All posts by Anthony

Denver, Colorado

Today we take a peek at what Denver is going to see as we head into the holiday weekend!

At 1053pm MDT, the temperature at Denver, CO was 72 degrees under mostly cloudy skies. An area of low pressure is starting to develop over the Four Corners region and shifts into the Central Plains by midday Friday. It’s not a particularly strong system, but does look to kick some some activity over the Front Range. Chances of it look to be over southern Colorado, largely sparing the Denver area as we kick off our weekend. Another piece of energy looks to develop over the Southern Rockies and shift into the Central Plains Saturday afternoon, and this system gives a better chance at kicking up some scattered activity in the Denver vicinity. Either way, temperatures will be noticeably cooler for Saturday so if those storms stay away, it looks to be a gorgeous day!

Friday: Mostly cloudy. High 90, Low 64.
Saturday: Mostly cloudy, scattered afternoon thunderstorms. High 81, Low 56.

TWC: Friday: Mostly cloudy, isolated storms. High 90, Low 65.
Saturday: Afternoon thunderstorms. High 83, Low 60.

AW: Friday: Periods of sun; pleasant. High 88, Low 63.
Saturday: A t-storm around in the afternoon. High 81, Low 58.

NWS: Friday: Partly sunny then slight chance of T-storms. High 90, Low 62.
Saturday: Partly sunny then chance of T-storms. High 82, Low 57.

WB: Friday: Mostly cloudy. High 87, Low 63.
Saturday: Chance of thunderstorms. High 79, Low 58.

WN: Friday: Partly cloudy with isolated storms. High 89, Low 62.
Saturday: Partly cloudy with scattered storms. High 81, Low 58.

FIO: Friday: Mostly cloudy throughout the day. High 89, Low 64.
Saturday: Partly cloudy throughout the day. High 79, Low 55.

Some light showers are found off to the northeast of the city, while ground clutter makes it look than it really is downtown.

The Curious Case of 1936

Lately it seems like each heat wave brings new all-time records with it, like one that went from Late July to Early August this year. As the planet continues to slowly warm, more and more of these heat waves are expected to occur. However, outside of 2012, we haven’t seen a heat wave like the record setting one in 1936. Extreme heat wasn’t the only noteworthy weather event of that year though, as the temperature see-saw tipped the other way in an unprecedented way just a few months earlier.

As the Dust Bowl era started to take over the Central US, the previous few winters had been relatively mild. When November 1935 came around, cold snaps started to take hold in the Pacific Northwest, as ID, OR, WA, and ND all saw top 10 coldest Novembers on record. The cold extended eastward into December 1935 as much of the southeast (FL, GA, SC) saw their second-coldest Decembers on record. After a large mid-month storm in January, cold air started taking a firm grip over the eastern US, with OH and IL reporting wind chills below -80F (using the old formula) and ND seeing the month’s average temperature of a frigid -6.9F

February 1936 was the main event. NE, ND, and SD recorded their coldest month of all time, while a total of 9 states reported their coldest February ever. SD saw -58F and ND dipped to -60 along with MT. Devil’s Lake, ND had an average temperature of -21 from the last week of January through the end of February. Fargo stayed below 32F from Dec 14 thru March 1st. Schools throughout the Midwest, Great Plains, and Pacific Northwest were all closed due to the extreme temperatures and snowdrifts, leading to supply shortages throughout the region. It wasn’t until mid-March that temperatures finally started warming up and people could recover, although this lead to flooding due to the ground being frozen to a deep layer.

A few months later, ridiculous heat engulfed the Central US. The driest summer on record occurred for 9 Plains and Midwest states, further contributing to dust storms sweeping throughout the record. Combined with record warm summers for everywhere from MT to KY, this contributed to widespread suffering on farmsteads throughout the US. Steele, ND hit a blazing 121F, still the state’s highest temperature. Ohio hit 110F, while 13 other states all hit all-time high temperatures that remain to this day. Lincoln, NE recorded a LOW temperature of 91F on the morning of July 25th before setting the city’s all-time high of 115F that afternoon. The heat continued into August, where Arkansas and Oklahoma both hit temperatures of 120F on August 10th, while LA hit 116F 2 days later along with Texas joining the 120F club as well. A total of 17 states set or tied their all-time record high temperatures, all of which remain to this day (Kansas also hit 121F, joining ND atop the sweltering leaderboard)

Hopefully it’s a long time until we see such prolonged extreme weather, since our country’s infrastructure and population has increased exponentially since then, the human toll would be that much worse.

Laredo, Texas to Washington, D.C.

Today we embark on a lengthy road trip, from the Mexico border to the nation’s capital! 1,723 miles separate Laredo and Washington DC, so it’s going to take 4 days to cover it all.

DAY ONE

High pressure is found over the Central Plains pushing into the Mid-MS River Valley. However, its’ effects are widely felt throughout the Central US and will keep much of East TX quiet throughout the day. The lone hiccup in the day may be some isolated shower/thunderstorm activity along the Central TX Gulf Coast, as the tail end of a weak boundary is lingering over the region and kicked up some thunderstorms in the Houston area today. This activity should be fairly isolated however so any impact should be minimal if we run into them between Victoria and Houston. The rest of the day should be smooth sailing as we finish the day in Lake Charles, LA.

DAY TWO

High pressure continues shifting eastward, and lucky for us, it’s sitting right over the route for the second day! No precip is expected as we head eastward out of Lake Charles along I-10 to Baton Rouge, then we continue on I-12 north of Lake Ponchartrain before heading north on I-59 out of Slidell. We continue along I-59 through MS before ending our day in Livingston, AL, just inside the border.

DAY THREE

Another enjoyable day thanks to high pressure! There’s a slight chance of an isolated shower or two over central AL during the late morning hours. But as we shift into far northeastern AL and make our way into TN, mostly sunny skies should continue to greet us as our northeastward trek proceeds. Partly cloudy skies are expected over eastern TN as we go past Knoxville and end our day in Bristol, TN, right on the TN/VA border.

DAY FOUR

Our last day! Will our luck finally run out when it comes to rain? Even though clouds will be on the increase today, and some scattered shower activity may dot the landscape, much of this activity looks to be caught up on the west side of the Appalachians, leaving our trip through VA fairly uneventful once again! We finish our day up cruising into DC under partly cloudy skies!

Washington, D.C.

Today we head off to our nation’s capital! Given the tumultuous nature of today’s news cycle, let’s see if the weather can help keep things calm with a good end to the work week.

At 1152pm EDT, the temperature at Reagan Natl Airport in Washington DC was 77 degrees under overcast skies. An area of low pressure is lifting into Quebec, trailing a cold front over the Northeast into the Mid-Atlantic states. The slow-moving nature of this system is cause for some heavy rains in PA today, where several inches fell in the southeast part of the state earlier today. Some shower activity is expected along the end of this front as it pushes through the region Wednesday, but should clear out by the late evening hours. As Wednesday turns into Thursday, high pressure will nose its way over the Eastern US, making for not only a pleasant Thursday, but also Friday.

Wednesday: Mostly cloudy. High 87, Low 71.
Thursday: Sunny and cooler, less humid. High 81, Low 66.

TWC: Wednesday: Mostly sunny. High 85, Low 72.
Thursday: Mostly sunny. High 80, Low 62.

AW: Wednesday: A brief shower or two. High 86, Low 73.
Thursday: Sunny; pleasant and less humid. High 81, Low 63.

NWS: Wednesday: Scattered showers. High 85, Low 72.
Thursday: Sunny. High 80, Low 64.

WB: Wednesday: Chance of thunderstorms. High 84, Low 72.
Thursday: Sunny and cooler. High 79, Low 63.

