All posts by Ryan

Holland, Michigan

Good evening! The weather looks good tonight in the Great Lakes, but how long will that last?

At 1253AM, ET, Holland was reporting a temperature of 54 degrees with clear skies. Temperatures were relatively warm, while dew points were low, so despite the clear skies fog is pretty unlikely tonight. High pressure angling in from Eastern Canada will ensure tomorrow will be just as pleasant as this evening has been.
A strong trough moving through Hudson Bay is going to link up with a more minor perturbation passing through the Northern Plains, with low pressure organizing in the region. A cold front will cross Lake Michigan towards Holland late in the day on Wednesday, with some rumbles of thunder possible, though severe storms are not likely.
Tomorrow – Mostly sunny, High 76, Low 52
Wednesday – Afternoon showers and thunderstorms, High 77, Low 54

TWC: Tomorrow – Partly cloudy skies High 74, Low 53
Wednesday – Partly cloudy early with thunderstorms becoming likely during the afternoon.  High 77, Low 55

AW: Tomorrow – Sunny to partly cloudy and pleasant Hiigh 73, Low 50
Wednesday – Mostly cloudy; breezy in the afternoon (late rain and storms) High 74, Low 55

NWS: Tomorrow – Mostly sunny High 72, Low 50
Wednesday – Showers likely and possibly a thunderstorm after 2pm. Partly sunny High 76, Low 53

WB: Tomorrow – Sunny, High 77, Low 55
Wednesday – Rain showers likely and a slight chance of thunderstorms in the afternoon. High 78, Low 57

WN: Tomorrow – Mostly sunny, High 72, Low 49
Wednesday – Partly cloudy with light showers likely, High 76, Low 54

FIO: Tomorrow – Partly cloudy overnight. High 74,, Low 53
Wednesday – Breezy starting in the evening and rain overnight. High 78, Low 55

It’s a pretty spectacular night in Holland, and most of the forecast period will be as well. Take a look at the always pretty satellite.

April Forecaster of the Month

There was one steady forecaster throughout the month, and I could still rarely believe who it was every time I performed a verification. There were machinations, and a very tight race from 2-7, (I’m happy to say Victoria-Weather came on strong for 2nd at the end) but the title holder led for most of the month. All hail our robot overlords: was the forecaster of the month of April.


One of the major ingredients for thunderstorms is warmth at the surface.  After a cool day on  Monday, that ingredient was introduced in New Haven on Tuesday. The thunderstorms followed later in the week, but we saw all the kindling gathered before that.  Victoria-Weather though there would be a little bit of precipitation on both Monday and Tuesday as a system coming out of the Great Lakes staged in New England, but it did not, and that coast us a share of the victory. Instead, it was WeatherNation who earned the W.
Actuals: Monday – .02 inches of rain, High 52, Low 45,
Tuesday – High 69, Low 46

Grade: B-D

High pressure hijinks

Generally speaking, sunny days tend to have a pretty low degree of forecasting error, but for some reason, that wasn’t the case in Jackson last week. The easily identifiable  flaw was in low temperature forecasts, particularly the one on Saturday morning, where even the best forecast was 4 degrees too warm. It seems we are still trying to figure out how forecasting in real live warm temperatures works. WeatherNation and the Weather Service tied atop the leaderboard.
Actuals: Friday – High 74, Low 45
Saturrday – High 73, Low 43

Grade: B-D

Severe weather to continue Wednesday

Tuesday was the first rough weather day, in terms of widespread severe weather, in the Plains for 2018. There was a streak of severe reports through central Kansas, as well as four different super cells that appear to have produced tornadoes, two northwest of Salina in Kansas, another along the Nebraska border and a fourth south of Kearney, Nebraska. To this point, it doesn’t sound like there was much structural damage, nor any injuries or fatalities, which is obviously excellent news.

Within these storms, however, there were reports of hail reaching up to 4 inches in diameter and damaging straight line winds, suggesting the intensity and organization of this feature. Unfortunately, the set up isn’t really changing, aside from a slight shift to the southeast, bringing with it the same threat for long track, if isolated tornadoes, large hail and strong winds. The greatest threat is highlighted by the SPC in red.

The red, moderate risk contains towns like St. Joseph, Missouri, and the northern metro of Kansas City, and closely correlates to the center of low pressure for this system. Expect more general thunderstorms in the arm extended towards Michigan, but the cold front southwest through the Big Bend is more likely to produce widespread severe weather, by my estimation.

Unfortunately, the conditions that occurred on Tuesday in Kansas and Nebraska are very dangerous, and are likely to be repeated on Wednesday. On Tuesday, they occurred in sparsely populated locations, but it seems less likely that we will be so lucky on Wednesday.

Jackson, Tennessee to New Haven, Connecticut

Hey gang, let’s hit the road, shall we? We’re going to take a 2 day trip through the Appalachians and on to southern New England. The distance between the towns of Jackson and New Haven is about 1,100 miles, which we will cover at a pace of about 65mph. We’ll make day one a slightly shorter day, calling it good after about 519 miles, which might actually get us through the entire state of Tennessee!

DAY ONE (Wednesday)

High pressure is wedged into the southeastern part of the country, and will be very good to us for our drive on Wednesday, with sunshine dotting our entire journey. We will hit the Smokeys late enough in the day that the typical fog that gives the mountains their name will not be present. Wei’ll just bounce into Radford, Virginia, nary a care in the world and call it a day after a pretty nice day of travel.

DAY TWO (Thursday)
An area of low pressure moving through the Canadian Maritimes is draping a cold front through the Great Lakes, and it will weaken and drift south towards New York City and Connecticut by Thursday. We’ll run into some wet weather, perhaps around Allentown, with the threat lingering for the rest of the drive into New Haven. By that point, it will be much weaker with storms more widely scattered. An advancing system in the Plains will force the boundary to act more as a warm front, which will lead to precipitation to fall more as generalized high base shower activity. What I’m saying is, if it has to rain, it could be way worse. Enjoy steam New Haven!

New Haven, Connecticut

We’re back in Connecticut tonight, visiting the western coast of the Nutmeg State. Let’s see how spring is treating them.

At 1253AM, ET, New Haven was reporting a temperature of 46 degrees with overcast skies. A departing area of low pressure lies over New England, with some clouds winding back into the region from the northwest. There continues to be a threat for some shower activity thanks to this low, though for the time being, it is lingering further north into the Hudson Valley.
The upper level trough is embedded into a broader wave running along the Gulf Stream. This will help the shorter waved trough deteriorate and eventually continue to the northeast. Rain showers will continue through the day tomorrow, with the threat for precipitation finally ending late in the morning on Tuesday. Any cool air brought on by this feature will be short lived, with warm air quick in pursuit, thanks to an advancing ridge.
Tomorrow – Mostly cloudy with showers possible. High 53, Low 42
Tuesday – Isolated showers early, then sunny and much warmer, High 73, Low 45

TWC: Tomorrow – Cloudy skies. Slight chance of a rain shower. High 53, Low 40
Tuesday – Mainly sunny.  High 73, Low 42

AW: Tomorrow – Mostly cloudy and cool with a passing shower or two High 55, Low 42
Tuesday – Partly sunny, pleasant and warmer High 70, Low 42

NWS: Tomorrow – A 30 percent chance of showers, mainly after 4pm. Mostly cloudy High 54, Low 41
Tuesday – Sunny, High 70, Low 43

WB: Tomorrow – Mostly cloudy with a 30 percent chance of showers High 52, Low 39
Tuesday – Sunny, not as cool, High 68, Low 42

WN: Tomorrow – Mostly cloudy with scattered showers, High 54, Low 42
Tuesday – Mostly sunny, High 70, Low 43

FIO: Tomorrow – Mostly cloudy starting overnight. High 57, Low 42
Tuesday – Partly cloudy until morning. High 74, Low 44

A few spritzes of rain in my forecast. This low doesn’t seem to want to leave, but that extra precipitation might not reach the ground. Here is the beautiful satellite, showing off the well defined circulation in New England.

Kauai sets a rainfall record

Back on April 14th, a steady stream of heavy rain pummeled the northern part of the island of Kauai, the westernmost major island in Hawai’i. The northern end of the islands are exposed to the trades and most of the features that drift across the Pacific, so northern Kauai isn’t unfamiliar with heavy rain from time to time. This was something else though.
A sensor in northern Kauai reported a 24 hour rainfall of nearly 50″ which topples the American record which has stood for about 40 years, dating back to Tropical Storm Claudette in 1979 in coastal Texas. For comparison, the maximum total from the devastating Hurricane Harvey was about 60 inches, over the course of several days. This was nearly as much in a quarter of the time. The annual rainfall at Victoria-Weather HQ is about 30 inches!
For more on the devastation and the recovery efforts in this remote part of Hawai’i, read Brittany Lyte’s article on the event, or check out KHON‘s video story of the event.

Emerging spring time

One of the nice things about the delayed introduction to spring is that in places like the southeast, we haven’t hit the sultry, oppressive weight of summer heat. Such was the case in Anderson last week, when our forecast accurately showed that temperatures would see highs around the 70 degree mark, both on Thursday and Friday. The low temperature dropped a bit on Friday after an inactive cold rolled through, but all that meant is that it was tough to get out of bed on Tuesday morning. Too comfortable! claimed the top forecast spot
Actuals: Thursday – High 72, Low 50
Friday – High 68, Low 39

Grade: B-D