Monday, August 22, 2016

Welcome Back!

New Student Welcome, Saturday, August 20, 2016
Today is the first day of classes for the 2016–17 academic year at the University of Utah.  One of the great things about being a professor is you experience renewal each fall as the school year begins anew.  In addition, the start of classes each year reminds me that winter is coming and summer is nearly in the rear view mirror.

It has been both a hot and dry summer.  We are currently just behind 2013 for the hottest all time in the Salt Lake Valley (I'll forgo the graph this time) and have had only 0.67 inches of precipitation at the Salt Lake City airport since June 1, which ranks as the 16th driest since 1874.  It's been so dry that the sight of virga this morning made me positively giddy.  

For the most part this summer the monsoon has been a total bust in northern Utah.  We've had neither the large-scale pattern nor the disturbances necessary to bring in moisture from the south and initiate widespread shower and thunderstorm activity on a regular basis.  Every now and then we get a weak monsoon surge and a few showers and thunderstorms, but that's it.  

Let's hope Mother Nature is saving it up for late October and November.  

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