Sunday, January 15, 2012

You heard it here first: The drought will soon be over

The snow pack in Northern California is low to non-existent this year. Some sites where snow core samples are usually taken remain free of any snow, whatsoever. Tioga Pass Road from Yosemite to Lee Vining, usually closed from November through May, is open to traffic. If you had ever hoped to ice-skate on Yosemite's Tenaya Lake, now is the time!

But do it soon. Tioga Pass will soon be closed. Snow will accumulate in the mountains and rain will fall in the valleys.

This week, we begin our unit on electricity. I have found that there is no better way to bring the rain and humidity to otherwise dry Sacramento than to enter into our study of electrostatics.

In reality, we still get results adequate to see the effects we hope to see. And in most parts of the US, there is no better time than late January to study electrostatics. We're only immersed in triboelectricity for a few days before moving onto current electricity. And you don't need dry air for lemon batteries!

So ready your umbrellas and raincoats, Northern Californians. There will be rain aplenty by the end of the week.


berrendsci said...

Ahh bring back memories of demonstrating the van de graaff to moderate success in San Francisco. Upon moving to Utah, my first use of this device had much more shocking results for this demonstrator who had always lived in humid environs. If I try to use sunprint paper in Utah for a lab activity, I can cause weeks of cloudy inversion, sunless days.

Stevie Ray said...

Wow! You hit it dead on. Were you wearing your moisture-sensing power bracelet?