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Weather Talk: Number of factors created Tuesday's record warmth

The record high temperature of 66 degrees in Fargo-Moorhead on Tuesday was caused by a number of factors coming together just right. Southeast wind was blowing up milder air from the central Midwest. Warm air was pooling just east of a cold front...

The record high temperature of 66 degrees in Fargo-Moorhead on Tuesday was caused by a number of factors coming together just right.

Southeast wind was blowing up milder air from the central Midwest. Warm air was pooling just east of a cold front as upper atmospheric conditions were dynamically heating the air. It was mostly sunny, allowing for a good dose of solar radiation. The air was dry, allowing it to heat up rapidly in the afternoon sunshine. The ground had dried up considerably after the late October heavy rainfall.

But one key factor was the completion of the area harvest in October this year. Outside the Fargo-Moorhead area, many fields lay fallow, and all that black soil is an excellent absorber of solar energy on a sunny day.

Within a few weeks, or maybe just a week or two, those same fields will be covered with bright, reflective snow, which will make it hard for the weather to even get above freezing.

Have a weather question you'd like answered? E-mail weather@wday.com ,

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or write to WDAY Stormtracker, WDAY-TV, Box 2466, Fargo, ND 58108

Related Topics: WEATHERWEATHERTALK
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