A Letter to Mother Nature: a book review

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 11:52 AM GMT on June 05, 2012

One of the features of wunderground.com that I'm most proud of is one all of you can take credit for--our wunderphotos. Each day, users of the web site upload an average of 500 - 600 photos of some of the most beautiful and spectacular natural phenomena on the planet. We all share the same atmosphere, and one really gets a sense of that connection when we look at the wunderphotos, which come from every corner of the planet. Since 2003, 1.5 million wunderphotos have been uploaded, with over half a million just in the past three years. We have a dedicated team of volunteer reviewers that screen each photo, and I owe a big thank-you to all of you who have served as wunderphoto moderators. One of our most dedicated wunderphotographers, Lucy Woodley (wunderhandle: observing), was inspired to collect a set of 90 of her favorite wunderphotos and put them into a book. Her effort, A Letter to Mother Nature, was published this May. Each photo in the book has a sentence above it, poetically describing the scene below. It only takes a few minutes to whip through the book, but the spectacular images and thoughtful text invite one to linger longer and contemplate the natural beauty we are surrounded by. Here's a sampling of the text and images from the book, with wunderphotos by SunsetFL, CameraDiva, and Sharrose:

Dear Mother Nature,
Quite simply, I am in awe
of you and here is why...

You remind us to always look up...



...for there are great wonders overhead.



We can't resist dancing in your meadows.




A Letter to Mother Nature is $14.99 (paperback) from amazon.com. Proceeds from sale of the book go to support the disaster relief charity Portlight.org, founded by members of the wunderground community. I give A Letter to Mother Nature my highest rating, five out of five stars.

Rare transit of Venus today
I hope all you wunderphotographers will help document for us today a rare celestial happening--a transit of Venus across the sun. On June 5th at 3:09 pm PDT, Venus will begin a historic 7-hour transit of the solar disk, appearing as a dark spot against the sun's blazing face. This will be the last transit of Venus across the sun until 2117. As always, when viewing the sun, be sure to do it indirectly, or use a proper filter such as a #14 welder's glass to block the sun's eye-damaging rays. NASA.gov has more info. I'll link the best wunderphotographs taken of today's transit at the bottom of this post tonight and Wednesday morning. Below is one from Venus' last transit of the sun, back in 2004. Thanks, wunderphotographers!

Jeff Masters

Venis in transit (tillerdog)
Venus in transit across the sun June 8, 2004. Taken at sun rise in Flagler Beach Floirda ( USA ) with a 850mm lens by photojournalist Jim Tiller.
Venis in transit
Transit of Venus (redtim)
Transit of Venus from the Wunderground Office
Transit of Venus
Venus Sunset 7 (Nikongranny)
Venus across the sun during a cloudy evening.
Venus Sunset 7
Transit of Venus (LaddObservatory)
Despite thick clouds we were able to capture a brief glimpse of the planet Venus transiting the Sun. This image was taken with a modern digital camera attached to the historic Ladd Observatory telescope (1891) The clouds thinned just enough to capture this one image at 6:21:38 PM EDT, just moments after second contact.
Transit of Venus
Venus and sunspots at sunset (Llamadave)
I took this from a telescope projection on a white surface in West Lafayette, IN
Venus and sunspots at sunset
Transit of Venus 2012 (Guruchild)
I used a first generation canon digital rebel, a 300mm telephoto lens, a circular polarizing filter, and the low atmosphere to capture this beautiful amateur photograph of Venus dotting the Sun's disc.
Transit of Venus 2012
Venus transit (milfeld)
Venus transit

The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.

Reader Comments

Comments will take a few seconds to appear.

Post Your Comments

Please sign in to post comments.

Log In or Join

Not only will you be able to leave comments on this blog, but you'll also have the ability to upload and share your photos in our Wunder Photos section.

