Paul is a full-time fifth-grade teacher at an elementary school in Fairfield ... Paul is a New York Emmy award winner (2007), five-time Emmy nominee, and four-time winner of the Connecticut Associated Press Broadcasters' Association award for 'Best Weathercast' in Connecticut (2006, 2008, 2009, 2012) ... The local weather journal is a two-time winner of the Communicator Award of Distinction (2012 & 2013) ... Paul was inducted into the Housatonic Community College Hall of Fame and received the Distinguished Alumni Award (2012) ... Follow Paul on Twitter @PaulPiorek ...

Friday, February 14, 2014

Full Snow Moon Quite Appropriate for This Month

You may have noticed how the Moon has been growing --- or waxing --- over the last two weeks. We didn't see much of the Moon the last two nights, but we will be able to see it this evening and early tonight. The Full Snow Moon happens at 6:53 p.m. EST. The Moon will rise at 5:28 p.m. local time this afternoon and set at 6:45 tomorrow morning.

So, how did the February Full Moon get its name, anyway? Since the heaviest snow usually falls during this month, native tribes of the North and East most often called February's Full Moon the Full Snow Moon. Some tribes also referred to this Moon as the Full Hunger Moon, since harsh weather conditions in their areas made hunting very difficult.

Remember, Full Moon names date back to the days of the Native Americans, who lived in what is now the Northern and Eastern United States. The tribes kept track of the seasons by giving distinctive names to each recurring Full Moon. Their names were applied to the entire month in which each occurred. There was some variation in the Moon names, but in general, the same ones were current throughout the Algonquin tribes from New England to Lake Superior.


This Moon has also been known as the Full Storm Moon and Full Candles Moon. A Full Moon rises at about the same time the Sun is setting. Since the length of daylight continues to grow each day through the Summer Solstice, today's Full Moon will rise a little later than it did in December or January. In addition, this Full Moon will appear still fairly high in the sky since we're still in Winter.


Classic Nor'easter Delivers Over a Foot of Snow to Southwestern Connecticut

A classic February Nor'easter delivered heavy snow and strong winds to southwestern Connecticut yesterday, nearly paralyzing local roads and closing schools. The heavy snow pushed the season's total well over four feet. The snow began falling lightly just after 1 o'clock Thursday morning, and the heaviest snow fell between 8 a.m. and 12 p.m. Here is the surface map from 7 a.m.

There were white-out conditions during the morning with snow rates of one-to-three inches an hour. Another round of light snow developed early this morning, padding the snow totals. Cumulatively, nearly a foot-and-a-half of snow fell in Darien and Fairfield, and over a foot of snow was reported in New Canaan, Weston, Norwalk, Stamford, and Sikorsky Memorial Airport. Here are the snowfall totals from February 13 & 14 for southwestern Connecticut.

The storm's cumulative snow total of 12.2" at the airport pushed the monthly snowfall to 27.8" through February 14. It also marked the fifth day with measured snow in two weeks. Local climatologist Ralph Fato created this video showing the key highlights of the storm. The snow tapered off later in the afternoon.