FARGO — Early this morning, the Red River officially hit minor flood stage here. That's because we melted a lot of snow yesterday.

But, obviously, it's not the first day we've had above freezing temperatures, so why did we have more melting?

Go to your freezer for this one, folks. We're going to use a frozen turkey as an example.

A frozen turkey taken out of the freezer does not thaw right away, it takes time with the surrounding air temperature to thaw.

WDAY logo
listen live
watch live

But there is another process that can help our snow melt much faster.

Water vapor in the air will condense onto the snow's cold surface, where it releases heat.

This is called "latent" heat," and it is the heat used to evaporate the water in the first place.

It means that when we have a higher dew point, our snow shrinks a lot faster.