4 Sunny Weekends? It Might Hit 70 This Time Too!

March 4, 2015

Wednesday 7pm…

Do you realize we are forecasting a 4th consecutive sunny weekend?  Amazing for late February and early March!

Starting with Valentine’s Day we have seen mostly sunny skies each weekend day. That’s due to nearly constant upper-level ridging hanging around near the West Coast over the past month.  During that time we’ve seen less than 1/2″ of rain!

With the increasing sun angle and day length, we’re getting more energy down here at the ground so that means warmer temps this weekend.  We may hit 70 either Saturday, Sunday, or Monday.  But it wouldn’t be a record because we’ve been even warmer in early March as mentioned in Monday’s post.  We don’t appear to get good offshore (easterly) flow over the weekend, which should keep high temperatures from reaching the 75 we saw back in 2005 despite the 850mb temps forecast to be about the same as 2005.  So to summarize…

THIS WEEKEND

  • Warmest we’ve seen so far this year
  • Good chance we touch 70 either Saturday or Sunday
  • Light wind continues, including in the Gorge
  • Overnight temperatures will gradually warm too

It’s very obvious that we have no rain, and hardly any clouds, on the way through Tuesday of next week.  We have some rain in our 7 Day forecast for Wednesday, but is that the beginning of “the big change”?  It doesn’t appear that way for now.  Models have been consistently backing off on cool and wet weather later next week and beyond.  Just 1-2 days ago the GFS models was giving us snow down around 2,000′ or even lower in the extended range.  As of today though all of our long-range models show some wet weather later next week but then a return to upper-level ridging of some sort after the 15th.  Take a look at the ECMWF & GFS 500mb height anomaly for 9 days from now…next Friday, the 13th:

ecm_fri

gfs_fri

Then a week later, Thursday the 19th.  Including the GEM too…this is just as Oregon’s Spring Break is about to kick in…

ecm_thu_19

gem_thu_19

gfs_thu_19

The all show either normal or above normal upper-level heights over the Pacific Northwest.  No sign of a big turnaround to a wet pattern.

So enjoy the unusually sunny early March weather…it might not happen for another 10 years!

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen