east winds uplift moist Atlantic air to the icecap, up over 10,000 feet, has apparently resulted in above-average snowfall. For what its worth, rather than Greenland’s ice-cover melting away, it is building at an above-average rate, so far this fall:

Greenland 21051021 Greenland-ice-growth-blowing-away-records-Oct2015

Having all that moisture turned to solid snow releases a lot of latent heat, and because it is released up over 10,000 feet atop an icecap I imagine this is more heat lost to outer space.


Faboo made some headway towards Fram Strait, traveling 6.2 miles in light winds to 84.471°N, 6.154°W. Temperatures reached a high of -12.1°C at 0300Z, achieved a low of -21.2°C during a brief down-spike at 1500Z, and then swiftly recovered, with a temperature of -12.7°C at 2100Z. There are still no clear pictures available.


O-buoy 9 has drifted down nearly to 79° North, and is now again pausing. Here is a beautiful picture of the twilight after the brief day. Obuoy 9 1020 webcam

Temperatures have slid down to -15°C and winds are light.


DMI3 1021 mslp_latest.big DMI3 1021 temp_latest.big

Flingson is flattening, with a pronounced Laptev Sea to Canadian Archipelago flow developing.  This flow is tapping into some cold air over Siberia, and the ice is growing quickly in the Laptev Sea, both on the shore side and the sea side. (The ice freezes quickly close to shore because the amazing Lena River summer floods [the river can rise 60 feet] create fresher water close to shore, which freezes quicker.) Though the ice attached to shore is called “fast ice” it often breaks sose and, on a cross-polar-flow like this, heads for a pile up in the Canadian Archipelago. Here’s a view from the Russian side of the growing ice along Russia’s north coast.Extent 2015102021 arctic.seaice.color.002

Despite the strong flow on the Pacific side of Flingson, the flow in Fram Strait remains weak and confused. Fing3 and Fling4 can be seen following along a sort of arcing cold front, with Fling5 off the DMI map but seen on the UK Met map.UKMet 20151021 28514410This string of storms is expected to coalesce into a single big gale southwest of Svalbard by the weekend, and finally give the Greenland coast some strong north winds.


DMI3 1022 mslp_latest.big DMI3 1922 temp_latest.big


DMI3 1022B mslp_latest.big DMI3 1022B temp_latest.big

It has been a long Thursday, and I feel especially in need of escapism. Now are the times that try men’s souls, but I’m not in the mood. Give me sea-ice. My hotheadedness requires some cooling, and indeed craves it. Give me some views of blue and sky-blue-pink, and a solid, white plain so different from land, with land’s silly fences and land’s silly no-trespassing signs, because it is in fact a sea,  and laughs at fences.

The above maps show “Slingson” got weary of its long string of trailing hanger-on-ers, and cut lose,  a bit like Thidwick just before he shed his antlers, (and, just in case you are unaware of the great American poet Dr Seuss, here is a picture of Thidwick just before he shed his antlers:)thidwick2After the band snapped, a fading “Flingson” headed towards the Canadian Archipelago, leaving “Fling3”, “Fling4” and “Fling5” taking a more normal route across the North Atlantic towards the arctic coast of Eurasia. But things are different this year, and I don’t expect the three lows to cruise along the nice highway of relatively milder coastal water between sea-ice to the north and bitter cold tundra to the south, gradually weakening as they get to the East Siberian Sea. Instead the first two will melt from the maps, as “Fling5” becomes a gale over Svalbard, and north winds howl in Fram Strait. So say the models, which are usually pretty good in the short term. (I distrust the long-term, which suggest gales will howl from the south in Fram Strait by the end of next week.)

One thing messing up the ordinary west-to-east flow of storms along the coast of Siberia may be the swift freezing of the Laptev Sea, even as the Kara and Barents Seas are much more wide open than they were last year. Concentration 20151022 arcticicennowcastThis is one of those chicken-or-the-egg things, wherein it is hard to say whether the pattern created the sea-ice or the sea-ice created the pattern. However once it is created, I imagine they work hand in hand. Storms don’t want to go where it is cold, and would rather hang back where it is warmer, and if they hang back from the ice-covered Laptev Sea that sea experiences south winds, but they are not the balmy winds of summer; rather they are as bitter cold as an ex’s lawyer, which only increases the ice on the Laptev Sea. This likely means something for Europe, but I’m still adding it all up on my digits.

As Flingson sinks back down to the Archipelago it came from, the high building over the Pole from the Pacific Side is actually a surviving lobe of “Nuhi”, which, as it is a new new high, I will dub “Nunu.”  (I understand that silly name may cost me some long-time lurkers, but if they can’t take a joke, you know the rest.) I expect Nunu will create some very cold temperatures under its clear skies, and indeed the buoys over that way are hinting at a fall below -25°

O-buoy Reports.

Faboo continues to be less than picturesque, and lens befoul-ment is afflicting our other buoys as well. O-buoy 13 reports temperatures of -23° with 5-10 mph winds, and shows a smear.Obuoy 13 1022 webcamO-buoy 15, north of the Chukchi Sea, has seen a warm-up to -8° with 5 mph winds. and also shows a smear, Obuoy 15 1922 webcamWhen I turn to O-buoy 8b, expecting its usual smear, I get a surprise, for over north of The East Siberian Sea it is -18°, winds are 10 mph, and dawn is breaking on a brief day. Obuoy 8 1022 webcamAcross the Pole at O-buoy 14 the brief day is ending, winds are slacking off, and temperatures have crashed to -24°C.Obuoy 14 1022 webcamObuoy 14 1022B webcamOver in Fram Strait, O-buoy 9 hasn’t sent us a picture in two days. If the camera has quit, it is likely because it has been functioning without a bit of human maintenance in extreme conditions for over two years. It deserves a standing ovation, but I miss it. The weather station continues to work, and reports it is -13°C with 10 mph winds, and we’ve finally made it down to 79° North latitude.


On October 20 Faboo drifted steadily southeast to 84.400°N, 5.720°W, which covered 5.69 miles. Temperatures fell from a high of -12.8°C at midnight to -20.3°C at 1500Z, and then rebounded to -13.0°C at the end of the period at 2100Z.

On October 21 Faboo continued to the southeast until it reached 84.397°N at 0600Z, when it decided to head northeast until it reached 5.641°W at 1800Z when it decided to head northwest, winding up at 84.410°N, 5.651°W. This curve wound us up 0.83 miles northeast from where we began. (Faboo waits for the coming gales with bated breath, thinking it will be cool to cover 20 miles in a day.)

Temperatures fell from the prior -13.0°C ro -21.7°C at 0600Z, bounced to the daylight high of -15.1°C at 1500Z, and fell to -17.9°C, which is still above normal. DMI3 1022B meanT_2015 FRIDAY MORNING DMI MAPS

DMI3 1023 mslp_latest.big DMI3 1023 temp_latest.big


DMI3 1024 mslp_latest.big DMI3 1024 temp_latest.big

As forecast, Flingson settled down into Canada, and Fling3  faded north of Europe as Fling4 filled in over Svalbard, and Fling5 grew into an Autumnal gale over Iceland. Now Fling5 is elongating and has a second “zipper” center where the occluded stops occluding to the northeast. I’ll call that second center “Fling5zip”. Rather than loop-de-looping it is expected to take the old storm-track along the Siberian Coast, but rather than the storm-track becoming established, a high pressure will build in the wake of Fling5zip, deflecting the following storm south towards Britain.

Originally midels showed this blocking high pressure creating a southerly gale in Fram Strait, but some have backed away from that idea, and now show a sort of aimless mess of isobars in Fram Strait, so your guess is as good as mine, concerning which way the ice will move next week. For the moment there is a good surge southward, which is normal for this time of year.

On the Pacific side Nunu has not created the cold I expected, as it slides towards Canada.  It will try to develop a ridge through Fram Strait, linking to high pressure over Scandinavia, but the failure of this ridge to become established, (or the failure of models to figure out what in blue blazes is going on),  is creating the aimless mess of isobars in future maps.


Faboo is not yet reporting the northwest winds. Our last report is from October 22, when, midst the last aimless mess, Faboo slowly drifted northwest to 84.438°N, 6.063°W, which was 3.37 miles the “wrong way”. The wind-vane and anemometer are likely coated in hoarfrost, as neither is reporting. Temperarures rose to  -9.7°C at 0900Z and then plunged to -20.8°C at 2100Z.


Hudson Bay is now totally surrounded by snow, with cold air pouring south from the Pole to its waters. Usually such cold air is warmed by the waters, but the waters seem to have less heat to give up this year, likely because the ice was so late melting last summer. This does not bode well for me, as a warm Hudson Bay buffers us from cold north winds, down here in New Hampshire. (Temperatures in the map below are in Fahrenheit. The freezing point is shown by a shift from blue to pink [except in the middle of Greenland. where pink represents -50°F].Hudson Bay 20151024 cmc_t2m_ecan_1

This is the highest Hudson Bay ice-extent, this early, since 1992.Hudson Bay 20151019180000_CVCHDCTHB_0008532843

Of course, we are only talking about 1% of the Bay being frozen. Yet once the Bay starts to freeze it can proceed with astonishing speed. Last year the bay went from being ice-free to totally covered in something like 21 days. The tiny, little bit of ice can now be seen creeping out from the west coast. Watch to see how fast if grows in coming weeks.


In the upper left of this map is the Beaufort Sea. Notice “The Slot” has vanished, and ice is starting to creep out from the coast of Alaska.


“The Slot”, which was such a fascinating feature of late summer maps of the Beaufort Sea, has completely filled in with ice. Now we see a more normal slot of open water along the coast. It was this sort of slot which once trapped whaling ships that lingered up there too long. (A few ships got trapped up there on purpose, to make an early start in the spring.)  The concentration map below shows the sea-ice just starting to link up with the shoreline ice northeast of Barrow, and again north of the Mackenzie River Delta, creating a new “lagoon”.Beaufort Concentration 20151022 beauforticennowcast

The above map does not show how thick the ice is. When we look at the same secene with a thickness map, the view gets interesting.Beaufort Thickness 20151022 beaufortictnnowcastOrdinarily the ice would get thinner (lighter purple) as we moved towards the youngest ice at the edge, however this year we can see some deeper purples towards the edge, which is like a ghost of the “reef” that once existed on the south side of the “lagoon”. Considering these maps tend to “average out” small areas of thicker ice, the reef may be more solid than the above map suggests, and contain some bumps that are sizable bergs. It is something to keep in mind, when we watch how this ice behaves this winter. I imagine the thinner ice in the old “lagoon” will be more likely to crumple into pressure ridges, and also the existance of larger bergs in the “baby ice” to the south will act like sails, and that ice will shift more in strong winds than would be the case is it was all flat.

SNOW-COVER CONSIDERATIONSSnowcover 20151023 ims2015296

Besides showing that Hudson Bay is now completely surrounded by snow, the snow-cover map shows the snow is unusually far south in the west of Russia, down past its southern borders into Kazakhstan. The Russian city of Omsk, down near the border, received 16 inches of snow, which basically closed them down. Omsk-21Oct15-600x372

You may be saying to yourself, “Big deal; it may be southern Siberia, but it is still Siberia.”  However something to remember is that as you get further and further south the climate become more and more of a desert. Desert snows are usually thin and dirty, mixed with dust, where it is cold. To get a deep snow like this creates a deep snowpack early in the winter. If it is not melted away by the Russian version of “Indian Summer”,  it could create a larger than normal area of radiational cooling, and create some nasty cold for Europe, if winds turn east.  (One reason Tolkien may have located Mordor to the east, and had the east a direction of dread, is because Europe’s cruelest and coldest blasts come from that direction, (and it also brought waves of barbarians, but never mind that).


On October 23 Faboo stopped going entirely the “wrong way”, swerving southwest for most of the day, and reaching 84.424°N at 1500Z before twitching back to the northwest, and winding up at 84.427°N, 6.570°W, which is 3.47 moles SW of where we began. The change in direction may have been caused by the passage of a micro warm front, for temperatures were very cold through much of the period, reach the lowest temperature of the season, -25.0°C, at noon, but then bumping up to -13.8°C at 2100Z.

During the brief daylight Faboo gave us this picture:NP3 1 2014 2015cam1_2

This is a photograph of

A.) Faboo telling us it is as cold as Jupiter.
B.) Faboo spinning very rapidly to stay warm.
C.) Static


Obuoy 14 1024 webcam

Of all places for a lead to threaten to form! Temperature is -22°C.


DMI3 1024B mslp_latest.big DMI3 1024B temp_latest.big


DMI3 1025 mslp_latest.big DMI3 1025 temp_latest.big


DMI3 1025B mslp_latest.big DMI3 1025B temp_latest.big

Fling5zip continues to slowly drift east of Svalbard, with decent north winds back into Fram Strait.

Those winds will slacken as a new Baffin Bay Baffler develops. I’m not exactly sure what to name it, for it contains the ghosts of a number of lows, including “Looter”, which drifted across Canada from the Aleutians, “Nairzeetwo” which drifted down into Alaska after crossing from the East Siberian coast, “Fingson” which came south from the Pole through the Canadian Archipelago, and a more typical North  American low I never named which came up through Hudson Bay. Hmmm… Because it is an amalgamated mess, I’ll dub it “Malga”.

In any case, as the south winds ahead of Malga counter the north winds behind Fling%zip I expect there will be total, utter and complete confusion in Fram Strait, which will be interesting to watch next week.

Unfortunately we are getting no reports or pictures from Faboo, though the co-located Mass Balance Buoy has kicked back into life and reports a slow drift south and west, with very cold temperatures below -29°C. Further south O-buoy 9 still isn’t sending pictures, and stopped sending weather reports for much of the weekend, but the GPS worked and showed it made more rapid progress south. In fact O-buoy 9 has traveled farther south in the past 5 days than it did in the prior 50 days.Obuoy 9 1025 latitude-1week

This swift movement is already slowing, for the weather station licked back into life and reports the winds have slackened from gale force yesterday to less than 10 mph. Temperatures have been cold and are getting colder, now below -15°C.

Despite the cold temperatures the ice is likely breaking up. This is bound to happen when the ice further north is only creeping south as O-buoy 9 zooms south. The speedy ice leaves the slower ice behind, and open water appears (and swiftly skims over with fragile and thin ice).

The only maps I can find that can “see” such a subtle break-up, (subtle if you are viewing from a satellite, but darned meaningful if you are on the ice), are the Norwegian Ice maps from . (The top map below is from October 21 and the bottom is from October 25, and you can see a few holes appearing in the solid red areas of “very close drift ice”).

Fram Ice 1021 barents-sea-ice-extent-2015-oct-21_nis (1) Fram Ice 1025 general_20151023

Thanks to the site for alerting me to these maps. (And by the way, these maps show what pregnant polar bears already know: There is no ice around Svalbard, and therefore the expecting bears will either head to Franz Josef Land, or north to the Sea Ice of the Arctic Sea, to dig their caves in ice-bergs, where they hibernate and bear their cubs. Therefore there will be few cute cubs to see in Svalbard in the spring. So don’t buy a ticket to go there to see them. Also don’t be alarmed by news reports about “:plunging polar bear populations” in Svalbard next spring. The bears have simply moved to a smarter place to bear their bears.)

The way O-buoy 9 has started to move once again shows us how mobile the sea-ice is, even when temperatures are well below the freezing point of salt water, and even when the ice has had a long period of time to “freeze solid”. Many novice ice-watchers think the polar ice is static.This is one of the first misconceptions I had shattered when I began using my lying eyes to see what actually goes on up there.

This was also shown by the crack that abruptly appeared right before O-buoy 14, despite nearly a month of temperatures below the freezing point of salt water, and current temperatures close to -30°C. Temperatures have struggled to get up to -20°C, and the water in the new crack is swiftly freezing over, (or “healing”, as I like to say).Obuoy 14 1025 webcam Obuoy 14 1025B webcam And that seems a good point to conclude this post, making the point that if the darkness and cold doesn’t close down the show our cameras put on for us, the grinding, shifting ice might do it.

PS is reporting record early snows in Kashmir kashmir_snowfall_650x400_81445

And also in the far eastern Siberian city of Chabarovsk.East Siberia October Snow 12962

And also northern China

October Snow China Heavy-snow-hits-large-swath-of-north-China1-800x500

And “thousands” of tourists have been trapped in a valley on the northern Pakistan section of Kashmire, due to heavy snows in the mountain pass leading to the valley, and are reduced to eating nothing but boiled potatoes. October Snow Pakistan 55b4176ce6b6c

The entire concept of “Global Warming” looks more and more like humbug. What is amazing to me is the zeal with which those who adhere to such nonsense keep their eyes glued firmly closed.


I had plans to finish up some work on the clapboards at the end of my 250 year old house today, but awoke to temperatures of 23° (-5° Celsius) and frozen slush coating everything. I was pretty grouchy. October 18 is too darn early for snow. However the sun was brilliant on the horizon, and there wasn’t a breath of wind.First Snow 5 IMG_0760

It is hard to remain grouchy when it is so gorgeous out, but I tried my best. If I am to achieve my goal of becoming a cantankerous anachronism, it will require hard work and practice. So I put on my sourest expression and looked for things to gripe about.  I noticed my wife had left my granddaughter’s baby carriage had out, and it was all soggy with snow.   First Snow 2 IMG_0755Also the phlox flowers in the garden were frozen.First Snow 1 IMG_0753 Furthermore, the above photograph was suppose to be artistic, with the snowy car in the background, but it only reminded me I have to trim that yew. Also rake the leaves, and it’ll be harder with them wet.

Even as I was grouching to myself about that the leaves began falling. There wasn’t a breath of wind, but sometimes they are merely frozen to the twigs, so that the first beams of sun melts them free, even in a complete calm. In fact one leaf, as it falls, can jar others free, and a slowly developing slow motion avalanche of color crisply slides down the side of the tree. Formerly I’d sigh, and wax poetic, but as a practicing grouch I now grumble about how all the leaves are covering my firewood and keeping it from properly drying. The heap of firewood is to the right of the road, in this picture.First Snow 4 IMG_0756 You can see all those messy leaves all over the road. It’s enough to make you roll your eyes to heaven.First Snow 3 IMG_0758

Oh well. I figure Sunday’s suppose to be a day of rest, anyway. I’ll get back to practicing my grouchy expression first thing on Monday morning.

Viva Philippe Verdier! Sign the petition for his reinstatement.

Philippe Verdier is a household name in France, and in the eyes of some he is THE weatherman of France. He recently was goaded into writing a book suggesting some aspects of Global Warming Alarmism were political in nature, and not based on a solid foundation of science. Apparently he was upset when the French foreign minister, Laurent Fabius, who is not trained as a meteorologist, strongly suggested weather forecasters should state a certain thing, without asking them if they agreed. A version of the story can be found in a Telegraph  article  here:

However the important section is here:

He (Philippe Verdiere) said he decided to write the book in June 2014 when Laurent Fabius, the French foreign minister, summoned the country’s main weather presenters and urged them to mention “climate chaos” in their forecasts.

“I was horrified by this discourse,” Mr Verdier told Les Inrockuptibles magazine. Eight days later, Mr Fabius appeared on the front cover of a magazine posing as a weatherman above the headline: “500 days to save the planet.”

Mr Verdier said: “If a minister decides he is Mr Weatherman, then Mr Weatherman can also express himself on the subject in a lucid manner.

“What’s shameful is this pressure placed on us to say that if we don’t hurry, it’ll be the apocalypse,” he added, saying that “climate diplomacy” means leaders are seeking to force changes to suit their own political timetables.

It should be noted that Mr Verdier himself has no degree in meteorology. His degree apparently is in something called, “Sustainable Development”, which likely includes some knowledge of biology, geology, ecology and, yes, meteorology.  However it truly doesn’t matter what he learned before, once he entered the media and became a reporter of the weather, for reporters often find themselves entering situations they know little about. They are suppose to investigate and ask questions, and dig, and probe, and discover. Of course, many in the modern media are known for their complete failure to investigate, and are somewhat embarrassing, for they are but parrots in an echo chamber. They are told to repeat the propaganda they are paid to promote, and to stray from the dutiful bleating of the politically correct spin is dangerous. However Mr Verdier apparently was naive, and assumed he was suppose to continue his education, and to be a good reporter-of-the-weather.

What Mr Verdier then did was to write and (somehow) get published a book that stated the meteorological truth, as he saw it, and also the political truth about the pressure scientists were put under by non-scientists.

To a poet like myself the result should have been expected. In the words of the mother of the English Prime Minister Melbourne, “He who flies in the face of convention must expect to face the consequences.”

In my experience the result has been a rejection slip. (That is why it is slightly amazing to me that Mr Verdier even got his book published.) (Rejection occurs because, whilst an artist is expected to be eccentric, it must be in a politically correct manner. When a rich widow sponsors a poetry reading in her rose garden, a profitable poet should behave like a gigolo. If you want to be a starving poet, poke fun at rich widows and their rose gardens.)

It was little wonder to me that Mr Verdier promptly got fired, despite his honesty, despite his public popularity, and despite the fact his firing had nothing to do with the performance of his job and the accuracy of his forecasts.

It was also little surprise to me that Mr Verdier was surprised. When I was younger I was also surprised by the reception Truth received when spoken. It used to get me fired up, and I’d wail and beat my chest about what a martyr I was,  but since then I’ve grown more accustomed to human weakness. Perhaps I’m a bit jaded, but when I do something politically incorrect like wear a striped shirt with a plaid jacket, I don’t give a fig about other’s outraged expressions. Life is too short to care about such meaningless drivel, but if some old men want to dress in the latest fashions of teenagers, and worry about stuff like that, that is their right and their loss.

In like manner, compared to Truth and Beauty, most political stances are meaningless drivel. The same politician who was most eloquently anti-alcohol in 1918 was eloquently anti-prohibition a decade later. Such flip-flopping may be blatant hypocrisy in terms of Truth, but it is a rare politician who cares so much for Truth he will lose an election for It.

Real Poets and real Scientists, on the other hand, are suppose to care for Truth so much that they will suffer for it. And now Mr Verdier is experiencing such suffering.

Of course, this is a new experience for him. He has been successful, enjoying the limelight and adulation, and to now be abruptly kicked off the airwaves and plunged into ignominy is not all that bad. For one thing, it is a vacation from the rat race, and for another,  being a martyr for Truth can seem glamorous and even ego-inflating, at first. This may explain the pictures, verging on megalomania, on his website,  of him as a martyr.Philippe_Verdier_3472801b

Old poet-losers like me, who took such stances against political correctness 40 years ago, known damn well that standing in a cold sea-breeze looking glamorous can get old,  especially when no one is taking pictures and no one is preparing dinner. However I very much hope Mr Verdier doesn’t need to learn about loving Truth through working as a bottle washer, as America’s poets do.  It would be a waste if his God-given gifts, which involve reporting the weather to the public.

After all, Mr Verdier is a media-oriented individual. Megalomania is a job requirement. However, despite this requirement, Mr Verdier has done a courageous thing, and stood up for something which all too many in the media utterly ignore: Truth.

Therefore he should forgo the requirement of poets, and skip the bother of either dying young or working his fingers raw in rough jobs for the next 40 years. He has suffered enough, in his own ivory tower. Just as Winston Churchill didn’t need to work as a dishwasher, (though he did serve in the trenches), and always had servants, (at times even in the trenches), Mr Verdier should not be reduced to dire poverty to prove he is a lover of the Truth.

Mr Verdier has already loved Truth. He has proved he loves Truth. Therefore all who also love Truth should support him, and should sternly scold politicians like France’s foreign minister Laurent Fabius, who has proven he loves politics more than Truth.

So far, the best way I have seen to support Mr Verdier is to sign a petition urging he be hired back. It can be found here.

Also I suppose one could buy his book.

Speaking for myself, I envy Mr Verdier, because I know damn well that when I, as a young man,  stood for Truth, there was no one on earth urging others to sign a petition supporting me. For me, and I am sure thousands of other brave poets, the only reward for honesty was and is self respect. However I will not allow envy to lessen my support for Mr Verdier. So what if he is a novice? He is doing the right thing.

After I signed the petition, I expressed myself as follows:

I signed it, and I seldom sign petitions.

As far as I can see, Philippe Verdier is simply being honest. He was told to be dishonest, and simply wouldn’t stand for it. Therefore, because he didn’t do what he was told, he is to be punished.

The message the French government is attempting to send seems clear: If you do not tow the line, it doesn’t matter how established or popular you are, they will strip you of your job, your income and your dignity.

This sort of bullying is tyranny, and must be opposed. Some may be frightened and cowed, however those who own a shred of courage must take a stand. Rather than thinking they created a cowed public, the government must see they made a big mistake, and roused a sleeping giant.

Rather than cowing opposition on the eve of their wingding in Paris, the government must see that they have once again shot the foot they planted squarely in their own mouths.

Rather than seeming politically wise and adroit for being bullies, they must see they are clumsy buffoons.

Rather than the wingding in Paris being a propaganda extravaganza, suggesting Alarmists save the oppressed, it may well be turned right around, and suggest Alarmists oppress the saviors.

Therefore I urge all, and most especially those who love Truth in France, to object loudly and strenuously to the dastardly way Philippe Verdier has been treated.

No matter how small your voice may be, remember, as I do, that it takes only one pebble to start an avalanche.


From a Romanian site here:

Comes news of an early season snowfall that stopped trains, mostly because the trains are electric and trees dropped limbs onto the lines over the trains.

Trenuri blocale şi localităţi fără energie electrică, din cauza căderilor de zăpadă 16

Crudely translated, the report states this:

Travellers from personal train Suceava – Cacica were taken by minibus and taken home after the train was stopped Sunday afternoon in the station Todireşti, said County Council (CJ) Suceava, John Catalin Nechifor, according to Agerpres. The train was stopped at the station after power line was damaged because of falling trees and branches that yielded abundant snow. However, Nechifor said that another issue was brought before the train Ilva Mica – Suceava which was stopped after probably , trees fell on power grid, between the towns Kindergarten and Larion. According to Nechifor during the evening railway line between Transylvania and Suceava will be functional.Also, President CJ Suceava showed that there were failures in the electricity supply in the area Campulung Moldovenesc, but in Vatra Moldoviţei teams E.ON interfering spot for redeploying the network.

Moldova has a report on this website and the report there contains the significant (crudely translated) statement, ” Traffic was blocked on the road between Suceava and Gura Humorului, where winds broke several power cables. Shortly after it started to snow heavily, two cars had crashed violently on the same road.All seven people, located in both cars arrived at the hospital. Young: “It’s too early winter, we did not expect, now move on warm clothes.” Hostel from the mountains of the county Neamt snow deposited on leaves still green trees and grass.

If winter came when the leaves were still green, even the trees got fooled. Considering they spend more time outside than humans do, it is little wonder if humans were taken by surprise.

The culprit for the cold has been a high pressure which, on my Sea-ice posts, I named “CPR” (which was short for “Cross Polar Ridge”.) This ridge of high pressure for a while extended from Bering Strait to Norway, and the winds on the Eurasian side of this cross-polar feature drew air from the East Siberian Sea to Finland and then south towards the Caspian. The cold air has resulted in snow-cover far south in western Russia.Swan 1 ims2015285

This same high pressure “CPR” has largely faded away over the Pole, collapsing south over Europe and now forming a ridge extending from just north of the Caspian Sea all the way west to Britain. East winds now blow in an arc from Siberia to Ireland.Swan 3 gfs_precip_mslp_eur_3Much cold air came south with this high pressure. (Temperature in this map are in Fahrenheit, and pink represents below freezing.) Swan 2 cmc_t2m_eur_3

It can be seen that this high pressure’s east winds would be transporting the cold air to the west, and riding the back of these east winds were Bewick’s Swans.

Britain facing 'longest winter in 50 years' as Siberian swan arrives early

Unlike the trees of Romania, ducks, geese and swans are unlikely to be fooled. This likely occurs because they spend a lot of their time with their butts in water, and know when water is about to freeze. It would be big trouble if your butt got frozen into a lake, and in the case of the larger birds some need water to run across in order to get airborne. In fact some go so far as to suggest it was ducks that first spoke the phrase, “Get my ass out of here.”

Apparently swans have a habit of staying just ahead of the freeze, and there is a Russian expression that states, “The swan brings snow on its bill”, because they tend to fly just ahead of the first severe cold. Therefore, when the first Bewick’s Swan landed in a sanctuary in Slimbridge, Glouchestershire a month earlier than last year, and earlier than ever reported since records started to be kept (in 1963), people feared it might signify the start of a long, cold winter.

The story was picked up by the Telegraph which added “Spurred on by bitter north easterly winds, many of the swans are currently gathering in the Netherlands, with 45 on Lake Gooimeer and 80 on Lake Lauwersmeer.” and they also had some cool pictures:Bewick's swans have migrated to Slimbridge every winter since 1963

So there you have it, one of the rare cases of people in Romania agreeing with people in England.

People tend to form a beautiful variety of cultures which some, calling themselves “progressive”,  oppose, thinking a bland, international McWorld culture would be better, and individuality should be abolished in all its forms, including the variations that lead to some being called English and some being called Romanians. I think this would be a huge loss, and would be preferring the myopia of Cyclops to the depth perception which owning two eyes and two views allows.

However I must admit two views can involve distrust. Here in New England the Natives have always distrusted the Newcomers, and any deal made with “the other side” was suspect.  For this reason the word “Indian” was sometimes used (until it became politically incorrect) to indicate something you couldn’t trust. An “Indian Giver” was someone who gave you something they later took back, and “Indian Summer” was a late autumn warm spell liable to be followed by very un-summery weather. Even more politically incorrect was the word for an early cold snap, which often preceded an “Indian Summer”, which was called a “Squaw winter”. “Squaw” was the word for an Indian woman, and now is deemed very racist, sexist, and very, very naughty.  Therefore, in the bland spirit of internationalism, I should say, “Early Winter” and “Late Summer”. Bleah. I figure there are too few adjectives as it is, and if I have to say “An early winter followed by a late summer may mean a hard winter,” it lacks the meaning of, “A squaw winter followed by an Indian summer grows the stingy Yankee’s woodpile.” Political incorrectness communicates more.

In any case, the old, weatherwise Yankee I once knew didn’t say a squaw winter always foretold a hard winter. It did set them on edge, but they could speak of early snows that were followed by relatively mild winters. They knew weather is complex, and were always scanning the skies for updates.

However one thing they put a lot of stock in was the behavior of wildlife. I’m quite sure they would tell the people of England to pay attention to those Bewick’s Swans, even if the current cold spell is followed by a nice, long, warm spell.

(A hat tip to Ben Vorlich for alerting me to the swans in England. Also to for the information about early snows in eastern Europe,) (which now includes Bulgaria:  )


Here’s a report from Maine about how short the snow-free period was this year. (Maine is the most northeasterly state of the USA.)

PPS   …Meanwhile, in Russia…

From the site:

Where snow cover was established?

IA “Meteonovosti” / 13:05 Wednesday, October 14

  October 14 national calendar – Protection of the day. On this day in Russia celebrated the meeting of autumn to winter. According to folk etymology, the name of the holiday is associated with the first snow that covered the ground. And where in Russia is now the snow has covered the ground? The snow cover is confidently gaining the north of the Far East. The white blanket has covered herself most of the territory of Yakutia and Magadan region, and in some places it has reached the height of 30 cm. Chance of snow (height 1-5 cm) is in the central regions of Khabarovsk and Primorye territories. In Eastern Siberia is a bit of snow, the snow cover was formed only in places Taimyr, Evenkia and north of Turukhansk district. But in Western Siberia, which in October had already been invaded by snow cyclone it is snow in most areas. In the south, the snow depth is substantially greater than 5 cm, but in the north, in the Yamal-Nenets district snow cover in some places more than 20 cm. Uncharacteristic early dressed in white Urals. After a heavy snowfall, which took place here at the end of the first decade of October, in the west of the Sverdlovsk Region the snow cover in some places more than 30 cm in many areas of the Perm region of 18 to 25 cm, is covered with snow and the South Urals. On the European territory of Russia is snow in the east Middle Volga (up to 5 cm). Closed by snow most of the territory of the Komi Republic, and in some places the snow depth reaches 30 cm. In the east of the Nenets Autonomous District of snow cover reached 10-15 cm. /  /

ARCTIC SEA ICE —Polar Dusk—October 11-18, 2015

As the darkness descends at the Pole, spreading out from 90° latitude like a black hole in the visible satellite views, the cameras start to shut down one by one, and we enter a period where our lying eyes cannot be fed with actual views. Instead we become dependent on various interpretations of satellite data, which are not always as accurate as they might be, due to biases that enter the interpretations. I won’t be too critical, for I myself could not do the amazing things scientists do with satellite data, however I do confess to being puzzled when the dame data produces differing maps.

For example, there are only so many weather stations that gather data, and the various computer models are all starting out with the same data, yet even the “initial” maps, which are the starting point and (one would think) involve no theories about how heat should be handled, differ from each other. You would think they could agree about their starting point. After all, in theory even a butterfly flapping its wings can make a difference down the road. Obviously, if the initial map is different, the forecasts will be different.

In like manner there are differences which even a bumpkin like myself can see in the measure of the thickness of sea-ice, where the leads and pressure ridges are, and even in which direction the ice is moving. It is for that reason it is good to double check with ones naked eyes, but  from now until April we are basically blind.

Rather than griping, I try to  be thankful for the information I receive, aware none of this was possible back when I was a young man in my twenties. I’ll keep up my sea-ice reports, though they are necessarily less informative. Also it is less soothing to contemplate sea-ice when more snow and ice than I care for can be seen out my own window, which will all to soon be the case, here in New Hampshire. (Our ski areas could get their first snow this coming weekend.)

My main focus is the DMI maps of polar temperature and pressure, which are in some ways simpler than other maps, yet give one the gist of what is going on. Then I occasionally peruse the NRL maps of concentration, thickness, and ice-movement. There is a time in February when the sea-ice reaches its maximum extent that is always interesting, and then there is the opening of the Russian base at Barneo in late March which also is amusing, as besides soldiers and scientists it holds a fair number of slightly crazy tourists, all paying over $10,000.00 apiece just to go to the Pole and be pompous on Facebook. Then, in April, the frost melts from the lenses of the surviving cameras, and we can start watching ice melt again.

One other event in the winter darkness is the demise of the North Pole camera, which I have dubbed “Faboo” this year. Ordinarily it is down in Fram Strait by now, and either picked up by an icebreaker or lost between crushing bergs. The weather buoy continues to report, albeit with erratic data as it hammered by Atlantic storms, and one year we followed it all the way to the north coast of Iceland, where it grounded.

This year “Faboo” is behaving differently, as is O-bouy 9, which is further south. There has been a delay in the transport of ice down through Fram Strait to Denmark Strait, along the east coast of Iceland, and the buoys are dawdling to the north. On other years I’ve seen buoys flushed south at a rate exceeding 20 miles per day, but (so far) this year the buoys can’t even manage twenty miles a week, and at times have headed north on “wrong way” ice. (If you click the overview of O-buoys at  you can see the location and GPS tracks of various buoys, and the map has a feature that allows you to zoom in on the track of O-buoy 9 off the northeast corner of Greenland, and see what an amazing, looping snarl of procrastination its track describes.)  I’m expecting these buoys to head south through Fram Dtrait shortly, but have been expecting it “shortly” for over a month, and it has been interesting to watch the ice hesitate.

The “official” data from Faboo isn’t posted until it is a day old, and it tells us that on Saturday Faboo drifted 5.01 miles southwest on winds that decreased to around 4-7 mph, as temperatures achieved a high of  -3.2°C at 0300Z, a low of -8.7°C at 0900Z, and finished the 25 hour period (which ends at 2100Z for some reason) at -8.0°C. (The briefly milder temperatures were associated with a slight wind-shift and drop in pressure connected to the passage of a very weak low I dubbed “FG6.”) Unfortunately Faboo’s camera has frosted up again, and we currently only get views like this:NP3 1 1011 2015cam1_3The frost on the lens seems thinner this time, and I’m hoping it may sublimate away in cold, dry air, and allow us our finally views. For the most part all you see is darkness, and the noontime dark (the opposite of midnight sun) arrives.

Roughly 315 miles south of Faboo O-buoy 9 is wandering southwest in a brisk but decreasing breeze of 13 mph, with temperatures down to -8.0°C after a thaw late last week. When looking at the picture remember that the buoy was drifting about in a Polynya of wide open water in late August, and made it as far south as 79.4° latitude. The last storm blew it north of 80°N, and now it’s just crossed 80°N heading south again. Obuoy 9 1012 webcam

Despite the fact the ice is moving en mass, it looks increasingly solid. If you have any spare time, you should watch the time lapse movie made up of these pictures at Around the 24 minute mark you can start to see Greenland in the distance, and around the 30.30- 31 minute mark you can see Greenland a final time. Then the battering this buoy survives in the sea ice is amazing. Also of interest is how dirty some of the sea-ice is, due to soot, volcanic ash, and algae that grows on the bottom of the ice.

O’ll hopefully cover )-buoys 8b, 13, 14 and 15 later, but they are in darkness now. I have to be on my toes to capture their pictures now, as daylight dwindles.  It is interesting that the dark isn’t immediate, for there are long periods of twilight and dusk.

Lastly here are the recent DMI maps, which I hope to find time to cover later.


DMI2 1011B mslp_latest.bigDMI2 1012 temp_latest.big


DMI2 1012 mslp_latest.big DMI2 1012 temp_latest.big

(I know some get annoyed when fellows like me name storms, but you will have to forgive me; long ago I was an English major, and not good with numbers, and old habits die hard.) (I am started to number storms a little.)

“Nairzeetoo” continues to weaken in the East Siberian Sea, with its inflow from the Atlantic now stretching over a thousand miles, shaped like a question mark, north to Svalbard and then to Franz Josef Land and then along the Siberian coast and then curving north and into the center of the low. Most of this mildness is over on the Wurasian side of the Pole, as the North American side grows quite cold in the wake of Nairzeetoo’s passage, with the minus-twenty isotherm appearing in Nares Strait. “Nuhi” is the high pressure growing behind the storm, separating Mairzeetoo from “Stukky”, which is curving northeast from Iceland to Svalbard.

What will be intersting to watch is the southwest flow behind Nuhi, as it shifts east. Some models see it extending down into Fram Strrait and another “wrong way” flow developing by next week. What models do not see (which surprises me) is this southwest flow clashing with the very cold air in place north of Greenland, and developing a third Nares Strait Storm, like Nairzy and Nairzeetoo.

“Looter” continues to mill around south of Bering Strait, as what is left of the high pressure CPR hangs tough over Scandinavia.


“The Slot” was my name for a sort of “lagoon” of open water that formed in the Beaufort Sea late last summer, largely bounded to the south by a long “reef” of sea-ice between it and the open waters along the shores of Alaska and Canada. To have this open water existing as a separate entity must have thrown a wrench in the ordinary flow of water between the warmer coast and the colder, ice-covered Pole, though I have no data to support any of my surmising.

The ice-models persistently  predicted the reef would melt away within five days, but the reef persistently persisted. When it did vanish in places the refreeze was already underway, and it seemed to be dispersed by strong winds more than melted. I was keeping a careful eye out to see if it reappeared, which would suggest it never entirely vanished.  Why would it suggest this? Because sea-ice doesn’t like to form in truly open waters, and prefers to extend out from the edge of preexisting ice. (In the cases of flash-freezing the “edge” can be as tiny as a fleck of frozen spray landing and floating on the surface, acting as a sort of deed-crystal. Without such an “edge” the chilled water simply becomes denser and sinks out of contact with the chilling air.) This early in the season temperatures are not cold enough for much flash-freezing, and therefore the reappearance of the “reef” would indicate bits of slush and small chunks of ice remained, unseen as ice-above-15%-concentration,  but a “reef” all the same.

And here’s where it gets interesting, because the NRL lab did not see the reef reappearing as the lagoon froze over as of October 10, while as of October 12 the Canadian Ice Service map did see the reef reappear, (upper left of their map.)  So I guess you can chose whichever map best serves your particular politics.

Reef Oct 10 beauforticennowcast Reef Oct 12 CMMBCTCA

In any case, I hypothesize that the “lagoon” represented a large area of water subjected to not unnatural warming sunshine, but rather to unnatural cooling, this summer. I suggest this because our lying eyes could see from now-defunct buoys that it was seldom sunny, and that the salt water skimmed with ice during cold spells even in July.

The greatest loss was O-buoy 10, which last reported from roughly 75.1° N, 140° W, which some maps showed as open water, when our eyes could see plenty of bergs and slush. In fact its last picture showed no open water at all, except in the far upper left distance.Obuoy 10 0925 webcamThe NRL map now shows that same area of the former-Slot now covered with between six to twelve inches of thin “baby ice”, but I suspect there is a fair amount of thicker ice mixed in. But then, I am a suspicious sort of fellow, at times.Reef Oct 10 beaufortictnnowcast

It doesn’t matter how thin the ice is. Once it is dry enough to be seen by the satellites it is included in the ice extent graph, which can be seen growing with great swiftness, despite the rushes of thawing air towards the Pole on the Atlantic side. Likely a lot of this growth is due to The Slot filling in, in the Beaufort Sea.DMI2 1012 icecover_current_new

You can see how quickly it happened in this Canadian Ice Service animation (currently showing Oct 3-12, though it may automatically update and show something different a week from now.) (“The Slot” is to the upper left).


Faboo continued southwest another 8.18 miles to 84.419°N, 3.786°W. A light breeze gradually stiffened from 8 mph to 19 mph, as temperatures fell from a high of -8.0°C at the start of the period to a low of -13.6°C at 0900Z and then -13.6°C again at the very end. The camera was having trouble transmitting pictures.


I have been calling the buoys over towards Bering Strait “The Beaufort Buoys”, but they more accurately should be called the “Basin Buoys”, as they are north of the somewhat vauge boundary between the various “Seas” and the “Central Arctic Basin”. (Also I was confused at first by O-buoy 8b, as I thought it was at 140°W when it was at 140°E.) The four buoys currently functioning over there are strung like pearls on a necklace, all between 78°N and 82°N.

Furthest east is O-buoy 13 at 140°W, north of Canada and west of the Canadian Archipelago. It’s starting to get stuck in winter cold, with temperatures between -10°C and -20°C, and winds currently light. It’s been hard to save a daylight picture, as days are swiftly becoming quite short, and I’m usually working when it is day there.Obuoy 13 1010 webcam Obuoy 13 1013 webcam

O-buoy 14 is further west, and a little north, at 147°W, which places it north of Alaska. Currently it is experiencing light winds and temperatures crashing below -20°C. Despite its relative closeness to )-buoy 13, the weather can be quite different, as was the case recently with lows passing over the Pole to Siberia.

Obuoy 14 1011B Obuoy 14 1013 webcam

We pass the dateline to arrive at O-buoy 15, which is at 171°E, which places it north of Wrangles Island, and the boundary between the Chukchi and Eat Siberian Seas.  For some reason its camera tints everything a bit blue, it seems. Sunday it experienced a “warm up” to -5°C (if you can call that warm), but since then has seen temperatures fall back to -15°C. A stiff breeze is blowing at 22 mph, with snow or ice fog, likely associated with “Nairzeetoo”.

Obuoy 15 1009B webcam Obuoy 15 1013 webcam

O-buoy 8b is located north of the Laptev Sea at 149°E. Currently it is experiencing temperatures dipping to -17°C, and winds between 10 and 15 mph. Its lens appears to be frosting over.Obuoy 8 1010B webcam Obuoy 8 1013 webcam


Srukky weakened swiftly over Svalbard, allowing winds to slacken in Fram Strait.

DMI2 1012B mslp_latest.big DMI2 1012B temp_latest.big


DMI2 1013 mslp_latest.big DMI2 1013 temp_latest.big

Nuhi dominates the Pole. Stukky drifting  east, much weakened. Southerly flow down in Denmark Strait but disorganized flow in Fram Strait, with east-to-west flow just north of it.


Light winds and temperature dipping to -10°C. Ice is not moving much, except east to west and back with the tides.

Obuoy 9 1013 webcam Obuoy 9 1013B webcam


There are still no updates from the Mass Balance Buoy 2014D co-located with Faboo, so we are doomed to be a day behind. Yesterday Faboo resumed a “wrong way” drift slowly to the northwest, ending the period at 84.424°N, 5.755°W, which was 5.29 miles the wrong way, if we intend to get down into Fram Strait. Temperatures were relatively mild, with a low of  -8.7°C at 0600Z and a high of -5.4°C at 1800z .  Breezes continued to slack off, from around 10 mph early to around 5 mph late.

And, because the lens of our faithful camera continues to be blinded by frost, that is all the news we have to offer.


DMI2 1014B mslp_latest.big DMI2 1014B temp_latest.big

“Fling” continues to hug the coast of Greenland, which keeps the southeast flow going in Fram Strait. As soon as Fling makes a move towards Svalbard, winds will swing around to the north and ice will move the “right way” in Fram Strait.


As we have watched O-buoy 9 this summer and fall it has been obvious less ice than normal is being flushed south through Fram Strait. In fact one might be tempted to say no ice has been flushed south at all, however in the NRL extent map it appears ice has been moving down the coast towards Constable Point at Scoresbysund, where the east coast of Greenland bends southwest towards Denmark Strait.Fram 1 arcticicennowcast

 Ordinarily the sea-ice would be already sweeping past Scoresbysund,  and on some years it extends all the way down to Cape Farewell at the bottom of Greenland. This year is is slow to progress south, and much of that progress is an illusion, as can be seen when you look to see how thick the ice is.Fram 2 arcticictnowcastThe fact much of the ice is tinted lilac means it is less than a foot thick, and in fact is home-grown baby-ice, like the ice we have seen grow about O-buoy 9 even as it failed to move south. Despite the south winds we have seen surge north by O-buoy 9, there has been enough cold air about to grow ice, and this same phenomenon occurs close to the coast further south. The ice is not in fact moving south, but is forming along the shore and extending outwards. It may contain a few larger bergs that calved off east-coast glaciers, and perhaps a bit of thicker sea-ice from the north that sneaked past the blockade that has captured O-buoy 9, however for the most part it is thin baby-ice.

What this means is that once the more normal winter flush of ice southward begins, (as I suspect it must),  the initial ice will be thin and, when exposed to Atlantic gales, prove to be frail and easily demolished and turned into swiftly melting slush. It will not travel too far south as ice, obeying the laws of ice, but rather will become water, and obey different rules.

Once we are talking about water of differing temperatures and different levels of salinity, it becomes possible, (or is within the realm of possibility), to create a model that can guess how the water will stratify into various layers, and which water will rise and which water will sink. As a rule colder water sinks unless it is nearly fresh water. Arctic water is somewhat less saline, but tends to sink, according to models and some observations, at various places off Greenland’s east coast. However this is not something you can depend upon, because you cannot depend upon the water always arriving in its liquid state.

If the water arrives as ice it can merrily go bobbing over the place where the models state the cold water should sink, and continue south on the surface. This utterly screws up the models. Once you have ice heading far south of where cold water is suppose to be, at the surface, then you have surface water being chilled by that ice far south of where surface water is suppose to be chilled,  This creates places where cold water may decide to sink far south of where it is suppose to sink, and all the nice, neat maps of ocean circulation need to be rewritten.

On one occasion,  (I think it was in 1817), so much ice was flushed south of Fram Strait that the Arctic Sea was ice-free in places that usually have ice, but the North Atlantic was dotted with bergs where bergs are usually never seen. Ice even grounded on the coastline of Ireland, and the Atlantic was so chilled by all this ice that Europe experienced “a year with no summer”.

While I expect no such drama, as the “warm” AMO shifts to a “cold” AMO, it does occur to me that we should not expect the ocean’s circulation patterns to remain stagnant, as if they were written on stone, but rather should be on our toes, and be ready to see the variations one might expect in a pattern that is not a straight line, but rather a cycle.


O-buoy 9  has seen night descend, and the camera sees only black, Temperatures are dipping below freezing after touching thaw briefly yesterday, when winds roared up to 35 mph for a time, before falling back to 10 mph now. The ice did not seem to move north much, and may now be moving south again.

O-buoy 13 has seen a brief daylight of bitter cold, with temperatures level at -20° and winds dropping to so slow that the anemometer may have been frosted to a halt by hoarfrost that now nearly covers the camera lens.Obuoy 13 1014 webcamObuoy 13 1014B webcam

O-buoy 14 is a little further north and sees even a shorter day, and saw even colder temperatures dipping below -25°C, as winds were nearly completely calm.Obuoy 14 1014 webcamObuoy 14 1014B webcam

O-buoy 15 is further west and sees a later sunrise, and also has seen very cold temperatures struggle to get above -20°C, though the breeze is stronger, and in the 10-20 mph range. Obuoy 15 1014 webcam Obuoy 15 1014B webcam O-buoy 8b is so far west it is it is in the other side of the planet, and I cannot catch its brief daylight unless I get up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom. Unfortunately even when I make these midnight efforts, the lens is obscured with frost. It has seen temperatures struggle up to -13°C in a breeze of around 10 mph. Obuoy 8 1014 webcam

All in all the buoys suggest that, despite mild Atlantic air pouring north, the polar cold is building.


DMI2 1015 mslp_latest.big DMI2 1015 temp_latest.big

Fling hasn’t moved towards Svalbard, and instead seems to be filling and weakening. The flow in Dram Strait seems to be east to west. Mini-low is north of Nares Strait. Nuhi is weaker, over northern Kara Sea with weak ridge extending towards Canada, which promotes cross-polar-flow from Svalbard to Canadian Archipelago, and also export of cold air down into Russia on the other side.  Over in East Siberian Sea Nairzeetoo continues to slowly weaken,  and has kicked a weak low east north of Alaska.

All in all everything looks weaker and less dynamic, as if the weather is pausing and thinking up the next surprise.


I imagine the winds are swinging around to the north, as they slowly pick up from 5-10 mph to 10-20 mph, because the temperatures have steadily dropped to around -8°C. However the camera is giving me no help, as I’m nit sure what to make of these pictures.Obuoy 9 1015 webcam Obuoy 9 1015B webcamI was wondering if the buoy had fallen over and was looking at the sky, but the features it sees don’t change as clouds would. Hopefully some sunshine will cast some light on the subject.


Faboo drifted steadily west, and as far north as 84.483°N at 1500Z yesterday, before wavering south slightly and finishing the period at 84.481°N, 6.137°W.  This moved us the “wrong way” another 4.68 miles, and placed us as far north as we were a week ago.

Winds were light, between 2 and 5 mph, throughout the period, and the temperatures continued mild,  considering the late date and how far north we are. Our high was -4.4°C at midnight, and our low was -9.3°C at 1500Z, rising back to -7.5°C at the end of the period.

While it is below normal over a lot of Europe, the export of cold air has left the Pole above normal, which may hint at a meridional pattern for the winter.DMI2 1015 meanT_2015


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DMI2 1016 mslp_latest.big DMI2 1016 temp_latest.big

TGIF.  It’s been a true work week, with true work, which means there is not much left of my brains when I get home. Or perhaps I should say my brains are there, but in a sort of delirium of exhaustion wherein I make all sorts of highly inventive and creative mistakes no true meteorologist would ever make, such as having high pressure systems rotate counter-clockwise in my my mind’s eye. After looking at maps in this manner for about five minutes last night I threw up my hands and went to bed, which is where brains belong when they are that dreamy.

This morning I have the feeling I have missed something, which is likely the truth. A true meteorologist makes maps his primary concern, and likely has a hard time taking time off for his or her honeymoon, because he or she doesn’t want to miss anything. However for me srudying maps is, I suppose, a hobby, even if it is a bit obsessive at times. So I do miss things, and often face maps with a sense I am being baffled.

“CPR” has slouched to a banana high, oriented east-west over Europe, with Europe concerned with snows and cold in the east winds to the south of the high, which is off our map. We only see the north side, and west winds over the top of Scandinavia,  which is a situation which can make the north coast of Norway milder than the Mediterranean mountains of Italy. Meanwhile the second high pressure, “Nuhi”, has cruised across the Pole to Severnaya Zemyla, (which are the islands separating the Kara and Laptev Seas.) Between these two highs the low “Fling” has reintensified east of Svalbard, yet there is not the northerly flow I expected behind this storm in Fram Strait (or not as much) because no strong high pressure built over Greenland. Instead the low pressure extends through Greenland to a second low I’ll call “Flingson”, which Fling left behind when it transited Greenland.  North of Fling and Flingson is a cross-polar-flow from Siberia to Canada.

This flow is interesting to me because it is liable to wind up in my backyard. The weak ridge of high pressure extending behind Nuhi to Alaska attaches to high pressure extending up the Rocky Mountains of western North America,  and the east side of that ridge is bringing cold air south from the Pole. In other words, the exports of Arctic air have shifted from down into Siberia (and then east into Europe) to down into North America. This shows up clearly when I cheat a little, and break my own rules about sticking to surface maps, and peek at the 500 mb map of North America. The ridge in the west and trough in the east clearly has a flow from northwest down to my last surviving tomato plants. NUhi 1 gfs_z500_sig_noram_1

Fortunately these superb Dr. Ryan Maue maps from the Weatherbell site have an option that allows you to peer ahead into the future, (or at least into what the models think the future will be), and it seems the pattern isn’t going to lock in. In the winter of 1976-1977 a pattern like the above map’s locked in early, and didn’t relent until February, and gave us a brutal winter.  The current pattern will give us a brutal blast, but then the trough will lift out. The pattern is transitory. One interesting thing the GFS model foresees is that the transitory nature of the pattern will completely erase the mild flow over the top of Norway six days from now, and dig a deep trough down into Europe, delivering cold Maritime air from Svalbard, rather than the cold air from Siberia.NUhi 2 gfs_z500_sig_eur_25

With these outbreaks robbing the Pole of its banked cold, the Pole will likely continue to be milder than normal. What will be interesting to watch is whether the imports of milder air continue to delay the exports of sea-ice down through Fram Strait.


Winds are light and temperatures are crashing below -10°C. The ice is drifting due south, and has made it back down to 79.5°N . The days are swiftly getting shorter, and even at 9:00 AM the sun isn’t up. (Hopefully there will be enough sun to clear the fogged camera lens, later)Obuoy 9 1016 webcam

1 hour later: Well, the lens isn’t clear, but the picture is sort of wonderful, all the same.Obuoy 9 1016B webcamOff to work.


Yesterday Faboo continued its slow drift the “wrong way”, though he/she showed some signs of hesitation at the end. Faboo reached 84.507°N at 1500Z ,before backing WSW slightly to end the day at 84.506°N, 6.742°W, which was another 4.36 miles away from Fram Strait. Winds were light, and the anemometer may have frosted up at the end.  Temperatures rose from -7.5°C to a first high of -2.3°C at 0600Z, then fell to a low of  -7.9°C at 1500z before rising again to -3.2°C at 2100Z, to end the report. This odd little ripple in temperatures suggests a polar micro-front wafted by, as does the change in ice-movement.

The co-located Mass Balance Buoy remains dysfunctional, and the camera continues to be a blind squirrel seeking a nut:NP3 1 1016 2015cam1_1


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DMI2 1017 mslp_latest.bigDMI2 1017 temp_latest.bigDMI2 1017B mslp_latest.big DMI2 1017B temp_latest.big 

Sorry I forgot to click the “Update” button and post the morning maps, and haven’t had much time to focus on the arctic. The arctic is here in New Hampshine, with wet snow falling this Saturday evening, and I’ve had to do some hustling.

However now I have time to look at the maps, and right off the bat notice the low pressure just north of Nares Strait, right where I was thinking a low might form, earlier in this post. However I can’t truly take credit for a correct forecast, because the mechanics of that lows formation are a mystery to me. I merely felt the warm air could not be driven against the cold air, noeth of Greenland, without a low forming, however the engineering of this event has taken twists and turns that basically baffle me. To some degree the low pressure left behind in Baffin Bay, when “Fling” underwent morphistication and transited Greenland, seems to have oozed north and added enough enegy to the mess north of greenland to form a low. Therefore, because I called the left-behind low “Flingson”,  I guess I should say Flingson has moved north and is now north of Nares Strait.

It is part of an odd wall of low pressure expending all the way through Svalbard to Nova Semyla (which is the extention of the Ural Mountains out into the Arctic Sea, and separates Barents Sea from the Kara Sea.) This trough is different, in that usually there is a gale center and a high pressure that create a strong flow south though Fram Strait, but instead we are continuing to see light winds that are often “wrong way” winds.

I’ll have to wait until tomorrow to look more closely at Fram Strait, as our cameras have obscured lenses, and Faboo is failing to update its meteorological data. O-buoy 9 has stopped drifting south and now drifts east, and little can be learned from its blurry view.Obuoy 9 1017 webcamThe Pacific side of the Pole is starting to show little effects of the current surge of relatively mild Atlantic air over the top of the Earth,  as temperatures remain cold and winds light. The only decent picture comes from O-buoy 14:Obuoy 14 1017 webcam

I likely will conclude this post and start a new one tomorrow.


DMI2 1018 mslp_latest.big DMI2 1018 temp_latest.big

Fling has been flung across the Atlantic to the southeast corner of Barents Sea, as Flingson is left behind and mills about north of Greenland, apparently inducing a light “wrong-way” flow in Fram Strait. Down between Iceland and Greenland in Denmark Strait a weak low is forecast to be the first of several that take a northern route across the Atlantic, between Svalbard and Norway into Barents Sea. This should get the northerly flow going in Fram Strait, but I’ve been saying that for over a month now, and one way or another the flow in Fram Srait has remained weak and confused. The long range maps make it appear the northly flow should get going, but I’m going to keep watching Fram Strait carefully, as I think the models are based on a “norm” that simply isn’t happening.

 The high pressure at the very bottom of the map is what is left of CPR, now greatly modified, and seemingly on its way to merging with the Azores High. It seems ironic that high pressure that began over the Pole might wind up part of a high pressure known for balmy breezes.

“Nuhi” continues to sit over the Laptev Sea, and the gradient between it and Flingson is drawing above average “warmth” up over the Pole. (“warmth” means -10°C, which may be ten degrees above normal but still freezes salt water.) This spear of mildness is turning the colder temperatures into a sort of horseshoe shape, and we are witnessing a situation where the temperatures north of 80° latitude are warmer than those between 75° and 80°.

I think it has been the failure of ice to be exported south through Fram Strait that is causing the PIOMAS vilume anomally graph to turn up from its yearly low at a higher level, for the third straight year.

Volume 20151018 BPIOMASIceVolumeAnomalyCurrentV2.1

We continue to get no news from Faboo, and O-buoy 9’s view from Fram Strait continues bleary, as it continues slowly east with 5 mph winds and temperatures rising to -10°C.Obuoy 9 1018 webcam

The best picture, of yesterday’s sunset, continues to come from O-buoy 14, where temperatures are dipping to -17°C.Obuoy 14 1018 webcam


 DMI2 1018B mslp_latest.big DMI2 1018B temp_latest.big

No reports from Faboo. I’ll start a new post soon.



Because I raised five children, and coached teams, and now run a Childcare, I have great sympathy for anyone who has had to deal with children. There is nothing sillier, in my opinion, than a person who has never raised a child, or experienced a classroom full of unruly children, who writes a book advising people how we should deal with our youth, (for example, certain economists.).

Despite my sympathy, I do have a bone to pick with many schoolmarms, for I was once a boy, and feel some schoolmarm’s understanding of masculinity can, at times, resemble a fish’s understanding of what it is like to walk and breath air. Some schoolmarms have even less understanding of what it is like to be a man than most men have of what it is like to be a woman. Where a man can at least see physical evidence of a woman going through menstruation, schoolmarms can see no physical evidence of what makes a man a man, and in their ignorance they often attempt to nip the very buds of masculinity. So awful and blind is their ignorance that, in my exasperation, I have even suggested that certain schoolmarms are living proof that it was wrong to ever give women the vote.

Perhaps the most damning evidence has been the way schoolmarms have allowed perfectly normal and healthy young men to be drugged with Ritalin. Some day these schoolmarms will die and stand before God, and have to answer the question, “How could you allow this to happen?” They will spread their palms and whimper, “What could I do?” And then they will be asked, “What alternative did you seek?”

I am not God, but I have asked schoolmarms these same questions. It is not an answer to simply whimper and spread your palms, but many do it. Years ago it became apparent to me that few tried hard to do anything but walk on eggs and never make waves, and to merely serve their time and retire and collect their teacher’s pension, (a pension which I note is, in part, funded by the Pharmaceutical companies that drug children). In my humble, anti-schoolmarm, school-boyish opinion even the teachers that claim to be Christian have in fact worshiped Molech, and participated in the sacrifice of our children.

Now the young boys they once couldn’t bother to truly help, and instead only drugged, have grown up. They are a very real social problem. The army, which is where troubled young men traditionally went in order to be slapped into shape, absolutely refuses to accept young men who spent their youth on Ritalin. Why? Because such men never learned even the rudimentary basics of a certain disciplines, because schoolmarms were too lazy to do anything more than drug, drug, drug them. Now such men are damaged goods.

If the boys were such a problem in classrooms, then teachers should have gone on strike, and demanded society deal with the problem. Teachers didn’t. Instead they meekly went along with the poisoning of bright young men, and now their retirement is not as serene as they hoped it would be. Bitter, snarling, surly, thirty-year-old men lurk about the edges of gated retirement communities, and retired teachers might get mugged. Is this any way for our elders to be treated? Yes. What goes around comes around, and if you treat helpless children badly you may expect to be treated badly when you are a helpless elder.

My rural town is facing a heroin epidemic. Enough heroin to get high all weekend currently costs less than a six-pack of beer. Young men do “sow wild oats”, but where drinking whisky once left youth horribly hung-over, playing with heroin now leaves youth horribly addicted. Therefore we warn our youth against heroin, but some don’t listen. I can’t help but notice that the youth who are deafest to good advice are the same ones who spent their entire boyhoods drugged on Ritalin. Obviously Ritalin didn’t make them smarter. In fact it seems to engender an attitude wherein the use of drugs is acceptable. And the use of drugs is acceptable, to schoolmarms, is it not? In fact some schoolmarms demand little boys be drugged, do they not?

The exception to this rule is tobacco. Since before the time of Tom Sawyer schoolmarms have been dead set against the small Winston Churchhills of the world smoking fat cigars. But make a fiery, defiant young Winston complacent with Ritalin? Oh, that is fine and dandy.

Now we are facing the consequences of our worship of Molech. Some schoolmarms feel it is horrible to send our youth off to war, and that sacrificing our youth in battle is a worship of Molech. However when danger invades our land it might be nice if elderly, retired teachers had a few healthy young men around to defend them. Are there many such young men left? Or have the schoolmarms crucified them all?

Some schoolmarms say it isn’t Ritalin that maims our young men, but rather the maiming is caused by a social problem that Ritalin was attempting to deal with. This is a lame excuse, and fails to recognize the damage such drugs do. It accepts the propaganda spewed out by the pharmaceutical companies, which suggest such drugs are not addictive and have no side effects, and which make the old Tobacco Lobby’s evil antics look minor, in comparison. Even if there was and is a social problem, the problem is not solved by drugging perfectly healthy little boys. In fact that ignores the problem, and the problem gets worse, like a cancer growing but hidden by painkillers.

In my opinion nothing is more degrading to manhood than addiction. The addicted cannot stand up and be a man, because they cannot worship anything high, (such as God if you are religious, or Truth if you are an atheist), and instead they are tortured and physically driven to worship their next fix. It is a “monkey” that rules them, and for their next fix they will sell their grandmother’s teeth. No promise they make can be trusted, for they will break it if it gets in the way of their next fix. They are reduced to being liars, for their next fix. It could happen to anyone, including people put on heroin against their will: Once addicted nobody can trust you. Your word is worthless. You are not a man; you are a junkie.

I’ve seen some young men pull out of this downward spiral, but they are a minority. They somehow have the guts to go through the nightmare of going “cold turkey”, (which few schoolmarms can even imagine), and then have the will to resist the attractive beckoning of friends who want them back, even though going back is death. However I’ve also seen pink-cheeked young men die of overdoses, even early on in their addiction.

In my Childcare I sometimes deal with the children of such addicts. Usually the grandparents have stepped in, because the parents are so focused on their next fix that they worship Moloch, and sacrifice their own children. The children have a certain air of sadness. They cannot understand why their parents care more for heroin than for them.

Schoolmarms need to be asked the same question. Why did you care more for Ritalin than six-year-old boys?

High up in skyscrapers the sleek executives of pharmaceutical companies preen and chortle and send out the blood money to the Teacher’s Union, so old teachers can receive pensions. They think they are above it all, but outdoorsmen built the very box they gloat in. Once their high-rise office was merely I-beams, high above city streets, with a cold wind whistling through, and the only people able to work in such scary circumstances were stoic Navajo and Sioux. In other words, the sort of outdoorsman their drugs destroy built the very perch such executives prattle upon.

The simple fact of the matter is that many boys are not born to be indoors. It is unnatural to ask them to sit for long hours at desks or in cubicles. It is even crueler to drug them for complaining about being cramped, especially when they are small and helpless, only five or six years old.

What I say is, “Lets go outside!” It is not merely the little boys that then jump for glee. Lots of the little girls don’t want to sit indoors at rows of desks either. Nor do they learn less by being outside. Can you tell the difference between checkerberries and partridgeberries? Between yellow vetch and crown vetch? Kids only four year old at my Childcare love to tell their parents about such distinctions. Furthermore children who may be the worst learners at rows of desks are sometimes the best students, when romping through the fields.

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Is it so hard to do what I do? Obviously not, if a bumpkin like me can do it. So why didn’t schoolmarms do it thirty years ago, when they first became aware boys were a worsening problem in their classrooms?

Either they didn’t respond to the problem because they lacked the brains to see a solution, or they were too damn lazy, or perhaps too scared. None of these excuses justifies drugging small and helpless children. Rather than seeking the solution they complied with the problem, and became part of the problem, and included the problem in their retirement portfolios.

How strange it seems to me that these same schoolmarms now think their retirement should be free of the problem, which is looming like a thunderhead in our social skies. Did they really believe they could destroy our future, and then somehow retire into a future that wasn’t a wasteland?

Do schoolmarms deserve the fat pensions we pay them? That is not for me to decide. I suppose we each earn our respective rewards and punishments, whether they be in this world or the next, however I fear schoolmarms  will soon see a different sort of pension, when hyperinflation renders their fat checks too small to buy a loaf of bread, and they face streets full of the thugs they unwittingly created.

Old men and small children don’t do well
In wars, for in such madness a crazed greed
Casts songs of innocence into a hell
With songs of experience. War’s sick need
Is to mutilate both Truth and Beauty,
So old men and small children best lay low
And have nothing to do with loot or booty,
And own nothing worth taking, and never show
The true treasures that Truth and Beauty are.
Keep those secrets private, as the kings rave
And shake their fists at the evening’s first star
Because it dares shine and fears no brute’s knave.
That star glimmers Truth unseen by madmen
But seen by the old men walking with children.


ARCTIC SEA ICE –Refreeze Delayed–(October 3-11, 2015)


.DMI2 1003 mslp_latest.big DMI2 1003 temp_latest.big

DMI2 1003B mslp_latest.big DMI2 1003B temp_latest.big

I apologize for being unable to properly withdraw from life and enjoy the pleasures of escape to the arctic. Sometimes life won’t let you escape.

Time and tide and arctic sea-ice wait for no man, and a lot’s been going on I haven’t had time to talk about. A veritable flood of milder air came north with low pressure and made the Pole an area of uplift, which drew more air north at the surface.  A lot of this “air” was water vapor, which went from taking up a lot of space as vapor to taking up very little space as a drop of water or an ice crystal.  Therefore there does not need to be as much outflow aloft as one might expect, with all the inflow.

The vapor also released a lot of heat as it went through the phase changes of gas to liquid and liquid to solid. (There is a phase change the other way when precipitation evaporates or sublimates when falling, but for the most part the recent storm has been releasing more heat than it has been sucking up.)

They say what goes up must come down, but this is not true of the Pole. Water vapor goes up there and does not return, and heat goes up there and is lost to outer space. Once the sun sets the Pole is like a chimney for the planet, and what we have just  seen is stuff heading up the chimney.

That being said, when a mild surge heads north for the Pole I often look for a south-bound arctic outbreak somewhere else,  and indeed  there were two decent surges of cold into eastern and western Siberia, as well as a snowy spell in Alaska that drew notice.

Even as milder air floods the Pole, snow-cover is building on the tundra in Siberia, Alaska and Canada.  This will assist the creation of cold air through radiational cooling, and result in the Arctic ocean being frozen by south winds from the tundra.

Snowcover Oct 3 ims2015276_alaska

However one interesting feature is that swath of snow northwest of Hudson Bay, because much of it is well south of the actual coast of the Arctic Sea. This tendency also shows up in a Dr. Ryan Maue map posted on Joseph D’Aleo’s excellent blog at the Weatherbell site, showing the the deepening snow in Western Siberia. Much of the snow is well south of the actual coast.Snowcover Oct 3 ecmwf_snowdepth_russia_41(1)

This of course makes one wonder about the maps which show the arctic coasts as well above normal, in terms of water temperature:  

(I point out elsewhere that these maps can show water as red even when it is full of floating ice, as was the case in Hudson Bay last summer, which does make one suspect they are estimating on the warm side.)

In conclusion, we have a situation where we have a cold circle of ice atop the globe, surrounded by a larger circle of milder coastal waters, surrounded by an even larger circle of cold tundra. Until the coastal water freezes, the situation is wonderfully unstable.

The current temperature graph for areas north of 80° shows the current surge of mild air past its peak, and about to begin what I suspect will be a steep plunge.DMI2 1003B meanT_2015

The ice “extent” graph shows the mild surge did slow the refreeze, but couldn’t halt it.DMI2 1003B icecover_current_new

Most of our surviving buoys did show the milder air reaching across the Pole to Beaufort and Chukchi Seas, and the pacific side of the Central Arctic Basin, ending their cold spell. The Atlantic and Siberian side hadn’t experienced the early season cold as much, and continue fairly mild. Yet the temperatures only briefly could thaw, in only a few places, and rather than the sea-ice thawing we often saw falling snow and freezing rain. Most of the slow-down in the refreeze was due to bottom-melt having a chance to occur without much upper-freezing,  and also gale force winds smashing up the new baby-ice.

It is unfortunate that O-buoy 10 got crushed (or perhaps retrieved by an icebreaker) as we have no eye down in the Beaufort Sea “Slot”. The NRL concentration map suggests the southern “reef” of the “lagoon” got dispersed by the gales, though we cannot tell if the water still has ice and slush in it, once everything gets wet, as slush doesn’t show up well to satellite sensors.  If the reef reappears during the refreeze we will know it wasn’t fully dispersed.Concentration 20151003 arcticicennowcast

I’ll download some pictures from cameras, and catch up on Faboo’s doings, in the morning.


Obuoy 9 1004 webcam

It is actually nearly noon where O-buoy 9 floats, near the meridian. The days are swiftly growing shorter and the sun lower, and I have to be on my toes or I miss the daylight pictures.

It is interesting to compare this picture with the picture from last Thursday. If you open the pictures to new tabs and click back and forth, you can see only the shadows move. What appears to be open water is actually “baby ice”. The stability is remarkable, considering the area went through a whiplash from southerly gales to northerly gales.Obuoy 9 1002 webcamThis is not to say the ice isn’t moving. The area moved over 20 miles north and then 20 miles south. Temperatures also rocketed up to a period of thawing, before crashing to the current period where temperatures stay between -10° and -5°.

Obuoy 9 1004 temperature-1week

What the stability of the ice shows is that the ice is becoming more concrete, and that even a thaw can’t halt the process of refreezing in the northern waters of Fram Strait. In fact when the temperatures first crashed in the above graph the winds were up near 40 mph, so the wind chill was severe, adding to the power of the refreeze. Lastly, the water under the ice is colder here than over in Barents Sea, or in the southern parts of Beaufort and Chukchi Sea on the pacific side, so bottom-melt can’t occur to any great degree.

The only way to melt this ice will be to bodily shift it en mass many miles south, down the east coast of Greenland, yet currently the wind has died and the ice is still up near 79.5° latitude. We made it south of 79° briefly back at the end of August, but since then the typical export of ice south through Fram Strait has been halted.  It is highly likely to resume as the autumnal gales set in, but I’ve been saying that for a month now.


DMI2 1004 mslp_latest.bigDMI2 1004 temp_latest.big

The maps show the Polar gale (“FG4son”) continuing to weaken and fill as it sinks south towards the Canadian Archipelago, with the -15° isotherm reappearing at its core despite the fact the storm was initially made up of mildness. I am fascinated by how such storms “create cold”, but cannot explain it.

Also interesting to watch is Fram Strait. I am suspicious of the slightest dimple of low pressure there, expecting a new frammerjammer to form, but it looks like any low pressure forming there now will be squeezed southeast and be absorbed by a a general area of storminess loop-de-looping in Western Siberia, and building a ridge of high pressure over western Scandinavia which will join up with the high pressure on the Pacific side of the Pole, and create a long ridge over the top of the earth. If this actually occurs (I tend to want to see it before I believe it) then once again winds will turn south in Fram Strait, and once again the ice will move “the wrong way”.


Faboo got a pie in its face and can’t see.NP3 1 1004 2015cam1_3I suppose we might get enough warmth surging north to melt the lens clean, if another southerly flow actually gets going in Fram Strait, but unless that happens I’m a bit gloomy about the chances of the low sunshine cleaning the lens.  Usually we are well down into Fram Strait by now, and Atlantic air keeps the lens thawed. Twice we have even seen the icebreaker show up to save the camera. This year we are much further north than usual, though we’ve made some recent progress down towards 84° latitude.

October 1 saw Faboo continue SSE another 14.82 miles to 84.368°N, 5.285°W. Winds were strong, peaking at 36 mph at the start of the period and only slacking off to 15 mph at the end. Meanwhile temperatures slowly rose from a low of  -10.2°C at the start to a high of -6.4°C at the end.

October 2 saw the winds die down and Faboo move more to the ESE, covering only 3.56 miles to 84.330°N, 4.930°W. Temperatures dipped to a low of -8.7°C at midnight and then rose to the high of  -5.4°C at 1500Z.

That swirled-around air is about as warm as we’ll see, unless another surge comes north through Fram Strait, as the unofficial Mass Balance report shows temperatures crashing to -15.75°, and also Faboo moving very little at all.

As an aside, the stormy end to the ice-melt season really took a toll of the Mass Balance buoys, and the buoy associated with Faboo is one of only two still reporting.

SUNDAY EVENING DMI MAPS  —Wrong-way flow developing—

 Already the long ridge of high pressure can be seen developing from Bering Strait right over the top of the planet and down through the Atlantic towards Denmark. This may give cold north winds to Finland, but the western side will be effecting Fram Strait, and southerly winds will push the normal flow of ice south through Fram Strait back to the north.  Also another gush of mild air could rush up to the Pole, and the Earth’s heat be lost “up the chimney” to the deep darkness of outer space.

DMI2 1004B mslp_latest.big DMI2 1004B temp_latest.big

The gale west of Iceland is an interesting feature. I’m dubbing it “Stukky”, as the ridge of high pressure will act as a “Block”, and the gale will just get stuck. It will mill around west of Iceland all week, until a greatly weakened memory of it may get carried up the coast of Greenland next weekend, like an eddy in the southerly flow, and perhaps be the next frammerjammer.

It will be interesting to watch how strong the southerly flow gets, and how long it lasts, this week. Some models see the passage of “Stukky” heading north as a mere blip in a continuing southerly flow, but that involves the models looking further ahead than is wise.


O-buoy 14 is located roughly at 79.1° N and 148° W. Temperature rising at -8°C.Obuoy 14 1004B webcam


O-buoy 8 is experiencing light winds and temperatures down around -7°C. The lead on the horizon to the upper left still looks open. The pressure ridge on the foreground hasn’t come any closer to overwhelming the camera.Obuoy 8 1004B webcam

O-BUOY 13 

Temperatures have risen to -8°C with winds 10-15 mph. Obuoy 13 1004B webcamO-BUOY 15

After a dive to -14°C temperatures have recovered to around -7°C, as winds have dropped to nearly calm.Obuoy 15 1004 webcam

O-BUOY 9  –Fram Strait at night–

Winds are nearly calm and temperatures down around -8°C.  At the start of the winter darkness there is a lot of twilight.  Obuoy 9 1004B webcam


On October 3 Faboo made it as far south as 84.324°N at 0600Z before drifting slowly back to the north, continuing east all the while, to end the day at 84.327N°, 4.761°W, which was only 1.17 miles, to the east, and not towards Fram Strait, although ice to the east is more likely to get flushed south than ice to the west, until you get over towards Franz Josef Land.

Temperatures were at their highest around midnight, at -7.4°C and then spent most of Saturday around -10°C  before a plunge to the days low of -16.1°C at the very end of the period.

The unofficial reports today show we remain basically stalled, with temperatures moderating slightly.


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“CPR” (which is short for “cross polar ridge”) continues to develop, but the southerly flow is jerked west north of Iceland by Stukky the stalled gale. Consequently all the Atlantic mildness and moisture is crashing into Greenland, climbing to 10,000 feet, and depositing snow and latent heat up on the icecap, where a lot of heat is likely lost to outer space. Up north of there in Fram Strait the winds are still nearly dead calm (according to O-buoy 9) and temperatures remain cold. No real “wrong way flow has developed yet.

Elsewhere cold north winds have developed over Scandinavia and western Siberia, but for the most part the developing high pressure of CPR has things fairly quiet and getting colder in the calm. FG4son continues to weaken and fill as it settles south through the Canadian Archipelago, with a weak Alaska-to-Greenland flow to its north.

All Quiet on the Northern Front.


O-buoy 9 reporting calm and -8° with a dusting of snow.Obuoy 9 1005 webcam


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“CPR” has developed from Norway to Alaska, with the isobars on the west side of that ridge of high pressure indicating “wrong way” flow in Fram Strait. So we seek out our reporter on the scene, O-buoy 9, and ask if winds have increased.Obuoy 9 1006 windspeed-1weekIndeed the breeze has stiffened rather swiftly to over 22 mph. So our next question is whether the winds are bringing north milder, Atlantic air.Obuoy 9 1006 temperature-1weekAnd indeed we see temperatures have rise right up to the freezing point.

We glance north from O-buoy 9 to Faboo, to see if the mildness is making it further north, and see temperatures have risen slightly to -13.08° C, but not before getting down to -20.05° C. (These are “unofficial” reports from the Mass Balance Buoy, which has a date stamp but lacks a time stamp).

In other words we have a nice flood of juicy, mild Atlantic air heading north to meet some frigid arctic air. Hmm. Anyone sense an event on the horizon?

Here is our morning picture from O-buoy 9:Obuoy 9 1006 webcamThe ice isn’t showing signs of movement (though it may be starting to move en mass) but the baby-ice is darker, as if the dusting of snow has been blown off and/or thawed.

Last week the southerly flow created a storm that brought down cold north winds around its west side, and Fram Strait experienced a sort of whiplash, with southerly gales becoming northerly gales.   This time the storm may form further west, towards the Nares Strait of Greenland, and keep Faboo  and O-buoy 9 in southerly and westerly winds. (If such a storm does form it will be dubbed “Nairzy”.)


 DMI2 1006B mslp_latest.big DMI2 1006B temp_latest.big

“Nairzy” is forming north of Nares Strait, as mild air spears north through Fram Strait and runs into very cold air that was parked there. “CPR” remains a blocking high across the Pole, keeping “Stukky” stuck west of Iceland. Weak low pressure rules the Kara Sea, as low pressure crosses Siberia west-to-east to the south.

The “wrong way” winds in Fram Strait have the ice starting to grind north once again.


Sadly the camera’s lens continues to be obscured. I do have some hope the surge of mild air may get far enough north of Fram Strait to melt the frozen rain from the lens.

On October 4 Faboo made it as far east as 4.713°W before drifting back west, and barely nudged south, covering only 0.59 miles the entire 24 period and ending at 84.319°N, 4.730°W.  Temperatures moderated from a low of -14.8°C to a high of -8.8°C at 1800Z, with winds light to calm.

On October 5 the entire day saw near calm, and the ice barely budged, drifting south to 84.315°N ar 0600Z, north to 84.319°N at noon, and then back down to 84.315°N again at the periods end, while floating west to 4.758°W at 1800Z before turning east, and covering only 0.32 miles. However the temperature plunge was far more dramatic, from a high of -10.0°C at noon to -23.8°C at the period’s end. This is a temperature befitting January, this close to Fram Strait.

Today’s unofficial reports showed the temperatures rising into the single digits and the ice starting to shift north, but the -23.8°C reading once again shows the “cold creation” that occurs as storms fade away at the Pole. Even if the cold only occurs in pockets, I have never heard it adequately described, though I have a sense older meteorologists intuitively grasp it.

The ice has started moving north under O-buoy 9 as well, and it produced the picture of the day, after a daylight of gray drabness:Obuoy 9 1006C webcam


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“Nairzy” continues to grow, and now is to a degree diverting the “wrong way” flow to the east as it moves to the Pole. However it looks like, as Nairzy moves on, the “wrong way” flow will reestablish itself until a frammerjammer develops next Sunday. The southerly stream of mild air has moved east towards Svalbard and colder air and calmer winds are off the northeast coast of Greenland at O-buoy 9.

Across the Pole “Looter” is the Aleutian low south of the Bering Strait, but it looks like it will mill around and occlude and loop-de-loop there without bringing a major Pacific surge north. Rather it will contribute to an east wind across the Bering Strait and then along the entire Siberian coast, before the east wind dives south through Finland.

The morning view from O-buoy 9 is again gray, with light winds and temperatures back up to -3°C after getting down to -5°C over night. There is no clear movement of any ice even on the distant horizon. Obuoy 9 1007 webcam

On the other side of the Canadian Archipelago O-buoy 8-b has seen temperatures crash to -15°, and its anemometer may have frozen up, for it reports no wind. The lens has been obscured, either by hoarfrost or perhaps light snow.

Obuoy 8 1006 webcam Obuoy 8 1007 webcam  WEDNESDAY NIGHT MAPS

DMI2 1007B mslp_latest.big DMI2 1007B temp_latest.big

“Nairzy” has moved past the Pole, and the “wrong way” flow has resumed in Fram Strait. Cold temperatures have been sneaking back to the Pacific side of the Pole.


Yesterday saw some dramatic stuff sweep by our faithful camera. Not that the lens was melted clean and we could actually see anything, but the ice on the lens thinned a little. NP3 1 1007 2015cam1_2In this situation we have to resort to seeing with thermometers and anemometers and barometers, and yesterday they recorded a bit of a ruckus passing Faboo by.

Movement was erratic as we moved west to 4.770°W at midnight, east to 4.627°W at 0900Z, west to 4.724°W at 1500Z, and then back east to 4.346°W at 2100Z. Of greater interest was our “wrong way” movement north from 84.315°N to 84.425°N at 1800Z, before we slouched back to 84.418°N. All in all we moved 7.62 miles NNE, the “wrong way.”

Winds went from a dead calm to a stiff southerly breeze of 25mph, and then swung over 100 degrees while subsiding slightly to 20 mph. As this surge of wind rushed up the  temperatures soared from -23.8°C on 2100Z on October 5 to -0.2°C at 1500z yesterday, before falling back after the wind shift to -8.1°C at 2100Z.

This is a demonstration if the Atlantic’s power, this close to Fram Strait. Occasionally, even during the darkest, coldest days of January, milder air can come rushing north, when the flow is meridional.

It annoys me our data is always a day late. More recent data comes from our co-located Mass Balance Buoy 2015B, but that is like taking your own temperature by sticking the thermometer in your wife’s mouth. Well, maybe not that bad, but 2015D’s temperature cannot be called Faboo’s “official” temperature, especially as it lacks a time stamp. (Likely Mass Balance data is gathered twice or four times a day, but they don’t say so.)

In any case, unofficially Faboo saw temperatures plunge today, and then yo-yo back up, as winds again became southerly, and the “wrong way” drift resumed.


Why is “meridian” spelled with an “a” and “meridional” with an “o”?  The answer my friend, is blow-ed in the wind. The answer is blow-ed in the wind (and likely involves the fact many meteorologists can’t spell, including the fellow who first coined the word “meridional”, back in the days scientists spoke Latin.)


For some reason the DMI maps seem to miss the spikes of coldest cold, so I figured I should note that our buoy closest to the Chukchi Sea has shown temperatures flirting with the -20°C mark.Obuoy 15 1007 temperature-1weekThis would tend to suggest the baby-ice would be growing over towards East Siberia. It also suggests these O-buoy cameras hold all sorts of interesting stuff, even when their cameras are a bit boring, as O-buoy 15″s has been.Obuoy 15 1007 webcam

THURSDAY MORNING DMI MAPS  —Second Fram Strait Surge—

DMI2 1008 mslp_latest.big DMI2 1008 temp_latest.big

A second surge of mild air up through Fram Strait seems to be clashing with cold air north of Greenland, and breeding a second low north of Nares Strait, which we will dub “Nairzeetoo”. Nairzy, (which now should perhaps be called “Nairzeeone”), is swiftly fading, perhaps because Nairzeetoo is robbing it of its inflow.

The models are flipflopping a bit, in terms of how this wrong way pattern will break down, but it seems the part of “CPR” towards the Pacific will weaken and fade, with most of the high pressure settling over Scandinavia, which will allow low pressure to take a more normal west-to-east route in the North Atlantic, and allow a more normal north-to-south flow in Fram Strait. However for a day or two winds are still southerly, and the ice heads north, the “wrong way”.


Temperatures are back up to freezing and perhaps just above, and the winds have again picked up to over 20 mph.Obuoy 9 1008 webcam


Yesterday Faboo dithered about, as winds swung around 170°, dropping from over 20 mph to around 7 mph just before noon and then increasing to over 20 mph again. The ice changed directions so much that it must have been groaning and moaning in protest. In terms of longitude it moved east to 4.335°W  at midnight, west to 4.484°W at 0300Z, east to 4.145°W at 0900Z, west to 4.330°W at 1500Z, and finally back east to 4.161°W at 2100Z. In terms of latitude it moved south to 84.389°N at midnight, north to 84.407°N at 0600Z, south to 84.390°N at noon, and then north to 84.424°N at 2100Z. In the end all this fuss and bother moved Faboo only 1.21 miles northeast. May this be a lesson to us all: “Don’t dither”.

Temperatures fell to a low of -17.0°C at 0600Z, and stayed fairly low all day, before a second climb began at the very end of the period and raised us to the day’s high of -7.3°.

Today’s unofficial report from the Mass Balance buoy suggests Faboo made it above freezing and has been blown north. I have had hopes the lens might actually be melted clear of ice, and sure enough, it happened.  Of course, the view is of thick fog, but hey, its better than nothing.NP3 1 1008 2015cam1_1


DMI2 1008B mslp_latest.big DMI2 1008B temp_latest.big

 The “wrong way” flow is now pulling above-freezing air up towards the Pole on the Atlantic side, even as cold air sags south and builds on the Pacific side. “CPR” is eroding on the Pacific side and an independent (and weak) high pressure has broken away there, with a weak trough of low pressure separating it from the stronger part of CPR, which is settling down over Scandinavia. This trough, though weak, will change the pattern eventually. Meanwhile our “wrong way” flow continues, with Nairzy fading as weak Nairzeetoo follows.

I suspect some sort of ruckus will come of all the mild air being pumped up to clash with very cold air, but so far the models don’t see to see much of anything home-grown, and instead foresee the import of storms north from the Atlantic over the top of CPR as it settles south to Sweden.


It is interesting to compare the Beaufort Sea sea-ice concentration map from a little over two weeks ago with today’s:

September 23

Beaufort ice 0923 beauforticennowcast

October 8

Beaufort concentration 20151008 beauforticennowcast

To the west The Slot’s “lagoon” has frozen completely open, while to the east the southern “reef” of the lagoon seems to have been dispersed by the storms, even as the ice has advanced on all other sides.

It seems “The Slot” will soon be but a memory, however I imagine it contributed to the cooling of Beaufort Sea surface water, by preventing warm inflow from the south (due to the “reef”) even as the “lagoon’s” water was exposed to colder-than-normal summer air temperatures, which often dipped below freezing. This may explain why the ice at Mass Balance Buoy 2014, located at 80.72° N, 177.61° W, (north of the Western “Slot”), seems to show the bottom-melt ending early.Bottom Melt Oct 8 2015F_thick


DMI2 1009 mslp_latest.big DMI2 1009 temp_latest.big

Nairseetoo is stronger than forecast, and rather than subsiding south into the Canadian Archipelago like Nairzy did it looks like Nairzeetoo will head across the Pole for the East Siberian Sea, finding its way through the weakness that developed in CPR’s high pressure. Indeed Nairzeetoo is describing what looks like a new storm track. As the Atlantic side of CPR sinks down and becomes a Scandinavian high pressure storms will take the new storm track north of it. This storm track is trying to behave itself and become a more ordinary west-to-east storm track along the Siberian coast, but is currently displaced far to the north.

“Stukky” remains stuck over Iceland, but north of it is a little dimple of low pressure off the east coast of Greenland. I remain suspicious of such dimples, as we’ve seen them blow up into frammerjammers this fall. I’ll call this one “FG6”, but currently models don’t see it as being more than a weak eddy swept north in the “wrong way” flow, eventually absorbed int Nairzeetoo as a bump on its isobars on the Laptev Sea side.

The next storm looks like it will be Stukky, which  will at long last depart Iceland and head north to Fram Strait, curve east to Svalbard, and then dive over the top of Scandinavia into western Siberia. If this occurs Stukky will end the wrong way flow in Fram Strait, and there will be more typical gales between Stukky and high pressure centered over Greenland’s icecap.

After that I don’t trust the models, but they are showing some odd stuff, including the idea that the north flow won’t last very long in Fram Strait.


Obuoy 9 1009 webcamA steady south breeze of roughly 20 mph has blown the ice back up to 80°. It had drifted east nearly to 6° longitude, but is now pushed back west by the southeast winds ahead of FG6.  Temperatures have been above freezing, and this thaw extends north to Faboo, which is now further east than O-buoy 9, and back north to 84.59°N.


As always, Faboo’s official data is released a day late, when it is in some ways old news, but in this case it does demonstrate that  when you introduce moist Atlantic air to frigid polar air the result is a ruckus.

Yesterday (October 8) Faboo  saw its lowest temperature at the very start of the period, (which was the day before’s highest temperature) of -7.3°C. Temperatures soared up to a high of +1.1°C at 0300Z, and for the rest of the period temperatures didn’t vary more than two tenths of a degree, ending the period at +0.9°C at 2100Z. This thawing was accompanied by a roaring gale, peaking with steady winds of 31 mph at noon, and only backing off to 28 mph at 2100Z.  These roaring winds pushed the ice 14.54 mile NNE, the “wrong way”, to 84.580°N, 2.679°W.

The lens of Faboo’s camera was melted free of ice, but all it could see was a thick fog. This super-saturated air was likely condencing on the ice and snow the same way drops of water bead on the side of a glass of ice-water on a humid summer day. As this water condenced it was releasing latent heat, as it underwent the phase change from vapor to liquid, and this heat made the fog a “snow-eater”. Likely the powder snow became sticky and, even slushy in places. In the end, however, all this heat will be uplifted and go up the chimney to outer space, and be lost to earth.

The Ryan Maue GFS map from the Weatherbell Site of polar temperatures paints a pretty picture of the storm Nairzeetoo sucking in the mild air this morning.DMI2 1009 gfs_t2m_arctic_1

I have a hunch the computer models are constructed to see storms as tracking along lines of latitude, around the Pole, and have a hard time seeing these storms that track along a line of longitude right over the top of the earth. They always seem to see these storms as weak, minor features, and displace the energy south to more southerly storms, and then are taken by surprise by the strength of the polar lows. Even when the lows do not become gales, they are often stronger than foreseen.

Why are they stronger? I can only venture “wild surmise”. (John Keats)

My imagination sees the “Quiet Sun” as creating a situation where the earth is losing more heat. In a sense the damper in the chimney has been opened up. At the same time the oceans are releasing more heat, (perhaps due to ordinary cycles, or perhaps tweaked by the “Quiet Sun,”) and this creates more heat available, to rush up the chimney. Therefore rather than winds achieving a poise that allows them to waft around and around the earth in a serene and genteel manner, they are sucked north into a maelstrom, a sort of black hole where earth sees heat vanish, never to be seen again.

Not that Nairzeetoo will get to the Pole and vanish. It will be spat out the other side of the “black hole”, (which makes our black hole rather pathetic, as black holes go), and wander down to fade away in the East Siberian Sea.

The conditions in the wake of Nairzeetoo are confused, in the vision of various models, but there seems to be an idea some intense cold will develop in the wake of the swirl of thawing, especially just north of Greenland.


DMI2 1009B mslp_latest.big DMI2 1009B temp_latest.big

“Nairzeetoo” is heading past the Pole, much stronger than it was suppose to be. It’s feeder-band of above-freezing air is bent away from the Pole now, and Naizeetoo may soon be cut off from is fuel.

FG6 is weak, in Fram Strait, weakening the “wrong way” flow. Stukky is still stuck, over Iceland. Sown south of the Bering Strait, “Looter” is also stuck, and, if anything, is sucking cold air south rather than driving Pacific air north. The high pressure CPR remains strong over Scandinavia but is weakly slumping south to the coast of Siberia as you move east towards the Pacific.


DMI2 1010 mslp_latest.big DMI2 1010 temp_latest.big


DMI2 1010B mslp_latest.big DMI2 1010B temp_latest.big

“Nairzeetoo” is starting to weaken, as the mild air feeding it now has a long way to go and has been swung around to the Siberian side. At the surface the freezing osotherm is retreating back towards Svalbard, but likely a sort of feeder tube of mild air is rushing north as an occlusion, above the low levels. A lot of Atlantic heat is being lost “up the chimney” to outer space, but the mechanics keeping Nairzeetoo strong are getting too strung out, and it is starting to weaken and fill.

The frammerjammer “FG6” never strengthened, and now is just a dimple on the side of Nairzeetoo. It has pushed the ice slightly south in its wake.

Stukky has finally come unstuck and is drifting north from Iceland. Some decent north winds are developing between it and high pressure centered over Greenland, but these are quite local and don’t extend far up into Fram Strait yet. Because high bressure is building behind Nairzeetoo,  stukky woll not be able to follow straight north, and likely will veer towards Svalbard. It will likely remain weak, for a North Atlantic low, and not get much below 1000mb, and therefore the isobars brween it and the high pressure atop Greenland will not be very tight, and winds won’t be that strong in Fram Strait.

Things get interesting not all that far into the future, as temperatures are expected to crash greatly north of Greenland, in the wake if Nairzeetoo. This can be seen in Dr. Ryan Maue’s supurb rendition of the GFS model over at the Weargerbell site. The first map below is the intitial map of current conditions, and the second is from 48 hours from now. Note how the cold grows north of Greenland, and also the start of a new surge of milder air just beginning. (GFS maps are flipped, with Greenland at the top and to the right.)Nares 1 gfs_t2m_arctic_1Nares 2 gfs_t2m_arctic_9The next map is from 72 hours from now, and the flood of milder air is obvious along the north coast of Greenland.Nares 3 gfs_t2m_arctic_13

Now, to a bumpkin like me such mild air flooding north and clashing with the very cild air would create the next Nares Dtrait storm, perhaps called “Nairzeethree”. However the GFS model sees no such solution, 72 hours from now.Nares 4 gfs_mslp_uv10m_arctic_13

This GFS solution shows the weak remains of Nairzeetoo on the East Siberian Sea, and then no storm at all from there all the way across the Pole and down through Fram Strait until one comes to a new, weak low crawling up the east coast of Greenland.

It doesn’t usually pay to disagree with the computer only three days into the future, but I am wondering if it is failing to see a storm that will develop north of Greenland, where the cold air is hit by the next mild surge.

Faboo news

Faboo made it as far north as 84.606°N at 0600Z yesterday, and as far east as 2.115°W at 0900Z, before the winds dropped and shifted, and temperatures fell below freezing. Winds then picked up to the 15-20 mph range, and we headed the opposite way to 84.569°N, 2.648°W. Our total movement for the day was 0.78 miles SW. Our high temperature was +0.9°C at the very start, and our low was -5.5°C at 1800Z. After dim views thriugh thick fog, our lens promptly frosted over as soon as temperatures dipped below freezing.

NP3 1 1010 2015cam1_6

O-BUOY 9 –Winds stiffen, temperatures crash, ice moves wsw, snow

Obuoy 9 1010 webcamObuoy 9 1010B temperature-1weekObuoy 9 1010B webcam

 back down to -15°

Obuoy 8 1010B temperature-1weekObuoy 8 1010 webcamObuoy 8 1010B webcamBy the way, O-buoy 8 is located further off the coast of the Canadian Archipelago than I initially reported. It actually is on the Russian side of the Pole.

The other O-buoys showed somewhat dull pictures of grayness, with only O-buoy 14 showing any sign Nairzeetoo brought mildness across the Pole, rising towards -5° as the other two stayed down at -15°.


 DMI2 1011 mslp_latest.big DMI2 1011 temp_latest.big

“Nairzeetoo” continues to stretch out its feeder band, as it weakens and drifts towards east Siberia. The milder air has been drawn east along the Sibe4rian coast as the colder air is drawn east along the Canadian and Greenland coasts. “Stukky” has managed to create a more normal northerly flow in Fram Strait, but is blocked by a new high, (Call it “Nuhi”), which is forming between Stukky and Nairzeetoo. The sea-ice north of Fram Strait is being shifted west by Nuhi rather than flushed down into the strait, as winds swing to the east rather than being north. If Nuhi shifts north of the Stait more the winds in the northern reaches of the strait could even veer to the southeast, which would make the ice diverge and could create some open water. The descending air within Nuhi is becoming the coldest air of the Autumn, so far.


Obuoy 9 1011 webcam

The wind doesn’t show in the picture, of course, but it has been steadily in the 30-33 range, and the camera has drifted south of 80° latitude once again, moving ESE towards 9° longitude.

If you compare the above picture with O-buoy 9 pictures from earlier in this post you can see the dark areas are now light areas, as apparently the low areas of baby-ice were filled in with blowing snow, which perhaps stuck to the wet surface during the period of thaw. Temperatures are now slowly sinking past -6°, despite the wind being east, and not from the coldest air to the west.


DMI2 1011B mslp_latest.big DMI2 1011B temp_latest.big

LOCAL VIEW -Hurricane Joaquin-Updated Wednesday morning

It is hard to get properly alarmed about hurricanes any more. Sooner or later we will get clobbered, and no matter how much warning is done before hand, the storm will be reported as coming either “without warning” or “with little warning.”

For what it’s worth, here is a warning I wrote for WUWT in 2012, which contains quotes from an earlier warning I wrote for Accuweather in 2006:

After so many years of warning people, I feel like a hybrid cross between Chicken Little and The Boy Who Cried Wolf.  “The Chicken Who Cried Wolf”, perhaps.

I’m sick of it. I’m done with it. The simple fact of the matter is, it is too late. All you can do is rush out and buy some milk, along with all the other freaked-out people, if Hurricane Joaquin turns out to be “The Big One”.

It probably won’t. It will probably turn out to sea. Hurricane’s usually do, which is what breeds the sense of complacency, and even invulnerability.  Just before the 1938 hurricane completely trashed New England a college professor, professing to be an authority, announced that “hurricanes could not hit New England”, (for some reason it is best we forget). In that case a major hurricane hadn’t hit New England in over a hundred years. And, as it hasn’t been a hundred years since the 1938 hurricane, Joaquin probably won’t hit us.

If it does hit us, it will follow these three steps. One, it will mill about to our south, growing strong. Two, it will turn north and, still strengthening, start to take the characteristic accelerating path to the northeast and out to sea. And Three, “without warning” it will, accelerating even more, hook back to the northwest and clobber New England.

The amount of time the public will have between step 2 and step 3 will be around six hours. As you go to bed the late night news will be reporting the hurricane is heading out to sea, and when you awake the winds already will be rising. I’m convinced that, given the correct set of circumstances, not even the billions spent on satellites and computer models make all that much difference. (It might be interesting to plug the information we have concerning the 1938 hurricane, or Hurricane Carol in 1954, into our modern computers, and see if they recognized the threat 12 hours before New England got pummeled.)

When young I walked woods where all the rotting tree trunks lay in the same direction, and have seen those trunks slowly rot away, until now you can barely make out a long line of moss where the trunk once lay, and a low pile of stones where the roots once were torn from the earth. The forest is now full of pines over sixty years old. It is hard to believe the entire woods was flattened in a single hour, by Carol.

Some of those woods are now full of houses. I’m tired of coming across as an old crab, telling people their idyll is doomed. They worked long and hard to come up with the down-payment, and continue to work long and hard to come up with the mortgage payments, and the doom might not come in their lifetimes. Who needs some chicken crying wolf?

Of course, doom might come next Monday. But in that case it is likely too late to do much more than buy milk, ice, (and toilet paper. Don’t forget the toilet paper.)

I myself have a generator, plenty of containers that will hold plenty of gas, and a wood stove I can cook on, and firewood, and pigs and goats to feed the neighbors with, after their milk goes sour when their coolers run out of ice.  (But I’m not sharing my toilet paper. One has to draw the line somewhere.)

So I am just going to sit back and watch, to see if Joaquin heads out to sea or not. This post will contain updates, (and also poetry, which some flee from faster than they do hurricanes).

Hurricane Joaquin 2 HUIR(5)20151001 satsfc

(Click maps and pictures to clarify and enlarge.)

Currently the stationary front would seemingly protect the east coast. The problem is that low off Florida. If that digs into the upper atmosphere it can change the “steering currents,” and a hurricane headed safely northeast out to sea can back to the northwest.

To the south again lurks the hurricane
Making mockery of idyllic palms,
Balming breezes, and sweet rum that calms pain
Served by babes in grass skirts. Instead a bomb’s
Hidden in the wrapping paper. The south
Holds no mercy for the north’s limping troops.
Poison brims the bloom sipped by the bee’s mouth.
Youth tastes time and grows gray and stoops.
Low moaning’s in the music, a background
Full of ominous portents of doom.

Is this then the harvest? The crop found
By one who bouquets the wrong sort of bloom?
Love we should sow, but the world is insane
And builds on a beach before a hurricane.


Hurricane Joaquin 1002 HUIR

500 AM EDT FRI OCT 02 2015


LOCATION...23.3N 74.7W

Hurricane Jiaquin 1002B uv900_swath_nest3__2_(1)

Notice how the model swings it back towards New England before curving it out to sea. That makes a fellow nervous.


It is still just sitting down there, nudging ever so slightly north. 20151002 satsfc

LOCATION...24.3N 74.3W

I’d hate to be holed up in the central Bahamas right now. Sustained winds of 125 mph, and Joaquin is only slowly crawling away. At least in New England a hurricane comes plowing through at top speed, and is in and out before you really know what has hit you.  The 1938 hurricane was moving at over 50 mph when it clouted New England, but Joaquin is only moving at 7 mph.  By the time it finally moves away they won’t have a palm tree left. God help them.

At least it is moving NE, away from land.



LOCATION...28.0N 68.9W

Now is when the hurricane starts to accelerate harmlessly  (unless you live on Bermuda) out to sea, and everyone goes to bed unsuspecting. The “Big One” will shock people with a very different forecast in the morning, but that only happens 1% of the time.  Sleep well.



LOCATION...30.4N 67.1W

Joaquin continues to head out to sea, but I’m not lowering my guard quite yet, as our steely gray skies and east wind have given way to blue skies with an east wind, which means the high pressure is coming down over us. This is great if it shunts the hurricane out to sea, but bad news if it manages to get in front of the hurricane. In the upper atmosphere map below you can see what the computer model imagines we will see tomorrow morning. (Dr. Ryan Maue map from Joseph D’Aleo’s site at Weatherbell.)Joaquin 4 ecmwf_z500a_noram_7

The above map shows the low pressure off Carolina and the high pressure ahead of Joaquin which, in a worst case scenario, could sling it northwest. Those much wiser than I are fairly certain it will “escape” northeast, though Joseph D’Aleo states those on Cape Cod shouldn’t entirely lower their guard quite yet, and they will get some good surf.

A weirder solution would have Joaquin slow and do a loop. One of the weirdest solutions I have seen occurred in 1971, when I was about to sail south on a teenager’s misadventure.  A hurricane named Ginger headed out to sea, and then stopped, and spent a solid week slowly backing west and making a mess of all sailor’s plans. But that is a story for another time. I’ll just say I’m glad I’m not out on a boat this October 4, in the waters of Buzzard’s Bay heading south, as I was that October 4. Sometimes being an old man looking at maps and satellite pictures isn’t all bad.

Joanquin 4 HUIR(7)



LOCATION...32.2N 66.4W

It is swerving slightly back towards land, but no one seems the slightest bit concerned, as the the westerlies are coming south to the north, and also the storm is weakening some.  


Winds shifting a little south of east, here in New Hampshire, with only the crescent moon and bright Venus able to shine through a thin layer of strato-cumulus coming inland from the sea. Some higher clouds remotely seen through this lower deck, coming from the southeast. I’d be more nervous if wiser men weren’t certain the remote possibility of a sneak-attack-hurricane has faded away.  Joaquin likely will curve east and make a beeline for the Azores, but it currently is swerving just a little towards the NNE to see if it can get me to flinch.


LOCATION...34.1N 65.2W


LOCATION...35.8N 64.0W



LOCATION...38.3N 59.6W

Today Joaquin made up its mind and hitched a ride on the Westerlies across the Atlantic towards England.

20151006 satsfcEven as Joaquin vanishes off the right margin of the map that describes New England’s world view, Old England sees it appear on the left margin of the UK Met map describing their world view:Surface pressure chart - Forecast T+12 - Issued at: 0800 on Tue 6 Oct 2015

The UK Met has what is left of Joaquin running along the north coast of Spain next Sunday, so I may update this post a few times more, though it isn’t really a “local view”

However at this point I should likely tip my hat to the forecasters who had the nerve to go out on a limb and guess where this dangerous storm was going to go, especially Joe Bastardi over at Weatherbell, who did the best I saw, even though he did adjust is forecast from up-the-coast to out-to-sea. He made his adjustments before others, and all in all did an amazingly good job of predicting what cannot be predicted.

I stand by my guns, when it comes to the fact that one of these days one of these storms will look all the world like it is going out to sea, and then will swerve back northwest and shatter the windows of Boston’s skyscrapers while ripping just west of town, heading north at 50 mph. However even a blind squirrel can find a nut. I will be wrong 99 times before I am right once, as a guy like Joe Bastardi is right 99 times before he is wrong once.

But when I’m finally right, won’t I ever get the spotlight!  Headlines written by idiots will suggest I’m a better forecaster than Mr. Bastardi.  And me?  Hopefully I’ll have the brains to milk my day in the sun, and wind up nicely tanned.

In which case you should tap me on the shoulder, and remind me I am just an Eeyore.Eeyore rsz_eeyore61_5881_5847


LOCATION...40.5N 49.4W



LOCATION...42.0N 37.0W

Surface pressure chart - Analysis - Issued at: 0800 on Wed 7 Oct 2015

Current forecasts show a greatly weakened Joaquin sliding along the north coast of Spain and then ducking south along the France-Spain border into the Mediterranean by next Monday.