Happy 10th Birthday FOX12 Weather Blog!

I realized this weekend that as of TODAY, I’ve been doing this for 10 years now.   I was only 36 when I started…just a kid.


Of course the weather blog wasn’t born or hatched…as I recall it was an idea from our web guy.  Blogging was a new idea back then…a combo of WEB & LOG = BLOG.  There was no Facebook or Twitter, or at least most of us hadn’t heard of either one if they did.  No iPhone yet and mostly flip phones at that time I think.

I know some of you that read this were just in middle school and are now out in the adult world already.  All along you had the drama and trauma of the weather blog to feed your late night weather geekness!

It’s been truly a labor of love when I look back at all the hundreds, or thousands, of postings over the past 10 years.  If I didn’t enjoy it I sure wouldn’t take the time to post.

It’s funny that it all began on a day when the entire metro area was prepping for a big snowstorm, except here at FOX12 I couldn’t figure out how there was going to be a snowstorm when it was in the 40s in the Gorge?   https://fox12weather.wordpress.com/2005/11/30/snow-or-no-snow/

That was also the ONLY time we’ve put snippets of 3 other forecasts on our station…just before my weathercast at 10pm.  Do any of you remember that?  You actually saw Jeff Baskin, Rod Hill, & Matt Zaffino for about 10 seconds each!  Seems bizarre but Wayne Garcia suggested it as a “one-stop shopping” thing.  Here were the results the next day.



In the end it didn’t snow and I heard about that success for several years afterwards.  In fact a few times a similar thing has happened…Mark downplaying some winter storm event while others were hyping it.

Yet, that’s balanced out by my worst forecasting disaster…December 29, 2009.  That was the worst metro area evening commute I’ve seen in my 24 years forecasting here.  We forecast only rain and instead it was all snow.  Read all about it on the wrapup post the next day:  https://fox12weather.wordpress.com/2009/12/30/snow-storm-09-wrapup-what-happened/




There have been lots of ups and downs.  To be honest what sticks out most is the neverending drama, especially the first 8 years or so.   Things seems to have settled down (a bit) in the past year or two.  I think a large part of that is a move to discussing weather on Facebook instead of here; commenting is definitely down the past couple of years but visits are not.  There are currently two groups in the Portland area that discuss weather on FB 24/7 and I’m part of both those groups.  I admit it’s more “immediate” and convenient than commenting here.  On this blog you have to hit refresh to see if anyone has added a comment…that’s a bit annoying.  But thanks to those of you still sticking around!

The thing I find most useful here is the 10 years worth of forecast reasoning during many different types of weather events.  Whenever we have any sort of extreme weather, I’m going back in the past to see what I was thinking before a similar event occurred.

Here’s to at least a few more years of blogging!

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen


68 Responses to Happy 10th Birthday FOX12 Weather Blog!

  1. Diana says:

    Happy 10 years! I adore this blog and all the various personalities that hang out here. Drama and all, I continue to have a great time here. I don’t say much, but check in all the time. I’m at 1000′ on Mt Scott, so this is one of the only ways to find out what might happen up here.

    I wish us many more years of weather blogging. Thanks, Mark for making it possible!

  2. I initially happened on this blog when I was living in Portland and looking for someone who could give a nuanced forecast based on local knowledge, much like Cliff Mass does in the Seattle area, when a lowland snow event was threatening.

    And I’ve kept regularly visiting here even though I’ve moved back to Seattle. (Likewise, I kept following what Cliff Mass was saying when I lived in Portland; both are worth listening to.)

