As snow goes, where go the animals?

As snow goes, where go the animals?
Animals like the wolverine evolved to live in the snow, and they excel in conditions that defeat most animals. How will they fare if (when?) snow continues to decline in their homes? And whassup with the balmy but hidden ecosystem under the snow? More »

Is there really a “State Tournament Snowstorm”?

Is there really a "State Tournament Snowstorm"?

Is there really a “State Tournament Snowstorm”? March in Madison, WI by sarae A persistent anecdotal piece of weather lore around Madison is that the WIAA (Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletics Association) State Basketball Tournament is always accompanied by a snowstorm. With… More »

Warming: A bad climate for endangered species?

newborn sea turtle on sand

How will rising temperatures affect endangered species? Are there ways to abate the consequences, and are they being tested? Can we even be certain that climate change is the cause of specific declines? More »

What is sleet?

What is sleet?

Sleet is translucent balls of ice that are frozen raindrops. The most common forms of precipitation are rain, snow, freezing rain, and sleet. In Wisconsin, precipitation usually begins as ice particles in a cloud. The temperature conditions below the cloud base determine if the precipitation ends up as rain, snow, freezing rain, and sleet. More »

Where does the water come from in Midwestern snow storms?

Where does the water come from in Midwestern snow storms?

Where does the water come from in Midwestern snow storms? ENLARGE Photo: NOAA/NASA GOES Project Water can travel a long way to dump onto the Midwest as snow. This picture shows the storm system that cause the massive February 2011… More »

Do abundant snowstorms suggest global warming is not occurring?

Do abundant snowstorms suggest global warming is not occurring?

Do abundant snowstorms suggest global warming is not occurring? ENLARGE Graphic: Rutgers University Global Snow Lab This graphs shows the area of land covered by snow over the past few decades in North America. No. These storms are individual weather… More »

Why does snow disappear?

Why does snow disappear?

Why does snow disappear? ENLARGE Photo: Amanda Graham Sublimation in action. When the snow builds up on my patio, it starts to evaporate after a few days, even though the temperature is still below freezing. On average, what percentage of… More »

How do snow fences work?

How do snow fences work?

How do snow fences work? Photo: flickr via Wikimedia Commons, by John Talbot. Snow fence might not have helped here (Ottawa, Canada). Snow carried by wind can reduce visibility and cover roads. We cannot “switch off” the wind; but we… More »

What is ‘black ice’?

What is ‘black ice’?

What is ‘black ice’? Photo: AdamKR Black ice in Halifax The term ‘black ice’ refers to either a new layer of transparent ice on water, which allows us to see the deep water below, or a layer of clear ice… More »

I thought I heard thunder during a snowstorm. Is that possible?

The Weather Guys

I thought I heard thunder during a snowstorm. Is that possible? Yes. A storm that includes any occurrence of thunder with snow is called a thundersnow event or thunder snowstorm. Lightning and thunder go together; you can’t have one without… More »

Why does snow sometimes sparkle?

Why does snow sometimes sparkle?

Why does snow sometimes sparkle? Photo of snow in west Sierra Nevada by Itrovert Sometimes on a sunny day, freshly fallen snow may appear to sparkle or glitter. This happens because when light hits an object light, it can be… More »

Why does snow squeak when you walk on it?

Why does snow squeak when you walk on it?

Snow can make both ‘squeaky’ and ‘crunchy’ sounds. Snow is a mixture of ice crystals, liquid water and air, and the sound it makes when you walk on it depends on the proportions of this mixture. More »

It’s snow-time! Dig into our all-flake, no fake feature!

Frosty questions: Are some snowflakes identical? How do flakes form, and how does weather affect their shape? How does ice in the atmosphere affect weather and climate? And where does the jet stream fit in this picture? More »

Avalanche Attack

What causes avalanches? Why are they so dangerous, and how can you avoid them without cowering at home? More »