All posts by Ryan

Weather Wayback… A change in format

Just in time (?) to check out this extended forecast oldie, WeatherUnderground updated their website, and made it much harder to find what we were looking. Probably a good thing, considering how far afield the forecasts ended up in Grand Junction way back in late October. The issue was a lower humidity and a greater range in temperature than anyone had anticipated, and the morning low on Thursday the 27th and the afternoon high on the 28th were both lower and higher than expected, and by no small margin. Mountains, man. They are the worst. Victoria-Weather and The Weather Channel tied for the best forecast
Actuals: Thursday October 27th, High 62, Low 30
Friday, October 28th – High 65, Low 32

Grade C-D

Coming soon…

So, yeah. We had our two boys, Liam and Easton on June 4th, and we’ve been enjoying their company ever since. It’s time to try a little bit to get back on the forecasting train.

Road Trip from Muskegon, Michigan to Fort Collins, Michigan

Ogden, Utah

Lexington, Kentucky
Road Trip from Ogden to Lexington

Lansing, Michigan
Lexington to Lansing

Athens, Georgia
Road Trip from Jonesboro, Arkansas to Athens

Albany, New York

Sebastian, Florida

Today we are off to the Space Coast of Florida, and the city of Sebastian, which lies between Melbourne and Vero Beach. I imagine the weather there is going to be quite wonderful, though perhaps a bit toasty. Let’s see if I’m right.

At 10am, ET The east coast of Florida was fairly uniform, with temperatures at 87 in both Melbourne and Vero Beach. The sea breeze was most active on the Gulf side of the Peninsula, but as the afternoon warms up, those storms should become more widespread over the center of the state, if the past couple of days are any indication. Temperatures will top out in the low 90s, though rogue thunderstorms will bring temperatures down with cool outflow.
The thunderstorm activity across the Florida Peninsula has primarily been found inland, allowing for collapsing storms to produce the cool outflows that have been seen along the coast in recent days. High pressure continues to extend from the Gulf of Mexico east across Florida, and local thermal dynamics will continue to provide direction for the weather, with early showers and storms possible, before the daily instability shifts further inland on each of the next two days. A cold front reaching the northern border of Florida will enhance the threat for later in the day storms for Sebastian, as flow will take a more southerly approach.
Tomorrow – Isolated showers and storms in the morning, High 90, Low 75
Friday – Partly cloudy with isolated showers and storms, High 90, Low 76

TWC: Tomorrow – Intervals of clouds and sunshine. High 95, Low 75
Friday – Sunshine and clouds mixed. High 95, Low 76

AW: Tomorrow – Intervals of clouds and sunshine, a thunderstorm in spots High 89, Low 74
Friday – Intervals of clouds and sunshine, a thunderstorm in spots; humid High 90, Low 74

NWS: Tomorrow – A 50 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms after noon. Partly sunny, High 90, Low 72
Friday – A 50 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, High 92, Low 74

WB: Tomorrow – Partly cloudy through late morning then showers and thunderstorms likely in the afternoon. High 86, Low 74
Friday – Partly cloudy with showes and thunderstorms likely, High 87, Low 74

WN: Tomorrow – Partly cloudy with scattered storms, High 90, Low 72
Friday – Partly cloudy with scattered storms, High 92, Low 74

FIO: Tomorrow – Light rain in the afternoon. High 86, Low 74
Friday – Light rain in the afternoon. High 84, Low 75

For a coastal Florida site in the heart of summer, those are some awfully chilly forecasts. Of course, with the random whims of Floridian thunderstorms, who really knows?

Weather Wayback…. Razor’s Edge

Autumn came in late October to central Indiana. There was a quick cold front that moved through, followed by temperatures in the upper 40s on the 25th in Indianapolis. There were only  too outlets who thought the dreary day was rain free, and it was at Indianapolis International Airport, though across town at Eagle Creek, there was a faint smudge of drizzle. Rain was thisclose to verifying during out period, but instead, Victoria-Weather got the win, with the dry forecast.
Actuals: October 25th – High 49, Low 37
October 26th – High 62, Low 34

Grade: A-C

Oklahoma pounded by overnight squall line

Take a look at this current radar image from Oklahoma City. It promises a very bumpy evening for residents of the Sooner State.