  3. Finally models are coming around. ..ine now looks much more likely for Gorge.

  4. muxpux (Longview) says:

    Just spent some time reading through a bunch of the posts at the beginning, found my first comment (December 15th, 2005…under my real name)

    And found this gem from Mark Which contains this in reference to extended forecasts ” I think 10-14 days is a bit ridiculous, but 10 years from now it may not be. ”

    Full quote below

    “WHY HAVE A 7 or 10 DAY FORECAST WHEN 5 IS MORE REALISTIC, ESPECIALLY IN FAST-MOVING WINTER WEATHER? Very good question…you may remember that it was only 10 years ago or so KOIN went to a 6 Day forecast (get it? KOIN-6???, we thought we were so clever!). Then quickly to a 7 Day. I don’t remember when KATU went to 10 days, but it must have been about 1997-1998. Statistics DO say that a 7 Day forecast now is about as accurate as maybe a 3-4 day in 1980, so longer forecasts ARE more accurate. But here’s why I pushed for it way back then; Jim Little and I were looking at weather maps PLANNING our own lives and vacations in the 1990’s, so after a while we figured we should share that information with the public if it was becoming good enough for us to use. I think 10-14 days is a bit ridiculous, but 10 years from now it may not be. Most important is that forecasters communicate uncertainty when the models are all over the place at days 5-6-7-8 etc… For example right now they all agree on ridging through at least next weekend.”

  5. gidrons says:

    Congrats from me too. It’s been fun tracking windstorms and arctic fronts on here. I don’t post much anymore but it’s still my one stop weather update.
    One minor suggestion is to look into other platforms. This still beats facebook. Couple years ago I made a facebook profile to join Brian’s group. Mike denied me for some reason, but did me a favor probably. It took me 20 minutes to get rid of the facebook tracking cookies.
    Trolling isn’t near as bad here as it used to be. See theweatherforums to see trolling.
    Here’s to 10 more years!

  6. Jeff says:

    Blizzards, ice storms, fog,
    or torrential rains that sog,
    love this weather blog.

  7. Congratulations Mark for making it to 10 years with your blog. I’m basically still a newcomer to all of this dialogue that goes on (for better or for worse). My hope is that everybody will try to keep the discussion civil in the coming year. I appreciate the information I receive here (the weather) but it would be helpful if we all learned to get along better. I’m sure it’s possible!

  8. MasterNate says:

    Mark, thank you so much for taking the time to feed our weather passion and provide a place where even the most green weather geek can feel comfortable posting or asking a question. I hope this is as fun for you as it is for us. I look foreword to many more exciting weather events.

  9. BlazerFan32 says:

    Happy birthday KPTV Weather Blog

    Now lets all hope that this is not the only place we see snowflakes in the Western Washington and Oregon lowlands all season. 🙂

  10. Rob - S.E. Portland says:

    Wow. 10 years! Time sure flies doesn’t it. We have discussed some really exciting weather events over the years here and had our share of busts too (too many in fact.) I would say above all we’ve learned an incredible amount of knowledge thanks to Mark and this blog. Until the inception of the blog we had nowhere to discuss weather, at least not in an interactive way. It was something new, fresh, and pretty neat! You gave us that platform to talk about weather and share our enthusiasm for it, so we all thank you for that. I can also say if not for the blog there certainly wouldn’t have been the 2 offshoot weather groups created over on facebook.

    Whereas I spend my time running my facebook group and do not comment here anymore, that wouldn’t have happened without the blog. Hopefully there will be 10 more years of blogging, detailed and informative posts from Mark, and a lot of fun wind storms, thunderstorms, and snow/arctic blasts to keep things exciting and interesting. If I can give any advice it’s to not allow any drama. I just browsed the past few posts and I see some. It puzzles me. You’re here to discuss weather, and aside from easy going banter, there shouldn’t be any issues among yourselves. If you’re all here for the same collective reason, then why should there be any crap at all. If you aren’t here for that sole reason, go do something else. Here’s to hoping for a cold/snowy Winter! I am really hoping yesterday won’t end up being the closest we’ll get to a snow setup for PDX. Oh, and I like the snowflakes on the blog. It’s an annual rite of passage after all.

    • Longview 400 ft says:

      Rob, I miss all that you have put into this blog as well, right or wrong I looked forward to all your posts. Please post again, I miss all the input you provided.

    • Rob - S.E. Portland says:

      Thanks, and I may do so. Hopefully we’ll have more exciting weather to discuss, especially SNOW!!!! 🙂

  11. Austin West Vancouver says:

    I remember the first days of this blog, still in high school with my new cool flip phone waiting to get home from school to get on the blog. The good old days :,). Speaking of good old days is that Tyler mode guy still alive? I remember him always posting back then.

  12. prune hill outpost says:

    Freezing rain continuing in skamania county 550 feet 11 miles down Washougal river road. Very treacherous now.

  13. Paul says:

    Excellent blog and I’ll forgive you for the 2009 debacle that made my room mate cry cause it was her birthday.

  14. schmit44 says:

    11/30/2015 Oregon (All) Temperature Summary

    High:55 at BANDON( 79 ft) & Port Orford(0 ft) & North Bend Munic(16 ft)
    Low: 49 at Port Orford(0 ft) & North Bend Munic(16 ft) & BANDON(79 ft)

    High:10 at Burns Municipal(4144 ft)
    Low: -17 at CHRISTMAS VALLEY (4360 ft )

    Largest Diurnal Change: 48 degrees
    Valley Falls (US (35/-13 ) (4324 ft )

    Heaviest Rainfall:
    0.20″ at SADDLE MOUNTAIN(3110ft)
    0.16″ at BURNT RIDGE(2955ft)
    0.16″ at QUAIL PRAIRIE LO(3183ft)
    0.13″ at BOARD CREEK(4770ft)

  15. Tigard Paul says:

    Mark, I started reading the blog several months after it was started, but have never posted until now (I’m guessing there are a lot of us like that). Thank you for keeping the blog active and so informative. I’ve learned a lot and, more importantly, now enjoy geeking out on weather. Best wishes on the next 10!

  16. GTS1K' says:

    With apologies to boringlarry (the master)…

    weather come and go

    wild or mild we never know

    embrace all that comes

  17. paulbeugene says:

    What would Jack Cappell have done..he would have kept the blog going on for another 40 years.
    Congrats on making it to 10 years, Mark. I don’t know how long it has been since I first posted on the blog but it is probably going on 8 years. Thanks for keeping it going through the weather doldrums and behavioral health craziness going on in blog land.

  18. goducks says:

    I so appreciate this blog and everything that you do, Mark. I’m one of the many who read every post, but almost never comment. Thank you, and keep it up!

  19. carnyfriday says:

    This is one of the things I look forward to most! Happy birthday!

  20. Farmer Ted says:

    GTSK1K, you think you are so clever with your little comments, someday you will look back, and if you have achieved any wisdom you will realize what a fool’s game you play. And what a fool you are for doing Josh’s bidding for him. I as so sorry that Mark has to have a business relationship with you. Taddie aha.

  21. old dial up daze
    new friends old friends come and go
    what a great fun ride

    ….and i still hate those damn snowflakes…

  22. High Desert Mat says:

    Yes, I sure remember when this blog started. I had qwest dial up and it was a slow go. Such a great place to come since I dont do the social media thing. This is my social media, along with a few other sites wink wink lol. Anyways, thanks Mark for your hard work and putting up with some of our nonsense. Best site I visit.

    Now lets get some snow going this winter over there in the lowlands. I have to say, its been quite a week, sitting at 9 now and still ice/snow covered streets. Wsw issued for tomorrow night but I doubt anything “fun” happens.

    Here’s to another 10 years. Thanks Mark

  23. Sifton says:

    Congrats weather “boy”!
    How bestowic that you nailed your 1st blog post, & just blew your last today!!
    J/K Mark, you da “man”…….

  24. Gene says:

    I wonder how many people are like me — following this great weather blog since that very first week a decade ago, but rarely (or never) posting.

