Dennis’ Local Almanac

By DENNIS McTIGHE

Super Bowl weekend brings sun

Whew, what a game! You always want to see a game come right down to the wire, and this one went deep into overtime as the Kansas City Chiefs’ quarterback, Patrick Mahomes, once again pulled off his magic. He came back from double digits down – at one point – but never pushed the panic button. He looked totally confident and relaxed as if he knew all along that his team would walk away with the Lombardi Trophy for the third time in the last five years – having won consecutive Super Bowls for the first time since Tom Brady did it in 2003 and 2004. And Mahomes is only 28!

Laguna just finished a very nice weekend with lots of sunshine and cool but clear skies. The soil is saturated and our rainy season – since October 1 – is well over 10 inches. Just up the road, L.A. has already surpassed its entire season with nearly 16 inches since October, which surprisingly enough is more the double the amount in Seattle since October. Some towns in the greater Los Angeles area have collected nearly 20 inches for the season so far with over half of this month still to come. March is on the way, which has had some lofty amounts historically with more than 10 inches of rain back in 1983 and over eight inches in 1992 – both El Niño years.

This week looks to be a lot quieter with only a chance of some scattered showers later this week, but no major storms are headed this way anytime soon. The month of April is also capable of popping out a few wet ones with more than six inches on three occasions: 1958, 1965 and 1983, all of which were also El Niño years. If all goes according to plan – when all is said and done, this season should finish with more than 20 inches – if some more of those stronger storms find their way down here. The NOAA is calling for quite a bit of stormy weather at least through April.

The South has been quite active for tornadoes much of this winter as temps have been above normal, also a product of an active El Niño which allows the subtropical jet stream to track much farther north than normal. Heck, there was even an EF-2 twister as far north as southern Wisconsin the other day, and temps have been in the mid to upper 50s way up in Minnesota. The normal high in the Twin Cities for February 12 is 28-30 degrees.

It’s supposed to be the quiet time of year for tornadoes in December, January and February, with an average for each of those months around 25 or so. There were that many in just one twister outbreak in Arkansas and southern Tennessee just a few days ago. Here on Sunday, February 11, there were a dozen reported in northern Alabama and central Mississippi.

With afternoon temps as warm as the 60s and 70s instead of the normal 40s – and only one intrusion of Arctic air back in early January – all the ingredients are in place for the formation of severe weather throughout the region. Once March arrives, severe weather begins to increase, and that tornado threat really starts to ramp up once April comes. That’s when Tornado Alley opens for business. Stay tuned on that one.

For now, ALOHA to everyone!


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