Let’s address that big line that rolled through Oklahoma City just now. Note the narrow blue band ahead of the primary line. That’s likely not actually precipitation, but rather the dust and particulate forced ahead of the line by very strong winds rushing ahead of the line. Usually, we would call this an outflow boundary, but that would indicate a collapsing storm, which this storm is not doing. It’s just hauling through Oklahoma, generating a lot of straight line wind.

If you look to the west, there are a couple of smaller bow echoes, which are undoubtedly producing strong winds of their own, and given their stronger radar returns, might be contributing some small hail as well.

All these storms are riding a mostly stationary boundary, which is the case with derechoes. Those straightline wind events are generally long lasting (expect to see this storm in Arkansas or Louisiana tomorrow morning) because they have the stationary boundary to ride, and produce widespread damage, thanks the to the breadth of these storms.

Fortunately, the storm is through Oklahoma City for the night, and the largest town it should clip overnight is McAlester, but places like Pine Bluff and Shreveport should be ready for an early wake up call!

Not quite tropical, except for the rains

Late last week, it appeared that tropical storm Beryl was in the near future for the western Gulf of Mexico. As it would ultimately turn out, however, the storm didn’t organize enough to be named, but it did bring quite a bit of rain to eastern Texas. On Friday and Saturday, though, College Station was still concerning itself with the onshore flow associated with the strengthening low. The problem was that it wasn’t quite strong enough to really pipe in any moisture based on circulation alone. There was nary a drop those two days, which was unexpected by almost everyone, and the dry, sunny days meant warm days as well. The warmest forecasters were the Weather Service and WeatherNation, and they snagged the top spot.
Actuals: Friday – High 96, Low 74
Saturday – High 95, Low 75

Grade: B-D

Topeka got throttled

Early last week, we took a look at the forecast for Kansas’ capital, Topeka. A cold front preparing to bisect the Plains was set to touch off thunderstorms in the area on Monday, and it was going to be close, whether or not those storms fired up before the boundary passed Topeka or not. Perhaps the headline gave it away. There were severe storms all around Topeka, particularly northeast of town on Monday night. They collected exactly one inch of rain before all was said and done, with hail and gusty winds to boot. There was just a trace on Tuesday, and the subsequent day must have felt much more comfortable.
Actuals: Monday – 1.00″ in heavy thunderstorms, High 99, Low 69
Tuesday – Trace in rain, high 92, Low 69

Grade: C

College Station, Texas

Midweek, and time for another forecast. This time, we’re going to head to the home of one of the finer meteorology schools in the country, College Station, in east Texas.

At 153PM, CT, College Station was reporting a temperature of 92 degrees with partly cloudy skies. Some seabreeze thunderstorms were popping up along the coast, with the strongest storm presently passing through downtown Houston. A tropical wave in the Bay of Campeche was directing a southeasterly flow into the Texas coast, helping to contribute to the thunderstorm activity.
The NHC is monitoring the wave, with the expectation of some development in the next few days, though models seem to agree that it won’t develop beyond a weak tropical storm, making it Tropical Storm Beryl. In the meantime, afternoon thunderstorms will continue today, tomorrow and Saturday, as the future Beryl drifts into the western Gulf.
Tomorrow – Warm but with isolated thunderstorms, High 92, Low 75
Saturday – More thunderstorms, but still other wise warm and sunny, High 91, Low 75

TWC: Tomorrow – Intervals of clouds and sunshine. A stray shower or thunderstorm is possible High 94, Low 73
Saturday – Sunshine and clouds mixed. A stray shower or thunderstorm is possible.  High 93, Low 74

AW: Tomorrow – Partly sunny; humid High 93, Low 74
Saturday – Clouds and sunshine, a shower or thunderstorm around; humid High 92, Low 74

NWS: Tomorrow – A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, High 95, Low 74
Saturday – A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, High 92, Low 75

WB: Tomorrow – Partly cloudy with a 30% chance of showers and thunderstorms, High 89, Low 75
Saturday – Partly cloudy with a 40% chance of showers and thunderstorms, High 86, Low 75

WN: Tomorrow – Partly cloudy with scattered thunderstorms, High 95, Low 74
Saturday – Partly cloudy with scattered storms, High 92, Low 75

FIO: Tomorrow – Partly cloudy starting in the morning, continuing until evening.High 92, Low 72
Saturday – Partly cloudy starting in the morning, continuing until evening. High 92, Low 73

Here is a look at the radar, showing those isolated thunderstorms. Very hit or or miss, and mostly miss.

Topeka, Kansas

All right, I’m back. Anthony monitored the site and took some good notes for Lubbock while I was away, but now we’re fully staffed. My new babies are sitting here in the room with me as I make this forecast, so now the paternal pressure is on!

At 353PM, CT, Topeka was reporting a sultry 98 degrees with a dew point of 68. Sunny skies dominated the region, but with upper level forcing hanging out in the Dakotas today, it appeared that their was no relief in sight for the day, and 100 degrees with those sticky dew points ensuring heat indices would remain dangerous for the rest of the day.
The pattern is unusually complicated for the middle of June, with a strong area of low pressure developing over the central Plains, though that is currently inactive. Showers and thunderstorms presently on satellite are the creation of a well organized system in the lee of the Canadian Rockies producing storms in the northern High Plains, while a stationary front in the southern Great Lakes is creating storms into the Mississippi Valley.  The surface low in the central Plains will draw northeast as the upper level trough associated with the system in Alberta will dig southwestward. The cold front will hang back with the jet diving into the Dakotas, but a prefrontal trough, acting as a remnant of the original low moving away from the central Rockies, will move through in the evening on Monday. There is a chance for an isolated strong thunderstorm during the PM hours on Monday as the trough moves through. It may take some of the humidity out of the air for Tuesday, however it won’t be a whole lot cooler when the sun comes out again.
Tomorrow – Hot and humid again, with some strong thunderstorms in the area, High 100, Low 76
Tuesday – Clearer and not as hot, High 87, Low 69

TWC: Tomorrow – Intervals of clouds and sunshine. A stray shower or thunderstorm is possible. High 99, Low 77
Tuesday – Generally sunny. High 91, Low 70

AW: Tomorrow – A severe afternoon thunderstorm, with damaging winds and hail; otherwise, partly sunny, hot High 97, Low 76
Tuesday – Some sun, then turning cloudy, a thunderstorm in the afternoon High 92, Low 67

NWS: Tomorrow – Mostly sunny (Late Stors), High 96, Low 77
Tuesday – Mostly sunny, (early storms) High 90, Low 68

WB: Tomorrow – Mostly sunny, a 40% chance of showers and thunderstorms in the afternoon. High 95, Low 76
Tuesday – Sunny, High 90, Low 69

WN: Tomorrow – Partly cloudy with scattered storms, High 96, Low 76
Tuesday – Mostly sunny, High 90, Low 68

FIO: Tomorrow – Light rain starting in the afternoon, continuing until evening. High 98, Low 76
Tuesday – Light rain overnight. High 91, Low 67

This forecast both overstates and understates the thunderstorm threat. Expect storms could be extremely isolated, but those that develop could be monsters, with large hail and heavy precipitation, in particular. Truth be told, this forecast took about 3 hours to write thanks to those babies I was talking about, but here is the satellite from that time. Note all the activity northeast of Topeka.

Crisp cool nights with storms on the horizon

Thunderstorms were rampant and dangerous across the Dakotas on Friday, with severe storms afflicting the central parts of those states. There were tornadoes west of Bismarck in North Dakota and gusty winds and hail along the Missouri river in South Dakota. It mostly erupted to the east of Rapid City, however, with cooler air encroaching after the strong thunderstorms blew up and moved on. There was a trace of rain Friday night for Rapid City, but their forecast was marked mostly by clear skies and temperatures that were significantly cooler than what had been forecast for the overnight lows. Victoria-Weather ended up with the top forecast for the day, to take us into June..
Actuals Friday – .01 inches of rain, High 83, Low 51
Saturday – High 72, Low 45

Grade D-F