Are These Old Weather Proverbs Actually True in South Dakota?
Forecasts indicate that thunderstorms may roll through Sioux Falls tonight (Tuesday, April 12) High winds and damaging hail are also a possibility. It reminds me of an old weather proverb that says, "Six months from the first thunder of spring you'll find the first fall freeze."
So, in the spirit of our forefathers, let's mark the date: six months from April 12 is October 12. We'll keep the date and see if the old weather proverb proves true.
We'll keep this post on file to see how close we actually come the correct date. But what about some of the other golden weather proverbs? Have you ever heard "rainbow in the morning gives us fair warning?" This makes sense and is fairly accurate as showers to the west will be moving in.
On camping trips have you ever had your kids count the number of cricket chirps in 14 seconds? Then add 40 and you'll get a approximate temperature. For example: If you hear 20 chirps from a nearby cricket, it's about 60 degrees F.
This isn't the only one that involves insects and animals. It's been proven that animals are very sensitive to barometric pressure movement and can act bizarre. Here's a great one: "When the ass begins to bray, surely rain will come that day." We did not buy an ass to test this one out, my wife says she married one - so that's good enough for me.
Here's one from the Art of Manliness: "Frogs croaking in the lagoon means rain will come real soon." Every time I hear the word "lagoon" I only think of Gilligan's Isle - so Wall Lake will have to do. Frogs will croak when humidity rises so this, in a sense, is true.
"If spiders are many and spinning their webs, the spell will soon be very dry," means when you see an increase in the number spider webs, there is usually no rain in the forecast. It could also be recent rains have destroyed their webs and are in a hurry to rebuild in time for dinner. If I was a spider, that's what I would do.
My grandfather always said that when his knee hurt, there was a cold front on the way. Although the chill in the air does indeed affect muscle joints and bones, we suspect this was his way of getting us grand kids to shovel his driveway or rake the leaves.
The Old Farmer's Almanac reminded me of this one: "When the clouds appear like rocks and towers, the earth's refreshed with frequent showers." Those would be thunderheads and there's a fairly good chance you'll see some thundershowers.
While these old weather proverbs are fun and entertaining - and mostly eerily accurate, it's still a good idea to have a good weather app or two in your phone to alert you of incoming weather. I want a good bit of fair warning from a trained meteorologist and swift technology.
Crickets and spiders? Not so much.