Some changes on the horizon. The ridge of high pressure that has moved on shore off the ocean will pass through the state and set up just to our east, starting a light southerly flow. Initially, it will raise our temperatures to near triple digit levels here in Reno, and possibly help pop up a few afternoon clouds. By Friday there might be enough monsoonal flow to give us a slight chance of afternoon thunderstorms…with continuing chances through the first of next week.
So just how does the sun “burn” your skin? It seems strange, because rarely do you feel the skin “burning” when you are out in the sun (although you certainly feel it later). This is actually one of the things that make UV exposure so dangerous over time, because we tend not to do anything about it until it’s too late.
Let’s first talk about sunburns. There are two types of UV radiation: UVA and UVB. UVB has a shorter wavelength and affects the outer layer of the skin, and is the primary cause of sunburns. It doesn’t burn the skin the same way that putting your hand on a frying pan would (that would almost be better, since you’d feel the pain immediately and do something about it.) More tomorrow.
Lynn leBlanc said:
My husband wants to know why when the air comes up from the desert it’s wet but when it comes off the ocean its dry?
Mike Alger said:
That’s a great question, and at first blush it does seem counter-intuitive that an ocean flow is drier than an overland flow. But the southerly flow brings up a tropical airmass which originates in Mexico…and can even originate in the Gulf of Mexico given the right conditions. If you’ve ever been down there you know how muggy it is there. The flow coming in off the ocean originates from a more mid-level to polar airmass, which is much drier.
Keep in mind, the conditions you referred to apply to the summer. The “Rules” change in the winter. The flow coming off the ocean tends to be much wetter than an overland route…although much of that reason is you don’t tend to get the light southerly flow which can draw up the tropical airmass in the winter.
Lynn leBlanc said:
Thank you, that makes sense!