Useful Weather Related Links
National Weather Service:
The NWS creates forecasts for all the areas of the US. Go to http://www.weather.gov/ and enter your location to view their forecast.
They also provide a detailed discussion of the forecast here: http://www.nws.noaa.gov/data/LWX/AFDLWX
The NWS forecast you get for your location will be the forecast for the nearest airport. Traditionally, pilots have been a group of people who have one of the most serious needs for current weather data and forecasts. This is also the reason why the NWS weather instrumentation is generally at airports. There are 122 NWS Weather Forecast Offices - here is a list of them.
NWS produces a lot of different forecasts. To see these we recommend Chris Smolinski’s Automated Weather Information web site
The detailed discussion assumes you are familiar with meteorological terms and what at first appear to be obscure acronyms and abbreviations. Here are some links to help interpret those:
Here is a link to the NWS radar for the entire US lower 48. It probably won’t fit on your monitor - you’ll have to scroll around it to find the area you’re interested in.
Here is a link to the NWS Winter Weather Page for the DC area.
NOAA has a web page that provides historical weather data for their NWS locations, called NowData
This is a link to the NWS Enhanced Data Display which is currently in beta testing but may well be the future of how NWS displays weather data on the Internet.
Here is a link for understanding Basic Meteorology
Sites Maintained by the Capital Weather Gang blog members
Xtrain21 maintains a site that has records of notable blog threads and links to other web sites
Chris Smolinski maintains a blog that records notable weather events and weather statistics for the Washington, DC metro area.
CWG commentor “walter-in-falls-church” does some seriously great snow sculptures.
Understanding Relative Humidity and Dew Point
You will find that the terms Relative Humidity and Dewpoint Temperature are commonly used but somewhat interchangeably. Here is a link that explains them:
and here is a link to a RH to DP converter:
Dew Point Calculator
Lightning is dangerous as you know. Here is a very cool map of the current locations of lightning strikes in the US (Activate the sound in the upper right corner to hear a tick for each strike.)
Here are two links with advice about the dangers of lightning:
In Hurricane season (Atlantic) or Typhoon season (Pacific), this link will show you the predicted path of a current one:
Another good hurricane site is the Central Florida Hurricane Center.
Here is a link to the NWS Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Tornadoes
Snow and Ice:
This is the Current Snowfall Map for the Washington DC metro area (the LWX Forecast Office).
Here is a link that describes why snowflakes look the way they do.
The Sperry–Piltz Ice Accumulation Index site forecasts ice accumulation.
Check out the snow sculptures by Walter, a regular CWG commentor and architect in Falls Church, VA. (Oddly he uses the CWG blog name “walter-in-falls-church”.)
Meteorological Views of the Earth:
Here are two large-scale meteorological views, that are both beautiful and mesmerizing
The latter web site does not provide a User Manual. Here is one that was posted on the Internet:
“Earth” web site User Guide
A Serious TV Show on Weather:
The Weather Channel hosts a weekly half hour show that seriously discusses issues involving weather. Jason Samenow of our Capital Weather Gang (who has been a guest on the show) succinctly summed up the show, “This is essentially the weather community’s version of Sunday morning talk shows like Meet the Press or Face the Nation.”.
The host is meteorologist Dr. J. Marshall Shepherd, professor at the University of Georgia's Department of Geography, the Director of the University's atmospheric sciences program, and the 2013 president of the American Meteorological Society
It is broadcast on TWC at noon on Sundays. Highly recommended.
Also you can see past shows here.
Heavens Above is a good site if you want to understand what you’re seeing in the night sky overhead. You will want to configure it for your location, for the chart to be accurate.
On a different but related subject, the Eclipse Calculator site tells you about upcoming solar and lunar eclipses:
On another different but related subject, the very professional Montgomery County (MD) Fire and Rescue Service has a twitter site maintained by Peter Piringer.
And on a completely different subject, do you know who was the first person to compute the circumference of the Earth and when he did it?
It was the Greek scholar Eratosthenes. He did it around 200 BC and his calculation was amazingly accurate for that time.
On an even more completely different subject, here is the Ted’s Pumpkin Butterscotch Pie Recipe:
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Weather
An Introductory Guide