Here is a cross-section from the WRF-GFS model (UW). You have to read it backwards (after you click on it for a better view). That means time goes from right to left. 5pm today to 5pm Monday. Those are wind barbs in knots. Notice the deep layer of easterly flow all the way through Monday afternoon. It’s not insanely strong, in fact it’s a bit weaker after tomorrow, but it’s there nonetheless through the next 3 days. This spells at least 3 more very hot days (95-100). Those spots on hills near the Gorge have very warm nights ahead…in the 70s. It’s unlikely that lower elevations (most of the populated areas) will stay warm…this time of year the longer nights allow temps to fall off more in the valleys. Will we hit 100? Maybe, or maybe not…it’ll be close.
Models are in agreement on a major change Wednesday and beyond…much cooler, back to our usual normal to cooler than normal temps with lots of lingering morning clouds. This hot spell is just be a short detour around a slow moving Winnebago while winding down the mild summer road called 2010. Nice poetry eh?
Now the transition between the heat and the big onshore push could be interesting. Models have been waffling around with an upper-level low that may drift through the Pacific Northwest on Tuesday. The 00z GFS is especially encouraging and appears to forecast a thunderstorm outbreak across our area during the evening and overnight Tuesday night. I doubt the next model run will look exactly the same, but hopefully we get SOMETHING before the end of summer. This has been one dead summer for thunder west of the Cascades…not too unusual but we can hope at least.
I’ll be off on one LAST week of vacation next week, back on Monday the 23rd. If we get some exciting weather Tuesday evening I’m sure I will be on here though.
Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen