A Few “Old School” Forecasting Rules

LurkeyLoo from this blog sent these forecasting tips in..thanks!  Actually I’ve had them in my Inbox for quite awhile.  But now that the weather is going to turn REAL slow, here you go…

FORECASTING WINTER BY ANIMALS:
It will be a bad winter if:
*squirrels begin gathering nuts early (mid or late Sept)
*muskrat houses are big
*beaver lodges have more logs
*the north side of a beaver dam is more covered with sticks than the south side
*squirrels tails grow bushier
*fur or hair on animals such as horses, sheep, mules, cows, and dogs is thicker than usual
*the fur on the bottom of a rabbit’s foot is thicker
*cow hooves break off earlier
*squirrels build nests low in trees
*wild hogs gather stick, straw, and shucks to make a bed
*animals grow a short, fuzzy coat under their regular one
*crows gather together
*hoot owls call late in the fall
*screech owls sound like women crying
*juncos are feeding in the trees
*birds huddle on the ground
*birds eat up all the berries early

FORECASTING WINTER BY INSECTS
It will be a hard winter if:
*hornets and yellow jackets build their nests heavier and closer to the ground than usual
*worms are bending up and going into peoples’ houses and abandoned building in Oct.
*there are a lot of spiders, frost worms, and black bugs around
*miller moths hit the screen trying to get in
*crickets are in the chimney
*ant hills are high
 

FORECASTING WINTER BY PLANTS
It will be a hard winter if:
*blackberry blooms are especially heavy
*carrots grow deeper
*grapes, cockleburrs, and apples mature early
*sweet potatoes have a tougher skin
*onions grow more layers
*trees are laden with green leaves late in the fall
*the crop of holly and dogwood berries is heavy
*hickory nuts have a heavy shell
*there is a heavy crop of berries, acorns, and pinecones
*bark on trees is thicker
*tree bark is heavier on the north side
*corn shucks and silk grow thicker and the shucks grow tighter around, and further over the ends of the ears
*leaves shed before they turn
*moss grows heavy on trees
*the old-time corn ear (shank) hangs downward
*laurel leaves roll up
*pine cones open early
*the darker green the grass is during the summer, the harder the winter

FORECASTING WINTER BY WEATHER
*two frosts and lots of rain mean cold weather is near
*a late frost means a bad winter
*for every frost or fog in August, there will be a snowy day in winter
*at least three severe fogs in June or July mean early snow
*if it snows “crosslegged” it will be a deep one
*if the first snow stays on the ground for three days, another snow will come to top it
*if it frosts before November 23, it will be a bad winter
*a long hot summer means a long cold winter — the hotter the summer, the colder the winter

FORECASTING WINTER BY FIRE
 
*when you build a fire outside and it pops, it will snow in three days
*if a fire tramps snow coming down the chimney (if noises come from the chimney that sound like boots in deep snow) there will be a deep snow
*if smoke from the chimney flows toward or settles on the ground, it will snow within 26 days
*if it’s cloudy and smoke rises, there’s a chance of snow

FORECASTING WINTER BY THE MOON
 
*the number of days old the moon is at the first snow tells how many snows there will be during winter

FORECASTING WEATHER
 
It will rain:
*within 3 days if the horns of the moon point down
*if leaves show their backs
*if cows lie down in the pasture
*if there is a ring around the moon — count the number of stars in the ring and it will rain within hat many days
*if the sun sets with clouds
*if you see a black snake in a tree, it will rain within 3 days
*if an ant covers the hole to its hill
*if smoke goes to the ground
*if earthworms come to the surface
*if birds fly low
*if it hasn’t rained in a long time and it starts raining before 7am, it’ll quit before 11am
*if it rains on “Blasting Days” (the three longest days of the year), there won’t be any “mast” (acorns, chestnuts, etc.) for animals to feed on
*if it rains on Easter Sunday, it will rain every Sunday for 7 weeks
*if it begins raining on the day the moon becomes full, it will continue raining until the moon quarters
the first twelve days after Christmas indicate what each month in the next year will be like

The weather will be fair if:
*you hear a screech owl
*smoke rises
*crickets holler (the temp will rise)

136 Responses to A Few “Old School” Forecasting Rules

  1. Home.A says:

    Whatever we have that isn’t broken goes up there. Holidays are when many of the presents are purchased and shared. Favorite thing about the Holidays.

  2. Traci says:

    Thanks Rob! I will watch for your thoughts about warming. I have to take her in to check for the flu, but want to know what to expect.

  3. runrain says:

    Full blown snow event in Happy Valley, for now anyway.

  4. KPTV Tower Temps
    http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/pqr/tower_temps/tower_temps.php?&units=F
    As of 8 AM (1 hour lag. Updates every :15 after the hour)
    Upper Sensor(1818′) 21.7 (22.1 at 7:00 AM)
    Middle Sensor(1473′) 22.5 (23.0 at 7:00 AM)
    Lower Sensor(1043′) 24.6 (24.6 at 7:00 AM)
    *Relatively steady temperatures the past few hours

    17z(9 AM) Upper Air Analysis(Observed over PDX)
    http://www.spc.noaa.gov/exper/mesoanalysis/new/viewsector.php?sector=11
    925mb: -4.0c
    850mb: -3.8c
    700mb: -1.5c
    500mb: -17.1c

  5. Hal In Aims says:

    Very light swizzle just began here…….

  6. Don Troutdale 230ft says:

    Snowing 30f 230ft. Roads white. Troutdale.

  7. pappoose in scappoose says:

    Will watch for the afternoon package.

    National Weather Service Portland or
    840 am PST Monday Jan 14 2013

    Models indicate additional low level moisture will push into the
    northern Willamette Valley tonight…which could lead to some areas
    of light freezing drizzle depending upon surface temperatures.
    However…given the current soundings would seem to favor water over ice processes…this precipitation could end up falling as light snow instead. Will focus on what to do with precipitation chances/type for tonight with the afternoon package.

  8. Lurkyloo says:

    Light snow here in NE. Started out as “snizzle” around 8am. Still coming down and my backyard is white and crunchy. :)

  9. Sandi (Wilsonville) says:

    Was surprised just now to look at the window and see it’s snowing lightly here in Wilsonville near I-5 & Willamette River. Very pretty!

  10. AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION
    NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE PORTLAND OR
    840 AM PST MON JAN 14 2013

    .SHORT TERM…RADAR…SURFACE OBSERVATIONS…AND SPOTTER REPORTS INDICATE LIGHT SNOW/FLURRIES HAVE BEEN FALLING ACROSS THE NORTHWEST OREGON COAST AND MORE RECENTLY ACROSS THE PORTLAND METRO AREA THIS MORNING. EVEN SOME LIGHT FREEZING DRIZZLE WAS REPORTED FROM ASTORIA. THE NAM AND GFS SUGGEST THIS HAS BEEN IN LARGE PART DUE TO WEAK ISENTROPIC LIFT ALONG THE 280K SURFACE. BOTH MODELS BRING AN END TO THIS LIFT AROUND MIDDAY. AS A RESULT…PUT IN SLIGHT CHANCE/CHANCES OF FLURRIES ACROSS THE REGION WITH A MENTION OF FREEZING DRIZZLE ALONG THE COAST THROUGH EARLY THIS AFTERNOON.

    THERE HAS ALSO BEEN A NARROW RIBBON OF FLURRIES THAT HAVE IMPACTED THE I205 BRIDGE…AND SUBSEQUENTLY KPDX…THE PAST TWO MORNINGS. BASED ON THE VERY LOCAL NATURE OF THIS SNOW…THIS HAS PRESUMABLY BEEN TO A NEARBY PARTICULATE GENERATING SOURCE THAT IS CAUSING ICE PROCESSES TO INITIATE IN SOMEWHAT UNUSUALLY WARM CONDITIONS…WARMER THAN AT LEAST -7C OR -8C. BASED ON YESTERDAY MORNING THIS SHOULD END WITHIN THE NEXT HOUR OR TWO.

    MODELS INDICATE ADDITIONAL LOW LEVEL MOISTURE WILL PUSH INTO THE NORTHERN WILLAMETTE VALLEY TONIGHT… WHICH COULD LEAD TO SOME AREAS OF LIGHT FREEZING DRIZZLE DEPENDING UPON SURFACE TEMPERATURES. HOWEVER…GIVEN THE CURRENT SOUNDINGS WOULD SEEM TO FAVOR WATER OVER ICE PROCESSES…THIS PRECIPITATION COULD END UP FALLING AS LIGHT SNOW INSTEAD. WILL FOCUS ON WHAT TO DO WITH PRECIPITATION CHANCES/TYPE FOR TONIGHT WITH THE AFTERNOON PACKAGE.

    WILL ALSO TAKE A LOOK AT MIXING POTENTIAL ON TUESDAY AS NORTHERLY FLOW INCREASES…AND THEN MIXING POTENTIAL ACROSS THE NORTHERN WILLAMETTE VALLEY AS EASTERLY WINDS INCREASE OUT OF THE COLUMBIA
    RIVER GORGE COME WEDNESDAY AND THURSDAY. /NEUMAN

  11. It looks unlikely to see temps warming above freezing today.
    12z WRF 4km Sounding(PDX)
    Shows temps remain below freezing until 1 AM Tuesday or so.
    http://www.atmos.washington.edu/mm5rt/data/2013011412/images_d3/kpdx.21.0000.snd.gif

    Also, note the crazy sharp and strong inversion Wednesday – Thursday(Probably beyond too)
    http://www.atmos.washington.edu/mm5rt/data/2013011412/images_d3/kpdx.54.0000.snd.gif
    http://www.atmos.washington.edu/mm5rt/data/2013011412/images_d3/kpdx.72.0000.snd.gif

    KPTV Tower Temps
    As of 7 AM (1 hour lag. Updates every :15 after the hour)
    Upper Sensor(1818′) 22.1 (22.1 at 6:00 AM)
    Middle Sensor(1473′) 23.0 (23.0 at 6:00 AM)
    Lower Sensor(1043′) 24.6 (24.6 at 6:00 AM)
    *Relatively steady temperatures the past few hours

    06z(8 AM) Upper Air Analysis(Observed over PDX)
    http://www.spc.noaa.gov/exper/mesoanalysis/new/viewsector.php?sector=11
    925mb: -3.5c
    850mb: -4.5c
    700mb: -2.4c
    500mb: -17.5c

  12. It looks unlikely to see temps warming above freezing today.
    12z WRF 4km Sounding(PDX)
    Shows temps remain below freezing until 1 AM Tuesday or so.
    http://www.atmos.washington.edu/mm5rt/data/2013011412/images_d3/kpdx.21.0000.snd.gif

    Also, note the crazy sharp and strong inversion Wednesday – Thursday(Probably beyond too)
    http://www.atmos.washington.edu/mm5rt/data/2013011412/images_d3/kpdx.54.0000.snd.gif
    http://www.atmos.washington.edu/mm5rt/data/2013011412/images_d3/kpdx.72.0000.snd.gif

    KPTV Tower Temps
    http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/pqr/tower_temps/tower_temps.php?&units=F
    As of 7 AM (1 hour lag. Updates every :15 after the hour)
    Upper Sensor(1818′) 22.1 (22.1 at 6:00 AM)
    Middle Sensor(1473′) 23.0 (23.0 at 6:00 AM)
    Lower Sensor(1043′) 24.6 (24.6 at 6:00 AM)
    *Relatively steady temperatures the past few hours

    06z(8 AM) Upper Air Analysis(Observed over PDX)
    http://www.spc.noaa.gov/exper/mesoanalysis/new/viewsector.php?sector=11
    925mb: -3.5c
    850mb: -4.5c
    700mb: -2.4c
    500mb: -17.5c

  13. W7ENK says:

    Still nothing falling in Downtown. I’m headed across the street for coffee, I’ll let y’all know if anything changes in the next 10-15 minutes…

    • Lurkyloo says:

      W7, I am convinced that the Dome follows you.

    • W7ENK says:

      Okay, so there’s a combination of microscopic snowflakes (they look like little white dots on my coat) and supercooled water droplets that prickle your face when they touch your skin, but when they land on cars, glass, anything else, they evaporate before they freeze. So essentially, it’s still doing nothing in downtown. Honestly, I’d like it to stay that way until this afternoon, I don’t feel like getting stuck in a hellish nightmare of a commute and walk in the door after midnight.

  14. Like a Kid in Snow says:

    I am hoping someone can answer this for me…the past three mornings we have had beautiful, thick frost here in Dallas. It has looked like snow but this morning there is nothing and yet the temperature is still the same. I have been following this blog for over 4 years now I guess I should know this but I am just not understanding the difference between this morning and the other mornings. Thanks!

    • W7ENK says:

      Dewpoint was lower last night. Not as much available moisture in the air, lack of fog.

    • Tyler Mode in Battle Ground says:

      Uneducated guess here: the very lowest levels have dried out just a tad. With the low clouds that have formed, they have robbed some of the moisture out of the lowest levels. This also leaves less areas of fog this morning.

  15. EA_TTD says:

    Snizzle just started ‘falling’ in TTD.

  16. Traci says:

    Everything is white in Gresham! Tiny flakes, and temp. says 28.8. I am assuming this is short lived, but what is the high supposed to be? Is this going to melt soon? I have to get a sick kiddo to the dr.

  17. 12z WRF 4km precip model says “What precip?” Go home, WRF, you’re drunk.

  18. runrain says:

    It’s snowing moderately now and the flakes are getting bigger i.e. sticking together. Just hope it stays frozen!

  19. Snow flurries this morning. Not sure how anyone could call this a snow shower or anything more than flurries. Still snow regardless…. and still MUCH better than rain or freezing drizzle(which may be coming)

  20. runrain says:

    Coming down harder now and flakes are bigger. I’m worried if the upper levels warm and this turns to liquid we could have a big mess.

  21. runrain says:

    Snowing very lightly here in Happy Valley and everything is white. It’s that dry blowing around stuff. Wind seems to be coming out of the Southwest now although temperature is holding at 26.8°. Makes this colder air more tolerable with the white.

  22. Tyler Mode in Battle Ground says:

    Very light snow needles here. I can see the individual needles on the bed of my truck.

  23. SeDrools says:

    Lightly snowing 27th and Holgate(SE Portland).

  24. Starting to get a little light snow falling here

  25. W7ENK says:

    Absolutely NOTHING happening in Downtown. Cloudy. That’s it.

  26. All this discussion regarding “intel snow” at Hillsboro leaves me unsettled. Back in the heavy industrial age, we had different terms for the “snow”: “fallout” or “ash”. If it were me, I’d grab a Geiger counter, listen for clicks, or grab a UV lamp, and see if the “snow” glows. I’d park my car under the carport, save the hood from Maaco paint job. Under no circumstances would I make a snow-cone and eat it.

  27. Ron says:

    Pretty good snowshower going on between 122nd and 142nd and Sunnyside. Sidewalks white. Temp 28f. Flakes are tiny. As I headed further east you can see the Cascades. Looks like the stratus thickened up. Nothing on radar. Sure is nice to see, though.

  28. alohabb says:

    With cars melting snow on roads, the liquid is freezing up causing slippery roads. Seen a couple cars fishtail on Murrary.

  29. Maybe a p.s.c.z starting to set up.

  30. Snow Flurry or light snow starting to pop up n radar hmm could be our best hope of snow this season . lol

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