Letter Re: U.S. Climate Data Available Online

Some comments on studying climates and microclimates: I do a fair amount of this professionally, and there are a couple more things worthy of discussion:

1) when looking at a specific area, in which a subject property is located, pay particular attention to low areas where cold settles. These areas will freeze first. Crop performance will vary widely.
Study not just the winds, but the exposure–the microclimate. Solar, wind, rainfall and snowfall patterns.

2) Do not build with haste. We encourage people to live with a property in as-is conditions for a year if they can, so that they can fully understand what the seasons are like all over the subject property. This is obviously not possible for everyone, but if there is a rustic cabin on the site, chances are it is in the best location for exposure, proximity to gardens, pastures, etc. It is likely that someone lived there long enough to understand the property.

3) Understand the neighboring properties, their owners, occupants, and passers-through, both human and animal. Don’t expect that just because you think you have the best place for a house, that it’s without complication. Ever seen a new house built right on top of a game trail frequented for decades by moose, deer, and predators? Nice big windows to many species look like opportunities to graze just beyond the reflection. Deer inside homes in the forests are not uncommon. Moose once in awhile too. Where there are deer, there may be bear, cougar, etc. It might be downright interesting, to wake up and find a moose in your great room. Take care, – Thomas S.