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Floods of the Super Moon 16/08/2014

Posted by zoidion in Event, urban agriculture, Weather.
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Twin Cities ephemera: It’s been a pleasant week with unusually cool mornings here–until today’s murky, muggy dawn–since the rain came in through the night following the Full Moon on the 10th. The rain brought some relief, as this region had begun to have a parched look about it. Even so, there was considerable variation in precipitation: My gauge registered 0.66 inch–enough to fill my rain barrels again–while locations on the other side of town reported only a tenth of an inch.

It’s been a week of harvest here on the urban homestead. Noting the evidence of a nighttime marauder–well, okay, an opportunist–I plucked the remaining corn from their stalks. Noticing the preponderance of sagging clusters of dark berries on the two elderberry bushes, I plucked them too: over seventeen pounds. Torn between this project and that, I spent last evening starting the wine-making process. Carpe diem.

Not harvesting this year, I still looked with satisfaction at the first flowers on the groundnut (Apios americana) vines–I placed a few roots in the ground four months ago. Next year, they will need a trellis. And the year after that, I can start digging some tubers.

IMG_1982

There were dramatic and destructive rains elsewhere, in widely separated regions.

The Community Collaborative Rain, Hail & Snow Network (CoCoRaHS) blog has an excellent summary, “Too Much Rain,” on major rainfall events on the days surrounding the Full (Super) Moon of August, with the Moon at perigee.

In my summer forecast, published here on 12 June, I anticipated “major storms in the high plains and Rocky Mountain region” during the week beginning with the First Quarter Moon on 3 August. Where did I get that? From the very heavy configuration Jupiter-Mercury-Sun in Leo in square to Mars-Moon-Saturn in Scorpio, with Saturn at the upper meridian through the specified region.

And lo and behold, the storms occurred like astro-clockwork. The linked article states: “On Friday night and early Saturday morning two rounds of heavy thunderstorms hit Kearney, NE. CoCoRaHS observers in and around Kearney reported from, 2.35 to 3.89 inches of rain for the 24 hours ending Saturday morning. Most of it fell in a span of a little more than three hours from 11:00 p.m. to 2:00 a.m.”

At 11:00 p.m. on Friday the 8th, Moon in Capricorn was upon the ascendant of the First Quarter chart calculated for Kearney: time to unleash the forces gathering since Moon crossed (actually, occulted: a phenomenon with more severe implications) Saturn on the morning of the 4th.

1Q Aug2014_transits08082014

Venus’ place (in water sign Cancer) on the western horizon of the First Quarter chart was further evidence of the availability of abundant moisture, and so the rainfall continued approximately until Moon passed the opposition to Venus at 3:09 a.m. local time.

But Saturn and Venus are not the only planetary signatures for rain.

Witness what happened in Detroit, where up to six-plus inches of rain fell during the night and day following the Super Moon–and where for some time there have been legal and police battles involving the municipal water supply. Detroit was under a double planetary whammy: Saturn on the ascendant and Neptune near the lower meridian of the Full Moon chart.

FM-Aug2014_Detroit

Notice that one of the meteorological features of the situation there was a “stationary low pressure wave”: a Saturn effect.

Next on the agenda: the Baltimore-Washington area, where one location recorded over ten inches of rain.

But the rainfall prize from the Super Moon was reserved for Islip, on New York’s Long Island: 13.57 inches of rain: a new state record. There, Saturn was seven degrees from the ascendant, but Neptune was exactly on the lower meridian (the most potent place) of the Full Moon chart. (The Moon reached Neptune at 7:26 p.m. on Monday the 11th: The deluge came during the thirty-six hours following.)

FM-Aug2014_Islip_transits

Decades ago, he was so right: He had put in the decades of study and observation to speak with authority. I refer to George J. McCormack, who laboriously produced on his typewriter a small number of his Text-Book of Long-Range Weather Forecasting. Seeking (in vain) acceptance from the community of measuring-instrument weather forecasters, he avoided dramatic language. But he had no inclination to minimize the dangers:

The keynotes of Neptune’s influence weatherwise are variability, low visibility, ascending air currents, prevalent southerly winds, lower barometer, humidity, excessive static and vacuums in the higher air strata that often prove hazardous for aviation. . . . this planet induces the heaviest downpours in the shortest space of time.

Bingo, Gee Jay.

-<zoidion>-

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