Flooding in the U.S. Midwest
River levels were gradually receding at Grand Rapids when the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) on NASA’s Terra satellite captured the top image on April 30, 2013. Though no longer at its historic peak, the river remained significantly flooded; this is easier to see when the 2013 image is compared to conditions on April 30, 2007, a relatively normal year.
ASTER combines infrared, red, and green wavelengths of light to make false-color images that distinguish between water and land. Water is blue. Buildings and paved surfaces are blue-gray. Lawns, parks, forests, and fields range in color from red to brown.
- National Weather Service Grand River at Comstock Park. Accessed May 3, 2013.
- Terra - ASTER
May Day Snow
A May Day snowstorm dropped snow from Colorado to Minnesota. Some parts of Colorado and Wyoming received more than a foot of snow, including 16 inches (40 centimeters) in Fort Collins, Colorado, and just over 12 inches (30 centimeters) of snow in Boulder, Colorado. The snowfall in Boulder was a record for the date and possibly the largest May snowfall for that city since 1978. Single-day May snowfall records appeared to fall in multiple states, the Capital Weather Gang reported.
The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite captured the top image on May 2 after clouds had mostly cleared out of the Denver region. For comparison, the bottom image shows the same area on April 27, 2013, before the storm struck. Although far less dramatic than snow cover in February, the May Day snow nevertheless covered a wide area, especially for so late in the spring.
Record low temperatures—19°F (-7°C) in Denver, 17°F (-8°C) in Boulder, and 7°F (-14°C) in Laramie—followed the snow. Meanwhile, the storm system continued dropping snow northeast of the Rocky Mountains, possibly setting new records in Minnesota.
- Terra - MODIS
NASA: US - Flooding in the U.S. Midwest (Grand River) - May Day Snow - from Colorado to Minnesota - Denver - 03.05.13
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