All posts by Ryan

Liechtenstein

Liechtenstein is a mountain nation wedged between Austria and Switzerland. It covers less than 62 square miles, which makes it smaller than many counties in the United States. It is also the wealthiest nation in the world, per capita thanks to it’s banking industry. It also has a prevailing southerly flow that keeps things fairly warm compared to other areas at their altitude. The mountains do, however, induce a lot of little microclimates and induce quite a bit of elevation snow.
Liechtenstein, despite their financial cache, does not have a weather department.

The Earth is hungry, enjoys Toyota Camrys

Once again, the earth has opened up following a good dose of rain and swallowed everything above it. This time it happened in Tampa, when a 20′ by 20′ hole gobbled up part of a parking lot, the lawn in front of a condominium complex and, of course that delicious 1995 Toyota Camry. I’ve heard that the Earth’s crust loves Japanese food.

No word on anything special that might have caused this sinkhole. The last we saw a sinkhole, it was in Guatemala and had been caused by Tropical Storm Agatha, which dumped an enormous amount of rain on the city. Tampa typically sees an exorbitant amount of rain, on the order of 6 and a half inches for the month of July, and there weren’t any tropical systems in the area that might generate a marked increase in rainfall, and in fact, Tampa only reported only about a tenth of an inch of rain yesterday, and none the day before. IT appears this may have just been another case of a leaky pipe, natural spring or just bad luck.

Napa, California to Farmington, New Mexico

We’re going to take a delightful road trip from beautiful Napa Valley to the 4 Corners of New Mexico, undoubtedly seeing some beautiful desert landscapes. It’s a two day drive that covers 1061 miles. The second day will be a few miles longer, as our 64.9mph pace will net us 519 miles on the first day, less than half what we want.

DAY ONE

Things are rather chilly by the standards of southern California this summer.It’s still plenty warm near Death Valley, which is about as far as we will make it on our first day. We shouldn’t have to worry about too much weather, as we’ll be inland of the coast, which will keep us out of the clouds. Some models seem to think there will be some shower activity along the Mexican border, but we aren’t going that far south. We’ll stop in Fenner, California, which is not the most densely populated area.

DAY TWO
We are in the throws of “monsoon” season in the west, and this typically means showers and storms for Arizona and New Mexico in the afternoon and evening. Depending on the flow, it can be fairly widespread, or it can just be an isolated cell or two causing headaches for the resorts of Colorado. New Mexico is almost always active, as wit will be on Wednesday. Actually, models indicate a more organized boundary scooting through the area, so perhaps a few more thunderstorms will be in the Farmington area than we should expect upon our arrival on Wednesday. Expect the threat to pick up pretty soon after we arrive in New Mexico maybe a few miles before that. Then all we have left to do is go out and enjoy the natural splendors of New Mexico. Land of enchantment!

Napa, California

For as warm as it’s been in the east, parts of California are cooler than they were in January. San Diego has reported record low maximum temperatures for the past week. Napa is north of San Francisco though. What are we doing there?

At 1254PM, PT, Napa was reporting a temperature of 69 degrees with clear skies. An unsettled pattered across the United States was demonstrated well by the upper levels which were littered with various eddies and troughs. Over the eastern Pacific a weak cut off low was set up, likely belaboring morning sea fog with the associated southeasterly flow for San Francisco Bay and the surrounding communities.
The low isn’t expected to move much for the next couple of days, which doesn’t bode well for a warm up in the Bay area, as the persistent cool, most flow will continue into the Napa Valley from the southeast. It won’t be as foggy as the cities along the immediate coast in the mornings, and it will likely be cooler than is typically expected this time of year.
Tomorrow – Morning fog and clouds, High 77, Low 53
Tuesday – Morning fog and clouds again, High 76, Low 55

TWC: Tomorrow – Partly cloudy skies. High 79, Low 56
Tuesday – Plenty of sun. High 81, Low 54

AW: Tomorrow – Areas of low clouds early; otherwise, mostly sunny; breezy in the afternoon High 78, Low 54
Tuesday – Areas of low clouds early; otherwise, mostly sunny High 77, Low 53

NWS: Tomorrow – Sunny High 82, Low 54
Tuesday – Sunny, High 81, Low 54

WB: Tomorrow – Areas of morning low clouds and fog. Otherwise sunny High 81, Low 59
Tuesday – Areas of morning low clouds and fog. Otherwise sunny. High 81, Low 58

Everyone is going warmer than what the models indicate, but that hasn’t born itself out lately, so I’m not sure where their ideas are coming from. We’ll find out soon enough what happens. The satellite is very quiet.

A new idea

Now that we have had our first Feature Forecast on the new site, thanks to Dan Thomas of WSMV in Nashville, I was thinking of other ways to bring the weather community to you. Every few weeks, I’ll link to any and all blogs from the city in question that I can find in any post that fits for the day. I’ll tell you early in the week, in case you are aware of any sites for the area that you might want me to link to. Does that make sense? Probably not. But we’re going to give it a shot on Friday when we look at Wasau Wisconsin to see what they have to offer! We’ll see how this goes.

No relief

There was hope that a few clouds and some storms in Winchester, and for that matter, the rest of the east coast, would cool things off over the past couple of days. Unfortunately, the storms never came, and it remained very warm in Winchester. 99 hot degrees on Thursday and only a few degrees cooler on Friday. The Weather Channel had the toasty forecast mostly correct and had the top spot. The hot seat, in this case.
Actuals: Thursday – High 99, Low 71
Friday – High 92, Low 75

Grade C

The Week Ahead 7/11/10-7/17/10

Good national coverage this week, so we’ll be able to get you a pretty good idea what is going on across the good ol’ US of A

Sunday – Napa, California
Monday – Road Trip from Napa, California to Farmington, New York
Thursday – Norwich, Connecticut
Friday – Wasau, Wisconsin
Saturday – Monroe Louisiana

Winchester, Virginia

Off to the East Coast where everything is hot. Just plain hot.

At 120PM, ET, Winchester was reporting clear skies and a temperature of 98 degrees. High pressure continues to dominate the east coast, continuing to exasperate the heat wave in the area, and Winchester would certainly reach 100 again today. Obviously, the city was in a heat advisory.
A weak, disorganized area of low pressure off the coast of North Carolina will try to drift towards the Mid Atlantic, and may generate a few thunderstorms over the East Coast, but they won’t reach as far inland as Winchester. Clouds in the area may stave off temperatures tomorrow even if it doesn’t rain, but a real cool down won’t be likely until a cold front arrives on Friday night, bringing with it showers and thunderstorms, which will likely be loud and rainy.
Tomorrow – Partly to mostly cloudy, with temperatures dipping slightly. High 93, Low 70
Friday – Slightly cooler with thunderstorms in the evening, High 88, Low 69

TWC: Tomorrow – Becoming partly cloudy with isolated thunderstorms developing during the afternoon. Hot High 97, low 73
Friday – Scattered thunderstorms possible High 93, Low 73

AW: Tomorrow – Sunny to partly cloudy, hot and humid; a thunderstorm in the afternoon High 94, low 72
Friday – Times of clouds and sun with a shower or thunderstorm around, mainly later; humid High 87, Low 73

NWS: Tomorrow – Mostly sunny High 94, Low 70
Friday – A chance of showers and thunderstorms, mainly after 2pm. Mostly cloudy, High 89, Low 70

WB: Tomorrow – Mostly sunny High 94, Low 69
Friday – Partly sunny. A chance of showers and thunderstorms in the afternoon High 89, Low 70

Still hot, but cooling down a bit for northern Virginia. A look at the satellite shows the two systems bearing down on steamy Winchester.

Warmer without the rain

As one could probably imagine, things warmed up considerably in Wichita when the remnants of Alex finally pushed off on Tuesday. The Weather Channel’s gamble didn’t pay off, and temperatures yesterday pushed 90. This eventually gave Accuweather the top spot for the day, proving that they didn’t take the 4th of July off. Poor saps.
Actuals: Monday – .41inches of rain in thunderstorms, High 82, Low 68
Tuesday – High 89, Low 67

Grade: C

Iceland

Two weeks in a row we take our travels to an island nation, though Iceland is a bit different from last weeks topic country, Cuba. Iceland, of course, is in the north Atlantic just on the outside of the Arctic Circle. They are generally too warm to be icy, at least on the coasts, because the Gulfstream that I constantly refer to in our East Coast forecasts eventually passes just south of the island nation. This keeps the Icelandic winters milder than one might expect for their latitude. The summers, however, don’t tend to be very warm. A hot day in Iceland is one that reaches the mid 70s. The path of systems that bring nasty weather to the northeast eventually takes them to Iceland. In many senses, Iceland is the place where systems go to die, and the country is often cloudy and precipitating in some fashion as an area of low pressure disbands over the area. Winds are also a common concern with the strong pressure gradients with those systems. Generally speaking, they never see any thunderstorms in Iceland, and only get lightning when one of their famous volcanoes erupts.
The Icelandic Met Office is the bureau that keeps Iceland abreast of the weather. Their site’s home page features three maps, one for wind, another for temperature and the last for precipitation. On the surface, Iceland appears to be one of those countries that keeps the weather forecasting behind the scenes, and hides things like radar or model data. With some digging though, the radar and satellite can be found under the “weather” tab, and further on the “observation” option on the sidebar. Further, under the “shipping forecast” option, you can poke around and find the actual surface analyses as well. So, while it seems the Icelanders are doing their meteorology in the background, they do offer a bit of a window into their world.
(I linked to their English site… for fun, check out Icelandic. They use a lot of letters.)