March, 2012

Record High, 87 Degrees Today!

March 15th, 2012 at 2:45 pm by under Weather

We started this morning at 57 degrees, what a warm….correction, hot afternoon it is. 87 degrees was the high temperature today. The average high temperature today is 58 degrees and the previous record was 84 set in 1973. The sunny skies with that south wind was a big factor to warm us up today. Another factor is the humidity, temperatures usually fluctuate much more when it isn’t humid outside. The dewpoint today was near 50 degrees (Versus the summer where its in the 70s)


Look at how the temperatures have rose over the past week:

Sat to Today

That area of high pressure is going to stick around our region over the next few days, but with the additional humidity and instability in the atmosphere we might see a stray shower or thunderstorm tonight. For our Friday, we also have a chance to see a thunderstorm in the afternoon with highs again in the low 80s. For our Saturday (St. Patrick’s Day) there is a chance for more of these scattered thunderstorms as the atmosphere remains in an unstable state.

We will eventually cool down a bit more on Saturday and Sunday with highs near 70 degrees.

Enjoy this taste of heat today,

Meteorologist Jeff Edmondson

Runners Ready to Rock? We’re On The Run, Again!

March 15th, 2012 at 12:31 am by under Sports

The Latest Notes and News, On the Run with Sportswrap Runnning Reporter, Jon “Flex” Leiding

On The Run!

Spring is Near

The warm temperatures seem to point to an early Spring. That or the speedy times heating up the “757″ recently…
At the Cox HS Falcon 5K, Portsmouth’s Ryan Carroll was on cruise control, winning in 16:40, while the Ladies were led by Stephanie Manny with a sizzling 18:52.

Just up the road, Kurtis Steck, just 17, was speeding through the course at the Jamestown Swamp Run 5K with a 16:58 and Jennifer Quarles, also from Williamsburg Ladies record with a 19:31.

We Never Stop!

The BIG Weekend Awaits!

St. Patrick’s Day has celebrations and races everywhere Saturday. The 8th annual Ali’s 5k Run in Williamsburg is available and a little further in Chesterfield, the Instant Classic Marathon Trail Run and Half Marathon are up for grabs. Head to the Oceanfront and the Shamrock 8K and Kids Final Mile, which both end near the statue of King Neptune.

Then Sunday, we go BIG!

The 40th annual Shamrock Marathon and Half Marathon get going at the beach and from what I’ve heard, only a few spots remain for the Marathon. J&A Racing let me know that close to 25,000 runners will be toeing the line for one of the races this weekend.

There is a Guinness World record attempt on the line, along with some great runners ready to bring their best. We will be on the scene this weekend and I’ll have a report as well. Watch WAVY TV 10 Sunday morning and you might see us at the Oceanfront, along with someone you know. Also check next week for a complete wrap up.

Thank You, Thank You, Thank You!

There is no way I get to do what I do without the support of so many runners and friends of the Blog. We continue to expand our friends from around the country. Please keep spreading the word. If you have an idea for a great story or a suggestion you think might be interesting, please drop me a line at

Spring is on it’s way and we’ll do our best to keep you covered. Good Luck on your training, no matter how far you go. Maybe, I’ll catch you soon… “On The Run!

See You On The Run!

On the Run with Sportwrap Running Reporter, Jon “Flex” Leiding

A Few Tweaks

March 14th, 2012 at 7:43 am by under Weather

There aren’t any big changes to the forecast except for the rain chance now for Friday.  However, there are some minor tweaks.  Yesterday despite the clouds in the morning we managed to make it up to the upper 70s.  Today we will have a lot more sunshine, but there will be a light northeast wind.  The water temperatures are in the low 50s.  So temperatures near the shore will be cooler than inland locations.  Low/mid 70s near the shore with highs near 80 inland:

Mixed High temps

 Tomorrow the winds will be southerly.  So most of the area will be in the low 80s.  That is well above the average high of 57, but I don’t think we’ll reach the record of 84 (1973).  Highs on Friday will be near 80, but now it looks like we could see a few thunderstorms in the afternoon.  The weekend forecast is going to be tricky.  While there is no big system near our region, there will be some moisture and a weak disturbance nearby.  For now I have some very early showers on Saturday and then ending, but the models are trying to dab in some rain chances at other times through early Sunday.  At this point I have to wait a bit for a more definitive weekend forecast.  I am confident though that we will see cooler temperatures.  Upper 60s to low 70s for highs. 

Meteorologist: Jeremy Wheeler

Wet Weather, But Staying Warm

March 13th, 2012 at 7:26 am by under Weather

As forecast, we started the day with a wet commute across the region.  Rain was steady through most of the area from 5-7am.  There were no thunderstorms, but the rain did get heavy in a few cities. 

Super Doppler 10 (6:00am)

 The rain will taper off later this morning.  We’ll have a little clearing this afternoon with only a slight chance for a shower.  Temperatures will climb to the low/mid 70s despite a lot of clouds today.  Wednesday and Thursday will be very nice.  We’ll keep the warm temperatures, but we’ll also have a lot of sunshine.  Highs will be in the mid-upper 70s through Friday.  In fact, a huge section of the country will be experiencing temperatures well above the average.  Many records were broken in the Midwest and Northeast states yesterday.  That trend is expected to continue.  The heat will press a little farther north today.  Even up to the Dakotas.

Forecast High Temperatures

 We do have a chance for rain on St. Patricks Day.  There is a 40% chance for rain that day.  Hopefully, the forecast will get amended as there is the famous parade, and also the Shamrock Marathon will be happening.  Sunday looks dry, but a little cooler with highs in the mid 60s.  The pollen forecast is at a 9 out of 12 today.  It will stay up through Friday at about the same level. 

Meteorologist: Jeremy Wheeler

I’m Back…Now What?

March 12th, 2012 at 7:47 am by under Weather

Yes it’s true.  I am back from a 5 day staycation.  It was great.  I got to see “Wicked”, saw several movies, relaxed, had a wing night with the family, and got some reading done as well.  I even got some yard work done yesterday in the beautiful sunshine.  Today we will increase the clouds and the temperatures.  Highs will be up near 70 degrees later this afternoon.  In fact most of the country is going through a warmer weather pattern for the next several days.  This will be due to the an area of high pressure that will park itself off of the southeast coast.  Almost like a Bermuda high in the Summer, but not exactly.  There will be some strong heating in the central U.S. 

Warmer Weather This Week

 It will be nice to see the warmer weather stick around for several days.  At this point I even see it last into next weekend.  If that happens, then a lot of folks will really be happy as we have seen a month or two of cooler temperatures during the weekends.  So if that pertains to you, then keep your fingers crossed. 

We have to chances for rain in the 7 day forecast.  Tonight a few showers will make it here, and will last into early tomorrow.  I don’t think we’ll see too much for amounts.  Maybe a quarter of an inch.  Then the next chance for rain won’t arrive until Saturday evening.  It’s a weak system at that time though, and could change.  So stay tuned for updates. 

Meteorologist: Jeremy Wheeler

Are We Done with the Cold Temperatures?

March 11th, 2012 at 9:12 am by under Weather

The question I have been getting from a few people is: “Are we done with the cold temperatures? Is spring here” Well It sure does look like it. Starting today our temperatures are going to keep warming up over the next few days ahead. Today, thanks to sunny skies and a south wind, we should see our temperatures in the 50s by noon and just next to that 60 degree barrier this afternoon.

Storm out west.

That developing storm in Missouri today will likely spawn a few severe thunderstorms in Arkansas and portions of Louisiana this afternoon and evening. What it is doing for us in helping to create a south-flow back to Hampton Roads. Temperatures will be able to rise very close to the average high today of 57 degrees. Tonight, the south wind should stick around the 5mph mark. Tomorrow that storm will begin to get closer.

