Sandy is Dead, Halloween is On, & More Good News

October 31, 2012

1.  Halloween:  The steady rain is finishing up and it appears we’re moving on to scattered showers from 6pm-10pm.  Check the radar here before you head out, if you’re lucky you might totally miss showers in your neighborhood:

2. Sandy is Dead:  Hydrometeorological Prediction Center (HPC) has issued their last advisory, around 8am our time.  It’s just a jumble of showers moving around the northeast without a definable center.

3.  Flood Watch is cancelled for the North Coast and Coast Range:  Not enough rain to cause any trouble out there and now it’s on to much lighter rain over the next 5+ days.


European Model Wins With Sandy

October 31, 2012

Those of us following weather closely already know this, but here’s a great article from USA TODAY.  The ECMWF (European) forecast model did far better on the initial forecasts for Sandy’s landfall in the USA.  We’re not #1 in computer modeling of our atmosphere anymore.

Read it here:


Weekend Looking Drier

October 30, 2012

The 12z ECMWF and now the 00z GFS are hinting that most of this weekends rain may stay farther north. They are developing a stronger upper-level ridge over the West Coast. Beyond that, good agreement on a colder trough next week. Not sure if it’s just a transitory feature, but we’ll definitely make a swing from warm to cold in the 5-10 day period.

Here’s the 00z GFS ensemble plot of 850mb temps. The operational is on the warm side, but only by a degree or two:

The 00z ECMWF is only partially out, but it shows 500mb heights up around 584dm on Sunday!  Very mild, but the rain would be quite close.

Luckily Daylight Time ends this Saturday night and all weather models/maps will come out an hour earlier through early March.  Ahh, the 00z ECMWF mostly out before my 10pm broadcast; that proves quite useful at times in the winter.

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen

A Different View of Sandy

October 30, 2012

Funny stuff from the company that makes animations about major news events.  Very briefly inappropriate in the middle, but the rest is fine:

Trick Or Treat Forecast

October 30, 2012

Lots of rain still on the way the next 24 hours, but models are attempting to shove a cold front and it’s solid rain to our east by the critical 5-8pm time period tomorrow.  If so, it’s possible we just see scattered showers for the tiny tots running around outside; all is likely not lost!

Wettest October in 15 Years! Snow Gone In Mountains Too

October 29, 2012

The heavy rain over the weekend pushed our October rain total at PDX to 5.21″, double the average October.  And we still have one more very wet weather system moving through the next 48 hours.  I wouldn’t be surprised if we are up in the 6.50″ range by the time kids are busy candy-collecting Wednesday evening.

We had two back to back wet Octobers in 1996 and 1997, and the wettest of all was 1994 with over 8″ of rain.  The weekend rain totals were a little less than I expected here in the Valley.  The driest parts of the Valley had 1.50″ or so.  There were some locations over 2″.  But wait, there’s more.  Check out the weekend rain totals in the mountains…4.60″ up near the crest of the Coast Range at “South Fork” near Lees Camp.  7.20″ at “North Fork” just SE of Larch Mountain (Oregon).  And Timberline, with 9.62″ (all rain) from Saturday morning to this morning.  I saw the Sandy River yesterday afternoon; it was running very high and not just the usual “flood-muddy-brown” color, but a milky brown.  Must be lots of glacial silt coming down from exposed mountain slopes.

As you can guess 2-3 days of 40s and rain have devastated the snowpack…there isn’t anything left below 6,000′ and very little above that spot.  Here are the current pics from Timberline:



What a difference from a few days ago when it was a beautiful winter wonderland up there.  But don’t worry, there will be more snow, at some point.  What I don’t expect is a return of the snow to lower elevations in the next week.  We’ll stay either mild and wet or mild and dry through the next 7 Days.  I’ve added all these images now to my Pass Cam Page off my main weather page.

Of course the Pacific Northwest weather patterns take back seat to the big weather action along the East Coast today.  Hurricane Sandy should make landfall along the New Jersey coast around our evening commute time.  Lots of great live shots coming up on our evening shows I’m sure!

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen


Tsunami “Wave” Passes Down Oregon Coast

October 27, 2012

The only part of the Pacific under a Tsunami warning at 11:45pm is Hawaii.  It’s only an advisory everywhere else from Alaska to California.

The small wave from the earthquake off the BC Coast moved down the Oregon Coast between 10-11pm.  Here are the  heights reported by NOAA:

Looks like the tsunami passed down the Oregon Coast between 10-11pm (0500-0600z).  Peak wave heights, with the initial wave at least, were below 1 foot:

 CHARLESTON  OR       0524UTC   00.3FT
 GARIBALDI  OR           0515UTC 00.2FT
 LA PUSH  WA              0448UTC   00.4FT
 NEAH BAY  WA            0530UTC   00.3FT
 PORT ORFORD  OR      0519UTC   00.5FT
 SOUTH BEACH  OR       0524UTC   00.3FT
 CRESCENT CITY  CA     0555UTC   00.6FT

You can see a model forecast of the wave energy; most of it heading SW towards Hawaii where  a warning is still in effect.

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen