Posted by Dee Norris
Can you figure out what happened at Mohonk Lake, NY?
Get out your slip-sticks and put on your thinking caps, gentle readers. We need to solve the mystery of the temperature record at at Mohonk Lake NY.
On Monday, the New York Times had this to say about the temperature record at Mohonk Lake:
The record shows that on this ridge in the Shawangunk Mountains, about 20 miles south of the better-known Catskills, the average annual temperature has risen 2.7 degrees in 112 years. Of the top 10 warmest years in that time, 7 have come since 1990.
Now I just happen to live in the Catskills (the Shangra-La of New York State, IMBO) and a 2.7 degree (I am assuming F, not C) increase sounded pretty high for the ‘Gunks’ so I turned to this handy tool at http://www.CO2Science.org for a quick look-see at the USHCN data for the Mohonk Lake (41.77.N, 74.16W; 379m) site. Here is what I found:
Since I live in the general area, I have previously used the data from a site in nearby Maryland, NY (42.52N, 74.97W; 363m) in a local lecture. I was sure I remembered that the station in Maryland had not exhibited a trend like this. Double checking the ol’grey matter, I got this graph:
Both sites are at the same altitude and in the same general vicinity. I know that climate change can’t be that localized, so it has to be something else.
I hope to get down to Mohonk Lake this weekend if possible for a closer inspection, but in the meantime, here is an opportunity for all the climate sleuths out there to take a shot at solving The Mystery at Mohonk Lake.
UPDATE: The Mystery Deepens
In a converstion today with Paul Huth at Mohonk Preserve, I was assured that the station did not have the latest electronic MMTS measurement system and that they still used the original system installed in 1896, but an inquiry at NCDC provided the following equipment:
An appointment for a site inspection has been set up for the middle of next week.