Final Numbers: A Scorcher For Early April

April 7, 2016

PDX hit 85 today, setting several records:

MarkHeatWave_NoRecordHotTemps

As you can see it was quite a weather event for early April.  Just about every weather station in our area set a record high.  Here are a few more from the Portland NWS:

nws

The only official airport locations close to us that hit 90 were Kelso and Roseburg.

That coastal forecast is always extremely tricky…a 50 degree body of water is within a mile or two of most of those locations.  As soon as the east wind dies and/or wind switches to a westerly direction the temperature takes a nosedive.  It didn’t happen today until after the noon hour thus the real warm temperatures.

Here in the valley temperatures spiked dramatically compared to yesterday.  The highs were somewhere between the very warm WRF-GFS and coolish MOS and model surface temps.  Good to remember in early April 10 years from now when it happens again…

Tomorrow will still be fantastic, but significantly cooler.  We lose the easterly wind, see a gusty northwest wind kick in during the afternoon (onshore flow) and the atmosphere overhead cools a bit as well.  That should keep high temperatures in the 70s for just about all of us west of the Cascades.


The “Heat” Is On Today

April 7, 2016

9am Thursday…

We’re all set for a historic day temperature-wise in the region.

A record warm airmass is overhead.  When the morning weather balloon went up over Salem this morning (it’s done twice a day), at the 850mb level (about 5,000′), the temp was 68 degF.  It’s never been that warm until the first week of May as you can see by the dot on the chart.  The squiggly red line shows each day’s warmest temperature ever recorded at that height. 

Capture

East wind is very strong, with 7 millibars easterly gradient between The Dalles and Portland this morning.  Actually a bit stronger than I would like to see.  If it were to gust 20-30 mph at PDX all afternoon that could hold the temperature down lower than the 86 I forecast last night.  We’ll see.  Regardless, it’s spreading across the metro area as the warm air above begins to surface and the overnight cool air ponded in the valleys warms.  That means a dramatic jump in temperatures between now and 11am.

Corbett, in the wind all night, stayed in the 60s; this in a place that has an average HIGH this time of year in the mid-upper 50s.  Tropical by April standards.  Eagle Creek RAWS between Sandy and Barton suddenly jumped to 74 at 9am! Several 70 degree temps at 9am in Damascus area too already as warming surfaces…crazy for April!  Sunset Transit Center at 217/26 has jumped to 69 as well in that exposed east wind spot.

There are a few locations in the Cascades and/or foothills that have already at 9am reached or exceeded yesterday’s highs…with 8 hours of heating to go!  Ariel near Lake Merwin and Brush Creek (2400′) near Eugene are both 75 degrees.

So I think we’re all set for 80s this afternoon.  Enjoy the record warm temperatures, at least the wind and dry air should keep it from feeling real “hot”.

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen