Ever wondered how to forecast the weather without actually using instruments?
Check the Clouds:
Clouds can tell us a lot about the weather. For example, they can tell us if it’s going to be warmer on a particular night by simply being there. That’s because they prevent heat radiation from escaping. They can also tell you whether there will be rain and whether there will be bad weather in general (when you see clouds moving in opposite directions of each other).
Check the Humidity:
If you’re one of those people whose hair gets all curly when it gets really humid out, you know exactly what this is about. However, even if your hair doesn’t react, you can still figure out that it’s really humid out by look at the leaves of certain trees. For example, pine cone and maple leaves tend to curl in high humidity, just like the hair on some people. You can also tell it’s humid if you can’t get in the front door because wood tends to swell up in high humidity.
Check the Animals:
Birds only fly in the sky when they expect fair weather ahead. On the other hand, if power lines in your neighborhood are covered with birds hanging around, that means the air pressure is dropping rapidly. Cows like to lie down when it’s about to rain and ants tend to build their hills with steep sides just before the rain comes. Cats like to clean their ears before the rain and turtles will seek high ground before the storm hits.
Look at the Rainbow (but only in the west) and look for a Red Sky:
If you see one in the west, it means a major storm front is coming. A red sky at night (again from the west) means that there is a high pressure system with dry air. Look at the sky in the east in the morning. If you see the same red sky it means it means the dry air has already moved on by.
Check the Air:
If it smells like a compost heap, expect some rain soon. Similarly, swamps will give off a nasty smell if a storm is on its way.
Check the Moon:
Seen any red moons lately? That means there is dust in the air. However, if it’s nice and clear, then you should expect some rain soon.
Check the Wind:
If you can tell which way the wind is blowing, you can tell if there is a storm approaching. Easterly winds say that a storm is coming. Westerly winds say the opposite. Strong winds will tell you that high pressure is on its way.
A Few More Ideas:
Make a campfire – If the smoke goes straight up, clear skies ahead. If it curls, then you can expect a rain soaked evening.
Check the grass – if it’s wet and dewy, that means it probably won’t rain. On the other hand if it’s dry, better break out the umbrellas!