All posts by Anthony

Tallahassee, Florida

Yesterday, much of Florida got rocked with a line of thunderstorms associated with the low pressure that’s moving up the Eastern Seaboard and is dropping a bunch of snow from D.C. to Boston. That whole front has moved out over the Atlantic, which means… yup, you guessed it. A whole lotta nothing for the next couple of days.

At 1053PM EST, the temperature in Tallahassee, FL is 45 degrees under fair skies. As mentioned earlier, the cold front that swept through the Sunshine State yesterday is found over the Bahamas to the Florida Straits and broad high pressure is controlling much of the region from the Southern Plains throughout the Deep South and Gulf of Mexico. This dome of high pressure will center itself over the Gulf of Mexico, then over Florida by Saturday. In fact, the next chance of precip for the Florida Panhandle doesn’t appear to be until Sunday morning when a weak disturbance moves in from the west. In the meantime, hoards of sunshine is expected to finish off the workweek, but a rather chilly start to both days, as clear skies and a cool air mass could lead to areas of frost.

Thursday: Clear, some morning frost. High 57, Low 31.
Friday: A few clouds. High 66, Low 33.

TWC: Thursday: Partly cloudy. High 57, Low 27.
Friday: Sunny. High 64, Low 32.

AW: Thursday: Plenty of sunshine. High 59, Low 30.
Friday: Bright sunshine. High 65, Low 33.

NWS: Thursday: Morning frost. High 55, Low 31.
Friday: Sunny. High 62, Low 35.

WB: Thursday: Mostly sunny. High 57, Low 32.
Friday: Mostly sunny. High 65, Low 32.

Here we see a few high clouds off to the west, but otherwise, a whoooole lotta nothing going on. Once again. I’ll let you know where my next forecast is for soon, and you can plan your vacation there. Guaranteed sun!

A Few Frustrating Flakes

Has everybody seen the Allstate commercial where Mayhem is on the roof and just a tiny bit of additional snowfall landing on the roof causes it to cave in? Well, as Ryan mentioned in his Indianapolis forecast, seems like whenever it’s cloudy during winter over the Great Lakes region, it snows. Overcast skies during the mid-morning hours on Tuesday did just that, wringing out a trace of snow, causing mayhem in Ryan’s dry Tuesday forecast. However, his superior temperature forecasting was enough for a 3-way tie between VW, NWS, and WB.

Monday: 0.5″ of snow, melting to 0.02″ liquid. High 35, Low 17.
Tuesday: Trace of snow. High 32, Low 18.

Reno, Nevada

A combination of two things I love most, weather and gambling. With the NFL conference title games tomorrow, wouldn’t it be nice if the weather was dreary so we have one more reason to stay inside and enjoy football? Well, if you are staying indoors, it’ll either be the slot machines or the football game, because it sure won’t be the weather’s fault.

At 4:55PM PST, the temperature at Reno was 50 degrees under fair skies. A strong low-level ridge has been building over the Western US, pushing from the Pacific Northwest southward into the Great Basin and Intermountain West. This dome of high pressure is steering a couple of storm systems up into British Colombia and Washington before continuing into the Northern Rockies. This is going to keep the Reno/Lake Tahoe area pretty quiet under mostly cloud-free and sun-filled skies. A few more clouds are expected on Monday than Sunday with a system dropping from the Northern Rockies towards the Four Corners region, but that’ll be far enough to the east to be of no major consequence for Reno. So if your parlay hits on Sunday and pays out big, go out and dance in the streets, the sunshine will make that trip to the cashier’s window even better, just as long as you don’t wait until the sun goes down, as it will be on the chilly side in the evening.

Sunday: Sunny. High 52, Low 23.
Monday: A few clouds. High 55, Low 24.

TWC: Sunday: Mostly sunny. High 56, Low 22.
Monday: Partly cloudy. High 56, Low 25.

AW: Sunday: Full day of sunshine. (I like that forecast) High 52, Low 21.
Monday: Mostly sunny. High 56, Low 23.

NWS: Sunday: Sunny. High 49, Low 21.
Monday: Mostly sunny. High 53, Low 22.

WB: Sunday: Sunny. High 50, Low 20.
Monday: Partly cloudy. High 53, Low 23.

