Category Archives: Seasons
Since the beginning of the 2023-24 snow season, Madison and Dane County have received approximately 32 inches of snow.
Snow is a form of solid water, and water is the only substance that occurs naturally in all three phases — solid, liquid and invisible gas — in the Earth’s atmosphere. Of course, that means that the 32 inches of snow began as the equivalent amount of water in the invisible vapor (gas) phase before it transformed into solid water. Continue reading
Folklore forecasts, often in the form of short rhymes, help farmers and mariners predict short term weather. Continue reading
The Wisconsin State Climatology Office, housed at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, monitors and reports on the ice coverage of Madison lakes.
The office keeps a database of the ice-over and ice-out dates for three Madison-area lakes: Mendota, Monona and Wingra. These records extend back to the winters of 1855-1856 for Mendota and Monona. The record of annual ice cover of Wingra is spotty, but consistent starting in the winter of 1982-83. Due to the long record based on visual observations, it is no surprise that the rules of opening and closing have been handed down by oral tradition. Continue reading
We are now a couple of days into what is easily the coldest air we have seen this entire winter.
Until a week ago, complaints about the lack of snow were also justified in the southern part of the state. However, two recent snow events have even changed that situation so that, as of Monday, Madison suddenly is 7.3 inches ahead of normal for the snow season, which started July 1. Continue reading
Astronomical winter begins at the winter solstice, which happened this year for the Northern Hemisphere at 9:27 p.m. Central Standard Time on Thursday, Dec. 21. Winter south of the equator begins in June.
The Northern Hemisphere winter solstice occurs at the time the sun is at its southernmost point in the sky. At this time, the sun is overhead at noon on the Tropic of Capricorn, approximately 23.4 degrees south of the equator. Continue reading