Thursday, April 24, 2014
David Epstein has been a meteorologist for more than 25 years. He spent 16 years in Boston and currently freelances at WGME13 in Portland.
In 2006, David founded GrowingWisdom.com, a business producing educational and marketing videos for the green industry. He currently is a professor at Framingham State College, teaches Jan Plan at Colby College and owns Bloomscapes Inc., a landscape design business.
David authored "Gardens Of New England" and his work has been published in Grolier's Science Annual for 10 years. He lives in South Natick, Mass., and has a summer home in Harpswell.
I am not a deep sleeper. If the dogs whine in the middle of the night, I am up in seconds. Maybe it’s the parental instinct or something. So when the winds are howling all night long, I don’t sleep so well. This time of the year the wind sounds differently as well. It’s a winter sound still, but will make the shift to a summer sounding wind in the next few weeks.
Some of you might think this is ridiculous. How can the wind sound any different between March and May? However, as soon as the leaves reach a certain size they change the sound of the wind and the branches of the trees stop clinking against each other in the same way. I think the wind actually sounds more ferocious while the trees are in leaf than when they are bare.
That’s probably enough of my wind sound observation for today. Speaking of today, the wind will continue to gusts all day long. While sunshine will be abundant, the blustery conditions will make it feel a bit cooler than the mid to upper 50s.
Dry warm stretches in Maine are unusual in the 4th month of the year, but always appreciated. As a matter of course, even a day or two when we see sunshine and readings in the 60s thoroughly appreciated.
Today will be a typical day of April temperatures, warmest inland where the sea breeze doesn’t reach and cooler at the coast. Highs this afternoon over western York, Cumberland and Oxford counties will reach into the 60s and extreme southern sections will flirt with 70F.
Along the coast the southerly flow will cap temperatures in the 50s. It will be coolest within a mile or two of the water as temperatures slowly build as you head away from the coastline.
Day two of what is a holiday weekend for some is featuring mostly sunny skies and cool temperatures. Yesterday, a westerly wind kept sea breezes at bay, however today a southerly wind off Casco Bay will keep place like Portland quite a bit cooler.
While Saturday reached close to 60F, today will be in the upper 40s and lower 50s as the cold ocean brings chilly air back to Maine.
I do expect a lot of sunshine this afternoon so if you are outside working in the sun it won’t feel as chilly. There isn’t any chance of rain for the next few days. Monday is Patriots day, one of those holidays which only a few states celebrate. Maine is of course one of them. It’s one of those rare holidays were we get mail.
Patriot’s Day is also Marathon Monday. Some of you may be running this year and the weather looks super. Around 7AM temperatures will be in the lower 40s, rising to the 50s by 10 or 11AM and the lower 60s in the afternoon. Winds will be light and give runners a bit of a head wind as they approach Boston.
It’s a record cold morning for Portland and southern Maine with many areas in the lower 20s and teens. Fryeburg is coming in at 15 degrees with Portland, as I write at just before 6 a.m., hitting 23, which broke the record of 24 set back in 2003.
You can thank high pressure from Canada for all the cold air this morning and for keeping it chilly the next couple of days. The air around high pressure systems circulates clockwise. As the high moves east today its circulation will create a cold east wind.
There are many buoys off our coastline which provide weather information to meteorologists and mariners. I checked a couple of these this morning and found water temperatures in the upper 30s and lower 40s. This cold ocean water will chill the air above it. As the wind blows from the east towards our coastal cities and towns it will also keep the air cold. The image below shows the buoy report this morning from the one off Portland. Click here to see current data
The weather is going into drama mode today with strong wind, heavy rain, thunder, and eventually a rapid return to colder air.
A strong southerly flow over Maine this morning is transporting maritime tropical air north. Temperatures overnight didn’t fall much below 60F for a taste of summer. Although there are a lot of clouds today, many areas will make it back into the middle 60s this afternoon.
We missed the lunar eclipse early this morning thanks to all the clouds. We get another chance to see some of the next eclipse on October 8th 2014. There are then two more total eclipses in 2015, both in April and October. For those of the Jewish faith, it’s interesting that all four eclipse fall on the festivals of Passover and Sukkot.