Here’s the infrared satellite for the region, and we see the Sierra Nevada peaks just off to the west then the Central Valley of CA. Otherwise, not much going on once again.

Punta Gorda, Florida

So my last forecast was for Florida. Nothing was going on. Now a cold front moved through the state. Once again, I forecast for Florida. Once again, not much going on. Either good weather follows me wherever I forecast, or somebody is trying to tell me that I’m not good at it. Either way, sunny skies for everybody!

At 9:53PM EST, the temperature at Punta Gorda was 56 degrees under fair skies. Earlier today, a cold front swept through the state, bringing a heavy thunderstorm this morning and then a few showers afterwards. Clouds lingered around until the mid-afternoon, but has pretty much cleared out as the front continues eastward. High pressure over the Western Gulf of Mexico will slowly shift eastwards behind it. This means at least a couple days of sun for the Sunshine State. It might be a bit breezy tomorrow with the high shifting in, but otherwise, a very pleasant weekend is in store for the region. That means you can enjoy an outdoor viewing party of your favorite NFL playoff team!

Friday: Sunny, slightly breezy. High 67, Low 45.
Saturday: Few clouds, warmer. High 72, Low 49.

AW: Friday: Mostly sunny, breezy. High 67, Low 43.
Saturday: Mostly sunny. High 71, Low 47.

TWC: Friday: Sunny. High 68, Low 45.
Saturday: Sunny. High 72, Low 49.

NWS: Friday: Mostly sunny. High 65, Low 47.
Saturday: Sunny. High 69, Low 50.

WB: Friday: Partly cloudy. High 66, Low 45.
Saturday: Partly cloudy. High 69, Low 48.

You can clearly see the front sweeping through the remainder of the Florida Peninsula. Behind it, nothing but blue skies. Well, except right now, it’s kinda dark outside. Stargazers delight!

When Snow is Relative

Minneapolis has the most snowfall before New Year’s since 1991. Central Park just got socked with their 4th largest single storm total in recorded history. Places in the Sierra Nevada have racked up over 10-15 FEET of snow over the last couple of weeks with intense storms hitting the West Coast. Today, however, the biggest weather story to a majority of my friends and family… was the ONE inch that Valencia, California received today.

Valencia is part of the Santa Clarita Valley, the furthest north valley before you hit the High Desert portion of the state, or the Central Valley. Just north of the Valley, the Grapevine is hit by a few good snowstorms, which is the high point of where Interstate 5 is as it connects the SCV to the Central Valley. However, snow levels rarely fall low enough for snow to make it to the valley floor, as it’s around 1300-1800 feet above sea level. Today’s upper level low pushing over the region dropped snow levels down all the way to 1500 feet, meaning some of my family and a slew of friends spammed their respective social networks with pictures of tiny snowmen, snow-covered lawns, snow angels on their sidewalks. While it wasn’t the first time it’s snowed there in forever, I saw it snow there once myself while living there, it was the first time in 22 years that they got a measureable snowfall. An awesome way for some lucky Californians to bring in the new year! In a related story, milk supplies are running low, bread is scarce, and gas is shooting up to $4 a gallon. Oh wait, that’s normal for them…

Note the palm tree trunk in the background. Happy 2011 everybody!

Naples, Florida

2010 is wrapping up a busy weather year, and we have a large system affecting the Midwest. Blizzard in the Dakotas! Severe Thunderstorms and tornadoes in the Nation’s Heartland! Possible flooding rains in the Central Gulf Coast! So where are we forecasting for today? That’s right… South Florida. Where pretty much nothing is going on…

At 11:53AM EST, the temperature in Naples, FL was 78 degrees under partly cloudy skies. High pressure over the Southeast is keeping the Florida Peninsula fairly quiet outside of some spotty clouds. Our mega-system over the central US is pushing a cold front towards the east, but that high pressure is doing a fairly good job at slowing down it’s progression towards the Sunshine State. The whole tail end of the front pretty much stalls out over northern FL on Sunday, leaving some increased clouds over the rest of the Peninsula. There’s a shot of some scattered shower activity over South Florida Sunday evening, but should be isolated if anything. However, I’ll leave a chance in there. Last time I left it out and got burned. I’m not going to finish 2010 on that mistake!

Saturday (New Years Day!): Afternoon clouds. High 79, Low 59.
Sunday: Increasing clouds, isolated evening shower. High 77, Low 60.

TWC: Saturday: Sunny. High 79, Low 57.
Sunday: More clouds, slight chance of a shower. High 76, Low 56.

AW: Saturday: Partly sunny and beautiful (really, beautiful!) High 77, Low 59.
Sunday: Mostly sunny and warm. High 77, Low 60.

NWS: Saturday: Mostly sunny. High 77, Low 60.
Sunday: Mostly sunny. High 77, Low 61.

WB: Saturday: Partly sunny. High 77, Low 60.
Sunday: Partly sunny. High 76, Low 60.

Here we see the relatively benign weather over Florida and portions of the Deep South. Most of it will stay away from South Florida, so festivities tonight will be warm and dry for everybody! Well, dry as far as Mother Nature is concerned, your bartender will say otherwise. Happy New Year’s Eve readers!

Altoona, Pennsylvania to Little Rock, Arkansas

Today, we embark on a trip from Altoona, PA to capital of Arkansas, Little Rock! At 1006 miles, this will encompass 2 days, nearly splitting it right down the middle with a stopover at Louisville. Let’s go!

DAY ONE

We head out of Altoona, making our way towards the outskirts of Pittsburgh and cut through the northern sliver of WV before entering OH. A cloudy start is expected to our day as a frontal system working its way through the OH Valley will drop some light snow showers over western PA. As we continue towards Columbia and southwestward, warmer temperatures will give way to a better chance of a rain/snow mix at times, but overall any precipitation we encounter will be on the light side. We make our way into Louisville to end the evening, still under overcast skies dodging only a couple stray light showers.

DaY TWO

Once again, we get off to a cloudy start. However, with the dissipating system shifting towards the northeast, only a couple isolated showers are possible this morning as we head out of Louisville towards Nashville. Once we head west towards Memphis, clouds will start to break up some and should be dry conditions as high pressure slowly works its way into the Southern Plains and Lower MS River Valley. There may be some lingering stratus as we make our way into Arkansas, but overall a quiet day as we cruise into Little Rock under tame conditions.

Haiti

Today’s country brings us to the Caribbean, and one that has been in the news quite a lot over the last year. Haiti makes up the western side of the island Hispaniola, with the Dominican Republic constituting the eastern half. The country was rocked back on January 12 by a massive 7.0 earthquake centered very close to the capital of Port-au-Prince, devestating the city as well as most of the rest of the country. Geographically speaking, the country is fairly mountainous, making it relatively difficult to get from one place to another quickly. Port-au-Prince is found in a fairly protected harbor where the Canal de Saint-Marc and Canal du Sud join, jutting into the western side of the island. Being located in the tropics, Hispaniola enjoys a typical climate of such latitudes, with warm year-round temperatures, frequent trade showers, and like the other larger Caribbean islands, some afternoon thunderstorm activity. Haiti also lies in an active tropical area, with tropical storms and hurricanes often manacing the region from June – November. With its’ mountainous terrain, along with rampant deforestation, a slow-moving tropical system can wreak havoc upon the country, with flash-flooding common when a tropical system takes aim on the country, regardless of the actual intensity of the storm.
The “Centre national de meteorologie” is the nation’s governing meteorlogical body, with much of the site in French. There isn’t a handy link to translate it to English that I could find, but some navigating of the site shows a vast amount of satellite images that are pretty helpful. However, it appears that the one radar site for the island is non-operational along with no apparent current observations. There is a couple of pages devoted to Marine forecasts and tropical weather, which i’m sure is very valuable when a dangerous system is approaching the region. However, with December now upon us, the country should be safe from additional storms until June when the next season revs up.

Honolulu, Hawaii

As I look out my window and see some light snow falling, it makes me wish even more I was at where I am forecasting for. Thankfully, today it’s Hawaii and not the Yukon.

