Weather in the Foothills

“The animal should not be measured by man. In a world older than ours they move finished and complete, gifted with extensions of the sense we have lost or never attained, living by voices we shall never hear.”       

~ Harry Beston, American writer & naturalist, 1888-1968

Often considered the “father of the modern
environmental movement.”

This week came with a reprieve from the winds. Daytime temperatures read upward toward 90 degrees, holding on to the last remnants of summer’s heat. On the other hand, nighttime temperatures are getting a jumpstart on winter; a few have dropped down into the 40s. Almost instantly once the sun sets it becomes cold. Also, it’s dark way too early! Brighton, the ever-eager golden retriever, is none-too-pleased as we are now not as enthusiastic about her evening strolls.

For the most part, our domesticated animals are unaffected by the change of weather and seasons. Their wilder natures, without human intervention, are controlled by instinct. It’s all about survival. For example, wild and even farm animals can detect storms as the clouds roll in and, on a grander scale, the impending change of seasons. Infrasonic sounds are a likely reason as storms and thunder produce sound waves at those frequencies. Also, the changes in barometric (air) and hydrostatic (water) pressure are factors. Variation in these can trigger an animal’s survival mechanism. The animals’ instinctive reaction is to seek shelter in the face of potentially violent weather. The crucial timing of seasonal migrations is similarly affected.

Observation of changes in weather by a local dog: hot – sleep on tile floor; mild – sleep on dog bed; cold – sleep with us. Simple science!

To conclude the week, beautiful summer-like weather is expected across the foothills and throughout Southern California. On Friday an offshore flow will strengthen and lead to temperatures much higher than normal – close to 90 – into the weekend. Moving into Monday the same weather pattern continues, albeit some cooling and low clouds along the coast. Beach weather in November? Absolutely – “surf’s up!”


Sue Kilpatrick is a Crescenta Valley
resident and  Official Skywarn
Spotter for the National Weather Service. Reach her at