More Clouds on Monday

With the area of rain closer and a strong push of a south wind we will add some more moisture to the atmosphere. Also we will see highs in the upper 60s for our Monday. By Tuesday we will see that cold front move by, but its not really going to be strong enough to push colder back into the area, instead we will see scattered showers Tuesday. Eventually the skies will clear out a bit on Wednesday, but our highs will still be near 70. In case you wondering about your plants, lows should also be in the 40s to 50s into this upcoming week.


Enjoy your Sunday!

Meteorologist Jeff Edmondson

Runners of Hampton Roads, We’re “On the Run” Again!

March 9th, 2012 at 2:06 pm by under Sports, Uncategorized

On The Run Again!

The Latest Running News and Notes around the “757″ from Sportswrap Running Reporter, Jon “Flex” Leiding

Let’s Hear it for the Ladies!

I am always impressed with so many great Runners in the area, but in a pouring rain Saturday, Mettle Events had their 15K leading up to the Dismal Swamp Half Marathon in April. The Ladies owned the Top three spots as DisneyWorld Marathon Champion, Renee High bested the course in 57:01, followed by Courtney Myfanw Chapman with 59:19, and Kristen Lawrence with a 1:00:30.
chesapeake’s Omar Higazi led the guys with a 1:05:00.

Children are the Future

The Youth Running season is underway and with the Shamrock Final Mile next week, the Pembroke Meadows Elementary Mile this past weekend was the perfect tune up as 13 year olds, William Verhappen in 5:41, Josiah Ramsawh with 5:45, and Travis Redmond in 5:53 all broke six minutes. Ryan Carroll of Portsmouth was the Overall Champ in 4:51, while Virginia Beach’s Kiara Jenkins, just 14, was the ladies winner in 6:22.

Shoutout to My Old School!

Granby HS Realy Team & Friends

Granby High School’s 4 X 200 Meter Relay Team of Tyree Wise, Rodney Godfrey, Sidney Fulford and Lawrence Harris
finished third by 1/100 of a second in the Virignia State Indoor Track Meet, qualifying them for the New Balance indoor nationals in New York City, along with standout squads from Hampton and Bethel HS. While the economy is tough these days and funds a bit low, a teacher at Granby HS made a few calls and happened upon Ann Hupp from Mettle Events. Hearing the story and that they had just a few days to raise the money, Mettle Events offered to pay for their trip to NYC! Ann is always doing some great things in the area and a friend “On The Run”. Best wishes to the team and their coach Jordan Crawford. Good Luck to all of our Runners in the Big Apple!

Record Timing
Like many of you, I was looking forward to March 7th. 3pm exactly. My browser was open to the Marine Corps Marathon Webpage, watching as each second was counting down. Friends posted that the clock was moving so slow. I had run the last two Octobers in D.C. and was hoping my wife and I would try it again. With under an hour to go, I left for a chiropracter appointment to get me straightened up for next week’s Shamrock Marathon, then went home. I was reminded to cut the grass, too my daughter to dance class, then went to my office to get us registered right at 6pm. I logged on and…”what hap…” SOLD OUT! 30,000 spots taken in a record time of two hours and forty one minutes.

Okay, So I was Sad..

For those of you that got in, “congratulations”. This was a great race for me last year. The military presence along the course is second to none. You will feel honored to be given a medal from a Marine at this finish. For the rest of us, there are options. You can do fundraising for one of the charity spots, run other races, maybe Richmond, the OBX, or the New Norfolk Freedom Marathon, all in November. There’s also New York and out of town choices.

Ready to Go Racing?

Not everyone has a Marathon or Half Marathon goal in sight, but you might find just the right race this weekend at Jamestown High School with the 11th annual Jamestown High School Swamp Run 5K. It’s an out-and-back race with a One Mile Fun run at 9am, followed by the 5K at 9:30. You can even register the day of the race.

What’s Up with The Shamrock Next Weekend?

Glad you asked! PLENTY! Last year, we were lucky enough to catch up with, now Tidewater Strider Hall of Famer and Race Director, Jerry Frostick. I reposted it here just to refresh your memory:

On The Run with Jon “Flex” Leiding & Jerry Frostick from Jon Leiding on Vimeo.

