Sunday, April 7, 2013

A Different Start To Spring 2013


April 3, 2013
Elevation Around 3100 feet
Maple Gap of High Knob Massif
Looking From Green Pastures Near Maple Gap
Photograph by Roddy Addington - © All Rights Reserved.


The view in early April 2013 is strikingly different from that observed one year ago as a cold, snowy opening to Spring 2013 has it running way behind the anomalously warm Spring 2012 opening.

Roddy captured only a few budding maples around 
the high pastures of Maple Gap above, in contrast to significant patches of green observed one year ago 
when beautiful Trilliums were also in bloom!


Although this weather pattern is finally beginning to change, at least through the coming week, the first week of April this year was much colder than observed in 2012.

Climate Statistics
April 2013 verses April 2012

April 1-7, 2013
( Northern Base of High Knob Massif )
City of Norton - Elevation 2141 feet
Average Daily MAX: 52.2 degrees
Average Daily MIN: 25.7 degrees
April 1-7 MEAN: 38.9 degrees

April 1-7, 2012
( Northern Base of High Knob Massif )
City of Norton - Elevation 2141 feet
Average Daily MAX: 67.9 degrees
Average Daily MIN: 39.1 degrees
April 1-7 MEAN: 53.5 degrees

This is all part of the wondrous spring emergence differences which make the High Knob Landform and southern Appalachians simply spectacular during this time of year.

High Knob Landform
Spring Emergence Differences ( Elevation + Latitude )

The December 1 to April 5 period was also wet in this area with up to 31.00"+ of total precipitation amid the main crest zone of the High Knob Massif, from Bowman Mountain across Big Cherry Basin to the Maple Gap - Thunderstruck Knob section.

Monthly Precipitation Totals
Big Cherry Dam of High Knob Massif
Observer: Gary Hampton & Staff
Elevation 3120 feet

December: 7.00"

January: 11.24"

February: 2.87"

March: 7.65"

April 1-5:  1.08"

2013 Total: 22.84" ( M )

Total Since December 1: 29.84" ( M )

( M ) - An estimated 1.25" to 1.50" of missing moisture in falls of snow too deep for the rain gauge to contain during the period
( most of this loss occurred in January-March ).

April 3, 2013
Upper Tennessee River Basin
South Fork of Powell River Watershed
Looking To South Fork Gorge From Maple Gap
Photograph by Roddy Addington - © All Rights Reserved.

The country labeled above is located just off the 
far right end of this photograph by John Mullins.

April 14, 2012
Viewed from Black Mountain ( Along State Route 160 )
Looking Across Central Part of High Knob Massif
Photograph by John Mullins - © All Rights Reserved.

The view southwest of this photograph being labeled below, with Roddy's photograph of April 3, 2013 located within the section near the Maple Gap Karst Fields ( looking toward the line marking the southwest end of the Big Cherry Basin section ). 

April 14, 2012
Viewed from Black Mountain ( Along State Route 160 )
Looking Across Southwest Part of High Knob Massif
Photograph by John Mullins - © All Rights Reserved.

Big Cherry Dam is 1103 vertical feet lower than the peak of High Knob, with the basin of Big Cherry Lake sloping upward from southwest to northeast to the summit level of the sprawling massif.

Choosing a view from above, it was hard to 
beat the Autumn Color Show of 2012.

Awesome Color Show of Autumn 2012
Big Cherry Lake of High Knob Massif

The next few weeks should see spring emergence accelerate, with April 15 to May 15 typically being the most explosive period of floral and faunal activity across lower & middle elevations ( * ).

Mid May to early June completing the "green up" 
across upper elevations of the High Knob Massif.

*More cold, even wintry, spells are likely 
to occur during this time period.

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