Spring Break Wrap; Warmer Weather Ahead…Eventually

April 1, 2014

Another wet morning out there and it looks like a gray day to start April, but there is hope on the horizon!

It’s only 8am, but apparently I’m still on east coast time because I couldn’t sleep.

My family vacation the past 7 days was crazy, and not in a good way.

​We showed up on Tuesday evening in Orlando to do 3 days of theme parks and 3 days of beach in Florida.  My daughter Ariel went to bed with a slight headache, then woke up with severe head/neck pain at 3am.  We took her to local ER at 10am.  By 2pm they sent her to children’s hospital in an ambulance after finding signs of infection during a spinal tap.   It was a bacterial meningitis, the scary stuff we sometimes hear about where kids are healthy one day and dead or dying 48 hours later.  Real scary for about 12 hours.

Nice first day in sunny Florida eh?  She then was in the hospital through midday yesterday, we left, went to the airport and headed home.  She’s perfectly “normal” now due to quick action on our part, prayers from family and friends, and the wonders of modern medicine.  If we would have been in a remote area (Mexico, outer Caribbean etc…)  I think she could have died.  I can’t say enough good things about my wife, who happens to be an RN and recognized the symptoms of a serious infection.  The poor girl deserves a return trip…she saw some brief sun the evening we showed up, and between the car and airport on the way out of there yesterday.  Otherwise she was in a hospital the whole time.

By the way, why does no one use turn signals in Florida?…extremely annoying.  I also saw some really bad driving there, and it wasn’t tourists!
I wanted to share the big picture weatherwise, since that’s the first thing I looked at.  Plus I figure some of you are model-starved.
Looks like not too wet tomorrow and Thursday, more rain Friday-Sunday, then finally some nice spring weather for next week.  Here are the two ensemble charts from both the 00z GFS and ECMWF last night:
tseries_850t_000-360_Portland
tseries_850t_000-384_Portland
You can see the obvious ridging next week along with the below average 850mb temps this week.  Also note operational runs are much warmer than ensembles.  Check out the operational ECMWF meteogram:
KPDX_2014040100_dx_240
No rain next week and the warmest temperatures we’ve seen so far this spring, up around 80.  BUT, here’s another chart from the same run:
KPDX_2014040100_nx_240
It also shows the maximum temp on the top half in black squares for the operational run (note it matches the previous chart numbers).  Then the ensemble average is the smaller green squares.  Those numbers are more like mid 60s.  The bottom chart is minimum temperature.
Here’s a look at the monthly ECMWF maps from Sunday night’s run…showing troughing this week, ridging next, and then no real clear signal after that:

500za_week1_bg_NA

500za_week2_bg_NA

500za_week3_bg_NA

500za_week4_bg_NA

So the message here is that starting next Monday, we have a warmer/drier pattern for a while, but we don’t know if it’ll be really warm or just a bit warmer than average.  Either way it appears that some nice April weather is on the way.
Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen