General Question

jtvoar16's avatar

How long does it rain in New York?

Asked by jtvoar16 (2171points) October 7th, 2008

I have been trying to find a reliable source on rainfall in New York, but everything I find is in yearly averages and all sorts of stuff I don’t care about.
Long story, short: I am writing a book that takes place in New York. I am painfully anal about my details and having never visited New York for an extended period of time, do not know how long it usually rains there, near the Harriman State Park during the late summer, nearing the fall session.
I know this detail is meaningless, in most part, but I have a disorder.

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6 Answers

fireside's avatar

Here is a monthly breakdown for Middletown

And one for Newburgh

Looks like 3.7 to 4.3 in August for the area. Assume Bear Mountain might be towards the high end.

As for length of storm, I was north of there this past august and watched storms roll in within and out within 40 minutes and others that were around all day.

Some other links for you:–035

Les's avatar

OK, I’ll help feed your disorder. Are you talking about a thunderstorm? Or do you mean a light, nimbostratus type of rain?

jtvoar16's avatar

i meant actual rainfall.

You see, the way I write, as my professor in college called it, is a “Fateful” type of writing. I create a few major key-points I want to hit along the way, then I let the tail tell itself from sentence to sentence.

As with this rain, I like to give atmosphere to my surroundings, but it also may effect an impending battle that is going to take place. If there is water on the ground from the rain, or tons of mud, then the battle would be different if there was no rain. So if I had decided that the story would have taken place in the winter, I would be asking about the snow.

So, I guess what I am trying to convay is I take the details of my stories to the extreme. If you have ever played Dungeons and Dragons, or a game like that. The entire point of that game is make it seem as real as possible, thus, one day it may rain when you don’t want it too and screw you up bad, leaving you scared forever. I write my stories along that same idea. Like, “I just decide when the story starts and were, not what happens in it. That is for the details and the actions of my characters to decide.”
And yes, I am aware that I control every action of my characters, however I attempt to decide what happens in every scene based on what my characters would want and do, not what I would want or do. Such as their speech. I am very expressive with my writing, as you can tell with the three previous paragraphs, however, one of my characters vocabulary is comprised of nothing but LOL speak and “teen” speak. That makes it hard or her to convey her very deep emotions, meaning, in a time she needs to, stuff gets mixed up and someone nearly dies for it, causing her to change her speech patterns. I never intended it to happen that way, but because the details took me there, so mote it was.

Wow, that was a lot more of a rant then it needed to be, but when I get going, it is hard for me to stop!

fireside's avatar

ok, fair enough.
that’s a perfectly legitimate way to write.

but you still need to elaborate on what you mean by actual rainfall.
the duration of one storm, maybe early august?
I’ve got more info if that’s what you mean.

jtvoar16's avatar

ooo, okay. sorry.

Well, the part in my story involves someone driving across the park, and i assume, judging by the terrain, it will take them about three hours to get from one end to the other, so, a storm rolls in, and pours rain on the person for about an hour, then lets up, and I am wondering if it would be likely that it would rain again, about three hours later, give or take. That time of year is about end of August and the beginning of October. Obviously I am not looking for some kind of exacting thing, just “believable.” so people reading my book in new york will think, “Oh ya, that totally happens ALL the time!” not, “WTF? This dude has, like, no idea what he is saying. He’s dumb, we should burn his house down and sell his puppy on eBay.” Oh, and just to point out, I am not just saying people in New York would say that, I am saying everyone that reads my book would say that. Hehehe. I am a man of SUPER extremes, can you tell?

fireside's avatar

okay, well in my experience it is not likely to downpour again as quickly.

Typically, when you get the kind of storm that builds up out of nowhere, it is because a front is moving in and you can visibly see the clouds stacking up on one another because they are being folded together by the wind. That’s when you get the most intense storms and they usually last about an hour.

After that it is possible for another front to move in, but it is more likely that it will either stop or will consist of a drizzly rain.

That said, if I read a story where a two storms happened within a few hours, I don’t think i would be moved to sell the author’s puppy.

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