Next week, the Sportswrap’s Ali Lucia will be at the race, so if you see our cameras…SMILE! I heard we may even do a Live Shot on the scene. WAVY TV 10 and Fox 43 are your plce to get the best Running coverage of the Shamrock Sportsfest, so watch for our coverage. You may see someone you know. I’ll have my interviews coming with a surprise or two as well. Details will be coming nest week. Like we say in TV, “stay tuned”….

Feedback Time!

I can’t do this without the great input of SO many people in Hampton Roads. Your time and efforts towards this great sport make it easy for me to write and talk with people we admire. Keep it coming and I’ll keep going!

Look for On the Run weekly here at Have a Great Weekend!

See You On The Run!

On The Run with Sprotswrap Running Reporter, Jon “Flex” Leiding

The front has passed, now where did I put my Jacket?

March 9th, 2012 at 11:13 am by under Weather

Wow, now that was a “classic” cold front. Temperatures this morning were mild with the morning “low” which was the high for the day near 60 degrees. As I am writing this I see a strong northwest wind with a temperature at 46 degrees. Its’ getting chilly out there!

Cold Front Dropping Temperatures

We might be able to rebound to 50 degrees today if we are lucky enough to get any sunshine since the cold front has passed us by. But for the rest of this Friday I would count on it being cool and mostly cloudy.

Tomorrow an area of high pressure is going to develop across Hampton Roads, but it will be already too late. Highs tomorrow will be in he upper 40s with sunny skies. The wind will also begin to calm down from 10-15mph in the morning to 5-10 in the afternoon from the north.

High Pressure in Control Saturday.

On Sunday that area of high pressure will move offshore and we will see a south wind develop which will help to boost temperatures to be near 60 on Sunday.

Enjoy your weekend.

Meteorologist Jeff Edmondson

Solar Storm Has Arrived!

March 8th, 2012 at 10:34 am by under Weather

You have probably have  been hearing about this solar storm on our newscasts or on your social media feeds. So what is it? Well on occasion the sun can erupt massive amount of partials towards the earth. These eruptions are called coronal mass ejections (CME). These CME’s can cause  power grid failures, disruptions with GPS signals, and even affect air traffic. The solar wind which was carrying the CME arrived early this morning and so far there have not been any incidents reported yet. The CME will continue to be impacting the planet through tomorrow morning.

Solar Flare

This is the image of the solar flare that happened on Tuesday. In 1999 a similar solar storm happened which caused power grid failures in Quebec, Canada. Now, there is another effect to Solar Flares, the Northern Lights. Early This morning I was able to see the Northern Lights from a camera set up in Yellowknife, Canada.

AuroraMAX Project

Another tool I use for the Northern Lights are forecasts and models from the Geophysical Institute in Alaska.

Aurora Forecast

If you see the forecast for Friday it lists the Index at a 6+ the Kp (A unit for measuring the intensity of the aurora) could be possible a 6 as well which could mean for areas in West Virginia and Washington DC the lights might be visible on the horizon.

Across our area the skies will be clear on Friday night so in case this CME is stronger than predicted it might be visible along the Eastern Shore and Northern Neck.
Something to keep our eyes on the lookout for.

Meteorologist Jeff Edmondson


A North Carolina Lifeline Built on Shifting Sands

March 7th, 2012 at 12:32 pm by under Uncategorized, Weather

Very thorough, interesting article on the temporary bridge built on Hatteras Island. If the link doesn’t easily work for you, I’ve copied and pasted the entire NY Times article below:

RODANTHE, N.C. — Last August, when Hurricane Irene sliced across the Outer Banks, it cut Highway 12, Hatteras Island’s lifeline, in two places. Engineers rushed to repair the damage, filling and repaving a washed-out stretch of roadway here and building a bridge over a newly formed inlet a few miles to the north.

Islands of the Outer Banks

WEAK POINT An inlet cut by Hurricane Irene, later reinforced with rock.

The road reopened on Oct. 11, to the cheers of anglers, would-be vacationers and the innkeepers, restaurateurs and merchants whose livelihoods had taken a huge blow.

