After the quick moving storm left an inch or two of snow behind, things will definitely be cold for the next few days, with overnight lows dropping into the single digits to low teens for the next couple of nights. After sunny skies and a high in the 30s on Wednesday for Reno, a few clouds will drift into the region through the next several days and highs will rise back up into the low 40s, and stay there through Christmas Day. At this time I don’t see any appreciable chance for any precipitation for the duration.

Snowman Melting

Ralph asks: “Why is it when the air temperature is as low as the mid 20’s, ice and snow will melt IF the sun is shining; but the ice and snow hardly melts at all even if the air temperature is in the mid 30’s if the sun is not shining? Why isn’t the air temperature the controlling factor regarding ice and snow melting?”

Here’s a quick and dirty answer to his question.

There are two ways to heat (and therefore melt) snow. One is by conduction. That’s a transfer of heat by contact from one substance to another… in this case heat from air touching the snow. While this works, it’s not the fastest.

Tomorrow, I’ll share a better and faster way.

 

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