Sunday Marks Official Start Of Fall

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WEST MICHIGAN — If you feel a brief chill run down your spine at about 4:44 PM on Sunday afternoon, your body is feeling the official start to fall. Wonder if most of us are ready to say goodbye to summer 2013 and hello to the cooler temperatures?

While the start of fall will enter like a lamb (not a lion), temps will be a bit below normal on Sunday. Highs generally in the low/mid 60s are expected under partly cloudy skies. So what exactly is this thing they call the autumnal equinox?

The start of fall for the northern hemisphere also signals the start of spring for the southern hemisphere. At 4:44 PM, the sun is poised directly overhead of the equator. There are generally equal days/equal nights as well…each one being about 12 hours in length. Compare that with the more than 15 hours of daylight we experienced in the peak of summer. Now that the sun is south of the equator (for us), we’ll lose even more minutes faster as we head through October and November.

Remember the earth is tilted at 23.5 degrees. That means the rays of the sun are no longer hitting the northern hemisphere as directly as they were in the summer. It also means the sun angle is lower, the days are not as warm, and the intensity of those rays not as great. Yes…all things now point to cooler weather and eventually winter. But don’t sweat it, we actually have some stellar weather coming up over the next several days.

If you’ve been waiting to get some outdoor work done, wait no longer! We are expecting a dry stretch of weather through next Friday with temperatures eventually warming (briefly) to around 80. Morning lows will be on the cool side with some 30s and 40s here and there… so watch the garden for frost.

Get the complete West Michigan forecast at www.fox17online.com/weather. Have a pleasant weekend.

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