Cooler Air Moving In

First a poll, for fun:


I thought of this today as I came outside to get in the car and drive to work.  It was breezy, comfortable, and just refreshing in general.  I thought “what a perfectly normal spring day in Western Oregon”.  It seems like it’s been a very nice spring so far to me.  A warm spell about every week and a half, followed by cooler weather and showers.  We haven’t seen any long spells of wet weather, and no constant cold like last year.  Remember last year?  I think almost the entire Spring was chilly (through mid June!) minus that 95 degree heat wave in mid-May.  That was sure strange.  Anyway, looks like quite a few of you are happy with this Spring so far as well.  Of course most of us here would probably like to see lots more hail and thunderstorms every few days, but this is about reality here in the poll.

Moving on, a nice pool of cool air beginning to arrive now.  A radar on the South Washington Coast would be nice in a situation like tonight’s.  IR satellite shows a nice band or two of what are probably heavy showers moving towards the Coastline.  Maybe a flash of lightning on the beaches overnight?  Maybe not.  In fact Drew and I discussed the possibility of a thunderstorm Tuesday afternoon inland.  Looks like the main dynamics and coldest air has moved off to our east during the peak afternoon heating.  We’ll see if the strong sunshine can do the trick.  I left thundershowers out of the forecast in the end.

Models are agreeing well on a nice ridge developing over us Saturday through Monday.  In fact the ECMWF and GFS hint that it’ll be the beginning of a longer period of much drier and mild weather.  The maps definitely have that “late May-early June” look with higher 500mb heights even after the weekend…Mark Nelsen

38 Responses to Cooler Air Moving In

  1. N3EG says:

    In the communications business, we use coverage maps to determine where we need to add sites. The weather radar during a steady heavy rain looks just like a computer generated coverage map. Let’s hope the people who are picking the potential new radar site are watching it right now.

  2. Let’s hope I’m wrong! Yes, you heard me, I said I hope I’m wrong about having only once nice weekend in may (we don’t always even get that much!) I really hope I’m wrong and we have many nice weekends this month, and from this coming weekend all the way through memorial day is warm, sunny, and nice!

  3. TriforceofEternity says:

    Mback Says:
    May 11, 2009 at 9:22 pm | Reply

    “SECOND, if that really is worth anything. I voted as well but will not reveal how I voted due to my rights.”

    LOL Good one Mback. I like your humor. 😀

    So I guess your afraid that HARRP will modify the weather if you reveal what you voted and by the way I voted number 3 so there. (number 3) 8)

    Yes I am boring in what I voted so sue me and make me live under a bridge. 😛

    Shoot they found out my vote and will now ruin this spring by making it drippy all the way till shortly after July 4th. Darnit.

    Guess I’ll just have to move to Redding California for some ‘fun in the sun’ and post on their blog.

  4. TriforceofEternity says:

    Thanks Jess for also answering my question about snow-pack. I’ve seen the valley have below normal rainfall so I was curious about the mountains.

  5. TriforceofEternity says:

    How did your electricity do Rob during that 35-40mph gust since all the trees are fully loaded?

  6. Yeah it only reached t-storm status briefly before pulsing back down in strength..

    Well we just had quite a squall move through. Rain, small hail, and gusty W-NW winds 35-40mph.

  7. muxpux says:

    wow. the wind today was a bit surprising…been sunny here for the last hour and a half or so. but that wind…gusting easily into the low 20’s. nothing huge or damaging, just a bit surprising.

    also, fun looking at the NWS temperature graph on days like today…up, down, up, down…

    this woulda been a snowy day if this system rolled through back in december…not that we needed it…haha.

  8. The storm you saw up here, Wrath, gave one shot of thunder after it had rolled to our east (so further up into the foothills). Did put some hail into downtown BG according to my wife.

  9. Possible t-storm just east of La Center and north of Battle Ground. It doesn’t look very promising for additional showers and storms. 500mb temps are moderating, we are running out of moisture, and there doesn’t appear to be any favorable instability or lifted index.

  10. William Johnson says:

    Astoria, oregon
    from what i hear at around 3:10 am this morning we had a good windstorm with heavy rain lots of people said it woke them up but it didnt for me . But from the time i woke up at around 8 am weve had some pretty impressive showers roll through about 20 minutes ago we had small hail chunks but so far no thunderboomers yet i just wonder what the chances are of gettingf any thunder in this area are we are getting sunbreaks but seems to be not very big sunbreaks just small ones here and there.

  11. Vaportrail says:

    Lots of rain suddenly in Hillsboro

  12. Mback says:

    SP, you were supposed to keep my appearance at the meeting a secret…. Thanks for letting me down buddy.

  13. Whoa… what are the odds… I am driving up to Oregon on Thursday and was thinking about going to Old Spaghetti Factory for dinner!

  14. Steve Pierce (Vancouver, WA.) says:

    P.S. This week’s AMS meeting is open to the general public! All ages are welcome! This is one of our last big meetings of the season, so come check it out!

    I hear there is going to be a special “star” cameo appearance by someone we all know very well!


  15. Steve Pierce (Vancouver, WA.) says:


    May AMS Meeting – “Rose Festival Weather”

    Date: Thursday, May 14th
    Time: 6:00-9:00pm (Dinner at 6:00pm)
    Location: Old Spaghetti Factory in Clackamas 12725 SE 93rd Ave Clackamas, OR 97015

    George Miller… meteorologist, writer, historian and college instructor… will share his interesting findings upon review of 100+ years of Rose Festival weather records!

    For complete meeting details and driving directions, please see —

    Click to access OR-AMS_meeting_May14-2009.pdf

  16. Steve Pierce (Vancouver, WA.) says:

    Test post only

  17. andrewjohnsonsilverton says:

    Its snowing pretty hard over in Joseph, Oregon this morning. Looks like its just starting to stick.

  18. Sean (Lebanon, IN) says:

    Yes, the new blog looks very good!

    The system that is coming out of the Pac NW, will have a big impact on my weather here tomorrow.. Might just be a chase day..

  19. stevied (North Portland) says:

    like the new blog!

  20. Timmy_Supercell (Hillsboro) says:

    Mark, you said no lightning on the coast being likely, so far they are the only ones with lightning, including yesterday.

  21. Timmy_Supercell (Hillsboro) says:

    So far, Wunderground was the only one that called thunderstorms ahead of time. Not even NWS had it. You gotta love Wunderground, they never fail.

  22. Timmy_Supercell (Hillsboro) says:

    Lightning along the coast! We have a chance of storms.

  23. sds123 says:

    I’m voteing or drier and warmer this coming week.

  24. Ben (Tillamook) says:

    i would love to see a flash of lightning or some short of extreme weatehr tomorrow

  25. Today was a great day to sit outside and enjoy a cheese bagel and a shot in the dark. Very pleasant spring weather indeed…and great timing with it being my day off.

    Can we skip the ups and downs for a while and have a week straight just like today? No??


  26. Mark, thanks for the update. As things stand right now I agree with you and Drew with probably not seeing t-storms tomorrow. Looking at recent IR loop it does appear the cold upper low is moving too quickly as it barrels towards the Washington Coast. Unfortunately this will probably move east of the Washington Cascades a bit too early in the day taking with it the best dynamics and cold air aloft with it. Of course there might be marginally cold enough air left behind perhaps 500mb -24c to -26c and coupled with strong sun breaks that may fire off something…. I hope so.

  27. Jesse-Orchards says:

    This Spring so far (March/April) has been colder than normal for Washington and Oregon, but it hasn’t been as noticeable as last year, mainly because it has been brighter and less rainy overall. Most of the cold departures this Spring have been in the morning lows, as opposed to much colder than normal daytime highs like last season.

    There have also been decent warm spells every week and a half or so, like you pointed out Mark, as opposed to a long string of cold days. Mentally, that is probably another reason this spring seems so much nicer than last year to most.

    And Karl, the temperature swings you describe with such frustration represent some of my favorite weather. 😉

    As for my thoughts on a drought, Aly. The cascade snowpack is still well above average, so we should be ok IMO, even though it has been drier than normal in the valleys.

  28. Just saw Mark’s 7-day….looking mighty nice for this weekend!

  29. This spring so far has been a mixed bag of rain and some sunny warm spells in-between….and…yes, everything is green….Add a few more good t-storms into the mix and I will be even more delighted…:-)

    52.2F with more showers showing up on the horizon

  30. Karl Bonner says:

    The most annoying thing for the past two springs has been the sharp up-and-down swings in temperature. A day with 80 degrees and sunshine is followed by a day with a biting north wind, spotty hail and highs in the upper 40s. I prefer more of the moderate air masses myself.

  31. Timmy_Supercell (Hillsboro says:

    I voted 3rd choice, not nearly as wet as other years, and sunnier as well. And by this time of year, we usually don’t have as many storms. Every since February started, we came upon some pretty dry weather overall. And when we get the rain, its generally light. The mornings are too chilly though (especially in Hillsboro), thats my only complaint.

  32. Tornado Aly (Vancouver) says:

    Actually this spring has been one of the better ones in the recent past. It seems like usually it’s either way to hot, or way to cold (more of the latter), and a ton more rain than this year. This has been a great mix of weather this year…. Although I heard on the radio this morning that we are in a drought now? I know we have been below rain averages for about a year with the exception of August 2008, but didn’t realize it was that bad. Any thoughts?

  33. Mback says:

    SECOND, if that really is worth anything. I voted as well but will not reveal how I voted due to my rights. Anyway, nice day out there but I noticed the wind was kicking up at a good pace. Mark, good idea on these surveys. It’s a nice mix up from time to time.

  34. mouse2112 says:

    Next week in the 80’s? Very nice!

  35. FIRST!

    And I voted

    Not so bad, some rain, some warm spells, very green!

    I chose this because we have been in the 70’s and low 80’s already this Spring.

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