How Do You Forecast Fog?

ASK THE METEOROLOGIST “Is foggy weather predictable like other conditions such as morning fog is expected till 10am the next 5 days?” Rocky Anderson SOU Fog is actually more difficult to forecast than a cold front or a warm front. Fog forms when the air temperature drops to the dewpoint, which is the temperature at … Continue reading »

Ask the Meteorologist: The Jetstream

ASK THE METEOROLOGIST Which is the greater influence on the positioning of weather systems — the jetstream or weather systems? Chris Stoney, Rogue River The jetstream is the main weather phenomena that dictates where our weather systems will move. There are two major patterns within the jetstream — high pressure ridges and low pressure troughs. … Continue reading »

How do you Forecast a Week Ahead?

“How do you predict the weather forecast that is a week ahead?” Alex Lopez Eagle Point Middle School Forecasting the weather is like deciding what you’re going to wear in the morning. You look outside or step outside to feel what it’s like. You start with current conditions, and that’s what we look at…temperature, wind, … Continue reading »

How Do Clouds Form?

“How can cirrus and other clouds form without a storm coming?” Tracy England Grants Pass Cirrus clouds are the highest clouds and are made of ice crystals and tend to form 24-hours before a change in the weather occurs. Altocumulus clouds are mid-level clouds and thus can be made of ice crystals and water droplets. … Continue reading »

Ask the Meteorologist: Rain Shadows

ASK THE METEOROLOGIST Why doesn’t Southern Oregon get a lot of snow? Torie White Washington Elementary The Rogue Valley, and Medford specifically, sits at a low elevation amongst many mountains. The mountains act as a shield, and play a huge role on the type of weather that moves into the Valley. In most cases, this … Continue reading »

Doppler Radar vs. Traditional Radar

“What is Doppler Radar? How is it different from regular Radar?” Tyler Norman-Steed North Medford High School Radar stands for Radio Detection and Ranging and is used to locate precipitation and precipitation intensity. Radar sweeps in circles horizontally as well as up and down. The difference between Radar and Doppler Radar is that not only … Continue reading »

What Causes Thunderstorms?

What causes a thunderstorm? How does it form? Linda Clark Ashland High School Thunderstorms need three things to form: moisture, instability and lift. Instability forms from daytime heating of the earth’s surface heating the air around it causing it to rise because warm air is lighter than cool air, this is called the updraft. When … Continue reading »

High/Low Pressure on Weather Maps

  ASK THE METEOROLOGIST Sometimes I see low pressure depicted on a weather map where the lines of barometric pressure do not support that a low pressure area exists there. Does this mean that it is a high altitude low pressure area? Lotus Moon Wolfe Mount Shasta High School   This is very common. Although … Continue reading »

What is a Microclimate?

“What is a microclimate and how close can different microclimates exist?” Chris Gerschler Medford Microclimates are local atmospheric zones where climates differ like the coast, mountains and valleys. They can be as small as a garden bed to many square miles!

Ask the Meteorologist

At what temperature can you see your breath? Kathy Childers Medford   We all know that on a cold morning when you’re outside facing the elements, when exhaling your breath “shows.” In actuality, your breath is “showing” by forming a cloud. The same phenomenon happens from planes, with the air that exits the jet exhaust. … Continue reading »

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