All posts by Ryan

Bangor, Maine to Kingsport, Tennessee

Usually when we do these road trips, I break them into 8 hour days, and if there is any left over time (according to Mapquest), I add an extra day if there is more than 2 hours. Today’s trip from Maine to Tennessee is 18 hours and 1 minute’s worth of driving. Awesome. it’s a 1073 mile trek through the busiest corridor in the United States, I-95, so we’ll go at the relatively slow pace of 59.6mph, and cover 476 miles on those first two days, leaving about 120 miles for the third day. I think that will be manageable.

DAY ONE

By the time we are in Parsippany, New Jersey, the first stop for today’s journey, we will have covered 35 of our route’s turns, according to Mapquest. Amazing. The drive through Boston and New York will be mostly agreeable in terms of weather, though hot, humid conditions will build, necessitating the use of air conditioning or a rolled down window in order to hear the denizens of New York calling you a moron. Not that you are, of course. A boundary shifting towards the east, kind of a cold front associated with a low over eastern Canada and kind of a warm front associated with the strong system in the Mid-Mississippi Valley will mean a threat for some isolated sprinkles after Hartford and until we reach Parsippany.

DAY TWO
Our second day of travel will be considerably wetter, as we drive right along the east-west oriented part of our cold front/warm front combo, from Parisppany to to about Chambersburg, Pennsylvania. In that line, there is a good chance we will see very heavy rain and some isolated thunderstorms. There may be a break in the action when we get south of Chambersburg, because after passing through the 34 combined miles of Maryland and West Virginia, we will be on the lee side of the Appalachians, which will help stamp out the thunderstorms for a while. Sure, there will be a few showers as we approach Dublin and Newbern, Virginia. Pick one of those cities, and that’s our destination on Monday.

DAY THREE
Hey, good thing we waited to finish this trip! The front will be through, and clearing, cooler conditions will be taking hold of the Smokeys when we arrive. Instead of torrential downpours, we will arrive in Kingsport in style, with pleasant weather all around us.

Kingsport, Tennessee

We’re taking a trip to the far eastern tip of Tennessee for the second week in a row. This may be a messy beginning of the week.

At 1153PM, ET, Kingsport was reporting a temperature of 83 degrees with partly cloudy skies. A line of showers and thunderstorms extends from the Daniel Boone Forest in Kentucky to just east of Crossville, and is marching methodically to the east towards Kingsport. The systems primary cold front was generating a line of thunderstorms and an energetic environment ahead of the cold front and the SPC has issued a “high risk” for parts of western Tennessee. This energetic part of the system still has a while before it can reach the Smokeys, and will likely be taken apart before any severe weather can reach Kingsport.
Expect just a few showers and storms today and tomorrow ahead of the primary system, but not anything particularly intense. The primary cold front will arrive instead late on Monday with the heaviest rain and thunderstorms. With this frontal passage, there will be a threat for some strong winds and even some small hail, something that is not expected today or tomorrow. With strong southerly flow ahead of the front, expect hot and humid weather tomorrow, with only a minor cool down with rain and precip on Monday.
Tomorrow – Isolated midday thunderstorms, High 88, Low 63
Monday – Strong storms and heavy rain in the afternoon, High 80, Low 62 (Non Standard)

TWC: Tomorrow – Partly cloudy and windy with a thunderstorm or two possible in the afternoon. A few storms may be severe. High 89, Low 68
Monday – Showers and thunderstorms High 77, Low 68

AW: Tomorrow – Intervals of clouds and sun with a couple of thunderstorms around; breezy High 85, Low 62
Monday – Mostly cloudy with a shower or thunderstorm around High 80, Low 63

NWS: Tomorrow – Mostly cloudy with a 50 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Breezy High 87, Low 62
Monday – Showers and thunderstorms in the morning…then showers likely and a chance of thunderstorms in the afternoon. Breezy High 77, Low 62

WB: Tomorrow – Mostly cloudy with a 50 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Breezy High 89, Low 64
Monday – Showers and thunderstorms in the morning…then showers likely and a chance of thunderstorms in the afternoon. Breezy. High 81, Low 63

It should be noted that the NWS was having problems with their site, and those numbers are estimates of things like “upper 80s” and whatnot. They’ll still do better than the Weather Channel, who I am not sure knows what they are doing on this one. A look at the radar shows rain on the way.

The Week Ahead: 5/2/10-5/8/10

Wow, we’re already to the end of April. Tornado season is upon us!

Monday – Evansville, Indiana
Tuesday – Chattanooga, Tennessee
Friday – Road Trip: Corvallis Oregon to Danville, Virginia
Saturday – Omaha, Nebraska.

Bangor, Maine

We’re headed off to Maine for today’s forecast. I think we only do this forecast whenever it’s raw and nasty up in Maine, so I wonder what it will be like with an early May forecast.

At 1153AM, ET, Bangor was reporting a temperature of 62 degrees with partly cloudy. The entire East Coast was enjoying a pleasant midday, with an area of low pressure centered over the Great Lakes that extended a tongue of high clouds into central New England, though there was little by way of surface forcing. A separate low over southeastern Canada was generating a gusty off shore flow.
A broad trough is running over the western part of the country, and the northerly component is shifting east. Bangor will be dry and pleasant for the next 36 hours or so. The low over the Great Lakes will occlude, and the occluded front will push into Downstate Maine overnight Saturday into Sunday. Expect some chilly rain to take the weekend out after a rather pleasant beginning to the weekend. Cloudy skies are anticipated when rain is not seen on Sunday, but the lifting warm front and passing occlusion will make things warmer.
Tomorrow – Sunny and warm, High 64, Low 40
Sunday – Rain begins early, cloudy, High 75, Low 48

TWC: Tomorrow- Mostly sunny skies (showers after 10pm). High 69, Low 40
Sunday – Few showers. High 74, Low 48

AW: Tomorrow – Warmer with times of clouds and sun High 73, Low 37
Sunday – Rather cloudy and warm; a shower in the afternoon High 74, Low 48

NWS: Tomorrow – Rather cloudy and warm; a shower in the afternoon High 76, Low 36
Sunday – A chance of showers high 65, Low 50

WB: Tomorrow – Sunny. High 77, Low 35
Sunday – Mostly cloudy. A chance of showers in the afternoon High 66, Low 50

This is a stunning change in philosophy between two forecasting camps. Three forecasters have temperatures climbing from Saturday to Sunday, two have them dropping precipitously. Stunningly variant. We’ll see how this goes. The satellite is seen below.

