August forecaster of the month

It’s been neck and neck all year between a pair of outlets, but in August, one of those venues separated themselves from its closest competitor after yet another strong month. Indeed, Accuweather dominated the month of August, while Victoria Weather faltered. With only a few months left in the year, can the reigning yearly champion be toppled? After another month of “Forecaster of the Month” Accuweather looks tough to beat.


Water in the desert

Prescott finds itself in the higher terrain of the Bradshaw mountains, and is officially in a “Mediterranean” climate. That means, every once in a while, it rains. The splash of rain from a thunderstorm on Tuesday was really only particularly surprising because nearly all thought that dry air was on its way, with an end to the periodic afternoon thunderstorms following suit. Nope! The Weather Service and their acolytes at Weatherbug were wary of the potential clearing, giving them the victory, predicting a very slight chance of rain very close to the Mojave.
Actuals: Monday – High 88, Low 63
Tuesday – .01 inches of rain in a thunderstorm, Hgh 86, Low 58

Grade: C-D

Thunderstorm Trio

A smattering of showers/thunderstorms were possible on Sunday, but were expected to largely miss the area. One of them decided to take aim on Kingston, however, and ruin a few forecasts. Temperature forecasts were nearly identical across the board, so the storm weeded out Accuweather, the NWS, and as the trio worthy enough for a victory, albeit shared.

Sunday: 0.09″ of rain in a thunderstorm. High 88, Low 61.
Monday: High 91, Low 65.
Forecast Grade: A

Bye Bye Summer, Sort Of

With the start of September here, we encounter the change of seasons! September starts Meteorological Fall, which encompasses Sept-Nov. The actual start of Autumn isn’t until September 21st, so there’s still plenty of time for you to get out there and enjoy a bit of summer while it’s still there. These next few days will still be plenty warm over much of the country, but a couple of troughs are expected to dig into the Central US and bring some unseasonably early fall temps. Don’t worry, you won’t be scraping off windshields anytime soon, but the walk to the car in the morning could be a bit more refreshing than it has been lately.


Fred forms well east of normal


Anyone who follows the weather, and in particular, the tropical weather that surrounds this time of year recognizes many of the graphics put forth by the National Hurricane Center. Naturally, we are all familiar with the wind history charts, showing the hurricane strength winds passing over an island group. What isn’t typical, however, is seeing Africa on one of these images. It’s even more unusual for Cabo Verde, the island cluster in this image, to see any sort of tropical system, let alone one that crosses the island nation.
Fred formed almost immediately after his parent wave came off the African coast, and nearly as immediately turned north. It has to, if it’s going to clip Cabo Verde. We call storms the originate from this part of the world “Cape Verde” storms because they generally pass well to the south of Cabo Verde, but in my memory, this is the first storm to actually landfall in the country.
The capital, Praia, lay on the southeastern shore of Santiago, and was directly in the line of fire from Fred. Fortunately, it doesn’t sound as though there has been a loss of life of significant property damage, though the storm isn’t fully through the country. Cabo Verde is typically protected by the Azores high, and is typically very arid. Additionally, it is a volcanic nation, with many high peaks on all of the islands. This is a recipe for torrential rains and landslides with a ground unaccustomed to accepting moisture. Hopefully, the news continues to remain positive in this island chain.

Brightening horizons

A lot of the cloudiness in the Midwest and Great Lakes lately isn’t actually cloudiness, but rather haze from fires in the Pacific Northwest. A lot of, but not all of, I should note. Kankakee did report an isolated shower and thunderstorm on Saturday with a weak wave cycling through. That wave helped clear the pattern aloft a bit, and definitely allowed warmer air into the region. Still, that haze tempered temperatures as compared to what guidance suggested they could have been. Weatherbug and WeatherNation secured a spot in a three way tie by having a cooler forecast. Accuweather nabbed the third spot by having perfect overnight lows.
Actuals: Saturday, .05 inches of rain, High 76, Low 62
Sunday – High 80, Low 64

Grade: B-D

Prescott, Arizona

I’m not sure that Prescott has ever been a forecast destination here before. I hope they manage to live up to expectations.

At 612PM, PT, Prescott was reporting a temperature of 83 degrees with a thunderstorm. Across Arizona, there were a smattering of thunderstorms, particularly at the higher terrain, as Phoenix and it’s local environs were dry, but places like Prescott and Winslow were reporting the thunderstorms. There is a deep upper trough over the western US, and it will help to direct flow towards the surface reflection, developing over the Upper Midwesty. Right now, the vigorous flow is playing a part in the activity across Arizona,.
Flow will be brisk and southwesterly through the day tomorrow, and it can’t be ruled out that there will be a stray thunderstorm across Arizona through the day tomorrow. The surface low will shift into Canada and dissipate, as will the upper trough. With a more relaxed flow at the midlevels over Arizona, the threat for thunderstorms will diminish in western Arizona. Convection will continue over the western New Mexico, but conditions will certainly dry out again in Prescott.
Tomorrow – Isolated thunderstorms, High 85, Low 65
Tuesday – PArtly cloudy, High 83, Low 62

TWC: Tomorrow – Scattered Thunderstorms 84, Low 62
Tuesday – Partly cloudy, High 83, Low 59

AW: Tomorrow – PArtly sunny, High 85, Low 63
Tuesday – Plenty of sunshine High 83, Low 60

NWS: Tomorrow – A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly after 11am. Mostly sunny, High 85, Low 63
Tuesday – A 10 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly sunny, High 84, Low 61

WB: Tomorrow – Partly cloudy with a 20 percent chance of thunderstorms High 85, Low 63
Tuesday – Partly cloudy with a 10 percent chance of thunderstorms. High 84, Low 61

WM: Tomorrow – Partly Cloudy with Isolated Storms High 84, Low 63
Tuesday – Mostly Sunny with Isolated Storms High 84 Low 61

FIO: Tomorrow – Partly cloudy until evening.High 87, Low 65
Tuesday – Partly cloudy starting in the afternoon.High 87, Low 63

And here we can see those widespread thunderstorms. They should pulse down fairly soon, I think. More of the same tomorrow.

