It may seem off the topic of sea-ice, but let us begin off the coast of Peru.

SST 20170829 Anomaly globe_cdas1_anom(96)

That blue spear pointing west off Peru is what looks like the start of a La Nina, and is a bit of a shock to me, for only two month ago that area was red, and it looked like we were in for a weak El Nino, at least in the central Pacific (an El Nino Modoki). The switcheroo that has occurred has given me, (and perhaps the patterns) a case of whiplash.

As far as I know this fooled everyone. A year ago people were expecting a big La Nina, because often a strong El Nino is followed by a strong La Nina, (sort of like a strong action creates a strong reaction). Instead there was a rather pathetic excuse for a La Nina, followed by a pathetic excuse for an El Nino.

Perhaps we are seeing a case of delayed-but-not-denied. It is sort of like when my desk gets too messy, and an avalanche of papers at the back starts to slide towards me. I can delay the avalanche with my right palm in one place, but it comes at me from another angle, and I can delay that with my left palm, but when it comes at me yet again from a third direction I know it’s all over, and the mess will slide into my lap and on the floor, (and cleaning my desk will become unavoidable). In other words, a La Nina was primed, but held back by some unknown culprit, (I suspect the “Quiet Sun”), but now the resistance is futile, and the La Nina will not be denied.

How does this effect sea-ice? In a general sense warmer oceans (El Nino) eventually (in several ways) warm the Pole, and increase melting, while colder oceans (La Nina) eventually (in several ways) cool the the Pole, and decrease melting.

Much of the hoop-la about the Pole melting has to do with the Atlantic being in a “warm” AMO phase at the same time the Pacific was in a “warm” PDO phase. The clockwork of these cycles has been messed with by the sun being very “noisy” last century, but shifting to a “quiet” sun this century. The PDO turned cold as expected, but then unexpectedly swung back to warm (though it may be ending that swing now.) The AMO has remained warm, but may be starting its swing back to cold.

When the tropics are warmer the planet tries to balance things out. The planet is like children, and like humanity, in that it attempts to achieve peace through creating a ruckus. The jet stream becomes meridional, as the planet tries to move the heat north and cold consequently sweeps south. So think of that, next time you look out the window at a howling storm. As trees fall say: “The planet is making peace.”

When the tropics cool (La Nina) the flow becomes more zonal and the cold stays north more. I’ve actually been forecasting that, (and seeing my forecasts blown), for some time, as the lagged effects of the big 2015 El Nino were used up (in theory). However in fact, as I stated, the big La Nina never developed and instead it looked all the world like a weak El Nino was going to develop.

This provided me with a handy excuse for all my blown forecasts. It also explained why the anomalous low pressure appeared at the Pole (that I dubbed “Ralph”) and wouldn’t go away, and why unusual warmth rushed up to the Pole in the dead of winter even as unusual snows fell in Kuwait, the Sahara, Mexico and Vietnam.

But now, with this La Nina appearing out of the blue, my forecasts need to go through a switcheroo. But the problem is the timing.  There is a lag between when an event occurs at the equator and the effects reach the Pole, both in terms of the air temperatures and in terms of the sea-temperatures (with the water taking longer to respond.)

My layman’s guess is that it will be around mid-winter when the pattern switches to a zonal one. The winter will start out like gang-busters, with a meridional pattern, (as a lagged effect of the El-Nino-that-wasn’t), but then the cold will retreat to the Pole and the end of the winter will be more merciful, at least on this side of the Atlantic. (I’m not so sure about Europe, as the Gulf Stream looks like it is swinging like a fire-hose on a sidewalk, and currently in a swing that may aim the mildness more towards north Africa than Europe,)

Of course this is dependent on whether the La Nina sticks, or becomes the La-Nina-that-wasn’t. The recent pattern has seemed agitated and fickle, and I blame the confusion on the “Quiet Sun.”

Perhaps we are even still seeing the lagged effects of the last La-Nina-that-wasn’t, for the models keep seeing a zonal pattern appear at the Pole. It starts to happen, but then Ralph reappears.  On a whole the clouds, looking down at the Pole, have moved in a counterclockwise manner.

Recently we have seen one of the best recoveries of “Byoof” (The Beaufort high) and the models were even suggesting we’d soon see a clockwise flow of clouds over the Pole. So far Ralph merely sagged to the Atlantic side, and the contrast between Pacific high pressure and Atlantic low pressure has created a cross-polar-flow from Siberia to Canada.


(All the cool air pouring down into the plains of North America is one of the factors breeding hurricanes in the warmer waters further south.)

Temperatures are falling, after the last Ralph-feeding mild-impulse came north. Surface-melt has ended, and from now on melt can only come from below.DMI4 0829 meanT_2017

It does not appear “extent” will get as low as last year:

DMI4 0829 osisaf_nh_iceextent_daily_5years_en

And for those who like to switch the subject to “volume”, it does not look like volume will get as low as well. The ice has not been scattered by “Gustogales”, and remains concentrated in the Central Arctic.

DMI4 0829 FullSize_CICE_combine_thick_SM_EN_20170828

Will update later if I find time.


After being alerted in “comments” I went to Tony Heller’s site at  to check up on a couple summer-voyagers who can send us pictures of Arctic Sea-Ice.

Creeping Senility Crystal Serenity is a luxury liner that allows you, for a mere $10,000, to travel north and see for yourself the melting ice. To a certain degree their technique for selling tickets utilizes the usual wailing and rending-of-garments about Global Warming, which Alarmists like to employ when making money off the fact ice melts in the arctic in the summer. However someone made a bit of a mistake. In selling tickets they state that they will be taking the Peel Sound route, and then go on to state that if William Parry had turned south and entered Peel Sound in 1819, rather than heading straight west to where sea-ice blocked him south of Melville Island, he might have been the first to navigate the Northwest Passage.

I have no idea if this is true, for the state of the ice in 1819 is largely unknown, except where Parry sailed. However by suggesting the waters were clear in 1819, and then running into ice, they embarrass Alarmists aboard, for rather than making it look like the arctic is melting away, they make it look like ice has increased in the last 198 years.

They may be able to penetrate the ice and complete the Northwest Passage, for they are accompanied by the icebreaker Shackleton.  However Parry was powered by sail, and stated he could be halted by a mere inch of ice, unless there were strong following winds.

Here is a picture of the ice they’ve met and the Shackleton:

CS 0829 2 Attachment-1

And here’s a map of their route:

CS 0829 1 Attachment-1

Ice looks thicker ahead, but sometimes there is open water right along the coast. The icebreaker can send off helicopters to seek the best route. (Another thing William Parry lacked.)

The cross-polar-flow I mentioned earlier in this post has been pouring some cold air down that way, and O-buoy 14, not far to the north, seems to show broken new ice between the bergs of old ice.

Obuoy 14 0830 webcam

I wonder if there is any chance they’d just turn around and go back?

The other adventurers are two boats, the Sea Dragon and the — , which are most definitely milking the Global Warming angle for every drop of cream they can get. The expedition is headed by the arctic adventurer Pen Hadlow, who achieved a remarkable so trek to the Pole years back, but is also known for the “Ship Of Fools” debacle down by Antarctica.

They sold their expedition as a first-time sort of adventure: “First to sail to the Pole”, (though they made sure to include many disclaimers about how science would come first and they might not bother going all the way). They include plenty of footage of sea-ice, and of polar bears reclining on the ice, all the while exclaiming how ice free it is.

(Before I include any photographs I should give credit where credit is due. Their photographer is named Coner McDonald and he is taking some beautiful shots.) You can check out his pictures of polar bears here:

While admiring their daring, I do have to toll my eyes a bit about the way they stress the sea as being ice free, yet need to tie up to a floe to do science experiments. But I bit my tongue, even when they included pictures like this:

(Taken by a drone?)

Arctic Mission 1 21014050_1885841401442838_5566014077910508507_o

And this:

Arctic Mission 2 21150145_1885839721443006_7462560160847329194_n

But today they found a patch of open water, and marveled over how ice-free the Pole was, and I can feel my held tongue slipping from my grasp.

Arctic Mission 3 21150233_1890956340931344_2187743086738490783_n

1.) They are at 80°, far from the Pole.

2.) We have reports of whaling ships sailing above 80°

3.) We have early Nimbus satellite pictures from the 1960’s showing enormous areas of open water up there.

4.) If it is so ice-free, why don’t they just head north? Why are they dilly dallying at 80°? At the very least they should set a new furthest-north-by-a-sailboat record. (I think the old record was set by Nansen’s Fram, 85°55′N)

The truth is, as we have seen from the camera’s of O-buoys in the past, the sea-ice is quite near, just over the nearby horizon (and possibly visible if they climbed the mast) and they likely would have a hard time heading much further north. But we shall see about that.

They should have sailed last year, when the gales had the ice much more broken….though perhaps the ships would have been broken up as well, by such gales.

NRL averaged “thickness” maps:  (Last year on left; this year on right.)

The Navy maps shows ice 2 feet thick where they find open water. This is likely because they average the thickness. There may be ice six feet thick not far away, and when you average it out with the patches of open water it comes to two feet thick. But what worries me is the chance the thicker ice crunches together with them in the middle.

View of that Ice-edge” from space

My best guess is that the “open water” they are in is in the upper center of the above picture. The ice gets thicker and thicker as you head to the Pole. Check out the view yourself here:

In any case, I’ve grabbed a hold of my slippery tongue again, and wish those fellows (and ladies) well. I’ll include them in my prayers. Their Facebook page makes good reading, no matter whether you are an Alarmist or Skeptic:

They have a neat time-lapse shot of their boat motoring through the sea-ice (before they found this “open water”) that likely makes the spirit of William Parry green with envy. Sail-powered ships lacked such maneuverability.

Stay tuned.


HURRICANE HARVEY –Galveston; head for the hills–(UPDATED WEDNESDAY)

At the Weatherbell Site Joseph D’Aleo and Joe Bastardi, (whom I consider among the best of the old-school forecasters), have been warning us that Harvey could be a threat to Texas since last week, (when models were suggesting Harvey was headed for Mexico or Central America, or even would die out after crashing into the Yucatan.). Now others are catching on, but Bastardi’s map of a possible track is a sort of worst-case-scenario that needs to be soberly considered, if you live down that way. Of course, though I like Mr. Bastardi a lot and wish him no ill, I’m praying he’s wrong. (After all, it is no sin for a meteorologist to be wrong; anyone dealing with the weather is often surprised by the twists and turns of chaotic systems. But what would be a sin would be for a meteorologist to fail to alert us of danger, and, as Mr.Bastardi is alerting us of danger, we should sit up and take notice.)

Here is the scenario he has drawn up:

Hurricane Harvey 1 download(2)

Notice Bastardi has the hurricane loop over land and then restrengthen over the Gulf of Mexico, with the ominous note, “May be close to, if not, major at both landfalls.”

To the east of the storm this involves persistent south winds and persistent heavy rains. The rains are somewhat beyond the comprehension of me, up north, where three inches is “heavy”. Parts of the Texas coast could get three feet!  Here is one of Dr. Ryan Maue’s maps (from the Weatherbell site; week free trial available.) Even his excellent map can’t comprehend the rainfall, as the color-key maxes out at 25 inches (two feet).

Hurricane Harvey 2 ecmwf_tprecip_tx_40(2)

What does this potentially mean for people on the Texas coast, east of the eye of the storm? It means a nasty storm surge from the south, due to the winds, at the same time as nasty flooding comes from the north, due to rains.

They say everything is bigger in Texas, (including egos), but there is some truth to this saying, when you look at the history of their floods and storms.

A saint delivered the book “Isaac’s Storm” to my hospital bed as I recovered from an operation a few years back, and I felt a lot less sorry for myself, reading about the unmitigated disaster the Great Hurricane of 1900 brought Galveston, a disaster which lost the fair city thousands of its thriving, young lives.

If you visit that area one thing that strikes you is how amazingly flat the coast is. In the case of a flood, you have a long, long way to go, if you are going to find a hill to head for. Therefore, if you are going to head for the hills, you should start early.

Galveston is now protected by a huge seawall they lacked in 1900, because they learned their lesson. They know the waters can pile up on that coast, and tides can rise twenty feet above normal. These huge tides can travel miles inland, with the landscape so flat. You can be ten miles inland and have salt water lapping at your front door.

Meanwhile, even if the landscape was perfectly flat, you’d have a flood of two to three feet, simply because of the rain. But the landscape isn’t perfectly flat, and all that rain starts to flow south.

The Texas landscape has wide, dry rivers crossed by long bridges, which causes visitors to wonder, especially when years pass and the dry river only has a small flash flood towards the middle, caused by a big thunderstorm. Visitors wonder why so much money was spent building such a long and expensive bridge. Then they see the same bridge, spanning dirty brown waters surging south from bank to bank of the “dry” river, because a tropical storm has dropped the equivalent of a thousand big thunderstorms, with its drenching rains.

Usually the floods from the sea have receded as the Hurricane dies and rains out over the land, and tides withdraw before the floods from the lands peak. What is so nasty about Mr. Bastardi’s track is that the winds don’t quit, and the sea keeps surging north even as the rainwater floods south. Where land-floods and sea-floods meet, the water could become absurdly deep, even in places miles away from both the coast and the river banks.

Then, as a final twist to the knife of this worst-case scenario, if the track of Harvey is as Mr. Bastardi predicts, all the water piled up against the coast will abruptly be pushed south, as winds swing swiftly to the north. This would push water out to sea, you might think. But, in terms of the Houston Ship Channel  and Galveston Bay, it would drive high waters against the landward sides of places that perhaps don’t have seawalls facing north towards land, including Galveston itself.

Yikes. For this reason I pray Joe Bastardi blows this forecast. Joseph D’Aleo, at his Weatherbell blog, points out computers offer other solutions; other paths Harvey might take:

Hurricane Harvey 3 aal09_2017082418_track_early

I think people should recognize the way meteorologists stick their necks out, when they make a risky and threatening forecast. If they see a real danger, they need to speak, to save lives, but they also face a nearly unlimited opportunity for looking like a chump. What would you chose to do? If you are right, you look like Paul Revere. If you are wrong, you look like Chicken Little. And you must chose NOW!

It is wise to turn to scripture in such situations. What did the prophet Jonah do? He was asked to deliver an unpleasant forecast to the people of Ninevah. Basically he was suppose to tell the Hell Angel’s of his time to shape up their act. Quite wisely (in my humble opinion) he said, “no bleeping way”, and headed in the opposite direction as fast as he could scamper. Then he got redirected, and wound up back in Ninevah, telling the Hell’s Angels fire and brimstone was going to rain down on them, because they were way too rowdy. Then he retired to the hills to watch the fire and brimstone rain down. However he blew his forecast. The people of Ninevah completely shaped up their act, for a little while (around a generation,) and the forecast fire and brimstone was delayed. Therefore you have this great scene in the Bible, with Jonah rather irate and sulking in the hills above Ninevah, because  he has (against his will) told the Hell’s Angels they’d get rained-on, but no rains fell.

Every meteorologist is, at some point, in the shoes of Jonah.

This is especially true if, as some suggest, people facing bad weather can change the weather by prayer, or New Age diets. or Hopi rain dances, or by buying anti-Global-Warming curly light bulbs. In fact, if human behavior can change the weather, meteorologists should keep their forecasts a secret, for, if they tell people, people will pray, and prayer will ruin their forecasts.

I would recommend meteorologists to do what psychologists do. When the forecasts of psychologists are absurdly wrong, they blame the client. In like manner, when the forecasts of weathermen are incorrect, they should blame the Baptist Church, or New Age dancers, or whatever, but those weathermen never listen to me.

Instead meteorologists attempt to forecast chaos, and confess when they are wrong. They are pretty amazingly humble, compared to the way the rest of us behave. Therefore, when the likes of Mr. Bastardi sticks his neck out, and makes an unpleasant forecast, I tend to think we should heed it.

Just as the tough dudes of Ninevah once heeded the oddball called Jonah,  the tough dudes of Texas should head for higher ground.


Friday Morning (5:00 EST)  25.9°N 95.4°W  Winds 105 mph.  Moving NW,  9 mph.

Hurricane Harvey 4 NHIR

1:00 PM 27.1°N 96.3°W; moving NW 10 mph; Winds 110 mph; pressure 27.91

Hurricane Harvey 5 vis0-lalo

5:00 PM

27.5N 96.5W; Moving northwest 10 mph. Winds 125 mph. Pressure 29.79

Hurricane Harvey 6 vis0-lalo

Harvey’s northward movement hasn’t yet slowed towards any sort of a stall, which is likely a good thing, as getting the center over the land will weaken the winds.

The eye wall went through a reformation today, where a small inner eye wall is replaced by a wider outer eye wall. Often the storm’s strengthening hesitates during this process, but Harvey kept right on growing deeper, with stronger winds. Fortunately the wildest winds are close to the center and hurricane force winds, at this point, extend out around 35 miles from the center. Also the center appears to be aiming for a relatively uninhabited area between Corpus Christi and Galveston, rather than hitting either city with the full brunt of his fury.

9:00 Update

27.9°N 96.9°W; moving NW at 8 mph; winds 130 mph; pressure 27.79.

NHC reports:

“A station at Aransas Pass run by the Texas Coastal Observing
Network recently reported a sustained wind of 102 mph (165 km/h)
with a gust to 120 mph (193 km/h).

A station at Aransas Wildlife Refuge run by the Texas Coastal
Observing Network recently reported a sustained wind of 71 mph
(115 km/h) with a gust to 102 mph (165 km/h).”

So, with the eye just about to go ashore,  prayers apparently have been effective, as the core of highest winds are hitting a wildlife refuge, rather than a populated area. (Tree-huggers will groan about damaged dunes, in which case I will remind them a hurricane is as”natural” as a natural park.) Also we should be thankful the storm is not as vast as Hurricane Carla was in 1961. Carla gave the entire Texas coast hurricane-force winds.

However the danger now is that people away from the center get lulled into a false sense of security. Hopefully Harvey will continue inland as Carla did, and politely die. But Harvey has slowed a bit, from 10 mph to 8 mph, and this may be a sign it will loop-de-loop as Bastardi forecast. In that case, because part of the storm will remain over the warm, refueling waters of the Gulf of Mexico, it will not weaken as swiftly as Carla did. Furthermore, if it manages to loop back down over the warm water, it may even restrengthen. In this case the people northeast of the storm in Galveston, who may currently be thinking this is just another example of media sensationalism and hysteria, (because they are only experiencing rain and moderate tropical force winds),  will notice the rains just won’t quit, nor will the winds. This will get old after a couple days, and if the winds and rains increase after three days, it will be more than old; it will be ancient.

Therefore people shouldn’t yet breathe a sigh of relief and drop their guard, (nor should “prayer-warriors” stop praying.) (A hurricane is like a rattlesnake; you don’t joke about it until it is all the way dead.)


 8:00 AM:  28.7°N 97.3°W; NNW at 6 mph; 978 mb; 80 mph

Hurricane Harvey 7 vis0-lalo

1:00 PM  –Harvey downgraded to tropical storm–Nearly stalled–

29.1°N 97.6°W;  Moving NNW at 2 mph; Winds 70 mph; Pressure 29.15

The feeder band seen in the above satellite view passed through Galveston with heavy rain but now is east of them.

Here is a great view of the tight, small eye just before it went ashore.

Hurricane Harvey 9 harvey-eye-fulton

In some ways it resembles an oversized tornado.  Fulton got creamed as Corpus Christi laughed that all the hoopla was blown out of proportion. In fact the proportions of the strong winds near the eye were tight and narrow. If the hurricane had another day over the warm waters things would have been very different.

Now it will just be day after day after day of rains, as we wait to see if Harvey can get back down over the water and restrengthen.

SUNDAY, AUGUST 27–Harvey headed back to Gulf of Mexico–

10:00 AM  29.0°N 97.4°W; Moving SSE at 2 mph;  Winds 40 mph; Pressure 29,53

Hurricane Harvey 10 vis0-lalo

The feeder bands kept reforming and heading up over Galvelston and Houston last night. The far from the center at times they got rain at a rate of four to six inches an hour, and in places have totals up near twenty inches.

5:00 PM  Harvey stopped weakening; still heading for the Gulf of Mexico

29.0°N 97.0°W; Moving southeast 2 mph; winds at 40 mph, pressure 29.53

9:00 PM

28.9°N 96.8°W Moving southeast 3 mph;  winds at 40 mph; pressure 29.53

Hurricane Harvey 11 vis0-lalo

Harvey is drawing in dry air on his west side, shown on the moisture map.

Hurricane Harvey 12 wv0-lalo

I’m nervous this may push the storm farther south than models see.  I tend to see a storms isobars as a solid form, like a solid top, but they actually move like waves, and can shift in a manner a physical top can’t. Hurricanes seem to seek warm water and juicy air, and to flee dryness and land. Harvey may get drawn away from land, and even away from the waters his first passage cooled (which remain warm enough to strengthen a storm) towards the untouched and above-normal waters south of Galveston. Time (and sunrise) will tell.

MONDAY, AUGUST 28 –Harvey Reaching Sea; Slight Restrengthening

5:00 AM  28.6°N 96.3°W; Moving SE 3 mph; Winds 40 mph; Pressure 29.48

Hurricane Harvey 13 vis0-lalo

The dry air has circled right around and is now coming up from the southeast , giving Houston and Galveston a break. However moister air has also circled right around and is now collapsing south from the north towards the center.

Hurricane Harvey 14 wv0-lalo

The heaviest rain-band is east of Houston, over Beaumont. The danger is a new rain-band will form southwest of Houston and come north, as Harvey strengthens again.

Hurricane Harvey 15 FullSizeRender

11:00 Am 28.5°N 96.0°W Moving SE 5 mph; Winds 40 mph; Pressure 29.44

The fact the pressure is falling when diurnal variation usually uplifts makes it look like Harvey is already starting to ramp up despite not being over the water all the way and despite dry air. Cloud shot looks like some small convection is bubbling up as well. And though the water is “cooled” and “only normal”, normal is darn warm. I expect the storm to blow up faster than most expect.

Hurricane Harvey 15 vis0-lalo

TUESDAY AUGUST 29  —Flooding Rains Continue In Houston—

2:00 AM 28.0°N 95.0°W; Moving ESE 5 mph; Winds 45 mph; Pressure 29.44

The only good news is that Harvey hasn’t ramped up, despite being over water. But the nighttime infrared picture does seem to hint at an eye-line structure south of the official center, and the storm hasn’t yet turned north towards land, which will kill it for once and for all.

Hurricane Harvey 19 vis0-lalo

Hurricane Harvey 20 104676367-RTX3DL7M.1910x1000

Hurricane Harvey 21 104676362-GettyImages-840080284.720x405

Of course this flooding will be blamed on Global Warming, though history shows us other examples of amazing Texas floods. (What amazes me is Joe Bastardi’s forecast and the fact Joe D’Aleo was posting charts of historical Texas floods a week before the storm even hit.)

Hurricane Harvey 22 Slide01(161)

Houston’s growth has been amazing, but it has sprawled out into many flat areas that were flooded in the past without anyone even noticing. It is now the fourth largest metropolitan area in the nation.

year rank population

1900 85 44633
1910 68 78800
1920 45 138276
1930 26 292352
1940 21 384514
1950 14 596163
1960 7 938219
1970 6 1232802
1980 5 1595138
1990 4 1630553

Quibbling about politics is not needed in this situation, though I have to state politics is in disgrace, when you consider the amounts of money squandered for patronage and cronyism that should have been spent on actual engineering. (New Orleans has been given billions by the American taxpayer, and hasn’t even kept its pumps working, and is currently threatened by a failure of those pumps).

5:00 AM  —Harvey Starting Recurve—

28.1°N 94.8°W; moving East 3 mph; winds 45 mph; Pressure 29.44

Not daylight yet in Texas, but notice the new convection popping up out to sea southwest of Galveston in infrared picture below. They don’t need that.

Hurricane Harvey 23 vis0-lalo

4:00 PM 29.2°N 94.3°W Moving NNE at 6 mph; Winds 50 mph; Pressure 29.36

Hurricane Harvey 25 vis0-lalo

8:00 PM –Storm Strengthening; North winds pushing Bay into north Galveston; Rains finally ending in Houston.

28.7°N 93.9°W;  Movement E 6 mph; Winds 50 mph; Pressure 29.36

Not sure why storm swerved to the east.

THURSAY, AUGUST 39  –Harvey moves inland and weakens

1:00 AM CDT Wed Aug 30
Location: 29.2°N 93.5°W
Moving: NE at 7 mph
Min pressure: 995 mb
Max sustained: 45 mph

4:00 PM CDT Wed Aug 30
Location: 30.8°N 93.1°W
Moving: NNE at 8 mph
Min pressure: 998 mb
Max sustained: 40 mph

Hurricane Harvey 26 vis0-lalo



I just stuck that title in for this post as “Click Bait.” I figure it would get more “hits” than the title, “Quiet Times at Pole.”

The lack of a true “Gustogale” this August has left the sea-ice far less ripped-apart than last year, when we had two such storms.  (2016 to left, 2017 to right.)


Though we did have a couple small gales early in August, we need a big monster if we are going to compare apples with apples, in terms of sea-ice. If things remain calm it is not really fair to compare this year to last year.

I actually want an “Gustagale”, with howling winds and pressure below 970 mb, because of a private curiosity about whether the ice will fail to melt as much as it did in last year’s storms. This would mimic how 2013’s gale failed to melt ice like the gale of 2012, and support my pet theories.

However if I have learned one thing, it is that the Arctic is under no orders to support me and my pet theories. It obeys a higher Ruler. Therefore it seems wiser if I become humble,  and study what is given, rather than attempting to compare apples with oranges.

One pet theory of Alarmists is getting messed up by the quiet arctic. Last fall, when sea-ice “extent” refused to shrink in a manner that supported their idea that Global Warming was melting all sea-ice away, they shifted to sea-ice “volume.” The New-Meme was that, even though the ice had the same “extent”, it was thinner, and this meant the “volume” was wasting away towards the dreamed-of Pole with no sea-ice.  But the quiet at the Pole means the thickness of the ice hasn’t been smashed and sloshed by big storms, and this is increasing the “volume.” (This year’s Volume is graphed as black line, in graph to upper right of illustration below.)

DMI4 0821 CICE_combine_thick_SM_EN_20170820

I suppose I should point out to Alarmists, especially the ones who treated me like an imbecile for not accepting the New-Meme last spring, that “volume” has failed to shrink and has actually grown. I should find some witty and articulate way of saying “neener-neener-neener.”

But that is a waste of time. Of course the ice will be thicker, if it isn’t pounded to slush by a Gustogale.

I have always argued the “volume” calculations are full of challenges.  They depend on “thickness” calculations, and look at the differences between the NRL (left) calculations and the DMI (right) calculations.

Compare the ice poking south towards the waters northeast of Wrangle Island (towards East Siberia) in the two maps. There are places where the DMI map has ice four feet thicker than the NRL map. Add to that discrepancy the simple fact that, back when we had actual cameras drifting about in the Arctic Sea, we saw ice in waters that both maps showed as “ice free.”

Just to show the difficulty involved in “averaging” thickness, look at the view we get from our lone surviving camera, O-buoy 14, today:

Obuoy 14 0821 webcam

Take note of the biggest berg, up to the right horizon. It is not a big, calved chunk of glacier, but rather a remnant of a “pressure ridge”,  and made of many smashed-together chunks of three-foot-thick ice. It extends downward nine times as far as we see extending upwards. And most importantly, it is utterly invisible to the satellites which are attempting to determine an “average thickness” of the ice. Lastly, the satellites must pierce through the cloud-cover with microwaves, and microwave radar has a hard time differentiating between the open water in the foreground and the puddles of water on top of the ice in the foreground. In other words, the “thickness”maps are full of flaws, and this makes the “volume” graphs be fairly gross estimations.

They were gross estimations when Alarmists chose to make them the “New-Meme” last spring, and they remain gross estimations even when they now make the Alarmists blush sheepishly. They are worthy, as gross estimations, but other things are more interesting, (to me at least.)

Of greater interest is what I’ve dubbed “Ralph”, which is persistent low pressure at the Pole. When you look at the actual maps the individual “Ralphs” come and go. They have recently been flabby and nothing like last year’s Gustagales. For example, the current map shows the last “Ralph” has faded towards Canada, but a new incarnation has appeared on the Siberian side.

Although these lows are weak and flabby, if you look at animations of the cloud-shots of the Pole you witness clouds circle the Pole in a counterclockwise manner, as if low pressure was constantly centered on the Pole. Anomaly pressure-maps show the pressure over the Pole as been consistently and dramatically below normal.

In order for such low pressure to survive it must be fed by “feeder bands” of moist and mild air from the south. The above temperature map suggests a current Atlantic feeder-band entering north of Greenland, and another working north from central Siberia, (but misses the big surge that recently spilled north through the Canadian Archipelago.)

Low pressure at the Pole effects weather to the south. It not only effects the development of North Atlantic gales, but of Caribbean hurricanes.  However “Ralph” is also effected by conditions to the south, which can increase or decrease the power of its “feeder-bands”.

The greatest power to the south is the vastness of the Pacific, and the Pacific has been driving forecasters nuts. After the last super El-Nino a strong La Nina was expected, but it was weak and short and gave way to what looked like the start of another El Nino. But no sooner had models started to suggest another El Nino might be in the cards, when the Pacific plunged into La Nina territory.

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The reason I pay attention to the Pacific is because, in a “lagged” way, the Pacific seems to effect “Ralph’s” “feeder bands.” I have the idea that, if a big La Nina got going, “Ralph” might vanish altogether, for a while.

In any case, I have explained elsewhere the reasons why I think the Pacific’s odd behavior is caused by the “Quiet Sun” (and not CO2). In essence, my idea thinks the Quiet Sun should make the Pacific warmer, at first. This clashes with the Arctic, which the Quiet Sun should make colder, (during the summer, when the sun shines.) This clash between the cold Pole and warm tropics is what feeds Ralph.

This theory will be ruined by a cold La Nina developing in the Pacific. Bother!  But, like I said earlier, the Arctic is under no orders to support me and my pet theories.

For the moment we are perhaps seeing the last lagged effects of last summer’s mini-El Nino,  and getting a surge of milder air up to the Pole to feed Ralph. The average temperatures are above normal for the first time since early May.

DMI4 0821 meanT_2017

This is a little like last year, but things could change if the Pacific turns cold.

The crews of Pen Hadow’s expedition suffered awful sea-sickness getting through Bering Strait, but now are starting to recover as they head north for the edge of the ice. They are up to 75° north, without finding ice, but they must be getting close, for the gulls are plentiful and feeding.

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Stay tuned.

LOCAL VIEW –The Value of the Cantankerous–

I am becoming one of those old codgers who does not much want to adapt. It was hard enough to stop writing with a pen, and get a word processor, but even when I do try to be “modern”, I am on the low side of the learning-curve. By the time I have finally figured out how to use the latest gadget, it is already outdated. Then I have to put up with some juvenile looking at my computer, and saying, in an unnecessarily haughty manner, “Oh, you are still using one of those?”

It is for this reason I have stated that I would rather work on becoming what I call “a cantankerous anachronism”. Back when the automobile was invented there were apparently old men who sneered at the new invention, and said, “Get a horse.” I want to be the modern version. When young men, wet behind the ears, get haughty with me, I want to tell them, “Get a pen.”

Apparently, during World War Two, in certain places, there simply was no available fuel for cars, and for a time people had to go back to using horses. The young were utterly hapless, for they had no idea what to do. The old men were in their glory.

It might happen again, and I might be in my glory, showing the young how to use this thing called, “a fountain pen.”

But I don’t count on it. Life is a fresh breeze, fully of newness, and the dust gets blown away. I am of the Yankee, an outdated people, eradicated by progress. I should be a good sport about stepping aside.

The thing that makes me cantankerous is that the young, wise in their way, are such imbeciles about things that do not change, and that they perhaps should ask their elders about.

For example, take the subject of sex and drugs. My generation felt the preceding generation new nothing, but they did. Now I face a generation who thinks I don’t know, but I do.

I am fortunate because I did listen to cantankerous anachronisms. Not that I took their advice. Just because an elder has been a fool should not deprive me of my right to be a fool. (Especially when it comes to sex.) But later on I could say, “That old geezer knew what he was talking about.”

I am also lucky because the men in my family tree became fathers late in life. Some families can squeeze five generations into a century, but in my family we fit only two in the nineteenth century, and, in the case of my oldest brother, only two generations happened in the twentieth century as well. He has a son, born in the twenty-first century, who can say, “My Great-great-grandfather was born in 1850, and wanted to enlist in the Civil War as a drummer boy”.  Meanwhile my grandson was held in the arms of his great-great-grandfather(on my wife’s side), who was born in 1917.

My own Great-great-grandfather was born in 1797. Think of the expanse of time involved! My Grandfather could not only talk about how his Dad experienced the Civil War, but could talk about how his Dad remembered his Grandfather complaining about how the young just didn’t understand what mattered when the USA was only two decades old!

Then just imagine me meeting a twenty-five-year-old history teacher at my children’s school, who thinks I don’t know a thing about history, because I have never been to collage.

Any wonder I might choose to be cantankerous?

What bothers me most about young teachers is that they seem to never put themselves in the shoes of the people they talk about. Their talk often belittles and scorns. But they could never do what the people they describe did. “They who cannot do, teach.”

Personally I don’t think anyone under age fifty should be allowed to be a teacher of anything but simple grammar and arithmetic. History? To have a young person teach History is like having a ten-year-old girl teach of breast-feeding.

To teach history you must have an acquaintance with the people who made it. I have toiled the soil with the farmers, but even if you lack the luck of such toil you should have at least become acquainted with farmers. I have sailed the waters with the fishermen, but even if you lack that luck you should have at least become acquainted with such seafarers. I have brought livestock I cared for to be slaughtered, and have looked my hamburger in the eye before eating. If I become a vegetarian it will be because of that.  However many who claim they have a right to teach (and that I do not have the right) have not become acquainted with the food on their table. “They who cannot do, teach.” But you must have an acquaintance with those who do do, if you are to teach.

New England is no tropical paradise, and people have had to be tough to scratch a living from its landscape. I learned something of what I know the hard way, because I didn’t listen to my elders, however I also did listen to cantankerous anachronisms of the past.

I have learned what the Abernaki learned, before they were reduced to an echo. I have learned what the Yankee learned, before they too were reduced.

To learn what I know you don’t have to be Abernaki, or Yankee. But you must not be “Progressive.”

Why not? Because Progressives are too busy updating, to heed cantankerous anachronisms like myself.

NON-LOCAL-VIEW –Oregon Fires–(Updated)

(Photo credits first four pictures, Arthur Shaw)

My younger brother has been posting some unnerving pictures on Facebook of one of the many fires in Oregon. So far he hasn’t posted any pictures of actual fire, but does give a clear idea of the threat people feel.

Yesterday the sky began to become obscured by smoke on the dry, hot east winds.

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Here is his house at 2:30 in the afternoon, today, with the exterior lighting automatically clicking on.

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Here are burned leaves he notes falling from the sky.

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And here is the notice he gets served.

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Personally I am praying for my brother, because I am selfish. I am even praying for a materiel object, his house, because he built it by hand and it involved amazing effort. However he is not alone, nor is this fire the only fire.