WN: Wednesday: Partly cloudy with scattered showers. High 85, Low 70.
Thursday: Mostly sunny. High 80, Low 64.

FIO: Wednesday: Partly cloudy until afternoon. High 86, Low 71.
Thursday: Clear throughout the day. High 81, Low 63.

Southeastern PA has gotten hammered by heavy rains today, which seem to finally be shifting off to the south and east. Some of the southern end of this activity will continue to threaten the DC region into tomorrow.

Boring in Boulder

The forecast for Boulder, CO was pretty boring, and that’s how it panned out. Boring is good though! The isolated storms we figured would stay off to the south did just that and temperatures remained fairly steady as well. Not sure what Darksky was seeing though, they were… significantly behind the pack. Weather Channel and Accuweather tied for the win, just 1 degree ahead of Vic-WX.

Wednesday: High 88, Low 59.
Thursday: High 86, Low 59.
Forecast Grade: A

Monroe, Louisiana to Boulder, Colorado

We embark on a 2-day, 1,103-mile trip from the rural lands of northern Louisiana to right up again the Rocky Mountains. Will be quite the change of scenery from one day to the next, so let’s see what the weather will be like on this excursion!

DAY ONE

As a system works into the Mid-MS River Valley, scattered showers and thunderstorms are expected from IA down into AR. Luckily, we’ll just be greeted with some morning clouds as we depart Monroe as the morning precip stays off to the north. Activity will continue lingering off to the north as we push into northern Texas, with just partly cloudy skies anticipated as we cruise past the Dallas-Fort Worth area in the midday hours and Wichita Falls in the late afternoon. We end our fairly uneventful day in Childress, TX.

DAY TWO

It’s going to be a bit of a long day, but the scenery will be worth it once we make it to the end! While the region looks to be dry at dawn, there could be an isolated shower or two lingering in the area due to overnight activity festering over Oklahoma. Whatever there is should be short-lived and eventually shift towards the northeast as we head towards Amarillo to start the day. Dry weather continues into the midday hours as we push into far northeastern New Mexico and eventually into southern Colorado on I-25 by the afternoon. As the afternoon progresses, shower and thunderstorm activity looks to pop off over the mountains and make their way eastward. The further north we get before activity develops, the better it will be for us to avoid encountering these storms, but we’ll probably see a couple of them regardless into the evening. With the worst of the storms off to the south, we make our way into Boulder to finish our long day!

Boulder, Colorado

Today we take a trip to the gorgeous front range of the Rockies and visit the city of Boulder, CO! Let’s see what’s happening in this picturesque locale…

At 1036pm MDT, the temperature at Boulder, CO was 63 degrees under fair skies. A disturbance is exiting the Central Plains out into the Mid-MS River Valley and a weak low is dropping from SD to NE. Meanwhile, the monsoon continues to affect much of the Four Corners region, as it normally does this time of year. Much of the monsoon activity looks to affect southern Colorado tomorrow, bypassing the Boulder area. Thursday will be more of the same but it looks like the monsoonal moisture will push a bit further north. Thursday will most likely be dry, but a couple stray showers or thunderstorms can’t be ruled out. Otherwise, it looks to be a fairly pleasant couple of days!

Wednesday: Partly cloudy in afternoon. High 87, Low 58.
Thursday: Partly cloudy, isolated storms in late afternoon. High 86, Low 60.

TWC: Wednesday: Mostly sunny. High 89, Low 59.
Thursday: Mostly sunny, isolated storms. High 86, Low 60.

AW: Wednesday: Clouds and sun. High 88, Low 60.
Thursday: Intervals of clouds and sun. High 87, Low 61.

NWS: Wednesday: Sunny then slight chance of thunderstorms. High 89, Low 59.
Thursday: Mostly sunny then slight chance of thunderstorms. High 86, Low 61.

WB: Wednesday: Partly cloudy. High 86, Low 60.
Thursday: Partly cloudy. High 85, Low 63.