Display: 0, 50, 100, 200 Sort: Newest First - Order Posted

Viewing: 470 - 420

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32Blog Index

In case you haven't read, this was the NHC's official word on the blob:


THE GULF OF MEXICO...
CLUSTERS OF SCATTERED SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS COVER A GREAT AREA OF THE GULF THIS AFTERNOON. FROM SATELLITE AND DOPPLER RADAR VIEW...THE COVERAGE TAKES FROM 22N-30N E OF 93W. THESE SHOWERS ARE MOVING ENE AT ABOUT 15 KTS. THE STRONGEST CONVECTION IS FOCUSED ON THE CENTRAL BASIN FROM 22N-26 BETWEEN 85W-92W. DESPITE RIDGING ALOFT...THE OVERALL ACTIVITY IS MIDDLE TO UPPER LEVEL DRIVEN...AS A WEAK SUBTROPICAL JET STREAK MOVES ACROSS THE REGION. THIS JET IS NOTED ON MOST S-ERN CONUS UPPER AIR SOUNDINGS. MODEL DATA LOCATES THE JET AT THE BASE OF AN UPPER TROUGH MOVING ACROSS THE EASTERN CONUS. ANOTHER SMALL AREA OF WEEK DEVELOPMENT IS FOUND OFF THE COAST OF TEXAS S OF CORPUS CHRISTI. WEATHER CONDITIONS WILL REMAIN UNSTABLE ACROSS THE GULF DURING THE NEXT 24 HOURS AS THE MAIN AREA OF CONVECTION MOVES EASTWARD.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Tropicsweatherpr:
It looks like Chris will have to wait a while longer than the 15th of June as the main models GFS/ECMWF develop in the Eastern Pacific,unless both change to the Atlantic side.


Which they almost defiantly will. They're not changing between systems, they're changing between which one beats the other out which is much more complex. There is a system on the 12z GFS in the Caribbean, however it is weaker. Monsoonal developments almost always have competition in the EPAC, but often in the case of Arlene and Alex, the Atlantic wins out (more time to consolidate energy, the circulation is often larger).
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Quoting RTSplayer:
Gulf Convection blob model synopsis.

Nam suggests TS intensity, headed to Florida.

Most nothing else even initializes the Gulf blob.


GFS, Canadian, and Euro do nothing with it till the remnants reaches the Atlantic, where they may be developing it into a depression or hybrid low or maybe a named storm eventually...
ty..keep us posted ok
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Quoting duajones78413:


Do you think Corpus Christi will get any rain?


Looks like there's a chance :)

LONG TERM (WEDNESDAY NIGHT THROUGH TUESDAY)...EXTENDED PART OF THE
FORECAST WILL BEGIN WITH WESTERN AND EASTERN CONUS TROUGHS...UPPER
LEVEL RIDGING ACROSS THE CENTRAL US. BENEATH THIS RIDGE...WEAKNESSES
IN MID LEVEL HEIGHTS WILL EXIST ACROSS SOUTH TEXAS WITH AN UPPER LOW
OVER NORTHERN TEXAS/SOUTHERN OKLAHOMA. EVOLUTION OF THIS UPPER LOW
WILL BE THE MAIN FACTOR IN DETERMINING PRECIP CHANCES THROUGH THE
WEEKEND. UPPER SYSTEM SHOULD DRIFT SOUTHWARD THROUGH THE END OF THE
WORK WEEK BEFORE EJECTING TO THE NORTHEAST OVER THE WEEKEND. MODELS
PROG PWATS INCREASING FROM 1.6 TO 2.0 INCHES BY 00 FRIDAY...WHICH IS
ABOVE NORMAL FOR THIS TIME OF YEAR. HAVE CONTINUED THE SLIGHT TO
CHANCE POPS ACROSS ALL OF SOUTH TEXAS THURSDAY AND FRIDAY. INCREASED
POPS TO 40 PERCENT OVER THE VICTORIA CROSSROADS DUE TO CLOSER
PROXIMITY TO UPPER SYSTEM. SOME LOCALLY HEAVY RAINFALL COULD BE
POSSIBLE DURING THIS TIME DUE TO SLOW MOVING STORMS. WILL LEAVE
MENTION OF LOCALLY HEAVY RAINFALL IN THE HWO THIS MORNING. UPPER
TROUGH SHOULD BEGIN TO MOVE TO THE NORTHEAST BY THE WEEKEND. CHANCES
FOR CONVECTION WILL DIMINISH FROM WEST TO EAST AS THE SYSTEM PULLS
AWAY FROM THE AREA AND UPPER LEVEL RIDGE BUILDS IN FROM THE WEST.
LEFT LINGERING POPS ACROSS EASTERN PARTS OF THE REGION FOR NOW
THOUGH. TEMPS EARLY IN THE EXTENDED WILL BE A FEW DEGREES COOLER DUE
TO CLOUD COVER AND PRECIP CHANCES...BUT WILL BEGIN TO REBOUND BY
SUNDAY.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Patrap:
That's a surface "outflow Boundary" from that Storm..