Temperatures soar, then drop

Temperatures in Modesto weren’t so modest. The warmest forecast high came from on Friday at 103, and that was even 2 degrees too cool. Fortunately, that was the end o the heat wave, as a boundary swept in cooler temperatures on Saturday. It was nearly 20 degrees cooler on Saturday in Modesto than on Friday. Despite their fairly solid forecast on Friday, FIO was a disaster on Saturday, which opened the door for the second warmest forecast, from TWC, to overtake the Apple Robots.
Actuals: Friday – High 105, Low 70
Saturday – High 90, Low 67

Grade: B-C

Kingston, New York

The ADDs page is down, which is obviously a problem, so let’s hope that I can still put up a decent forecast.

At 753PM, ET nearby Poughkeepsie reported a temperature of 73 degrees with fair skies. There is a diminishing wave over the eastern Great Lakes which may produce showers in the Catskills, but a weak surface ridge will prevent that from happening tonight. Lingering moisture may fill into the Hudson Valley tomorrow evening, but that is speculative, and at most, Kingston should only expect a few clouds.
Another important feature is Tropical Stork Erika, which was severely disrupted by the Greater Antilles, but is still a good instigator of persistent circulation. The result for Kingston will be clearing conditions, even as a weak boundary pivots through town. After that boundary does roll through, though, exppect some warm, moist air to roll in, leading to a rather stuffy beginning to the week, fed in part by the remnants of Erika.
Tomorrow – Increasing clouds, High 87, Low 61
Monday – Warm and humid, High 90, Low 64

TWC: Tomorrow – Mostly cloudy, High 86, Low 61
Monday – Mostly sunny, High 90. Low 64

AW: Tomrrow – Partly sunny and warm (late showers) High 86, Low 62
Monday – Hot with plenty of sun High 90, Low 64

NWS: Tomorrow – A slight chance of showers and thunderstorms after 2pm. Patchy fog before 10am. Otherwise, partly sunny High 86, Low 61
Monday – Patchy fog before 9am. Otherwise, mostly sunnyHigh 89, Low 64

WB: Tomorrow – Partly sunny. Patchy fog in the morning. Hot. Humid High 86, Low 61
Monday – Patchy fog in the morning. Mostly sunny. Hot High 89, Low 63

WN: Tomorrow – Partly Cloudy with Patchy Fog High 86, Low 61
Monday – Mostly Sunny with Patchy FogHigh 90, Low 64

FIO: Tomorrow – Light rain starting in the afternoon, continuing until evening. High 87, Low 60
Monday – Partly cloudy until afternoon. High 89, Low 64

A look at the satellite showss the mess down in the southeastern US as well as the boundary, preparing to move through and clear things out, just in time for a warm up.

Modesto, California to Kankakee, Illinois

Up, up and away once again. We won’t be covering the entirety of the United States with this trip, merely stopping 2/3 the way, in Kankakee. It will take us 4 days to cover 2125 miles, which means an hourly pace of about 65mph, leading to the three leading days being through after about 520 miles, leaving the change for Tuesday. Let’s climb the mountains and make our way east.

DAY ONE (Saturday)
There is a large system moving into the northwestern United States, and San Francisco Bay will be seeing some rain and wind by the time we hit the road tomorrow. This will follow us through the Sacramento Valley, but will really be tapering off by the time we reach Sacramento itself. The Sierras look good, and we will be dry through western Nevada, There will be some mountain showers and storms, but many are focused near Salt Lake City, which is too far east for our Sunday goal. Instead, dry weather, fairly warm, to be sure, will allow us to camp in an RV or tent around Deeth, Nevada, with no fear of rough weather.

DAY TWO (Sunday)
Guidance suggests a long stream of showers from the Baja to the Canadian Prairies with little variation from this swath. Expect it to be dry through Salt Lake City, with some rain chances picking up as we climb into the mountains. The best shot at rain will be from Summit Peak, east of Salt Lake, to Rock Springs Wyoming. It will dry out quickly on the way east, before we stop in what should be a quiet Walcott, Wyoming.

DAY THREE (Monday)
Strong surface low pressure will be developing in the far northern Plains as we head east, but won’t emerge far enough into the Plains to make too much of an impact. The boundary extending from local pressure minima in Saskatchewan and eastern Colorado will run through the North Platte area, bringing some fluffier clouds, and perhaps a stray shower (which, in this part of the world could always entail some thunder as well). Anything we see will be brief, which is fantastic news, and we will press onward to York in hot, sticky late August air.

DAY FOUR (Tuesday)
Guidance isn’t 100% sure, but it definitely seems possible that the drive through Iowa will remain dry, but with temperatures warm and the atmosphere soupy, it’s entirely possible that some lifting parcels breach the cap, and there could be a stray thunderstorm throughout the Hawkeye State. Northern Illinois will be even moister, which means more instability, so don’t be surprised to see a little more stratiform rain mixed in with the thunder. There will still be more sun than rain, and generally speaking, those school buses we pass as we arrive when we get to Kankakee will be upset they spent the whole day in school.

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