WN: Wednesday: Partly cloudy with isolated storms. High 89, Low 59.
Thursday: Partly cloudy withisolated storms. High 86, Low 61.

FIO: Wednesday: Clear throughout the day. High 93, Low 62.
Thursday: Partly cloudy starting in the evening. High 89, Low 64.

Some thunderstorms are rolling off the Rockies down into Colorado Springs and Pueblo, but are avoiding the Boulder area tonight. This will probably be the theme for the next couple of days.

Hurricane Season Quiet So Far

We’re 2 months through the official hurricane season now for the Atlantic Basin, and this is usually when things start ramping up. Upper-level shear starts to significantly weaken and waves off the African coastline have better odds of finding favorable conditions to develop. Looking out at the Atlantic, however, there really isn’t much to write home about. There’s a disturbance which the NHC has listed at a 30% chance of developing into a tropical cyclone over the next 48 hours, but given the relatively cool waters around 35N/50W and it’s slow northeastward movement, odds look slim at this system developing into anything of real concern. There’s been a significant African dust layer over the more tropical areas of the Atlantic over the last couple of weeks which has really put the kibosh on anything getting revved up. For the next several days, looks like things are pretty benign!

In the Pacific, however, things are a LOT more active. Ileana and John are spinning their way not far from the Mexican coastline, the latter looking like it could be a major hurricane as it approaches Baja CA. The storm should remain off to the west of it so that’s encouraging news.

Of even more importance is Hurricane Hector out over the Central Pacific. It looks to keep a mainly westward trajectory over the next several days, which is good for Hawaii since it currently has maximum sustained winds of 155mph, just a tick below Category 5 strength. The big island has a tropical storm watch out for it and given model forecasts, a brush from Hector is all that it looks like it will get. Given its intensity, I’m sure they’re more than okay with that.

A Week of Extremes

As we push our way into the Dog Days of August, Summer is in full swing throughout the country. Well, it seemed that way anyways last week. The Desert Southwest and Southern Plains were absolutely scorching with temperatures pushing their way into the 110’s! Waco hit an all-time record high of 114F, breaking the previous record of 112F. Austin and Dallas-Fort Worth also broke daily high temperature records during the heat wave, cracking 107 and 105 respectively. As if that wasn’t hot enough, Southern CA and the rest of the Desert Southwest was an inferno. Palm Springs hit an incredble 121 degrees while Death Valley even set a new daily high record (which is impressive for them), topping out at a ridiculous 127 degrees. In fact, Death Valley set a record for the hottest month on record anywhere in the world for July, with an AVERAGE temperature of 108.1 degrees as 21 days in July hit 120+ degrees. July 2018 broke the previous record for hottest average month in the world set… just last July, when Death Valley averaged 107.4F in 2017. Hopefully July 2019 spares Death Valley a bit, but let’s not hold our breath.

A bit of an extreme on the other side was felt this morning as unusually chilly high pressure system shifted through the Upper Midwest. MSP dipped to 57 this morning and could only muster a high of 72, 11 degrees below normal. That’s nothing compared to what happened at International Falls though, the Icebox of the Nation. It lived up to its’ moniker today, bottoming out at a downright chilly 34 degrees, crushing the previous record of 41 set exactly 100 years ago. In fact, between July 1 and August 2nd in International Falls history, only 1 other morning has ever gotten that cold, July 11, 1911 got down to 32F. Certainly not summer-like this morning over the northland!

Billings, Montana to Bismarck, North Dakota

Today we’re taking another one-day trip between neighboring states. Today, however, is a much further north trip as we head from Montana to North Dakota! Let’s see how this Northern Plains trip will go!

High pressure is settling in over the Northern Plains after a cold front worked its way through the Dakotas and into the Upper Midwest. The route between Billings and Bismarck tomorrow is expected to be dry and filled with sunshine, a most enjoyable day to see the wide open plains!