Friday, April 1, 2005

A hint of desert summer

The graph at right was produced from data collected by an automated weather instrumentation system we have at our home (a WeatherHawk system). For months, during our blessedly normal wet season, we've had very temperate weather — lovely temperatures and relative humidities that most people would at least recognize. But yesterday one of our notorious "Santa Ana" weather systems moved in, and the hot, dry, desert winds came in. At around 10 pm on Wednesday evening the humidity was 90%; just four hours later, at 2 am on Thursday morning, it hit 10%. The low yesterday was 4% and as I write these words on Friday morning it is 10% and falling as the sun rises in our perfectly clear eastern skies. The big surprise for me is that the relative humidity can be so low despite the fact that our ground (and the chaparral) is still soaking wet.

This is a foretaste of our summer!

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