Still Blowing, but Weaker

January 19, 2009

Troutdale wind 03  Keith Biggs sent us this picture from Troutdale…one of many trees that fell the last few days.  Good news this evening as the wind has definitely ramped back down to "normal" at Troutdale.  Of course the gusts to around 60 mph might be considered "normal" up at Corbett, or at least generally not damaging.  The 9pm update from PGE says only 100 customers are out of power, so clearly there aren't many new outages.  My power at home came on soon after noon, so we were out about 38 hours.  That generator was worth EVERY penny!

Cold air is still streaming through the Gorge, but the cold air pool appears to be slightly shallower, evidenced by some clearing at Redmond and Bend today.  The thinner pool of cold air gives us a lighter pressure gradient through the Gorge…it's now around 10 millibars instead of 14+ over the weekend.  I think we'll see the gradient continue to gradually slacken the next 3 days…probably down to just 2-4 mb. by Thursday.

Not much to talk about through the weekend…except a sharp little drop of cooler air sometime Sunday, or Monday, depending on which model you choose to look at.  We (Drew and I) chose to not show anything dramatic either of those days since there are serious model differences. I did notice that the 12z WRF-GFS actually generates snow over us Monday morning as moisture from the west runs over colder air in place.  But once again, fun to look at but who knows what models will show tomorrow…Mark Nelsen