Nor is it only the people who live there who are involved. The traffic would be bad enough if it just involved the locals. But an amazing 200,000 have come to Oregon to view the total eclipse. Now they must turn tail and flee fire.

If you happen to believe in the power of prayer, I think this may be a situation worthy of stopping what we, who are safe, are doing, and praying for those we don’t know.

UPDATE –August 24

Prayers were answered, as the winds died and humidity rose. The blaze became less of a crazy firestorm:

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And became more of a fire that can be approached by firefighters:

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But not before three homes were lost in the Brookings area:

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The interlude is likely to end on Friday, when the strong, parched, hot east winds may return. The fire fighters are working like mad to set up fire-lines before that re-occurrence.

Many fire-fighters, including the fire-chief of my little town here in New Hampshire, have rushed out west to help with the Oregon fires. But they were already busy with other fires when the Brookings fire broke out. These fires can explode with astonishing rapidity, and the Brookings fire had an understaffed fire-fighter crew at first.

Now they have more firemen than any other fire, and are getting ready for a wind-shift back to the east. The fire was advancing to the east at five milers a day the last time the wind was east, but now battle lines have formed.

All attention will likely on Hurricane Harvey and Galveston on Saturday, as the short attention span of the media shifts from fire to flood. However the battles in Oregon will go on. If you are into prayer, there’s plenty to pray about. (Including a possible “Hurricane Irma” hitting me, a week from tomorrow.)

A RAVE — Prophecy From a Self-Destructive Culture–

One odd thing I have noted is that the people who give the most lip-service to the idea of human “diversity” tend to be Satan’s agents, when it comes to destroying diversity. This occurs because, even though they claim to support “minorities”, they stand firmly against that which makes a minority prosper, which is “patriotic pride”.

I believe God created us each with unique gifts. Just as our fingerprints are unique we each have God-given weirdness. We are all created equal, because we are all equally bizarre. There is no one on earth quite like you. You possess some special attribute no one else has, and even if you live in some obscure corner of Creation, without headlines or fanfare, what you have and what you do is important to the Creator’s plan.

The concept called “Satan” or “Maya” or “Ignorance” dislikes this individuality. Though Satan/Maya/Ignorance also was created by the Creator, its power drags against individuality like the Law Of Gravity drags against a dancer. It is a power every artist has felt and fought. It is the the urge for conformity.  It dislikes anything that can be seen as disorder, and, if need be, it wants to bring about order with a whip or a club or, in worst cases, with a death camp’s genocide.

We all like that which is agreeable, but there is a world of difference between agreement, when it involves understanding, and agreement brought about because, if you don’t, you die.

When an artist is successful, what he or she does is to bring forth some unspoken Truth that others recognize. People say, “I thought/saw/felt that, but never said it.” People were kept from speaking by the powers of conformity, until someone else had the guts to speak.  People then find it very agreeable to have an unspoken thought/vision/feeling agreed with, because true understanding is involved.

The power resisting an artist is the power that puts order ahead of true diversity and individuality, the power of conformity.  It entices the weak-minded into swiftly agreeing, so they might look wise. It is the backbone of “political correctness.” In many ways it is a kindly aspect of humanity, and explains why people agree to conform to ludicrous fashions, in order to “fit in.” (If you don’t think the outfits you wear [or your tattoos or your piercings] are ludicrous, and will be called a joke by your grandchildren, then try donning the “cool” outfits of the past. Go to work with Washington’s wig, or Lincoln’s hat.)

It is generous of people to go through the work of “fitting in”. It demonstrates they are willing to make an effort to be agreeable to others. However at some point one should ask themselves, “What am I fitting-in to?”

In a worst-case-scenario one is not merely following the flippant fads of fashion, but the fierce evil of a dictator, in which case it takes a lot of courage to not act like everyone else.

Man who didn't heil Hitler download

The man in this picture could not salute Hitler because his wife was Jewish. He (and his wife) paid the absolute price for not being politically correct, (death), but due to their bravery their daughter escaped that hell.

Saint Steven was stoned to death for refusing to be politically correct. Holding the cloaks of the people throwing the rocks, and urging them on, was Saint Paul, (then called Saul), who was completely convinced (at that time) he was correct. He was the ISIS of his time, utterly opposed to Jesus, even to the degree of hunting down Christians and destroying them.

Saul could only become Saint Paul by getting knocked off his high horse. (The revelation that temporarily blinded Paul is where we get that expression, “getting knocked off your high horse.”)

I dare say many politically-correct Americans deeply need to go through a similar “Road to Damascus conversion,” and get knocked off their priggish mopeds.

The problem is that the loyalty involved is a beautiful thing. Being loyal to political correctness is not altogether bad. After all, when Hitler perverted German loyalty, what defied him and defeated him was other people’s loyalty to a different idea.

Unfortunately some, horrified by the slaughters which history has played out, seem to think loyalty itself is to blame. In their efforts to stop the slaughter they slander patriotism. They seemingly feel this would be a better planet if we had no nations, no states, no home town teams to cheer for, and even no Dads that are better than your Dad.

The “business model” for this is McDonald’s. Why have fifty family-owned burger-joints when you could have a cooperate giant? And the simple answer is, “Mac-burgers suck, are unhealthy, and no family sweating, flipping the actual burgers, can subsist on the actual work of the frying, with what MacDonald’s reward them with, in terms of a paycheck.”

However we live in a time when the “business model” wins out. The family-owned burger joint seems stupid, (though the service is superb and the burgers are splendid.) The family-owned farm is equally “unprofitable,” (though that hard life remains the dream of many toiling in cities.)

And the people most fluent in all that the “business model” entails are strangely blind to the fact they are against all that is “family owned.” They are like Saint Paul when he was Saul, insisting they are righteous when they are utterly ignorant. Oh! Forgive the politically-correct, Lord, for they do know not what they have done (and continue to do.)

The most obvious evidence of the ignorant (another word for Satanic) impulses of the politically-correct is the simple fact they claim to support “diversity”, but have destroyed every culture they have touched. They jet-set about talking of “world community” even as they leave ruin in their wake. One decade they make money with oil rigs, and the next decade they make money with solar panels and wind farms, but always what they do is ugly, in terms of anything outside of their greedy pleasure. (I apologize to those who have cared for the poor while working for cooperate giants, and I also concede greedy oil companies are better at helping humanity “sustain” itself than greedy “sustainable” solar panel companies.)

Someone needs to say this, and it might as well be me: We have lived through a horrible destruction of the beauty the Creator created.  I am not talking about landscapes and the stuff you see in National Parks. I am talking about cultures. About the very essence of so-called “diversity.” About humanity.

Back on the first “Earth Day”, back in 1970, everyone thought the “coming destruction” would be due to depleted resources and over-population, and feared 90% of the people on earth would be dead by 2017. But the slaughter happened in a way never expected, and didn’t involve “population.”  And the very people who thought they were avoiding the cataclysm contributed to it. And what is the cataclysm? 90% of the world’s culture is now dead, killed by the very politically-correct people who like to preen themselves by believing they “support diversity.” In truth what they actually support is conformity, and a vast, world-wide MacCulture.

They don’t support diversity.  They actually crucify it. How?  They are unwilling to do the work. Work? Yes, for to “support diversity” you must first support your own culture.

And where does that begin? It begins at home. You must put your spouse first, before your job. Divorce is not an option, and your children? Your job must never come before your child. How many “politically correct” can say they have truly done that? But how many conform to the delusion they “support their family” by putting their job first, even to the degree where their house is completely empty, from 6:30 AM to 5:30 PM. Such echoing abodes aren’t a home, and can’t nurture a culture.

And how dare I say such a thing?

It is because I am a Native American. I am of a tribe despised and ridiculed and oppressed by the “politically-correct”. My tribe is called the “Yankee”.

All over the world people say “Yankee Go Home.” But where is there a nation called “Yankee-land?”  Certainly not in Europe. Yankee are often despised there.

If there is a Yankee-land where Yankee could go home to, it should be here, where I was born, but it is not here. Here the politically-correct rule. As a Yankee I was despised as a child, was despised all my life,  and am despised as an old man. That is why I am an authority on how all the talk about caring about “diversity” is sheer hypocrisy and humbug.

They can’t even care for their own.

They are useless. And their futility is about to be exposed. And their gruesome embarrassment will be hideous!  They who deem themselves the light will abruptly become aware they are made of darkness, and quail back like shadow from a candle in a cave. One Word will be their end.

Hang in there, all you who care more for Truth than political-correctness.

ARCTIC SEA ICE –Gustagales 2–

On his “Science Matters” site Ron Clutz has a wonderful post on Gustagales (which is my word for August Gales at the Pole.)

What is wonderful is an animation he has that shows how such storms can melt a lot of sea-ice in a hurry. For example the great 2012 gale

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melted a huge amount of ice in a hurry

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Ron’s animation does a better job of displaying the swift melt. But what few seem to sit down and to calculate is how much heat it takes to melt a cubic foot of ice. Though the temperature of ice and water can be the same, the phase change between solid and liquid sucks up heat, turning it into “latent” heat. (In fact one way I have learned to doubt various “thickness” maps, and the “volume” graphs derived from “thickness”, is because they can show six feet of ice melting away in a day, and that would simply require more heat than is available. Such super-fast melting makes me think melt-water pools are messing up the modeled calculations of thickness.)

Please don’t ask me to be the one to sit down and calculate the heat involved. I confess I spent all my Math classes dreaming out the window. However I did know “a lot” of heat was required to melt so much ice in 2012. In fact I doubted the ice had actually melted, but inquiries to very kind people who did reply to emails convinced me it was actually gone.

This brings us to the 2013 Gustagale. Ryan Maue posted a lovely view of the low-level moisture being sucked into it:

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It tore at the sea-ice from August 7 to August 11.

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And though the 2013 storm may have been smaller than the 2012 storm, there was little doubt it completely churned the sea-ice. Tony Heller posted this view of the situation between 120 and 180 degrees after the storm:

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The thing that impressed me was that the ice was so churned, but did not melt. I tended to taunt Alarmists a bit, asking them why CO2 had become so weak and ineffectual, but to myself I was more serious. Why the heck had the 2012 gale melted ice with such amazing efficiency, and the 2013 gale was such a weakling? The only reason I could see was that the 2012 gale had used up an extraordinary amount of the available heat in the water under the ice, and the water was unable to replenish itself in 12 months, and therefore there was simple no available heat to work with, in 2013.

In the post I linked to, Ron Clutz shows how 2014 was a calmer year, and less ice melted, but when I checked my notes I saw it too had a gale, on August 30.Gusta 8 2013-storm-dmi2-0930-mslp_latest-big

However the gale also failed to melt much ice, as Ron’s superb animation demonstrates. I conclude the Arctic Sea hadn’t yet replenished itself with warmer waters.

However with the passage of 2015, (and perhaps assisted by the development of the super-El Nino),  perhaps the waters were replenished, so that by last summer, 2016, when we had not one but two Gustogales, there was enough southern waters available under the ice to slightly enhance the melting, so we saw ice vanish with those gales.

That brings us to 2017, when we have had two storms which, while they not have been as strong as Gustogales, have had gale force winds and have tortured and smashed the sea-ice, but without the melting (so far) that we saw last year.

To me this suggests we are in a situation similar to 2013, where the available heat has been used up, turned into latent heat by the prior years churning and melting. We should not expect the ice to melt like it did last year.

I will conclude with this observation:  The ideas I am playing with have little to do with a trace gas in the atmosphere. Instead they have everything to do with the surges in the atmosphere that create Gustagales, and the oceanic surges that replenish mild waters under arctic ice.

I think it is high time the governments stop funding scientists who insist trace gases control our weather and our future, and start funding the down-to-earth (largely unrewarded) dudes who are  focused on atmospheric and oceanic  surges which are far more real and far more likely to significantly effect humanity as a whole.

(I know some are hard at work collecting the data that demonstrates how the water-under-the-ice gains and loses its ability-to-melt, and that there are conversations about whether this may occur in a short, four or five year, cycle. I believe these guys deserve the funding.)