Nov 29, 2011

Mysterious rain band

An interpretive ranger handed me a small rectangle of newspaper cut out from the Naples Daily News. It showed year-to-date rainfall totals for Ft Myers and nearby Naples:

Naples 37.62 inches
Ft Myers 65.29 inches

Can you see the mysterious rain band?

Photo taken from Naples Beach in October 2011

The two towns are both on the same coast, only thirty minutes apart …

“Could their 2011 rain totals really be that far apart?”


Along with the piece of paper the same interpretive ranger informed me of a meteorologist from Florida International University (FIU) who months earlier had alluded to a mysterious rain band that rain across the state from Ft Myers to West Palm Beach, but did not include Naples, and thus explained the lack of rain to the south.


I track rainfall in Naples and Ft Myers using a four-gage average for both towns, and thus was curious to see if the disparity was in fact real, and not an artifact of a single station.

My numbers show the same trend, although not as far apart:

Naples 34.4 inches
Ft Myers 51.52 inches

Naples (blue) had a subpar wet season
compared to nearby Ft Myers (red).
As for the rain band theory ...

I’m still trying to track that FIU researcher down.

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