I am a bit under the weather so a short post today.
I got the seemingly annual January email “Weather for 2011” today. I rarely spend the time to read this email when it comes. I remember taking “Weather 101” at SIU as an undergrad with Doc Horsley to fulfill one of my science credits. I remember his comment that “beyond 24 hrs, we are just really guessing” when it came to forecasting. Granted that was 20 some odd years ago and that things have gotten much better in the meteorolgy business… or have they?
Upon reading the email, there seems to be a lot of guessing, or at least odds playing going on. Some of the highlights that make me think that are: 2011 will be similar to 56, 68 and 71 (none of those years do I remember), a much later start to planting than last year (last year was the earliest ever), no Midwest crop production problems anticipated (I never anticipate any either, they just happen) and lower sunspots suggesting a cooler summer (BTW we are in solar cycle 24, a major upswing in sunspot activity).
I do know one thing for sure, that it is currently 35deg F outside right now and it is dark. And tomorrows weather will be different. And beyond 24 hours, the weather folks are still guessing a lot.