Saturday, February 21, 2009

FROPA, New Poll, & Geocaching

Well I am home, safe and sound.

My pilot last night nearly gave me a heart attack. He came on and said we were 42 minutes until touchdown.

And that Denver was experiencing extreme winds and severe turbulence. He made the flight attendants sit down at 30,000 feet!

Thank the LORD above the winds died back while we were landing, but the runway wasn't visible until 500 feet above it due to the snow.

I love flying United -- you can listen to the cockpit on Channel 9 and hear all the scoop between air traffic control and the flights. You know about turns and changes in air speed before the pilot executes them.

Which is helpful if you are a fearful flyer -- such as myself!

So FROPA --- a meteorological acronym meaning "frontal passage".

It happened here in Denver yesterday.

Here is a timeline of the weather...

  • Noon -- 55°, Winds West 22 Gusting 31, Partly Cloudy
  • 4 PM -- 51°, Winds Northwest 26 Gusting 39, Mostly Cloudy
  • 5 PM -- 42°, Winds Northeast 36 Gusting 45, Blowing Dust
  • 6 PM -- 26°, Winds Northeast 29 Gusting 38, Fog & Mist
  • 8 PM -- 21°, Winds North 5, Snow & Fog & Mist

    We picked up 1-3 inches of snow in the squall that lasted from 8pm until 10pm.

    The winds stayed north into the evening and overnight then switched out of the south,

  • 4 AM (Sat.) -- 2°, Winds South 9, Partly Cloudy
  • 11 AM (sat.) -- 37°, Winds Southeast 7, Few Clouds

    Often fronts will come in waves. The initial front, which was evident by the wind shift and temperature drop in Denver on Friday between 4 and 5 pm. Then the real surge of cold air comes in just a little behind the initial front.

    And just as soon as those winds switch to the south, the warm air returns.

    The above seem very dramatic, and it is --- but for Denver, very typical. We get rapidly changing, extreme weather in very short periods of time.

    Which is one reason why I love living here!!

    Here are the results from the last poll.

    "Would you rather be stuck at home with..."

  • A Blizard -- 42%
  • Clear Skies but Frigid Temps -- 8%
  • An All Day Rain -- 48%
  • An Ice Storm -- 0%

    There were 98 votes.

    So nobody wants an ice storm. I can't blame you. And it was basically split down the middle between a blizzard and rain.

    I had two people make comments wondering where the people lived and how it correlated to the poll above.

    So that is the topic for the new poll. Let's see if cold climates voted for snow or rain, and vice versa.

    And finally Geocaching....Click here to learn more.
  • 1 comment:

    1. I like listening to Channel 9 on United, too. In fact last time I flew through Denver I got to listen to them talk about a pretty big thunderstorm cell that air traffic control was trying to divert planes around. I could also see the storm from the plane window. Pretty neat. We navigated neatly around it, landed, and then they grounded the whole place while the storm passed over the airport area.

      Living in upstate NY, my answer to the poll was, of course, "cold climate and I love my snow."

      But I just came back from Jackson, WY to see this poll and the entry, and my first thought was "After snowshoeing in about 6-7 feet of snow in the back country Tetons, I'll take my relatively moderate NYS winter, thanks." The snow they get up there makes lake effect snow look tame.

      (and, in case anyone is interested, there are photos up on my Live Journal--just click on my name on here)