Nice writeup of the bet status and the purpose of climate betting here. The Chronicle is the weekly newspaper in Bill Gray's hometown, Fort Collins.
And just in time to screw up a ten-year bet designed to test the difference between anthropic warming and natural variability is a prediction issued today that a naturally variable cooling cycle will be so strong in the next ten years that it will temporarily mask the anthropic warming signal. Unlike Gray's assertion, this is a scientifically-based prediction, but it's just a single one. I'd like to see what the rest of the scientific community thinks of it.
UPDATES: When I talked to the reporter, he referred to the bet offer as an "old school" way of settling differences. I liked that description, and was sorry it didn't get into the article.
As to my increased respect for skeptics who put their money where their mouths are, that respect is for them as persons. It doesn't make their theories any better.
I should clarify that despite this new prediction of masked temps, I'm not backing off from the bet terms with Gray. I will modify future bet offers if this prediction solidifies into the consensus position, but backing out of the current negotiation wouldn't be old school.