Volume 7, Number 44 - January 24, 2007
brought to you online by Pinedale Online
Chill Out, Sublette County
Those that live in Sublette County know that it gets cold here during the winter months, and this 2007-2008 winter season is noexception (despite an early, mild start).
Tuesday morning welcomed the county’s coldest day yet with a morning low temperature of -26 Fahrenheit recorded at the Pinedale Ralph Wentz Field around 6 a.m. Although temperatures did manage to warm by over 20 degrees (-2 recorded mid-afternoon), the day remained a cold one – and that is just the temperature in town (many outlying communities saw even greater negative numbers on their thermometers).
“Tuesday morning was the coldest temperature so far this winter,” Meteorologist Jim Wirshborn of Day Weather,Inc., said. “During the next week or so readings will moderate a bit, but don’t look for a heatwave, maybe some 20sf or next week.
“Readings are often much colder in low-lying areas on clear, calm nights like we had last night. The temperature dropped below zero around 5 p.m.Monday evening and has stayed below ever since.” “It was lucky at the coldest time there was hardly any wind so the chill factor was only slightly colder than the air temperature,” he added.
Residents can thank a draft coming down from Canada for the sudden drop in temperatures, although according to Wirshborn other places affected by the approaching weather have had eve lower temperatures than what Sublette County has received.
“This pattern has allowed the snow cover to build up and when you get a clear, calm night radiation cooling takes place and the air near the ground loses its heat quickly after sunset,” he said. “In addition, frequently a string of well below zero readings will occur as we have seen during the last week.
“While this winter started out fairly mild, it has made up for it in the last four weeks... more than usual snow has fallen and in the days without cloud cover the night time temperatures have been very cold. Also, there has been little melting of the snow cover, which could continue to build through March in the lower elevations of Sublette County as well as the high country.”
It is important when these temperatures hit the area that everyone ensures that they are prepared whether they are planning to be outside or not. Things are known to change and accidents can happen – having a shovel, blankets and sand in your vehicle is always a good idea in these temperatures, especially with snow cover.
“I think the bigges tthing for folks is to try to stay warm,” Wirshborn said.
He advises everyone to wear layers as opposed to one warm outer coat as it“ insulates a person and cuts down on the wind blowing across a person’s skin depleting his or her body temperature.”
Being prepared doesn’t just stop with people; it is a good idea to take extra precautions with both your pets and work animals. “Check livestock more frequently...if you have a stock-tank heater it may not work as well at -25 as it does at zero temperatures – feeding may need to be done more frequently, too,” Wirshborn said. “If you have a dog that is not usually an outdoor dog, it is best to let the mout and get them back inside as quick as possible.”
And remember, this weather is here for a bit. While temperatures may rise and comfort levels increase, the winter is here to stay, so keep those shovels and coats ready.
“Winter, for sure, is not over,” Wirshborn said. “The next 30 days will run below normal on temperatures and above normal on precipitation.”
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