When I'm wondering about weather folklore and historical events this is the man I go to. With more than 50 years of statistical and observational research, he's the dude! When it comes to lunar cycles, woolly bear caterpillars, insects, bugs, and animals, he tracks them, records them, and establishes ties to weather patterns. He's a knowledgeable and interesting man. His name is Steve Gottschalk by way of Lowden, Iowa. I'm grateful to him for lending his unique perspective to the site. Steve's "wild" world of weather can be found every week right
here on TSwails.com. Take it away Steve!
THE GREAT ICE STORM OF 2007:
A powerful winter storm swept through the state of Iowa from the 23rd - 26th bringing a severe ice storm which was followed by very heavy snow in the northern sections. The worst of the ice storm was over central, northern and eastern Iowa.
The first round of freezing rain, snow and sleet began during the evening of the 23rd over northeastern Iowa with the freezing rain becoming more widespread on the 24th. The heaviest ice accumulations were over Marshall, Poweshiek, Tama and Black Hawk counties with amounts of 1" to 2" reported.
The combination of heavy ice and wind gusts near 50 mph brought down whole trees and thousands of tree branches, poles and power lines. Several hundred thousand Iowans lost their power and the rural areas were out for a week or more. There was at least $150 million in damages to the equipment, 1,000's of utility poles along with many hundreds of miles of power lines.
As the storm progressed, heavy snow developed over the northern parts of the state with many areas receiving 10" or more. Some of the higher totals totals were:
Waukee - 15.4"
Lansing - 16.3"
Decorah - 16.5"
Cresco - 19.6"
Strong winds created huge drifts and reduced the visibility at times. The combination of ice and snow brought travel to a standstill over much of the state. Sixty counties were declared disaster areas. It was the worst widespread ice storm since 1990 and may have been the worst since the 1960's?
THE FEBRUARY NEW MOON AND PRECIPITATION
After doing some research, I have found that some form of precipitation will occur within 24 hours of the New Moon - 75% of the time. The new moon is on the 23rd.
DOGS AND SNOW
For those of you that have a dog you may want to check this bit of weather folklore out sometime - "When a dog puts it's nose in the snow, another snow is brewing."
That's all for now. On the "wild" side of weather, I'm Steve Gottschalk