Wettest Day in 2+ Years: Stormy Saturday Thoughts


1.89″ of rain so far in Portland today, that’s our wettest calendar day since January 19th, 2012!

Luckily tomorrow we’ll see just frequent showers with sunbreaks mixed in.  Still wet, but not as gloomy.

I’ve been running way behind all night since I’ve been training a new employee and doing 3.5 hours of news from 8-11:30pm. Doesn’t leave much time for blogging!

I’ve checked out all the models for Saturday when there are hints of a surface low pressure system possibility shooting up the coastline and giving us a south wind of some sort.  The 12z GFS had shown a major windstorm for our area, but following runs are much weaker.  The 12z ECMWF was pretty windy. The 00z NAM and 00z GFS are splitty and weak, nothing to see with those runs.  The 00z Canadian is windy but nothing too crazy.  The new 00z ECMWF is noticeably weaker, but the low is doing almost exactly the same movement from SW to NE.  Here’s the 11am, 5pm, and 11pm Saturday.




The storm moves quickly, from off Cape Blanco to Puget Sound in 12 hours!  But it weakens from around 983mb to 990 at the same time.  If you want a good windstorm you want a deepening low to move quickly.

The wind gust forecast shows 50+ kt gusts at 11pm over SW Washington. ecmwf_uv10g_nw_14  There is no image between 5pm and 11pm, but I think it’s safe to say the ECMWF would show 50 mph gusts over the Willamette Valley based on this.

I’m not real excited for now (yet), and I’m hoping for model solutions that are much closer tomorrow so we can make a coherent forecast without a bunch of words like “possible, could be, watching, not sure, undecided etc…”

I do like that the ECMWF has shown two runs with pretty consistent solutions.

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen

46 Responses to Wettest Day in 2+ Years: Stormy Saturday Thoughts

  1. W7ENK says:

    The clouds parted around 3 o’clock just enough for me to catch this over downtown.

    • Dave in SW PDX (235') says:

      Given the conditions today, that’s an excellent photo, Erik. You can even see part of massive sunspot AR2192 sprawled across the middle of the Sun.

  2. dharmabum says:

    We just had a large cell move through the Barton area between 2:30 and 3 PM. 6 or 7 large lightning flashes and very loud rolling thunder.

  3. Hal in Aims says:

    cell mentioned by nws @ 2:42 pm just arriving here…….very dark….heavy rain……two fairly bright flashes and loud cracks…..

  4. Prairiedog says:

    Good lightening cloud to cloud about 1:15 between OC and Gladstone. The clouds were as black as I can remember in a long time. I was at HD in OC. Lightening was just north and west of there. Active weather for sure.

  5. Radar confirms report of possible tornado in Longview. Velocities shows rotation and a couplet lasts for 2 to 3 scans. Impressive. There was also brief rotation or some kind of low-level organization between Oak Grove and Milwaukie earlier as well.

    • Garron near Washington Square says:

      That’s pretty amazing! Thanks Rob, even heard something on TWC about it, so it must be a slow weather day for them…lol! Another couple of lines of showers building to our west, so maybe a chance of interesting wx in the rest of the metro….

    • Lauraholic says:

      wow. thats amazing. Yet … nothing not even a rain drop in oregon city.

    • Dave in SW PDX (235') says:

      Thanks, guys – great info. You can clearly see the funnel and airborne debris in the video, too.

    • Muxpux (Castle Rock 175') says:

      Girlfriend works downtown. Said she saw a tornado. I had to laugh, and now I’m eating my hat, lol

    • Eugene Dave says:

      Another video:

      Definitely looks legit. Other than a couple of weak waterspouts, this is the first video I’ve ever seen of a NW tornado.

    • Dave in SW PDX (235') says:

      That’s an even better view, Eugene Dave! Good find!

    • Dave in South Salem (500') says:

      That is an actual tornado. Not a very big one. It doesn’t look like the typical one because the condensation funnel did not reach the ground, but a tornado nonetheless.

  6. WEATHERDAN says:

    Hazy sunshine through high clouds and 61 at 1:00 PM. Might see a little darkening of the skies later this afternoon as a partial solar eclipse blots out 61% of the sun around 3:00 PM. Looks like a blustery day on Saturday. No not from the possible wind storm but the annual What will Winter weather be like symposium out at OMSI. It starts at 10:00 AM and you can see your favorite prognosticators prognosticate on this Winter. As for the possible storm it looks interesting but I remain skeptical that we see anything over 45 MPH in the valley. Peace.

