Chicago Will Be Colder Than Parts of Antarctica This Week

Scott Olson/Getty Images
Scott Olson/Getty Images

Chicago is preparing for life-threatening cold temperatures this week as a polar vortex grips the Midwest. Temperatures are expected to stay below -13°F all through Wednesday, January 30, making the Windy City colder than the South Pole in Antarctica, which will see highs of -4°F that same day, CBS Chicago reports.

The Midwest is known for its brutal winters, but the first month of 2019 is already shaping up to be one of the coldest months in the region's history. On Wednesday, thermometers could read as low as -20°F, which would be a record low temperature for January 30 in Chicago. It's also in the running to be the second-coldest day ever for the city, coming behind January 20, 1985, which brought lows of -27°F.

Wind chill will make the historic temperatures even more extreme. Gusts could potentially make it feel as cold -50°F outside, prompting safety officials to put a wind chill advisory into effect early Tuesday morning. At 6 p.m. Tuesday, the advisory will be upgraded to a wind chill warning which will last until noon on Thursday. The Chicago public school system has already canceled all classes for January 30, and in Wisconsin, Governor Tony Evers has declared a state of emergency.

This week's weather isn't just cold by Midwest standards. Barrow (Utqiaġvik), Alaska; Oslo, Norway; and even parts of Siberia and the Yukon are all expected to see high temperatures above that of Chicago's on January 30.

[h/t CBS Chicago]

Fall Foliage Is Running Late This Year

Free art director/iStock via Getty Images
Free art director/iStock via Getty Images

The August arrival of the pumpkin spice latte might have you feeling like fall is in full swing already, but plants aren’t quite so impressionable. According to Travel + Leisure, the best fall foliage could be coming a little later than usual this year.

Historically, the vibrant transformation starts to sweep through northern regions of the Rocky Mountains, Minnesota, and New England in mid-September, and reaches its peak by the end of the month. Other areas, including the Appalachians and Midwest states, don’t see the brightest autumn leaves until early or mid-October. The Weather Channel reports that this year, however, the forecast from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicts unseasonably warm temperatures for the next two weeks, which could impede the color-changing process.

Warm temperatures aren’t necessarily bad for fall foliage, as long as they occur during the day and are offset by cool nights. Since meteorologists don’t expect the overnight temperatures to drop off yet, plants will likely continue producing enough chlorophyll to keep their leaves green in the coming days.

The good news is that this year’s fall foliage should only be about a week late, and meteorologist David Epstein thinks that when leaves do start to change color, we’re in for an especially beautiful treat. If the current weather forecast holds, he told Boston.com, we'll "see a longer season than last year, we’d see a more vibrant season than last year, and it would come on a little earlier than last year, which was so late.”

Though poor weather conditions like early snow, heavy rain, drought, or strong winds can cause leaves to fall prematurely, most trees right now are in a good position to deliver a brilliant display of color after a healthy, rain-filled summer.

Find out when you’ll experience peak fall foliage in your area with this interactive map.

[h/t Travel + Leisure]

Amazing Timelapse Shows Florida Sky Turning Purple Following Hurricane Dorian

Scott Olson/Getty Images
Scott Olson/Getty Images

Photographs taken of Hurricane Dorian's massive eye and the damage it caused in the Bahamas paint a picture of what it was like to live through the historic storm. But some of the most stunning images to come out of the event were captured after the hurricane had passed. As KENS5 reports, the time-lapse video below shows the sky over Florida turning a unique shade of purple in the wake of Hurricane Dorian.

Dorian skimmed the east side of Florida earlier this week, causing power outages and some flooding. The worst of the storm was over by Wednesday night, but the ominous purple clouds it left behind may have sparked concern among some Florida residents.

A purple sky following a hurricane is the result of a perfectly natural occurrence called scattering. The sky was super-saturated after Dorian arrived, and the moisture in the atmosphere refracted the light of the setting sun. Normally, only the longest wavelengths of light on the color spectrum are visible through the clouds—that's why sunsets often appear gold, pink, and orange.

Violet is the shortest wavelength on the spectrum, which means it's almost never visible in the sky. But the air's high dew point Wednesday night, combined with the dense low-hanging clouds, created the perfect conditions for a rare purple sky.

Locals who've lived through a few hurricanes may have recognized the phenomenon; the same thing happened after Hurricane Michael hit Florida last year.

[h/t KENS5]

SECTIONS

arrow
LIVE SMARTER