From time to time people ask me if the I “get along” with the other TV weather people in town. I would say, generally, yes! Every once in awhile we all end up at some event together and 3 of us did today. Metro, the regional government, was celebrating National Bike Month and the release of the 8th edition of their BIKE THERE map. They had free ice cream, but Nick Allard and I waited too long to partake because they were all out for us (no need to cry for us though, we’ll get by). The competition involved sprinting on stationary bicycles as fast as you can for what seems like a long 10-20 seconds. It’s a tremendous rush compared to regular cycling since you go from 0 to 60 as fast as you can. We had a bunch of heats; each of us competing against each other and folks from several newspapers in the area. The picture above is me vs. Dave Salesky. I barely beat him, but he ended up the final winner timewise…he’s got a cool little trophy. Plus I figure he had to beat the younger guys so he gets extra credit there. Nick beat me in our heat. So I ended up 2nd (out of 6th) place. Wait till next year! So what do we talk about when we’re standing around? News gossip, weather people gossip, what the high will be at 5pm, re-living the glory of the surprise Dec. 29th snowstorm…etc…not too exciting, but always fun to get together. When I worked at KOIN, I actually had a very cranky sports anchor who worked there at the time (bet you can guess who!) tell me that I had no business hanging around with those other people since they are our competitors. What, are they going to steal the snow forecast for next December? Maybe try to sneak a copy of the temperature charts I’ve made? Weird stuff…one more story I remember from television forecasting!
Nice day today…but I was totally off on saying we’d have light offshore flow. We just have very weak onshore flow. Gorge gradient was actually 1 to 2 millibars westerly all day. I figured it would be 1 to 2 easterly. That might account for temps being slightly lower than forecast. The Willamette Valley was pretty much in the 70-75 degree range. I notice the Spokane to Portland gradient has gone way down since this morning though. That may be a prelude to a light easterly or flat gradient through the Gorge by morning…allowing our temps to climb a bit higher.
Not much change either Saturday or Sunday; I added a chance of thunderstorms to the Cascades both afternoons with some weak instability forecast.
No big changes for next week…I notice the 00z is a bit more split with Monday’s system…tricky forecasting the details on that one. Then after a brief break for at least part of Tuesday we get quite a strong system for late May in here by Wednesday.
Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen