What a Weekend! Mild Weather Will Continue

I can’t believe we’ve seen four consecutive sunny weekends.  This weekend topped them all; more like a nice May weekend than early March!  We hit 68 Saturday and 69 Sunday in Portland.  In fact today (at 69) was the 6th day at/above 60 degrees.

Looking ahead, temperatures look very mild for the next 7-10 days, and likely beyond.  This isn’t going to be like any March we’ve seen in many years.  We get one wet system Wednesday, and then some more this coming weekend.  We actually need the rain, since we’ve only seen .43″ in Portland in the last month…crazy stuff for this time of year!

The reason we’ll stay mild (although with rain at times) is the same we’ve seen all winter long.  Actually much of the last two winters and parts of the warm season too.  Upper-level ridging wants to continue along the western coast of North America or in the Gulf of Alaska.  That keeps storms away and weakens those that do move through the ridge.  Take a look at the 15 day 500mb height anomaly map from the 12z GFS, GEM, and ECMWF.  This is the ensemble average of all the runs from each model for Tuesday the 24th.  That’s in the middle of Oregon’s Spring Break:




Surprising how similar they are isn’t it?  All show the ridging centered to our north/northwest.  This may allow some precipitation into California at times, but in general it’s a warmer and drier than normal pattern like we’ve seen.


The 00z ECMWF monthly run is almost the same.  The maps above end at the end of week #2, so I’ll just show you week #3 and week #4:



Same story continues through the first week of April.  Cold trough in the east and mild ridging along the West Coast.  The heights weaken a bit over Alaska.

By the way, I think it’s unlikely any of the closed ski resorts will reopen and it’s even possible skiing goes down to just higher slopes of the other ski areas with the warmer than normal weather continuing.  Much of the precipitation the next 7 days will fall as rain at the base of Meadows and Timberline:


Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen

26 Responses to What a Weekend! Mild Weather Will Continue

  1. Lee says:

    Hi Mike, I don’t remember rain in any forecast either.

    In fact the rain just disappeared on my weather station. but it is still on learning mode.

    How ever, my intellicast app is showing rain coming in from the south. rather it hits or not.. hard to say.

  2. Lee says:

    We have in coming winds, peak ground level was 9 kph so far.
    barometer is reading 2953 and falling, it was at 2959.

    I see on the radar clouds coming in from the south.
    that could mean ☆someone might get a thunderstorm tonight.☆
    We are at 56°F. I didn’t feel any rain yet.

    oh we are at 66% percent humidity.

  3. steve says:

    I started my planting

  4. Jake-(Gresham) says:

    So I know some of you like to garden; thought you guys might be interested in this:


    I might be getting one for my grandpa for his birthday to test things out. Owns 5 acres and has bees. See how things go. Probably one of the coolest inventions I’ve seen in awhile!

  5. Garron near Washington square says:


    I’m not picking apart your forecasting skills, or anyone else for that matter, but, I had so many customers at my store “surprised” to see another sunny day under way. For some reason, they were under the impression that it was supposed to rain today? Not sure where they are getting this info from, unless the TV mets got together to plan a golf trip together, and wanted it to be sparse with people once they got there????

    Back when I used to watch the news, I was confronted by the same issue. After watching, I was some what confused about the upcoming day(s) weather, and when it might rain.

    With all the programs/graphics available out there, I think it’s high time to get progressive with your graphics and put out a daily forecast (maybe up to 3 days) for approx. rainy times. Instead of saying there’s a 70% chance of showers, maybe we could break down the part of the day that is gonna be wet vs. dry? Or am I all wet?

    • Purplehaze says:

      Sorry but just like the Government Mark is slow as molasses to innovate though he should in order to be more unique yet still detailed.

    • Mark Nelsen says:

      Geez, tough crowd (Purple Haze).

      I don’t know why someone thought it was going to rain today. Out of 6 evening newscasts neither of us in here said anything about rain. In fact I don’t think we’ve had rain in the 7 Day forecast for Tuesday leading up to this at all. Did someone else have a chance of rain?

  6. Lee says:

    I guess we topped out at 71 Saturday lol.

    I welcome the rain, it will be good for my pumpkins 8 got stuck in the ground.

    Plus I can finally test my rain Guage.

    right now we are at 39°F.
    99% Humidity
    and winds out of the west at 3 mph.
    I see we have a “hazardous seas” alert.

    I also see New Mexico is at 28°F. I feel sorry for them.

    All in all, let think we had better think long and hard..might need the A/C a lot this summer and I might need one for the main greenhouse. One already hit 95 in the thing.

    If March is like May, Then May will be like June and June will be like July, can we say “Prepare for high heat categories”?

    i stand firm on my prediction of severe thunderstorms for this summer with 2 possible Tornadoes with an F2 or better.
    I hope to be wrong on the tornadoes.

    I hope to get some good lightning shots.

    • Sapo says:

      Technically if March was like May then May would be like July hahah…Doesn’t matter, what does is that we’ll probably be in this pattern through the next couple of months and probably more because it doesn’t seem to be changing and has been persistent all winter. And I like thunderstorms only because they give some excitement in the summer.

    • W7ENK says:

      Our terrain doesn’t allow for the right dynamics to produce strong, damaging tornadoes with summertime thunderstorms. Our tornadoes are almost exclusively cold core funnels, very small storms, very short tracks. This isn’t the Midwest.

  7. I was up in the Harriet Lake area Sunday and let me tell you, it’s already incredibly dry. This is up around 2000′ – 2200′. It looked and felt like mid-June. It’s really almost creepy and I fear how severe the fire season is going to be this Summer.

    • Purplehaze says:

      Well put. Most bloggers are stuck down in the Portland/valley area which hasn’t seen the full effects of the drought being somewhat protected.

    • W7ENK says:

      Drove right by there on Monday afternoon on the way home from Timberline. Was a little surprised to find the gate open! Absolutely zero snow up at Timothy, not even in the shady spots. The lake is about 6 to 8 feet low already, too. Walked the shore right below the lodge and recovered a bunch of lost tackle.

  8. Aleta-West Gresham says:

    My fingers are itching to plant that garden!! I think lettuce is safe with that forecast!

  9. schmit44 says:

    3/09/2015 Oregon (All) Temperature Summary

    High:77 at AGNESS2( 247 ft) & CW3932 Central P(1290 ft) & CW6811 Grants Pa(947 ft) & ILLINOIS VALLEY(1389 ft) & MERLIN SEED ORCH(1144 ft)
    Low: 53 at BALD KNOB(3630 ft)

    High:48 at ANEROID LAKE #2(7300 ft)
    Low: 8 at CROW FLAT (5172 ft )

    Largest Diurnal Change: 57 degrees
    CHRISTMAS VALLEY (69/12 ) (4360 ft )
    Lorella (70/14) (4160 ft)

  10. Will we see the native white oaks in the eastern Gorge begin to put out their leaves before the end of March this year??? Stay tuned!

    • W7ENK says:

      Why so specific with “native white oaks”? What about the big leaf maples or your precious pterodactyl palms? Lots of Larch and Ash budding out all over already. Starting to see some green ready to pop on the neighborhood sweet gums, too. They’re about two months early.

      Happy belated birthday, by the way. I was basking in the summer-like weather up at Timberline on Sunday, so I missed it.

  11. A very bad sign going into this summer for sure. :/

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