Ridgey Weather

Junk2Showers dying down late this afternoon…and not nearly as much convection today as I expected.  BUT, that was a nice little squall at 2-3am wasn’t it?  It woke me up as hail was pounding against the northwest facing windows.  Those rain totals to the left are ending at 5pm Monday.

The BIG picture is one of upper-level ridging redeveloping through the next 7-10 days just west of the North American coastline.  Each model run is slightly different of course and the devil is always in the details.

I finally broke down (sobbing) and added rain to Thursday’s forecast since it appears one last weather system moves over the top of the ridge and plummets down into the Rockies, giving us rain as it passes over.  I knew this was a threat while forecasting the last 2 days but I was in denial.  After that it’s back to ridging for the weekend with nice offshore flow.  Of course about 5 days ago it looked like the next 2-3 days would see nice offshore flow and sun too, so hopefully models will settle down a bit and do a better job over the next week.

October is the foggiest month at PDX (on average), so moist ground & high dewpoints the next couple of days combined with any clearing at night should lead to some fog each morning/midday.  We aren’t quite up to the time of year where the fog can get stuck in the valleys all day.  That doesn’t happen until around mid-November…Mark

110 Responses to Ridgey Weather

  1. Dmitri K says:

    I feel compelled to respond to a post last night by Anthony at 12:43. I’m not dissing you in any way, since its not your theory, but I just want to say that what you wrote there is the most ridiculous thing I’ve ever heard of. Complete and total BS.
    This is one of the very few times where I can actually use my degree in the Earth Sciences to explain something here.
    1) Earth’s gravity, and that of every object in the universe, whether solid or gas, is caused by the object’s mass. It has NOTHING to do with any spinning iron cores, or anything spinning whatsoever. Jupiter has a colossal gravitational force but is made entirely of gas. The Sun has enough gravity to pull all of the planets in place but is made entirely of gas.
    2) The atmosphere is retained by the gravitational pull of the celestial body (Earth) large enough to do so. As per Note #1, this gravitational pull is dependent on the Earth’s mass. It will never go away, unless somebody figures out a way to carve the Earth out like a pumpkin.
    3) The Earth’s rotation doesn’t stop and reverse over time. That’s absurd. It spins counterclockwise as directed by the movement of other celestial bodies around it, and has been doing that in accordance with those bodies since the initial formation of the solar system. I magine a machine with 10 turning gears. Why would one gear all of a sudden slow down, and then reverse movement when the other 9 gears all keep turning the same direction as they have before?
    4) Whoever believes that we are nearing that non-existent phase may as well believe that we are also nearing the point where we all sprout wings and fly away into space, to live happily ever after.
    5) Holes in the atmosphere will not form because of a decrease in gravity, because said gravity is not decreasing.
    6) The Earth is not warming because of the holes in the atmosphere, because the holes in the atmoshere don’t exist, because there is no decrease in gravity.
    7) If there were in fact holes in the atmosphere, the Earth wouldn’t “warm gradually.” It would become severely more extreme, with scorching hot daytime weather unshielded from fierce solar radiation, followed by deadly freezes at night as all the heat escapes through these holes. Think Mars.
    Sorry, this theory is pure garbage. I almost pi**ed myself when I read it.

  2. alex says:

    temp righ now 57.2 dew point is 41 i didnt see any fog yesterday night or this early morning around 6-8 it was cloudt till like 12:00

  3. Jesse says:

    My dewpoint here in Orchards is 46, but it will fall some as the temperature does and possibly drier air associated with the high pressure moves in. Lowest dewpoint for the area I could find was 40 out in East vancouver.

  4. Jesse says:

    This system on its way for thursday looks like it could give us another good soaking, maybe get us up to average for precip so far for this month.

  5. Justin says:

    And the humidity is STILL at 60%, temps have risen more slowly than progeed so we’ve retained a pretty moist atmosphere today.

  6. Justin says:

    Nope Tyler, 40 is the lowest official temp, the same night I hit 30 (10/9 I think it was).
    I think PDX should stay in the low 40’s tonight, don’t see the atmosphere being dry enough yet to support rally low dewpoints so a widespread freeze seems unlikely tonight, maybe mid 30’s if we can remain completely clear and calm, with some chilly fog possible. Hmudity is already almost at 60% here though, so fog should form late tonight.

  7. Tyler says:

    I defiantely think we will have spots of fog tomorrow morning. Ground is still wet, although most of the roads are dry now. I think PDX has already had a low in the 30s. Didn’t they reach 38 or 37 last week?
    59 at my house in Vancouver.