What he said ^
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

In the situation depicted on the GFS (competing lows in both basins), the Atlantic side has won over the past three years so that is the side I will go with. It is possible that we get a storm in each basin as well.


Posible the both sides thing.
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:



That's a surface "outflow Boundary" from that Storm..
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Tropicsweatherpr:
It looks like Chris will have to wait a while longer than the 15th of June as the main models GFS/ECMWF develop in the Eastern Pacific,unless both change to the Atlantic side.

In the situation depicted on the GFS (competing lows in both basins), the Atlantic side has won over the past three years so that is the side I will go with. It is possible that we get a storm in each basin as well.
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
at the end of the radar loop in post #417 there is a line of "something" that is running ahead of the storm parallel to the coast. Can someone look at that loop and help me understand what it is? Might be just clutter but it seems interesting. thanks!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Gulf Convection blob model synopsis.

Nam suggests TS intensity, headed to Florida.

Most nothing else even initializes the Gulf blob.


GFS, Canadian, and Euro do nothing with it till the remnants reaches the Atlantic, where they may be developing it into a depression or hybrid low or maybe a named storm eventually...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting Tropicsweatherpr:
It looks like Chris will have to wait a while longer than the 15th of June as the main models GFS/ECMWF develop in the Eastern Pacific,unless both change to the Atlantic side.

The 18z GFS will show Atlantic development for sure... It may also show something in the East Pac but it will definitely have Chris.
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
SPECIAL WEATHER STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MELBOURNE FL
426 PM EDT TUE JUN 5 2012

FLZ064-052130-
MARTIN-
426 PM EDT TUE JUN 5 2012

...A SIGNIFICANT WEATHER ADVISORY IS IN EFFECT FOR STRONG WIND GUSTS
BETWEEN 45 AND 55 MPH AND SMALL HAIL OVER MARTIN COUNTY...

* UNTIL 530 PM EDT.

AT 424 PM EDT...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A
LINE OF STORMS CAPABLE OF PRODUCING STRONG WINDS AND SMALL HAIL
APPROACHING AREAS FROM PORT MAYACA EAST TO THE COAST NEAR THE MARTIN
PALM BEACH COUNTY LINE. THE LINE WAS MOVING EAST-NORTHEAST AT 25 MPH
TOWARD SOUTHERN MARTIN COUNTY.

THE PRIMARY THREAT WILL BE CLOUD TO GROUND LIGHTNING STRIKES AND
GUSTY WINDS OF 45 TO 55 MPH...WHICH CAN CAUSE UNSECURED OBJECTS TO
BLOW AROUND...SNAP TREE LIMBS OR CAUSE POWER OUTAGES. HEAVY RAINFALL
WILL TEMPORARILY REDUCE VISIBILITY. SEEK SHELTER INDOORS UNTIL THE
STORM PASSES.

STATE LAW REQUIRES HEADLIGHTS TO BE TURNED ON WHEN WINDSHIELD WIPERS
ARE IN USE.

LAT...LON 2710 8067 2718 8015 2697 8008 2697 8014
2695 8015 2695 8017 2695 8061
TIME...MOT...LOC 2023Z 243DEG 20KT 2681 8063

$$


52
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
It looks like Chris will have to wait a while longer than the 15th of June as the main models GFS/ECMWF develop in the Eastern Pacific,unless both change to the Atlantic side.
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Quoting GeorgiaStormz:
Poll time!!!

Will the blob in the gulf develop?:

I'm a forecaster: Yes

I'm a wishcaster: No


Ok, i suppose we could just use:

A: yes

B: no



lolol

I'm a forecaster and I will still say no
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting GeorgiaStormz:
Poll time!!!

Will the blob in the gulf develop?:

I'm a forecaster: Yes

I'm a wishcaster: No


Ok, i suppose we could just use:

A: yes

B: no
A
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Quoting GeorgiaStormz:
Poll time!!!

Will the blob in the gulf develop?:

I'm a forecaster: Yes

I'm a wishcaster: No


Ok, i suppose we could just use:

A: yes

B: no


Not the present blob but the new blog in 10-12 days I will guess yes!
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Quoting StormTracker2K:


Some more rain moving in toward your area.

yeah should be here real soon, alot of red and yellow once again in these storms..
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Quoting Hurricane1216:
Look at this: the Aqua satellite took this image of a massive cloud hole south of Australia in its MODIS camera.

amazing pic there
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

This one :P


Lol, I thought I might have the wrong one... That one's even worse!
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
May 2012 featured the lowest number of tornadoes since 1979.
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Quoting MAweatherboy1:

Still, that's a cold core low



I dont think thats the same storm..its showing it going back down south and even so if its cold core dosent mean it will stay so..Alberto and Beryl were depicted by the models to stay cold core..but again, I am no means a pro, only my amateur opinion here..
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting txjac:


And I'm David's neighbor!


I thought that you were in the Hill Ccuntry? ... My mistake. OK, you are added to the list!
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting MAweatherboy1:

Still, that's a cold core low


This one :P

Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Look at this: the Aqua satellite took this image of a massive cloud hole south of Australia in its MODIS camera.

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Tornado Watch out in Montana again today.

My friends Jesse and Steve will be live streaming again as well.

Here is a photo Steve took of a tornado warned storm there last night

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting ncstorm:


We will see..


Still, that's a cold core low



I'm not 100% sure that's the right low but the other ones in that area are cold core also so the CMC is not supporting tropical development.
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Picked up .81" so far today from a very windy thunderstorm. Must have had a wet microburst come thru as the winds must have a gusted 45 to 50 for a couple of minutes.
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Quoting TXCWC:
While there is a low, the CMC is not showing organized tropical development with this. Nogaps = 1 lone model run with ABSOLUTELY NO SUPPORT FOR IT BY ANY OTHER MODEL. I would not hang my hat or hopes on the NOGAPS out performing every other model - esp. against both the GFS and Euro. As for me, I'll be watching the NW Carribean and EPAC 8-10 days from now, but hey, that's just me, and I could be wrong about development in 3-4 days in the GOM/East Coast - if so - I will be back on to say so. :)


We will see..

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting TropicalAnalystwx13:

A tornado watch means conditions are favorable for the development of such. It doesn't mean that tornadoes WILL occur.

Right, but when you get no tornadoes in a watch that included wording stating that a couple of strong tornadoes would be possible, it's definitely a bust.
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Quoting LargoFl:


Some more rain moving in toward your area.

Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
438. MTWX
Quoting BaltimoreBrian:
Patrap the Dec 10-11 transit of Venus will not be visible from New Orleans.

The December 8, 2125 transit of Venus will be, weather permitting. In the morning.


Timeframe:

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting MAweatherboy1:
The SPC has a Mesoscale Discussion out saying a tornado watch will likely be issued soon in Montana... Yesterday's tornado watch up there, which included a very impressive 50% chance of EF 2 or greater tornadoes, may quite possibly be the bust of the year so far...


A tornado watch means conditions are favorable for the development of such. It doesn't mean that tornadoes WILL occur.
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
The SPC has a Mesoscale Discussion out saying a tornado watch will likely be issued soon in Montana... Yesterday's tornado watch up there, which included a very impressive 50% chance of EF 2 or greater tornadoes, may quite possibly be the bust of the year so far...

Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Quoting Dragod66:


See, the thing is I do read all the comments and most pages but, most of the time I get no answers... I know at some times of the day/season people can't get to my question right away but I am willing to wait and usually it's at the most busy times I formulate a good question. Every question I do ask, I feel is a legit question that is why I ask it. I wasn't trying to be rude in my response, I was just trying to give maybe a reason why lurkers stay lurkers... Back to lurking :(

If you ever have a question you really want answered, and aren't seeing an answer on the blog... try sending a WUmail to one of us that looks like we may be able to answer. I'm happy to answer questions in WU mail - or at least point you to someone who can answer it.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting HellcatS281:
Too bad it's cloudy, I won't be able to see the rare event.


Here just look at this

Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Quoting LargoFl:
lol ive been watching that for a week now, every day it gets a lil more organized, we shall see huh..if the winds keep blowing east it may well cross florida into the atlantic

Been watching what for a week? I'm really confused, since the blob in the gulf has only been there a couple of days...
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Too bad it's cloudy, I won't be able to see the rare event.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting jeffs713:

It will go forward.