Feels like Fall

Well, it did in Allentown the past couple of days. The variation in temperature was only 5 degrees for the entire 48 hour period thanks to the thick layer of clouds that buffered the area, and the temperatures never climbed above 54 or dropped below 49. The average temperature everyone had in their forecasts all ended up in the same neighborhood, but the highs and lows weren’t too good for anyone. Accuweather ended up with the top forecast for Allentown.
Actuals: Monday – .27 inches of rain, High 53, Low 49
Tuesday – .02 inches of rain, High 54, Low 49

Grade: C

Winston-Salem, NC to Fayetteville, AR

Today’s road trip is a relatively short one, compared to the recent coast to coast excursions we’ve encountered. So away we go! This trip will cover a modest 979 miles.

DAY ONE

A beautiful day for a road trip! After the recent storm system that’s been moving through the TN Valley and exiting the Mid-Atlantic, high pressure is building into the area, clearing out the cruddy low clouds leftover from the showers and thunderstorms traversing the area today. Winds will be on the light side for most of the trip, especially once we get west of the Appalachians and into eastern sections of TN. The initial part of the trip might see a little bit of wind from downsloping conditions, but nothing too big to worry about. Be sure to bring the sunglasses, you’ll need them as we continue westward into Nashville, our stop for the 1st day.

DAY TWO

A large storm system is starting to take shape over the Northern and Central Plains, deepening as it exits the Rockies. Strong low-level flow is expected out ahead of this developing system, which means some increasing low clouds throughout the day. Winds should be fairly light in Nashville as we head out in the morning with the high pressure ridge just to the east and pulling away. However, once we make our way to Memphis and westward into Arkansas, southwest winds will become gusty along with some scattered low clouds as the low-level flow increases. No showers are expected though as we push through Little Rock and northwestward towards Fayetteville, those should be reserved for the area along the front over the Southern Plains.

This is the type of thing you don’t want to see out your window

More from the deadly tornado that cut Mississippi in half on Saturday. CNN has a video of the looming EF4 tornado that eventually devastated Yazoo City and a large swath of Mississippi. It ended up having a path of almost 100 miles, at times wider than a mile and a half. Fortunately, a twister of this duration and intensity is rare, but is the reason meteorologists so intently monitor the weather, and why storm chasers are so important. Naturally, Victoria-Weather extends our condolences to those who lost friends and loved ones in last weekends storms.

Allentown, Pennsylvania

We’re headed out east to Allentown again with today’s forecast. For some reason, the Victoria-Weather Scheduletron 3000 likes to latch on to some cities over and over again for a couple of months. Allentown appears to be one of those cities early in 2010.

At 451PM, ET, Allentown was reporting cloudy skies and a temperature of 50 degrees. An east wind was indicative of the strong area of low pressure still found to the southwest of Allentown. The upper level low that has been the cause of so many problems over the center of the country of late is now centered south of the Great Lakes, extending an occluded front through Pennsylvania, where the fronts split at the occlusion point. A severe thunderstorm watch is in effect for western Pennsylvania, and Allentown happens to currently sit to the north of the warm front. In the warm sector, isolated thunderstorms are cropping up over Maryland’s Eastern Shore and parts of Delaware, all shifting to the northeast.
The jet aiding in the sustenance of the low will steer the system in a more typically winterlike pattern. The low will lose a lot of it’s organization and intensity and will stall over New England over the next two days. Overcast skies will continue for most of the next two days. Tomorrow will certainly see some rain for most of the day, though most of the day will be dry on Tuesday.
Tomorrow – Rain likely, High 59, Low 48
Tuesday – Early morning showers, then clearing slightly, High 57, Low 42 (Non Standard)

TWC: Tomorrow – Showers early becoming a steady light rain later in the day. Thunder possible. High 58, low 46
Tuesday – A few morning showers., High 61, Low 45

AW: Tomorrow – Rain High 56, Low 47
Tuesday – A blend of sunshine and clouds with a couple of showers, mainly early; breezy High 59, Low 44

NWS: Tomorrow – Showers. High 57, low 46
Tuesday – A slight chance of showers. Mostly cloudy High 59, Low 44

WB: Tomorrow – Showers. High 57, Low 45
Tuesday – Mostly cloudy in the morning…then becoming partly sunny. High 59, Low 42

A look at the radar shows the thunderstorms entering from the south.

Catching the nasty weather

Johnson City didn’t see quite as much rain as we had called for, but between the two days of our forecast period they did receive over a half an inch of rain, which isn’t peanuts. Like Oklahoma City, the previous city in our forecast repertoire, Johnson City managed to avoid the severe weather, however, which is of course good news, considering the destruction off to their southeast. Weatherbug, who wrote a novel for their forecast, had the top forecast in Johnson City.
Actuals: Friday – .17 inches of rain High 76, Low 46
Saturday – .42 inches of rain, some in thunderstorms, High 77, Low 57

Grade: B