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Moon for Moisture 03/12/2012

Posted by zoidion in Weather.
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Twin Cities weather report: Around here, we’re into what’s typically the cloudiest stretch of the year. But the mostly mild weather persists: the tech-weather folks are saying the temperature may reach close to 60F today—about 20 degrees above the average—as a surge of air from the Pacific continues to reach us in the center of the continent.

A smidgen of moisture precipitated out of the clouds and fog over the weekend, but nothing that could be called rain—yet. However, “they” say a thundershower is possible later today. So I’ll keep my rain barrels at the ready.

 

It just never made sense to me, from reading George J. McCormack’s Text-Book of Long-Range Weather Forecasting, that the Moon isn’t the primary indicator of moisture in a weather chart. Or did I just misread it? Maybe I just needed another perspective, provided by C.C. Zain’s Weather Predicting book and topical publications.

The more I investigated weather phenomena for the place I know the best—here—the more I kept looking to the Moon. And it’s not from being a Moon-man, who looks for the Moon every day/night.

The late fall and winter of two years ago is a prime example. Unlike every other winter of the past decade, there was plenty of snow around here.

It started in mid-November 2010, continued with frequent minor snowfalls, was punctuated by a mid-December blizzard that dropped 17 inches of snow (and, to nationwide notice) the roof of the Metrodome, and kept right on going. All in all, it was the fourth snowiest winter on record in the Twin Cities: the only “real winter” in the past decade.

What made that period so unusual? In the charts for the two seasons, two things: the Moon in water signs, and Jupiter conjunct Uranus in Pisces. The fall season chart showed a very nearly full moon within little more than a degree from both Jupiter and Uranus, while the winter chart showed a full Moon in Cancer (sixteen hours after a lunar eclipse), just above the Ascendant, and Jupiter-Uranus close to the upper meridian (signaling excess and exceptional conditions).

In addition, the fall season chart showed the Moon-Jupiter-Uranus cluster at one of the “octangle” points: one-eighth of the way around the circle from the upper meridian. These seem to bear watching.

Libra-Ingress-2010

Capricorn-Ingress-2010

Moisture-wise, it certainly helped that both seasonal charts had Venus in water sign Scorpio—thanks to a retrograde period within the three-month period between ingresses..

>> We won’t be seeing such a combination anytime soon—although fall 2013 looks persistently wet for the western prairie regions, including the Twin Cities (not so much for the plains)—under a combined Moon-Venus-Saturn influence. Next year’s harvest is likely to be hampered, following another dry, windy, variable (but not record-breaking hot) summer heralded by a prominent Mars in Gemini. <<

But what of the three snowier winters? In third place, 1950-51, which started off with the Moon in dry Gemini but connected to Jupiter in water sign Pisces in the crucial fourth place (“house”) of the chart, and water sign Scorpio on the Ascendant. (Digging down in the details shows the Moon at extreme northern declination, bringing bigger batches of moisture to northern climes.)

In second, 1981-82, the Moon is conjunct Jupiter in water sign Scorpio with water sign Cancer on the Ascendant.

And—drum roll, please—the winner winter: 1983-84, with 98.6 (sounds normal) inches of snow. And with the Moon in . . . fire sign Leo?! Huh? But Pisces is in the fourth place, and Venus is exactly on the Scorpio Ascendant, and conjunct Saturn. The latter combination would signify persistent precipitation.

This first week of December 2012, the midsection of the continent remains under the continued warm and dry influence of Aries at the base of the Full Moon moisture chart, while the west coast gets the wet Piscean influence.  The last quarter chart kicks in on the morning of the 6th, bringing a cooler and wetter pattern to the midsection. For this location, Saturn will be exactly on the upper meridian, accompanied by Venus and Mercury—a combination of chill, moisture and wind, more accentuated toward the south. The sign of Taurus at the base, and referring in general to northern regions, indicates a cooler trend than previously under Aries, but still on the mild side.

The greatest opportunity for rain and snow will accompany the Moon’s passage through Scorpio on December 10 and 11, particularly the latter. Any surges of cold air masses are apt to be released when Moon passes Saturn on the 10th.

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