Lesson 3: Climate - favorite bits

Overall: The interdisciplinary nature of this course is great. I coordinate a nature/environment book group and we often read single-topic books about, say, beavers (Eager by Ben Goldfarb), that actually cover a lot of ground like history, evolution, and psychology, all through the lens of that organism. The mountain lens is even way broader and I love seeing so much through my new “mountain glasses”!

  • A lot of the climate stuff was familiar, but this section helped me get a more concrete sense of pressure gradients. The Hadley cell animation was very helpful.
  • Westerlies, easterlies, and trade winds - I can visualize how they interact now!
  • I’d heard of the chinook but never knew what it was beyond “a kind of wind” - and now I can add “foehn” as well (love new cool words)
  • Similarly: krummholz! I know what it is by sight, great to have a term for it.
  • Other interesting phenomena: the mountain mass effect, onographic precipitation, and that what most restricts tree growth at high elevation is low temps during the growing season.

Agreed I added the words you singled out to my vocabulary.

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Same here. Two more things I enjoyed learning:

  • What SPF ratings actually mean when talking about sunscreen.
  • That the Himalayas have more than 100 peaks above 7200m, which is incredible.

I finally got the Tropic of Cancer and Capricorn straight. Such a simple thing, but I never bothered to work on it enough to remember which is north and which is south.
And krummholz was delightful - I had a lot of fun looking at other pictures i found just googling that word!

This was retweeted into my feed today - I got so excited, “Oh, I know what that is, that can cause orographic precipitation on the windward side and Chinooks (foehns) on the leeward side!”
play video at https://twitter.com/ABC/status/1400552044956639232