Finally! At 5:42 this morning snow began falling in Central Park. At 7 a.m. observers in the park recorded the first measurable snowfall of the season. Thus the latest date for the first measurable snowfall in a winter season still belongs to January 29th, 1970. By 7:47 this morning thousands of people were observed taking photographs of the astonishing half-inch of snow. Snow also fell in Southern California yesterday. Across Europe a massive storm, winds in the Czech Republic were clocked at 112 mph, has been blamed for at least 47 deaths and for bringing the rail systems of Germany and the Netherlands to a virtual halt.
This morning's snow was from a storm that's rapidly intensifying off the coast. As that storm deepens (watch out Maine and Newfoundland!), winds around it are going to strengthen. By this afternoon they'll be blowing out of the northwest at 15-25 miles/hour. You'll want to carry rocks in your pockets tomorrow, as the winds will be a steady 25-30 miles/hour with higher gusts. Better yet, stay inside. The winds, combined with an arctic front passing through Saturday afternoon, will make it rather unpleasant to be walking around outside. Sunday should be calmer.
Congratulations go out this morning to Columbia University's Wallace Broecker. Broecker was awarded the 2006 Crafoord Prize in Geosciences by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences. Broecker is a geochemist whose research over the last fifty years has fundamentally changed our understanding of the global carbon cycle and how the oceans, atmosphere and biosphere interact as part of the Earth's climate system.
Broolyn snow by Adrian Kinloch via Flickr.