HomeBird Fun FactsWhy Do We Have a Shimmer at Sundown?

Why Do We Have a Shimmer at Sundown?

Why Do We Have a Shimmer at Sundown?


The Shimmer at Sundown, Pittsburgh, 2 Feb 2021 (picture by Kate St. John)

18 December 2022

Typically in winter season Pittsburgh has cloudy skies throughout the day as well as clear skies during the night. When the shift occurs at sundown we see clear skies coming close to from the west however it gets here far too late for us to take pleasure in the sunlight. We have 10 mins of sunlight and afterwards it’s dark. I call this The Shimmer At Sundown.

Why does this take place so usually? Does Ohio have beautiful weather condition throughout the day that just reaches us during the night?

Shimmer at sundown, Midtown Pittsburgh distant, 2016 (picture by Kate St. John)

Myranda Fullerton at the National Climate Solution in Pittsburgh informed me why. Her solutions are reworded listed below.

Lake Result Clouds

Pittsburgh is popular for cloudy skies in winter season however you might be shocked where the clouds originate from.

Lake Erie plays a considerable function in our cloud cover as well as, as long as it isn’t iced up over throughout the winter season, it works as a neighborhood dampness resource that pesters the area with clouds. … Many locations have clear blue skies after a cold spell flow, however when we have northern circulation off of the lake we have cloud cover.”

Myranda Fullerton, NWS Pittsburgh, e-mail reworded

Buffalo, New York City has Lake Result Snow. I such as to believe that Pittsburgh has “Lake Result Clouds.”

Blending as well as the Limit Layer

When the air is well combined (wind and/or increasing cozy air, dropping chilly air) it produces a specified line in between the clouds et cetera people listed below. In winter season as well as very early springtime this blending occurs while the air is heated up throughout the day.

Throughout the winter season as well as very early springtime, many times we observe a well-mixed limit layer (we call this limit layer combining). When the environment is coupled/mixed, the top of that blending elevation is where we observe a cloud base[i.e. the bottom of the overcast deck] You might also really feel gusty wind throughout the day that sustains the idea of a combined environment, when solid wind up is transferred to the surface area via this implies.

Myranda Fullerton, NWS Pittsburgh, e-mail reworded

Steady Air is Clear

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The cloud base stays well specified while the air is blending. It breaks down when the blending quits at sundown.

In the evening, wind gusts generally diminish as the surface area cools down as well as the environment comes to be decoupled once more in tandem with sundown/ loss of daytime home heating. At decoupling you might shed your blending elevation as well as basically liquify your cloud cover.

Myranda Fullerton, NWS Pittsburgh, e-mail reworded

So Pittsburgh’s common winter season is: Overcast clouds throughout the day. Clouds separating at sundown for a Shimmer at Sundown. Clear skies at evening.

Still puzzled by the limit layer? Click On This Link for a video clip that discusses it

( images by Kate St. John)

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