  8. Derek Hodges says:

    Thats possible Jesse. Especially if we can get those dew points to really drop off, which may happen. Probably mid 30’s at my house if they do, mid 40’s if they do not. Wait and see now I guess…

  9. Jesse says:

    Today is definately remaining cool, mostly sunny and 59 at my house as of 3pm, and at PDX. Many areas will probably see another frost tonight if skies remain clear. Even the airport may finally see an “official” low in the 30s.

  10. Ryan says:

    Wow, the MRF over on the Unisys site is my favorite model now. It keeps any real ridge from forming and keeps clipping us with artic air out of Cananda. It also keeps most the pacific cool and without ridges.
    Most impressive part of the run is the tail end (Day 10) it has most of Canada and the northern United states at -8 to -10 C and a big pool of -10 to -15 C air is beginning its push down from the artic.

  11. Derek Hodges says:

    Thursday looks like imminent rain. But thats good 🙂 Then dry for a while…but I think things are going to begin to shake up within 10 days. Thats my forecast.

  12. NR says:

    The ECMWF has remained the lone wolf the last three days in calling for the building ridge to be very broad to the west and leaving OR/WA/ID open to waves from the NW.

  13. Jesse says:

    KPTV’s latest 850 mb ECMWF brings another cold system into our area next Monday and Tuesday after a warm Sunday. Maybe 66-68 Sunday.

  14. Jesse says:

    We stayed much cloudier overnight than I anticipated, only had low of 49 here but have only clmbed to 54 as of noon with thick clouds banked up against the Cascades. Might have trouble getting above 60 for much of the area again today. I hope it at least clears out this evening so we can have a chillier night tonight. Thursday’s system is starting to look like a soaker.

  15. Sean (Indiana) says:

    Good afternoon everyone..
    Well life as a network/system analyst can really be a pain in the rear. Thought would escape for a few minutes and take a look at the models and drop a note. Has been quite rainy here the latest 30 hours or so, ended up with just about 2″ of rain. But, now just some lower clouds but should be clearing out for a nice day tomorrow of around 73 (time to dry out a little bit).
    Just took a quick peek at the 12z GFS, looking like another cold shot will be moving through the MS and OH valleys towards the end of the week into the weekend. In watching the local forecasters two are saying a chance of rain/snow mix and two others are saying nothing at all with regards to a cool/cold weather. Time will only tell, unfortantely I don’t see any sort of colder weather for the NW until next currently.
    I loved going to those “What the winter will be like?” events. It’s interesting to see how each person comes up with their forecast.
    Also, found on the WXCaster site (http://wxcaster.com/cfs_charts.htm) where you can see models (for way more than 8-16 days out). The farthest date I went out to was (July 4, 2007), just kind of funny to look at.
    Have a good day, everyone

  16. Derek Hodges says:

    I say why look forward to winter at all if you don’t expect anything from it, but thats just my take. Its healthy to have differences in opinion.

  17. Andrew Johnson says:

    Well at least its not in the low 80s like it is today here in Northeast Oklahoma. We had a couple of frosts last week and a couple inches of rain sunday/sunday night. I’m just hoping that there is some snow when I come back to Oregon in december. I think its probably likely we’ll have a warm winter in the northwest, that seems to be the norm as of recent years. But remember 03-04 really wasn’t a cold winter by historical standards and we still had some decent snow. In the western Oregon just a couple weeks can leave us feeling good about how the winter went and thats possible even in the warmest of years. It would be nice to have a cold outbreak at least as good as dec. 98… But I’m old enough to vaguely remember dec. 1990…That would be more like it.

  18. Tyler says:

    I can’t wait to go to the meeting again, I attend every year. It’s fun with Mark’s recap of the previous winter and all the forecasts which leave you more excited for the storms to start rolling in.
    However, maybe the name should be switched from “What will the winter be like?” to “Will we have a winter?”

  19. Ryan says:

    I will be at the meeting this Friday. I decided to go ahead and use a vacation day so I could attend.

  20. Derek Hodges says:

    I don’t personally think its smart going into winter forecasting a huge blizzard, but I won’t say its impossible, even this winter. My forecast has one after all. But you got to expect at least a little something. There is so much mystery to it you can never rule anything out. I just can’t go into winter totally pessimistic or I feel terrible, “nothing to look forward too…oh well. sob…” lol I don’t care if I’m let down but its no fun to not expect at least something.

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