  7. N3EG says:

    Reported “tornado” in downtown Longview – observed a decaying funnel cloud over Kelso. Just now.

  8. Garron near Washington Square says:

    A nice thunder rumble in Beaverton, near Wash/sQ

  9. Andy - Vancouver says:

    Thunder at 33rd and Sandy

  10. Dave in SW PDX (235') says:

    Absolutely torrential downpour in Tigard right now. Lots of red on the radar with this line of showers.

  11. vernonia1 says:

    off topic….ODOT: Valley, No. Coast: All lanes of Interstate 5, northbound and southbound, remained closed near Albany (MP 237), after a fatal crash involving a semi and other vehicles. A detour is established. Southbound motorists will be directed to Old Salem Hwy (MP238). Northbound motorists will be directed to Knox Butte Rd. (MP 234). A law enforcement investigation and removal of the vehicles involved will likely take several hours. Motorists should plan alternate routes for afternoon travel.

  12. W7ENK says:

    NAM just settled on classic windstorm pattern for Willamette Valley on Saturday, FYI. Low is still deepening as it shoots up the coast, though it isn’t quite round, slightly elongated. 55kt winds in the Valley per this run. Still lots of time, could go either way.

    Hold your breath…

  13. dharmabum says:

    So far around 1.5″ of rain here near Barton Park on the Clackamas River.

    But 20 years ago in late October 1994 we got hammered with an all night storm. I was awakened with a knock on the door from the newspaper delivery lady, her vehicle was mired down literally to the frame of the car in my driveway where they had recently run fiber optic cable along our road. Well I was able to pull it out with my 4X4 and got her on her way. I then went to the backyard to check my glass rain gauge and was astounded to see the darn thing had completely filled the 6″ cylinder with rain overnight and was overflowing! All I know for sure is we had 6 plus inches of rain that night, and very little sleep from the constant pounding rain.

    • Mark Nelsen says:

      I remember that one. 2.44″ spread over two calendar days at PDX. So 4″+ in just 24 hours. I also remember no significant flooding because that was the beginning of the wet season. The first 3″ were sucked up by the dry ground!

  14. MasterNate says:

    Looking for a little help here. I am purchasing a weather station with a budget of roughly $1,000 and would like to here some suggestions on best for the money. Not looking for wireless. I’m sure it will be a Davis model but don’t know enough to make a good decision. Also, where to go to buy it. On line?

    • W7ENK says:

      Everyone raves over the Vantage Vue Pro 2, I think you can pick one up for under $300.

    • Prairiedog says:

      I have the Vantage Pro 2 and it has performed very well. I use that for my collecting and recording my data. I use a Rainwise just because I like the large display that is very visible and a focal point when people are visiting. More expensive unit but between the two the Pro 2 is best both value wise and logging of data.

    • High Desert Mat says:

      I have the vantage vue. It does everything and tells me everything I need to know, minus models of course.

      Oh if they are raffling it off at the winter weather meeting it must be a good one. I won it last year at that meeting. Thanks guys!!

    • MasterNate says:

      Thanks for the feedback. Looks like the Vantage Pro 2 is the ticket. Save some $ as well.

  15. Larry says:

    Good, we’re behind on the whole “strip the leaves off the trees” bit this year. Thanks!

  16. Alohabb says:

    Wow, that’s sounding dangerous.

  17. Mark Nelsen says:

    I just updated the wording and maps with some new info that came in

  18. schmit44 says:

    10/22/2014 Oregon (All) Temperature Summary

    High:72 at HERMISTON( 550 ft) & DW0069 Ferndale(840 ft) & ECHO(758 ft)
    Low: 59 at EW4053 Myrtle Po(417 ft) & Gold Beach (US 1(60 ft) & BROOKINGS(79 ft)

    High:38 at HOWARD Mt Howard(8150 ft)
    Low: 19 at CROW FLAT (5172 ft )

    Largest Diurnal Change: 37 degrees
    CW1102 Wallowa (65/28 ) (2946 ft )

    Heaviest Rainfall:
    4.20″ at NORTH FORK(3120ft)
    3.73″ at RYE MOUNTAIN(2000ft)
    3.61″ at CANNIBAL MOUNTAI(1939ft)
    3.39″ at LOG CREEK(2800ft)
    3.17″ at WA7ZVY-4 Newport(128ft)
    3.14″ at EW1135 Yachats1(32ft)
    3.05″ at HEBOWX Mt. Hebo(3160ft)
    2.96″ at TIDEWATER(2035ft)

  19. vinnybob says:

    2.02 here in Cedar Hills

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