The question really is... "what is 'it'?"
lol ive been watching that for a week now, every day it gets a lil more organized, we shall see huh..if the winds keep blowing east it may well cross florida into the atlantic
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Quoting aspectre:
217 Dragod66: Also ditto... the few times I ask questions no one answers them ... but I have learned a lot just by lurking for 3 years...

1) This isn't a chatroom. The people who could answer are constantly popping in and out.
2) They got answered. You probably didn't read the next couple or three pages. Yep, that's often how long it takes before somebody-who-could pops back in to catch up by reading the missed back pages.
Or maybe even longer. Some of the WUbers who could answer the more esoteric questions only appear during certain times of the day... or night, or extremely early morning.
3) Or you've asked a question when the blog is so actively monitoring a STORM or storm systems that one can barely keep up with reading it.
4) Or you've asked a question containing keywords that would pop up the answer within most of the first 10 results of a Google search.
5) Or you've asked a question that neither the NationalWeatherService nor the NationalHurricaneCenter could answer... not with any confidence in its truth value.
6) Or you've asked a question in a manner that indicates such unfamiliarity with the underlying complexity of the topic in general that it'd take a lengthy article just to explain what the answer means.


See, the thing is I do read all the comments and most pages but, most of the time I get no answers... I know at some times of the day/season people can't get to my question right away but I am willing to wait and usually it's at the most busy times I formulate a good question. Every question I do ask, I feel is a legit question that is why I ask it. I wasn't trying to be rude in my response, I was just trying to give maybe a reason why lurkers stay lurkers... Back to lurking :(
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Poll time!!!

Will the blob in the gulf develop?:

I'm a forecaster: Yes

I'm a wishcaster: No


Ok, i suppose we could just use:

A: yes

B: no
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Patrap the Dec 10-11 transit of Venus will not be visible from New Orleans.

The December 8, 2125 transit of Venus will be, weather permitting. In the morning.
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Quoting GeorgiaStormz:
no matter how high TCFP gets, the blob will not develop
probably not but never say never maybe in the Gulf would not develop but it could develop in the east coast even though I doubt it would happen.
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Quoting LargoFl:
anyone know which way it will be heading? texas or florida?

It will go forward.

The question really is... "what is 'it'?"
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
If you'd like to help with Portlights current project, feel free to check it out here.

Work is underway at the Tolbert House in Harrisburg Illinois.


The house donated by the community.

www.portlight.org

The Tolbert Family

Member Since: Posts: Comments:
423. TXCWC
I would not hang my hat on the NOGAPS and CMC outperforming BOTH the GFS and Euro. All major models appear to develop a major low system in 5-6 days (not appear to be truely tropical in nature)but in any case, this is WELL out in the Atlantic and no where near the GOM or East Coast. No threat to U.S. AT ALL (except for maybe a bit of rain coming through Florida). Again, NW Carribean or EPAC 8-10 days looks much more promising in terms of tropical development, in my view.
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
Quoting AtHomeInTX:


Another hot afternoon is expected across Southeast Texas today. Partly cloudy skies are forecasted with a 20% coverage of late-afternoon/evening thunderstorms. Temperatures will rise into the lower to middle 90s. The Heat Index will rise to near 100 this afternoon. Light and variable winds will become southerly later this afternoon.

Tonight, patchy fog is expected with lows in the lower 70s.

If you are in need of rain, rest assured that we will get it and possibly too much starting Wednesday and lasting through the weekend.


Do you think Corpus Christi will get any rain?
Member Since: Posts: Comments:
NE flow setting up, note the cells moving SW, I noticed the NE light winds here at work, backdoor front from the NE tropical entity in Gulf, perfect setup for creating something offshore

Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:
Quoting jeffs713:

I'd be looking more at RGB.
anyone know which way it will be heading? texas or florida?
Member Since: December 31, 1969 Posts: Comments:

Viewing: 470 - 420

Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 | 29 | 30 | 31 | 32Blog Index

Top of Page
Ad Blocker Enabled

Category 6™

About

Cat 6 lead authors: WU cofounder Dr. Jeff Masters (right), who flew w/NOAA Hurricane Hunters 1986-1990, & WU meteorologist Bob Henson, @bhensonweather

JeffMasters's Recent Photos

Mountain wave clouds over Labrador
Mountain wave clouds over Labrador
Mountain wave clouds over Labrador
Labrador ice