The Perfect Storm

The Dairy Arts Center Boulder, CO


Robert Henson

Meteorologist, National Center for Atmospheric Research; Journalist

The Perfect Storm— Inside the Colorado Deluge

A lecture and Q&A about one of the biggest natural disasters in Colorado history.

The Dairy Arts Center Boulder, CO

Film Synopsis

An unusually intense storm pattern catches some commercial fishermen unaware and puts them in mortal danger.

In October 1991, a dying tropical hurricane from Bermuda collided with a cold front from the Great Lakes, resulting in a "perfect storm" in the North Atlantic. Based on the best-selling nonfiction book by Sebastian Junger, The Perfect Storm tells the story of the sword-fishing boat the Andrea Gail and the ship's crew. Captain Billy Tyne (George Clooney) has had a string of unsuccessful fishing outings, and decides to return to sea despite the season’s notoriously poor weather conditions. When the ship's refrigeration system goes haywire, he and his crew have to return to shore as quickly as possible before the fish spoil, sending them into the middle of one of the worst storms in history.

About the Speaker

Robert Henson is an award-winning author and journalist on topics primarily concerned with the weather and climate change. He earned his bachelor's degree in meteorology from Rice University in 1983, and went on to get a master's degree in journalism from the University of Oklahoma in 1988, where he studied lightning at the National Severe Storms Laboratory. In 1989, Henson joined the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and its parent organization, the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR).

He has written five books on weather and climate change, including one of the most widely used textbooks for 101-level college meteorology courses, Meteorology Today (11th edition/Cengage, 2016), with lead author C. Donald Ahrens. Henson also wrote The Thinking Person's Guide to Climate Change (AMS Books, 2014), and is a contributing editor of Weatherwise magazine. He has written more than 50 articles for Nature, Scientific American, Discover, Sierra, The Guardian, AIR & SPACE/Smithsonian, and other media outlets. Bob began blogging for the Weather Underground in 2015.

From 1990 through 2014, Bob served as a writer and editor at the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research, which operates the National Center for Atmospheric Research and publishes AtmosNews.