Thursday, December 20, 2007

Thursday Thirteen #18

Thirteen facts about Winter.

  1. Astronomically, it starts with the winter solstice (around December 21 in the Northern Hemisphere and June 21 in the Southern Hemisphere), and ends with the spring equinox (around March 21 in the Northern Hemisphere and September 21 in the Southern Hemisphere).
  2. 17 Cars are needed to equal the weight of 1 loaded snowplow (50,000 lbs).
  3. Believe it or not, snow is actually clear/transparent. Snow appears white because the crystals act as prisms, breaking up the light of the sun into the entire spectrum of color.
  4. During the winter Orion dominates the sky.
  5. Nighttime predominates the winter season, and in some regions it has the highest rate of precipitation as well as prolonged dampness due to permanent snow cover in such areas.
  6. Hibernation is a state of reduced metabolic activity during the winter. These animals "sleep" during winter and only come out as warm weather returns. For example, gophers, bears, frogs, snakes and bats hibernate.
  7. During the winter months in the northern hemisphere, a gloominess nicknamed "winter blues", "February blahs", "Holiday depression", or doldrums, is informally noted amongst people. The severest cases of this type of depression is diagnosed as seasonal affective disorder (SAD).
  8. In the United States, January has the highest rate of suicide.
  9. The highest seasonal total snowfall ever measured was at Mount Baker Ski Area, outside of Bellingham, Washington in the United States during the 1998–1999 season. Mount Baker received 1,140 inches (29 m) of snow.
  10. The best time to build a snowman is usually in the next warmest afternoon directly following a snowfall with a sufficient amount of snow.
  11. Skiing was originally a practical way of getting from one place to another in packed or crusted snow. In Norse Myth, skiing was invented by Skadi, the snowshoe goddess. The word "ski" entered the English language from Norwegian in 1890.
  12. During the American Civil War, on January 29, 1863, the largest military snow exchange occurred in the Rappahannock Valley in Northern Virginia. What began as a few hundred men from Texas plotting a friendly fight against their Arkansas camp mates soon escalated into a brawl that involved 9,000 soldiers of the Army of Northern Virginia.
  13. Freezing rain is a type of precipitation that begins as snow at higher altitude, falling from a cloud towards earth, melts completely on its way down while passing through a layer of air above freezing temperature, and then encounters a layer below freezing at lower level to become supercooled. This water will then freeze upon impact of any object it then encounters.


Robin December 20, 2007 at 9:16 AM  

That must have been quite a snowball fight! Years ago I went to the ski museum in Oslo, it was really fascinating to see all that antique equipment.

WorksForMom December 20, 2007 at 9:45 AM  

I love this post and actually learning things from a T13. I only knew, sadly, 5 of these. Great list!

Believer in Balance December 20, 2007 at 10:53 AM  

I didn't know that snow was transparent! Cool!

Lori December 20, 2007 at 10:55 AM  

Wow, what great info of things I didnt know:) Happy TT and thanks for stopping by.

Sandee (Comedy +) December 20, 2007 at 11:20 AM  

Informative and entertaining as well. Very well done. Have a great TT. :)

Samantha_K December 20, 2007 at 11:42 AM  

It's not only animals. I too hibernate during winter. Oh, maybe that's just wishful thinking.
Happy TT!

Susan Helene Gottfried December 20, 2007 at 1:42 PM  

I wouldn't mind having enough snow to build a snowman. Lately, it doesn't stick around long enough -- or come down wet enough -- for us to build even a lousy snowman.

Well, there's a few months left in this winter. Who knows what'll happen.

Happy TT!

Dont make me get out my flying Monkeys! December 20, 2007 at 2:07 PM  

Even though Im back from vacation and feeling blah, I took some time to post for my friends on my wordpress blog!

! Come take a look, and visit my cruise pictures! myspace/maydakmom

AnGlOpHiLe FoOtBaLl FaNaTiC December 20, 2007 at 8:47 PM  

I learned quite a bit from this. I love the Civil War snowball fight. Leave it to us crazy Texans. The history teacher in me also has to add the last CW battle took place about six weeks after the war was over near Brownsville. The Texas troops won & learned the war was over from the captured US troops. Gen Custer (of last stand fame) was one of those men.

tiff (threeringcircus) December 20, 2007 at 9:46 PM  

Wow! That was great! I learnt alot about Winter.

MondaythroughSunday December 20, 2007 at 10:44 PM  

LOVE winter during the holidays..but come January and February I am missing my flip flops!! Have a Merry Christmas and hope it is a white one!!

Nicholas December 20, 2007 at 11:30 PM  

Very interesting facts, though #8 is a bit sad.

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