When autumn is in sight, you may crave pumpkin spices and apple pie. Let’s face it, there’s a lot to love about fall, especially after a hot summer.
Before we head to the pumpkin patch, let’s take a look at the changing seasons and what it all means.
The equinox occurs twice a year, in spring and autumn when the sun is directly over the equator. The equinox marks twice a year when the earth̵
In the first week of autumn there are almost 12 hours each day and night. Over the days and weeks we notice seasonal changes.
The earth is tilted on its axis, and as it orbits the sun, the northern hemisphere is angled away from the sun, making things feel and look different outside.
The sun shines lower in the sky and brings less light and warmth. We re-familiarize ourselves with later sunrises and earlier sunsets and have almost 9 hours of daylight on December 21st at the winter solstice.
At this time of year we can experience drastic temperature fluctuations from scorching heat to freezing cold.
Do you ever remember wearing shorts back to school because the summer heat lasted until September? Or maybe you wore a jacket on a chilly morning to take home due to a 30-50 degree warm up during the school day.
In other cases, we had to dig out our warmer clothes and coats because of colder days with rain, ice or snow.
Jetstream patterns are the directors of the weather and begin to change in the fall. Due to the decrease in the height of the sun, the average latitude of the jet stream is moving towards the equator.
Basically, the jet streams are drawn to where the seasonal areas of sunlight are strongest so that we can adapt to changing conditions. It is these seasonal shifts that allow for cooler aerial photography and sporadic shifts in our weather.
Courtesy of NOAA.gov
Fall encompasses a variety of weather conditions, including tropical systems. We are occasionally reminded of hurricane season, an impending threat that lasts until November. It’s a good idea to keep an eye on the tropics.
This time of year can bring such changeable weather that we expect it to be anything but typical.
To keep things interesting, there is a meteorological fall that begins a few weeks before the equinox. The switch was designed to allow scientists to make data more efficient in relation to the changing seasons.
According to NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Information, “meteorologists and climatologists divide the seasons into groups of three months based on the annual temperature cycle and our calendar.” Spectrum news meteorologist Matthew East explains the differences.
Hope you can catch some sights and smells of fall and roll with the weather changes. I wish you and you a safe and healthy autumn season too.