Milwaukee, Wisconsin to Oxnard, California

Another day, another road trip. We’re headed west from Milwaukee, which narrowly avoided a big snow storm today, to Oxnard, which has gracefully avoided snow storms for eternity. It’s a 4 day trip, which covers 2113 miles at a pace of 66.6mph. Our daily rate will be about 533 miles a day. Let’s see if we can get out of the snow.

Our first day of travel won’t really provide much in the way of significant weather issues. Sure, there will be a lot of left over snow over northern Illinois, but the interstates should be cleared as we drive through them. There is a chance for some isolated flurry activity just as we leave Milwaukee thanks to some onshore flow from Lake Michigan, but then things will clear up nicely, assuming the roads are fine in northern Illinois. Iowa dodged a major bullet, so after the Quad Cities, things should be entirely problem free. We will make it to Ashland, Nebraska, just past Omaha.

A big old area of low pressure will set up over the northern Rockies and the southwesterly flow associated with it will generate some lee troughing. When we approach the Denver area, expect to find some balmy temperatures, particularly when compared to where we just came from. Don’t expect any precipitation on Thursday for our route. Smooth sailing (or driving) to Evergreen, Colorado, just west of Denver.

An area of low pressure is moving into the southwest, and will be causing some issues along our route. As we navigate the mountains of western Colorado, we are going to deal with some snow, with the best chance coming on western exposures after we pass through Grand Junction. The typically desolate, lifeless eastern Utah will… well, it will still be desolate and lifeless, but with a chance for some light rain. The Wasatch will feature some snow again, but it will be rain by the time we return to I-15, which is at a lower elevation. The rainy day will end in Paragonah, Utah, which is just north of Cedar City.

The back edge if the precipitation will be around Saint George, Utah, in the southwest corner of the state. After that, we can get a into a rhythm that we will probably be a little bit more familiar with in the southwest. Actually, one difference will be that the recent wet weather will help scour the atmosphere a bit, so skies will be a little clearer. Also, it’s going to be a lot colder than normal until we hit the Coastal Range. At that point, it’s going to be a nice little California day.