    I feel that all of us who regularly read the blog have been blessed that Mark was willing to take the time and effort all these years to do blog postings on our weather, which are always informative and interesting, especially during those dramatic weather events we occasionally get. I’ve only posted a couple times over the years, but I read the blog (and comments) religiously. I also appreciate all of the regular posters who add their insights and updates.

    I’m sorry that Mark’s had to deal with the juvenile blog drama that crops up here from time to time, but thankful that he’s continued to crank out almost daily posts for the past 10 years despite that.

    Thanks again, Mark, for providing this blog for us PNW weather buffs, and I hope you’ll be able to continue doing it for many years to come.

    • Aleta-West Gresham says:

      Yep! That would be me as well! I rarely post but do enjoy reading the bog. I don’t do any social media at all so thank you for continuing to use this platform!!

    • Me too. I read the blog every day but I think this is my second post. Thanks so much to Mark for all his work!

  25. Joshua Downtown PDX says:

    Mark, congrats on 10 years for the blog. It is a great service to Portland and the surrounding areas. I have been here for a few years now, and I will continue to visit as long as it exists. Nobody can touch your meteorological skills.

  26. GTS1K' says:

    May your second decade be merry and bright….

    …and watch out for the ZR tonight………

  27. Jason Hougak says:

    Happy blog party Mark
    Should have had a special event, like a monster snowstorm to celebrate a decade of blogging.
    Thanks for the good info and fun chatting with weather geeks and trolls. Cheers 🍻

    Steady light rain here and 35, 33 down the hill in the Eagle Creek valley, was a little slick on my way home.
    BTW can you get a computer geek to fix the name and password allowing it to store like before for us weather geeks!

  28. Boring Oregon says:

    This was a great post. I have been here for just over a year and have learned a lot from it. I had never really been into weather very much but I got curious so I came here and I love it. Just to clarify, I’m not a troll right?

  29. Boydo3 N. Albany says:

    I remember being in our cabin in the coast range with only a dial up connection and having fun on the blog. I was working on a house on the coast and one in the coast range west of Alsea.That was the winter of 07′-08. Great storms that winter and lots of snow above 500′!

  30. JohnD says:

    Thanks Mark. The Blog Is a lot of fun and such a great resource for so many of us with weather passion. I have rightly told many people (especially including those with lesser passion) that you, sir, are simply the most creative weather forecasting force in our market–hands down! Here’s to another 10 years–or more!

  31. TVWeatherProducer says:

    So awesome. This is one of the best blogs ever put together !

  32. Ben Lyman says:

    Thank you, Mark for continuing with the blog. For amateurs like me its always an interesting and informative read. I really enjoy it!

  33. Sapo says:

    Awesome post! Lol I was quite young when this blog started..But I’ve been with it since I found it! Some good weather discussions on here.
    What are the FaceBook pages called? Nobody my age uses FB anymore tho..

  34. Larry says:

    Happy Birthday Mark’s Blog. Thanks Mark for being so active in the communities.

  35. billowen123 says:

    HELLO MARK, Thank you for doing this blog and making it fun. I never would have enjoyed being called a weather geek were it not for this blog. There is a confluence of weather, local events, different perspectives, and science that occurs here that I don’t think I would find anywhere else. Plus the weather in Portland can be downright strange.

    Thanks again, I’m a big fan. I’ll be around. Bill

  36. Colin Bondi says:

    Thanks for the blog. I’m only a recent visitor but now a regular one. While I rarely comment I read all the blogs and analyze the info because I’m a total weather geek. This is a really valuable resource.

  37. Funny how 10 years ago Mark was alone in predicting NO SNOW for Portland. Now we have a similar setup for tomorrow night RE ice in the Gorge. I just don’t see how you can get it to happen, given how quickly the models are killing the cold pool during the day tomorrow.

    If the Winter Storm Watch in the Gorge goes bust tomorrow, do I get the same kind of credit that Mark got for Dec. 1, 2005?

  38. Farmer Ted says:

    Good bye

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