River Temps

June 17, 2009
River temperatures have warmed up quite a bit over the last month.

River temperatures have warmed up quite a bit over the last month.

Drew made this graphic Monday, and I personally experienced it yesterday.  We had a healthy snow pack this past winter/spring, but the peak of the spring melt has now passed and rivers are receding.  My 8 year old son and I took a little kayak trip on the Columbia River around Sand Island at Rooster Rock SP yesterday.  Looks like the river has dropped 3-5 feet since the peak a week or so back.  The highlight of the trip (other than a buck-naked couple lounging on the beach…don’t stare Andrew!) was finding a pair of high-quality sunglasses just barely poking out of the sand.  Someone must have lost them in the last few weeks because they were unscratched with no rust.  What a deal!  I did notice the water temp was chilly, but not ice cold, so real summer weather can’t be far away!

The Summer Solstice is Saturday evening here in Portland, and just in time a large upper-level trough once again settles over the Pacific Northwest.  This one has colder air than any we’ve seen this month, so a few days in the 60s (for highs) are likely.  I notice that there is still no dramatic change towards higher 500mb heights as we wrap up June.  Lots of clouds this month (so far), so daytime highs have been a bit cool at times, but the very warm nights have given us an unusually warm month.

Mark Nelsen