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Understanding Snowpack

Posted Mar 3rd - 5:26pm

Could you help me understand the snow-pack graph better? Does that say the state has 66% of the snow that it should have as of today, or does it say that we are at 66% so far which may or may not be normal for this time of year? How is it calculated/measured? When does our snowpack stop growing and start shrinking? Thanks, Rob


The snowpack graphs are calculated for the average amount of snowpack should have as of TODAY, so your first guess was right. The data is calculated on past averages going back to 30 years. Some sites don't go back that far (that haven't been around 30 years yet) but the averages are still for each individual place and relates to the water content of the snow.


Posted Mar 3rd - 5:05pm

Are cyclonic storms more common in the summer or in the winter?




Posted Mar 3rd - 4:28pm

As I'm driving quite a bit for business, I notice that many of our reservoirs are very nearly full. Deer Creek, Jordanelle, Mtn. Dell and Strawberry, to name a few, are all within a few feet of capacity. In a situation like this, why is there so much concern about a snowpack at 70% of normal?



Barometric Pressure and Hurricanes

Posted Feb 28th - 3:15pm

What is the difference between barometric pressure that effects our weather and millibars that are in a hurricane?

Jim M. **********************************************************

In the subject of this email Jim also asked what a millibar was so we'll cover that too. First of all, a millibar is just a unit we use to measure pressure just like inches of mercury. The millibar is a function of the bar, another unit of pressure related to Pascals or atmospheres. We usually use inches of mercury for most public weather forecasts but meteorologists work mostly in millibars, it's much easier the scale is simple to use when we contour our weather maps.

Weather History

Posted Feb 22nd - 12:28pm

I plan on starting some type of green house in my back yard and I'm thinking a lot about what type of efficient heating system to make it work. It would be so helpful to know the high and low data for the area so I can judge how cold it could get during this spring time. Is there a website or even an excel file with this data. I am savy at excel so I could get the data and do some graphs and all that. Let me know what you could do.


Gary Bountiful, Utah


Posted Feb 21st - 3:32pm

How do you figure the wind chill factor? Someone told me whatever the wind speed is, you subtract it from the temperature. Is that correct?

Martha R.


Lake Effect Snow

Posted Feb 17th - 6:23pm

I located your website on the internet. I have been unable to find the answer to questions that are being debated in our office. How far away from a lake must you live to NOT receive lake effect snow? How big a lake must it be? We have a reservoir nearby and people seem to think we receive lake effect snows from them.

Thanks for your help

Sincerely, Kathy A.

Climate of SLC vs. St. George

Posted Feb 15th - 11:39am

Hi, I was wondering if you could tell me how I can find more detailed information on the weather differences (mainly temperature) between Utah county and Washington county (St George) year round? Thanks!

Emily M.


Burning and Air Pollution

Posted Feb 14th - 4:00pm

My concern about air pollution is this: I am afraid to burn in our wood burning stove right now during green air quality days because I see in the forecast a high pressure and more hazy and red air quality days coming. I am afraid that if I burn in our stove now, it will contribute to the pollution in the coming days, but I am not sure. I hear the reports say to go ahead and burn but I don't want to contribute to the pollution levels later on. Am I wrong, and it doesn't contribute to the problem because it is a green air day today? Thanks, Teresa


You are right to be concerned about putting pollutants into the air. On green days the Department of Environmental Quality is basically saying, go ahead and burn to heat your home using your stove. On any given day, the air is usually moving around. Meaning we have little disturbances from time to time and our jet stream is moving things overhead, the air is constantly mixing and moving downstream. So if you put something into the air, it will mix out. Is it good to keep adding junk into the air? NO! The more pollutants we put in the air, the worse our air or the air downstream becomes. But if you do have to burn, make sure you do burn on a green day. We're not saying using woodstoves is a bad idea, just to be wise about when you burn.

The Green Screen

Posted Feb 14th - 11:40am

I am e-mailing you for my communication merit badge. I am wondering how the weather man can tell were all the states are behind him. I would appreciate it if you could e-mail me back.

Thank you,

Chandler W.

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