But the winds and waves that shape the coast were already gnawing at the new bridge. By January, engineers were reinforcing its southern approach with sandbags and rock trucked in from the mainland, in hopes of keeping the road open until a more permanent fix could be designed and built.

The Outer Banks are home to some of the nation’s most celebrated beach communities. The road that links them, also called N.C. 12, offers an extreme example of the difficulty of maintaining houses, condos, roads and other infrastructure in the face of a climate-driven rise in sea level.

By some estimates, at least 70 percent of the ocean coastline of the lower 48 states is threatened by erosion. But the outlook here is unusually gloomy. In 2009, a federal report on erosion in the Middle Atlantic states predicted that if the sea level rises two feet this century — an estimate that many experts call optimistic — “it is likely that some barrier islands in this region will cross a threshold” and begin to break up. The report, produced by the Environmental Protection Agency, the United States Geological Survey and other agencies, said the Outer Banks were particularly threatened.

Already, Highway 12 floods repeatedly and is often cut by storms. Maintaining it “is totally a lost cause,” said Stanley R. Riggs, a coastal scientist at East Carolina University who is an author of a new book, “The Battle for North Carolina’s Coast,” which describes in depressing detail the difficulties of keeping the road open. “It will bankrupt the state,” he said.

But people who live and work on the Outer Banks say abandoning the road would make life impossible.

“You would see people with nothing left,” said Eddie Williams, who was born and raised on Hatteras Island. He manages the Paint Box, a gift shop in the village of Hatteras. “It would be devastating,” he said.

Beth Smyre, an engineer for the State Department of Transportation who is leading the planning effort, acknowledged the pessimism coastal geologists bring to the issue. “We try to take into account all these different opinions,” she said. But she added: “There are people living out there, there are tourists visiting out there. We have to provide a reliable and safe transportation system out there.”

According to a 2011 state report, coastal tourism brought $2.6 billion to the state’s economy in 2009, supporting 50,000 jobs.

“We have an obligation to keep this access in place,” Jerry Jennings, a district engineer with the transportation department who had overall charge of the road repairs, said in October, as he watched crews put the finishing touches on the $11 million-plus repair projects he described as temporary fixes.

He added, “Our employees, fortunately or unfortunately, have a lot of experience dealing with Highway 12.”

Irene’s attack on Highway 12 came as North Carolina was already confronting a number of issues relating to the fate of the Outer Banks.

Last summer, the state confronted what engineers called “advanced deterioration” of the Herbert C. Bonner Bridge, which carries the highway from Nags Head to the Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge, on the north end of Hatteras Island.

Some geologists suggested replacing the bridge with a system of ferries from the mainland. Others suggested maintaining a road link with a causeway or “long bridge,” looping into Pamlico Sound, an idea that the federal Fish and Wildlife Service endorsed as the best long-term option.

The state opted for a replacement bridge that will run right alongside the existing span; planning is under way.

Robert S. Young, a coastal geologist who is head of the Program for the Study of Developed Shorelines at Western Carolina University, calls the project “our own little bridge to nowhere.”

“They can engineer that bridge so well that it can withstand a Category 3 or 4 hurricane,” Dr. Young said in a telephone interview. “The barrier island it is connected to cannot.”

North Carolina has long been a leader in coastal protection through its ban on coastal armor — like seawalls and revetments — which, while it may protect a particular house or condo, almost inevitably degrades or even destroys sandy beaches. But last summer the State Legislature voted to loosen that prohibition, allowing owners of threatened buildings to protect them with “terminal groins,” structures built out into the surf to trap sand.

Dr. Young said he feared that the move was the beginning of the end for the armor ban. Meanwhile, he is among the coastal scientists who have been recruited to help assess beach damage caused by the groins, a prospect he said was “just so depressing.”

Efforts continue to maintain beaches by dredging up sand and pumping it onshore, a chronic activity on the Banks and elsewhere on the coast. When Irene struck, a project was under way in Nags Head, where houses routinely end up in the surf when a storm passes. As expected, Irene washed some of the new sand away.

