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Survival Skills – Weather Prediction When the Grid Goes Down

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survival skillsSurvivalists and weather hobbyists alike love their real-time satellite radar, weather channel, and the most in-depth weather information imaginable all easily accessed at the push of a remote control button or click of the mouse. But how close will you come to having any idea what the weather is going to do when the power grid goes down and you’re left to predict what’s coming using nothing but your five senses and perhaps a little intuition? Here’s what to watch for.

Wind Direction
If you haven’t figured it out yet, weather travels with the wind, and wherever that fickle beast decides to turn, expect the prevailing weather to follow. In the United States, wind and weather patterns move primarily West to East on the coattails of the jet stream, though keep in mind that rarely does it take a straight shot from coast to coast. Notorious dips are likely to happen that will suddenly drag a weather pattern from Minnesota down into Mississippi, and keep in mind Colorado has a few noteworthy geographical features known as mountains that can affect weather one way or another.

In general, weather from the northwest is fair, while weather from the southwest or southeast might carry a few surprises, and from the northeast not to be trifled with. If pondering this information makes you stop and think that it might be time to purchase a reliable compass, you would be right.

Cloud Formations
Like prevailing winds, cloud formations can change drastically throughout the course of a day. Learn to read them and predict what the changes mean. Since clouds are made up of water particles, the color reflecting off them can tell you a lot about what’s coming. Take a look at the sky at first light, and in the evening, while pausing a moment here and there throughout the day to monitor changes. All this observation might take practice but, trust us, it pays off. Before long you’ll be make Joe Cantori look like a piker and all without benefit of a single computer. Here’s an example: high ice clouds that break up as they move combine with winds from the south to bring rain in 15 to 20 hours.

The whole point in learning something about weather prediction is not so you can show off what a hotshot you are. We’re talking about survival here, so remember the reason behind it all. Knowing what sort of weather is on the way can be critical when you grow your own food or need to know what travel conditions will be like. And keep in mind that it’s not necessary to learn this all at once. Get a few good books, talk to old timers, and watch the sky.

The Holistic Survival Team

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