2014: 2nd Warmest Year Since 1941 at PDX

January 1, 2015

It sure didn’t feel like it for the last few days, but 2014 was a warm one!  It was the 2nd warmest in Portland since the Airport records were established back around 1940.  1992 was warmer.

MarkYearly_Temps_PDX

The warmest-ever August, September, & October months were amazing.  Even December was tied for #5 warm.

It was a slightly wet year too, with just over 40″ of rain at PDX.  Like the DUCK COLORS ON THIS ONE???  Seems appropriate for today.

MarkRain_YearlyTotals

We saw a classic winter inversion today with warm air moving into the mountains and cold air stuck in the valleys.  One of the warmest spots in our area was up at the top of the Magic Mile chairlift.  That’s a midday temp of 44 up at 7,000′.  MarkInversion_MtHood Yet it was in the 20s most of the day at Government Camp.  From our Skibowl Weather Cam we could see something else.  The top of the cold air appeared to be around 5,000′ because the trees have shed their snow above that elevation.

MarkInversion_MtHood2

You can also see the temperatures jumping up and down at the Mt. Hood SNOTEL site (5,400′) the past 24 hours; good evidence of the cold air sloshing up and down a bit at that elevation.

What’s happening the next week or so?  Not much, quite a dead weather pattern with upper-level ridging nearby for much of the next week.  For skiers it doesn’t look good since freezing levels go very high Monday-Wednesday next week, although we might stay mainly dry if everything works out just right.

Feel free to put in your 2014 rain totals below…I’ll start.

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen


ECMWF Weekly Maps

January 1, 2015

It’s Thursday, which means 4 maps (1 for each week) from the ECMWF ensembles.  They show the 500mb height and anomaly for each of the next 4 weeks.  Hmmm, looks like more of the same.  Week1 shows what we already know, ridging over and just to our east.  Hopefully not much precipitation the first half of next week because it’s going to be very warm with southerly/southwesterly upper-level flow.

500za_week1_bg_NA

Week 2, ridging splits a bit but still over us and to the north.  Aleutian Low sure seems to power up.

500za_week2_bg_NA

Week 3, not sure what to think about this except that ridging develops to our west again.  Maybe some lows passing by to the south?

500za_week3_bg_NA

Week 4, which takes us to the first few day of February.  Ridge wants to develop in the position we’ve seen off/on since November.  Alaska remains very warm and maybe rains are slamming California.  We seem to be in a bit of a dead zone.

500za_week4_bg_NA

Remember, this was one run of one model, always look for trends.