Offshore Flow Kicking In…

September 10, 2009

snapshotSome image sizing issues tonight, not sure why, but now I’m getting annoyed.  Click on the image to actually take a look.  This is the anniversary of the Yacolt Burn.  Larry from the blog posted the link…lots of info there.  Imagine 370 square miles of forest burning just northeast of the Metro Area.  And that all burned in less than 2 days!  1/2″ ash fell in Portland itself, paint peeled off buildings in Yacolt with the fire only 1/2 mile away.  This was an east wind episode that drove the fire 30+ miles from north of Carson all the way to just east of Yacolt and Battle Ground.

Luckily, for this year, we just had a bunch of rain in the Cascades so fire danger isn’t all that high.  Plus logging practices are quite a bit different.  For example in a dry east wind we don’t burn slash piles as they did back then.  In general people are far more careful nowdays. 

I see the wind is beginning to blow at Larch Mtn (WA) and Three Corner Rock in the Gorge.  I took a hike up to that 2nd spot in July.  A nice view, but it did look like it sure was exposed.  Somehow I missed the RAWS station, must have been gagging on a Clif Bar at the time.  If I recall correctly that was the time I ran out of water halfway through a hike…tough.  Okay, I digress a little bit.  The easterly gradient through the Gorge should go up to 4 millibars or so, enough to get east wind to PDX by midday or early afternoon.  Assuming that happens, the 92 shouldn’t be hard to hit.  We hit 91 last year on the same day!  The 850mb temp was only 18 and tomorrow’s is forecast to be around 21-22.  So the potential is definitely there for 92-96 degrees.  Okay, out of time…need to drive home.

Chief Meteorologist – Mark Nelsen