WRC weathercaster Bob Ryan reporting on the progress of Hurricane Isabel in 2003. (Image from a screenshot)

It’s something generations of Washingtonians still can’t seem to wrap their heads around: Snow is falling, schools are closing, the forecast is uncertain — and Bob Ryan isn’t there to walk them through it all.

Although the meteorologist retired from local airwaves in 2013 after more than three decades, most of them spent at the NBC affiliate WRC-TV, his many fans can still get their fix of the genial weatherman.

Ryan has been posting up a storm (sorry, it was irresistible) these past few days on social media, offering his analysis of the weather models, sharing forecasts and even tweeting a pic of a measuring tape in a snowdrift — a staple of on-air weather coverage.

Pure enthusiasm keeps the retiree engaged. Explaining the inspiration behind one recent post, documenting the snow in his yard, he says: “I just  noticed that the snow was these perfect crystals and they were so beautiful, and they sort of went ‘crunch, crunch, crunch’ under your feet, so I got my iPhone out.”

He still has access, via the Internet, to much of the same forecasting data that he had when he was in the business. And with Twitter and Facebook, he has a platform to share his thoughts. (One recent tweet dinged the federal government for closing after a mere few inches of the white stuff.)

But Ryan, 72,  says he doesn’t always miss being in the game. Now, he spends more time with his two grandsons. He can even make it all the way through a performance at the Kennedy Center, instead of leaving halfway through to make the 11:00 p.m. broadcast.

“It’s nice to sit by the fire and just enjoy the weather, too,” he says.


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