Nice Day

June 12, 2007

SnapshotHope you all enjoyed the cloudy, cool, and wet weather over the weekend.  Today was nice, but what a chilly start.  My cucumbers and tomatoes are NOT liking these temps.  So it definitely IS payback time for all that May sun and warm temperatures.  Another weak trough is moving by to the north tonight and tomorrow, pushing cloud cover and even a few light showers into Northwest Oregon.  The chance for rain south of Salem or east of the Cascade crest is just about zero.  Weak ridging again moves overhead Thursday and early Friday.  That means more sun and warmer temps at least for Thursday.  Then a strong trough moves down over the Northwest…guess what…over the weekend!  So plan on another cool weekend again.
Long range models are each a bit different for next week.  ECMWF continues to be quite strong with ridging and offshore flow next week, easily pushing our temps to 90 or above.  GFS has been waffling around a bit though.  So I threw in temps near 90 by Tuesday-Wednesday timeframe…Mark

Dry Parade (Hopefully)

June 8, 2007

SnapshotA bit of an absence from the blog the last few days.  It’s been a busy week converting graphics to 16×9 format so this took a low priority.  Hopefully nobody’s feelings got hurt?
Pretty straightforward weather the next couple of days.  Nice front moves through tomorrow afternoon.  It’s amazing that models have been quite similar on timing for many days.
Sunday is a post-frontal day and now Monday looks dry.  Apparently what was going to be a "big deep trough" moving through the Northwest on Monday will be a bit flatter.  Long range shows another trough approaching next weekend…Mark

Wild Weather Day

June 5, 2007

SnapshotSomehow this graphic never actually showed up on the air in my first weather segment tonight.  It shows a thunderstorm over Damascus/S. Gresham this morning.  Looks like some sort of downburst/microburst may have come out of this storm.  We also received what looks like funnel cloud video from NW Portland around 2pm this afternoon.  Pretty good considering models were forecasting Lifted Index around +5 or so.  Only in the Northwest…
The cold upper trough moves out to the east tomorrow afternoon, which should stabilize the atmosphere slightly and keep us from getting thunderstorms again.  Although once again with such strong June heating and cold air above, we might get a surprise storm in the eastern suburbs/Cascade foothills.
Weak ridging moves overhead Thursday through early Saturday, then another strong trough moves towards us and eventually inland by the end of the weekend.  So the Saturday-Tuesday period will be cool/shower again.  Due to the outlook, I plan to apply slug bait the the entire garden tomorrow…Mark

On to 16×9 !

June 4, 2007

Snapshot_2You folks didn’t know it, but for the last few weeks we’ve been getting ready to upgrade our weather system.  Here’s the story.
Television stations for the last 50 years have broadcast in a 4×3 format or the "boxy" look.  The FCC has mandated that in mid-February 2009, all analog (and 4×3) broadcasts will end and TV stations need to be broadcasting in digital only.  Of course that means the size of the screen changes to 16×9, regardless of whether stations upgrade to HDTV.  About 2 months ago KOIN became the first station to start broadcasting in this 16×9 format.  As of 10pm tonight we are as well.  That is 16×9, but not HDTV.  For those of you watching on cable or satellite TV or regular channel 12 over the air you may not have noticed much of anything different.  In the weather department we did change our forecasts a little and cleaned up some graphics too.  Those of you watching on an HDTV (either over the air or HD through satellite/cable) noticed that the black edges are gone and now we are filling the screen.  An example to the left shows our 7 Day forecast.  The area within the lines is seen by everyone.  But those watching HDTV will see farther out to each side.  So for 2 years we have to make graphics and show video for 2 sets of viewers.  We can’t put anything critical outside of the white lines, but we can’t stand long in the "edges" or some of you viewers will wonder where we went!   In February of 2009, all USA viewers will have to either purchase a set-top box to convert their TVs or purchase an HDTV.  At that point we will stop broadcasting that 4×3 signal.  Tricky for making the weather graphics eh?
As for weather…cold trough the next few days…get ready for showers.  My garden needs them, so I’m not complaining…for now.  Mark

Feels/Looks Like Summer

June 1, 2007

SnapshotHard to believe it’s only the first day of June…we’ve had four days well into the 80’s (and one 90).  A few thunderstorms in Central Oregon yesterday, and then a tremendous increase in activity 24 hours later (this afternoon).  At one point around 4pm I noticed a cell between Sisters and McKenzie Pass produced about 40 cloud to ground strikes in just one 15 minute period.  Not good considering how dry the region is.  And hopefully it’s not a sign of the summer to come.
Looking ahead to the weekend…as expected the trough offshore will be a bit slow to move inland, turning our upper-level flow more southerly the next two days.  Models continue to keep just about all convection over and east of the Cascades.  Although our RPM model in the latest 00z run continues to show something slipping from the Central Cascades of Oregon out and over the metro area late tomorrow evening as we head towards midnight.  It is barely noticeable on the maps, but once again it has been a persistent feature in that model the last couple of days.  It also shows a pop-up thunderstorm or two early Sunday afternoon too.  So with increasing moisture in the atmosphere and warm temps, keep an eye to the sky.  The one thing missing is some sort of obvious shortwave or trigger to really give us a nice little period of thunderstorms.
Monday is the transition day to much cooler weather with much cooler 850 mb. temps and a major marine push at the same time.  The rain may not be too heavy, but it’ll be quite a change.
Next week will be off/on cloudy and cool.  GFS has been indicating we may go back into warm/dry weather by the end of the week.  ECMWF doesn’t think so…we’ll see…Enjoy the weekend, Mark