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Advancing monsoon clouds and showers in Aralvaimozhy, near Nagercoil, India. From https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Monsoon_clouds_near_Nagercoil.jpg.

Weather Talk: Not all weather is unpredictable

It is said that weather is inherently unpredictable. This might be a matter of perspective. Or opinion. Or maybe location.

Consider India and the Indian Monsoon. Every year in April and May, subtropical sunshine heats the Indian subcontinent. The surrounding oceans water is heated also, but not as much as the land. This creates low pressure over India which draws increasingly humid, tropical air inland. Temperatures across India warm into the 100s, 110s, and even 120s.

The searing heat is accompanied by increasing humidity until finally, sometime in June, the balloon bursts and the Indian subcontinent is soaked with several days of intense tropical rain followed by three months of stormy summer weather. Certain features of Earth’s climate, such as the El Nino-La Nina cycle and the Southern Oscillation cause changes in the intensity of the monsoon. But it is basically as predictable as the rising sun. 

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