Monday, July 12, 2010

The Day the Rains Came

A persistent ridge of high pressure during June provided record heat (Roanoke and Blacksburg's hottest June on record; Danville's second warmest and Lynchburg's eighth warmest.) Not only did the heat beat down, but little rain fell down. Before our eyes our plush green lawns dried up, and so did crops. I was talking to a farmer in the New River Valley just before the dry spell hit. He was worried such arid conditions would return, because as he said, it seems to every year. He was right.

Finally, it appears there's a slight shift in the atmospheric pattern, and our luck. This week should offer a decent opportunity for showers and thunderstorms. Today has certainly been the case (so far today our rain gauge at Kent Square in Blacksburg has topped 1.00" of rain since midnight - and it's still falling). Severe upper level pieces of energy will rotate through our hot and humid air mass giving rise to area super-soakers this week. As mentioned, the humidity will be running high this week. Since the air will be primed with fairly moisture laden air, heavy rain could develop over your hometown. Like late last week, some of you may get 1-2" of rain in a rather short period of time, while your neighbors get much less. Case in point: so far this month at the Roanoke Regional Airport, that site has received 3.30" of rain. Last night I noticed at our downtown rain gauge at the Science Museum of Western Virginia there's only been about 0.70".

So keep the umbrellas on standby this week, and enjoy the rain. You never know when we'll dry up again!

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