Tracking the Lows

October 3, 2008

Snapshot  Whew!  Apparently this is THE place to be on a rainy (and soon windy) Friday evening for all the weather freaks.  Now sometimes you'll get TWO posts in one day.  The comment section is looking more like a meteorological Cheers, where everyone knows your name and favorite weather pattern.  A fun evening tonight, more like a winter night following buoy pressures, coastal wind, and the low pressure center.  It's fun only because it's not a huge news story, like a damaging winter windstorm.  When that happens the workload goes WAY up, which allows no time for geekery and ruins the weather fun for me.  Looks like the low is a bit closer to the Coast than we anticipated, but looking at buoys and coastal wind I don't see anything that makes me think wind will be any stronger than expected 24 hours ago.  I see Yaquina Bay Bridge has gusted near 60 mph within the last hour.  I also notice the wind direction is twisted about 90 degrees off.  When there was an east wind early this week it said south instead.  Now it says NW instead of S or SW.  That's the life of an anemometer I suppose.  South wind is also spreading up the Willamette Valley, with Salem switching over to breezy southerly in the last 2 hours.  I expect this moves into the Metro area in the next few hours as the easterly Gorge flow dies down…sounds really familiar doesn't it?  This has happened before and will all happen again.  Oh, sorry, wrong TV show, back to the weather now. 

As some of you noticed, the 00z WRF-GFS has the low moving onshore in NW Washington now, instead of Vancouver Island.  It only slowly weakens too, which gives us isobars oriented straight west-east over Western OR/WA tomorrow AM/Midday.  That's perfect for flow straight up the Valley…it's going to be a windy Saturday morning!  I still think 35 mph for the usual spots (SLE, HIO, PDX, VUO) is likely.  Which means some dude sitting at the top of Council Crest or Mt. Scott will have a higher gust at least to 40 mph.  Pretty good for early October with all the leaves still on the trees.

Real quiet for Sunday and Monday as we will be between weather systems.  A wrinkle in the long-range forecast is that the GFS (as of 00z) keeps rain to our north…just a few dribbles Tuesday, then the deep trough originally forecast to come right through us late week is shunted off to the east instead…Mark Nelsen

Rain Rain Go Away…. WAIT… Keep it Coming!

October 3, 2008

Snapshot So I love the rain.  Especially since I have been living in a desert for the last 4 years.  So far this system look fairly impressive in terms of rain fall.  We might see upwards of an Inch in the Valley and more in the Mountains. 

From looking at the models this morning I notice the GFS and the NAM are about 3 hours different in the timing.  The GFS looked like it was forecasting a 990mb low center while the NAM was about 980mb.  I think the GFS is tracking the precip a little better if you compare it to the wide spread rain as shown on the radar at about 6AM.   

Yesterday there was a record broken at Quillayute Airport in Washington with .99" of rain fall.  We will see similar amounts here through Saturday…possibly more! -Rob Martin