At 8:53am HST (Hawaii Standard Time, 4 hours behind us in the Central time zone), the temperature at Honolulu was 79 degrees under partly cloudy skies. Being located in the tropics, normally Honolulu doesn’t have to worry about many synoptic systems sweeping through the region, like our cold fronts and inverted troughs and explosive low pressure systems. However, the tail end of a stationary front found a little bit to the north of the islands is enhancing some shower activity, although most of that should stay off to the north. A weak disturbance east of the Hawaiian Islands has been very slowly trekking westward and could bring some showers to the area in the next couple of days. Thursday will be a better chance of this activity making it to Honolulu, as some of the lighter stuff on Wednesday might not make it over the mountains that make up the island chain to affect the capital. Most sites are giving a chance of showers on both days, but I’m rolling the dice and saying the first day of the new month will stay dry. Will VicWx prevail? Stay tuned!

Wednesday: Increasing clouds. High 82, Low 71.
Thursday: Mostly cloudy, a few showers possible. High 82, Low 73.

TWC: Wednesday: Scattered showers. High 83, Low 72.
Thursday: Better chance of scattered showers. High 82, Low 73.

AW: Wednesday: Scatted shower possible. High 81, Low 71.
Thursday: Breezy with a few scattered showers. High 82, Low 72.

NWS: Wednesday: Scattered showers possible. High 80, Low 71.
Thursday: Widespread showers likely. High 80, Low 72.

WB: Wednesday: Rain expected. High 82. Low 63.
Thursday: Widespread rain showers expected, heavy rains at times possible. High 82. Low 63.

Weatherbug is going significantly colder than everybody else on their lows, and the lowest they’ve gotten in the last 72hrs is 69 degrees. Do they know something we don’t? Time will tell I suppose. Here we see some high clouds to the west.

Severe Season Roars Back

As November starts to wind down and most people are more concerned about turkey, stuffing, Black Friday sales, usually the biggest weather related question people ask me is “Will we have a white Thanksgiving?”, not “Will we get rocked by a tornado today?”. Sadly, for the people of Northern Illinois, Mother Nature decided to blast the Great Lakes and Mid-MS River Valley earlier this afternoon. Last night it only appeared that maybe a few thunderstorms would roll through the WI/IL/MO region as a cold front pressed through the area, with some heavy rains at times. However, dynamics came together to produce a few severe cells that plowed through Northern Illinois. The worst one produced a rather nasty tornado (Click HERE to watch some amazing footage) that touched down near Rock Cut State Park. That’s on the northeast side of Rockford and continued NW to Caledonia, where sadly it flipped over a school bus in sent 6 children to the hospital. A couple storm reports from the area earlier today…

300 PM TORNADO 3 E LOVES PARK 42.34N 88.95W
11/22/2010 WINNEBAGO IL BROADCAST MEDIA

ESTIMATED 1/2 MILE WIDE TORNADO SPOTTED ON GROUND AT THE INTERSECTION OF ARGYLE RD AND HARLEM RD EAST OF ROCK CUT STATE PARK NEAR CALEDONIA. POWER LINES DOWN AND DEBRIS IN THE AIR REPORTED IN THE AREA.

0300 PM TORNADO 3 E LOVES PARK 42.34N 88.95W
11/22/2010 WINNEBAGO IL BROADCAST MEDIA

*** 6 INJ *** DAMAGE IN CALEDONIA AREA NEAR ARGYLE ROAD AND HARLEM ROAD AND PAULSON ROADS…ONE BUSINESS ALMOST COMPLETELY DESTROYED…OTHER HOMES AND GARAGES PARTIALLY DOWN. GRAIN SILO DESTROYED AND LEAKING GRAIN ONTO STREET. LARGE BARN COMPLETELY DOWN. LARGE SUBSTATION DAMAGED AND HIGH TENSION POWERLINES DOWN. BUS ROLLED OVER AT PAULSON AND HARLEM ROAD.6 CHILDREN INJURED…SENT TO HOSPITAL. ALL INFORMATION REGARDING TIME AND LOCATIONS IS PRELIMINARY UNTIL DAMAGE SURVEY CONDUCTED.

Being born and raised in Rochelle (just 25miles south of Rockford), I know this area very well and drive through it often when I travel south to see family, so hits a little close to home. Those reports came in around 3PM (as indicated), meaning schools all over the city were letting out when the system moved through. Really, it’s lucky (it appears, we’ll see until more reports come in) that nobody was killed, especially children, given how many people were probably traveling around the city at the time. Just another reminder than bad weather can crop up at anytime, so always keep an eye on the sky!