Stormy Night Ahead

Isn’t this great?  One system after another crashing onshore…ahh, the good old days (1970s) that I remember as a kid.  I used to actually go out in the farm fields where I grew up near Mt. Angel and play "flooding rivers" in the adjacent farmer’s field. I’d dam up the little furrows and then let all the water go, chasing it down to the creek.One system after another crashing onshore, some bringing strong winds to the Coast, some inland…Ahh the good old days are back again!  I’m sure the farmer appreciated the well-compacted field the next spring.

Okay, let’s pull it together and out of memory lane…I’m pretty much fully grown now and forecasting our stormy winter weather. 

As of 8pm:  Frontal system is hung up right over the top of us this evening, with tons of subtropical moisture streaming inland with it.  Snow levels are over 6000′ in the Oregon Cascades right now.  A strong wave, or area of low pressure that has been well progged by the models is riding along the front and should move inland somewhere between Astoria and Hoquiam around newstime (10pm) tonight.  It’s actually deepening as it moves onshore, so we should get quite a rush of south-southwest wind behind it.

Earlier today it looked like the path was Astoria-Yakima.  But now it’s more up towards Seattle.  This saves the metro area from damaging winds, but I still expect strong gusty wind between 11pm-2am.  Probably no stronger than gusts to 40 mph unless the low deepens rapidly the next 3 hours.  From Kelso-Olympia I think 50-55 mph is quite likely.  Either way a rainy and windy night ahead.

Lots of flood warnings coming in the next 24 hours, but with a quickly dropping snow level tomorrow, we should avoid big trouble.  A similar episode to last week’s flooding.

We (meteorologists) are being hampered by several offshore buoys out of service.  This is one area where we are somewhat blinded and have to rely on models and 3 hour pressure fall maps.  The maps tell us which part of the coast has the fastest falling pressure, which generally indicates where a low is heading.  Someone asked about "exploding buoys".  Here is a link to a NWS warning about those buoys.  http://www.ndbc.noaa.gov/hydrogen_hazard.shtml

Cooler weather coming up Wednesday-Thursday, but still no sign in RELIABLE long range models of any really cold weather here in the metro area.  GFS is doing it’s usual now-you-see-it-now-you-don’t, but I’ll discount that for now since ECMWF & CANADIAN are milder next week.

Oh, and for you BSG Fans…sorry, it’s Admiral, not Commander Cain.  I was 27 years behind…Mark

5 Responses to Stormy Night Ahead

  1. Kevin Beckman says:

    Hi Mark!
    I was just commenting today that it is great to see an ol’ fashion Oregon Winter. I too remember the ’70’s as a kid and have storm after storm pelting the windows while watching the Incredible Hulk or the 6 Million Dollar Man on TV.
    Kevin

  2. Andrew says:

    Boy, the hills up here in Portland are just soaked! We could have a major problem wednesday with all the extra rain coming in. There are several minor slides up here that i am surprised the media has not reported (or maybe not heard about). One good sized one is off of vista (sorry can’t think of street name) and something. Just up above ainsworth elementary school.

  3. Michael says:

    Just thought I’d mention that the PNA is expected to go significantly negative over the next two weeks:
    http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/precip/CWlink/pna/pna_index_ensm.shtml
    This normally bodes well for cooler weather coming our way. Most of the ensembles that forecast the PNA have it dropping below at LEAST -0.5 at some point, with a good amount of them showing them reaching all the way down to -1 a bit later.

  4. Derek says:

    haha I do that too Mark, well not as much these days but I won’t deny it. Its been a lot wetter than I can remember for a long time, probably 5 years+. Its also been getting quite windy. Its gusted to 30mph or so a few times already. I hope it gets a bit higher, but not so people get hurt. Keep up the good work

  5. Chris says:

    Mark
    Thanks for the blog and all of the info. Just one question: When is the facuet going to get turned off?

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