Barrier islands like the Outer Banks are inherently unstable. Waves typically strike these islands at a slight angle, creating currents that pick up sand and carry it along the coast. The wave energy along the Outer Banks is unusually strong; by some estimates 700,000 cubic yards of sand, enough to fill 70,000 average-size dump trucks, moves along that stretch of coast every year.

At the new bridge, evidence of this process appeared even on opening day, in the form of long-necked black water birds called cormorants perching on a spit of sand that had formed near the north side of the bridge. That spit had not been there a few days before, said Pablo Hernandez, the transportation department engineer who managed the bridge work.

“It’s very difficult,” he said. “This whole thing has been constantly moving and shifting.”

As he spoke, waves were already starting to cut sharply into the sand at the bridge’s southern flank, an area the engineers later reinforced. In nature, barrier islands respond to rising seas by gradually moving inland. They erode on the ocean side but expand on the bay side, as storms wash sand across them or as inlets form and the current carries sand toward the bay.

Since the middle of the 20th century, though, people here have done a lot to thwart this process.

During the Depression, the Civilian Conservation Corps built an artificial dune that survives today along much of the length of the Banks, blocking the overwash of sand. When the islands do wash over, leaving Highway 12 covered in sand, people bulldoze the sand back to the beach. When inlets form, they fill them.

The results have been predictable: Eroding on the ocean side and unable to move inland, Hatteras Island has narrowed. “Every year and every storm, the vulnerability just increases,” Dr. Young said.

Andrew S. Coburn, associate director of the shoreline program at Western Carolina University, noted in an interview that Irene was barely hurricane strength when it struck the Banks. “It was a pretty weak storm, but that’s not discussed,” he said. “You don’t hear that. Nobody talks about the fact.”

A weak storm — or even an unusually high tide — can cause big trouble for Hatteras Island, where Highway 12 is a two-lane road usually only a few feet above sea level. The reconstruction job in Rodanthe (pronounced roe-DAN-thee) is the second here in two years; a stretch was similarly repaired in 2009 when surging waves stranded oceanfront houses in the surf, including the house featured in the movie “Nights in Rodanthe.” The house was moved.

The state has moved the highway itself four times since the 1950s, said Dr. Riggs of East Carolina University. His book offers a “minimal estimate” of $93 million for the cost of maintaining it since 1983, a figure that does not include the new work.

Replacing the Bonner Bridge will leave the state “locked into trying to protect that highway for 60 to 70 miles,” he said. “They cannot do that. It will not last.”

The inlet spanned by the new bridge is not the first at that site. And in 2003, Hurricane Isabel cut still another inlet across the southern end of Hatteras Island; the Army Corps of Engineers filled that one.

In the coming decades, Dr. Riggs predicted, major storms will turn many parts of the Banks into underwater shoals or flats that are above water only at low tide. If Highway 12 were abandoned and the islands allowed to find their natural equilibrium, he writes, the resulting villages would be “situated like a string of pearls on a vast network of inlet and shoal environments.”

They could be reached by ferries, as are two other islands on the Banks, Ocracoke and Bald Head.

Dr. Young noted that until Bonner Bridge opened in the 1960s, all travel to Hatteras Island was by boat. “Martha’s Vineyard, Nantucket, Block Island, Puget Sound — people love to ride the ferry,” he said.

Not everyone agrees. NC-20, an organization of public officials and businesspeople from 20 waterfront counties, acknowledges that sea level has risen about 7 inches in the last 100 years, but rejects the idea that the situation is worsening. And it says that altering road or other infrastructure plans would be “unscientific” and “portends financial disaster.”

In 2010, however, a panel of experts convened by the North Carolina Coastal Resources Commission concluded that a sea level rise of about three feet is likely and should be “adopted as the amount of anticipated rise by 2100, for policy development and planning purposes.”

But people do not like to hear that message, especially after a storm, said Mr. Coburn, also a ferry advocate. “Are we at the point where we cannot sustain it? With Highway 12, I don’t think we are there yet. But there will come a day.”