Very Dramatic Weather Headlines This Week

November 11, 2015

For the 2nd time this week I’ve seen a very dramatic headline on the top banner of a well-known local newspaper website:

“APPROACHING STORM COULD RIVAL HALLOWEEN DELUGE”

The first was

“WINTER STORM WATCH: 2 FEET OF SNOW EXPECTED IN CASCADES”

and, for the 2nd time this week I think it’s pretty unlikely.

By the way, the Mt. Hood area picked up around 1-6″ snow out of that system the past 24 hours.  Models at that time were showing maybe 6-10″ max around Mt. Hood when the first headline came out.  Not sure what’s going on and how these headlines are showing up, but it appears a newspaper can actually top a TV newscast for hype!  That’s a new one.

So what’s really going on?

For the next two days a steady stream of moisture, a firehose-like atmospheric river, will be running into mainly the northern half of Washington.  That leaves us with just a few light showers through Friday night here in most of northern Oregon.

Then late Friday night and Saturday a cold front with its heavy rain band moves down through Oregon.  We definitely get a soaking, but not insanely wet like Halloween.  We saw rainfall rates of 1-1.5″ in just 2-3 hours with that storm. This time we’re talking maybe 1″ in 6 hours…like our RPM shows below.  Note the highlighted total during the day Saturday.

00zRPM_textoutput

An inch in 6 hours is a steady/heavy winter rain around here.  That’s wet!  But urban storm drains can handle .30″/hour just fine.

The latest GFS model is a bit less intense, about .70″ in those 6 hours ending at 4pm Sunday.

gfs_6hrprecip_ending4pmSat

The latest ECMWF model was similar to this…a very wet day, but nothing we don’t typically see in November.  Each model is a bit different and I’ve seen two models in the past 24 hours are a bit heavier.  Our evening RPM model run shows 1-1.50″ in the metro area, and far less in the mountains compared to what fell 2 weeks ago:

RPM_12KM_Precip_NWOR

So to recap, as of 8pm Wednesday evening:

  • NO, THERE IS NO NEED TO BUILD AN ARK AND WE WON’T SEE A REPEAT OF HALLOWEEN
  • NO RIVER FLOODING IS EXPECTED IN OREGON
  • YES, SATURDAY LOOKS VERY WET, AS IT SHOULD BE IN NOVEMBER
  • YES, THERE WILL BE SOME WATER PONDING ON SOME ROADS WITH LEAVES STILL FALLING
  • YES, BY CLICKING ON THOSE HEADLINES ABOVE I PROBABLY MADE A FEW CENTS FOR SOMEONE!

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen