Category Archives: Forecast

Two disparate forecasts, both very wrong

There were two schools of thought on the forecast in Bangor. One said that things would warm up on Sunday after a warm front passed though and some stout southerly flow picked up. Another said the temperature would drop off precipitously on Sunday as clouds and drizzle rolled in. The forecasts could not have been more different. As it happens, they were both wrong. Extremely wrong. The temperature was able to climb to near 80 both days of the weekend, and the lows were also much warmer than expected. On top of that, the rain that was supposed to come on Sunday never came, and instead we looked at some isolated drizzle on Saturday. We could say that The Weather Channel was the winner in Bangor, but the truth is, there was no winner. Well, except for the people of Bangor, who saw such excellent weather.
Actuals: Saturday – rain reported, not measured, High 79, Low 45
Sunday – High 79, Low 55

Grade: D (very close to an F)

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.

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

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

Dodging the severe weather

It’s been a rough couple of days for the southern US in terms of severe weather. In Oklahoma City, however, they got lucky. It didn’t rain or storm in Oklahoma City on Wednesday, and they avoided any severe storms yesterday. Temperatures were down, which may have prevented the genesis of strong storms in their immediate area, but the bigger deal was that storms developed further west than anticipated and began to die out overnight. Accuweather and The Weather Channel had the top forecasts for the better than expected weather.
Actuals: Wednesday – High 75, Low 57
Thursday – .17 inches of rain, High 75, Low 61

Grade: C

Johnson City, Tennessee

We’re headed into the Smokey Mountains and the eastern tip of Tennessee.

At 555PM, ET, Johnson City was reporting clear skies with a temperature of 68 degrees. Weak pressure gradient across the east belied the massive system developing over the High Plains, triggering the first real severe storm outbreak of the season. A warm front is extending into Tennessee is associated with this boundary, but is not developing much by way of precipitation. Even so, the presence of the boundary in Tennessee lends to power of the system in the Plains.
The cause of the system is a cut off upper level low over the western US. The subtropical jet over Mexico will lift north to intercept the low and transport it towards the Tennessee Valley. When the low pushes west it will tap into the Gulf and it’s moisture. The resulting rain and thunderstorms, which will arrive in Johnson City late Friday into Saturday will bring about torrential rains, with 1-2 inches of rain possible to begin the weekend.
Tomorrow – Late rain, High 74, High 51
Saturday – Torrential rain expected in the evening, with thunderstorms possible, High 75, Low 56

TWC: Tomorrow – Showers early then scattered thunderstorms developing later in the day. High 74, Low 50
Saturday – Thundershowers. High 75, Low 55

AW: Tomorrow – Variable cloudiness with a shower High 71, Low 47
Saturday – Mostly cloudy with a shower or thunderstorm around High 74, Low 53

NWS: Tomorrow – A 40 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy High 74, Low 48
Saturday – Showers and thunderstorms likely, mainly after 2pm. Mostly cloudy High 74, Low 55

WB: Tomorrow – Mostly cloudy with scattered showers and thunderstorms High 74, Low 48
Saturday – Cloudy. Scattered showers and thunderstorms in the morning…then showers and thunderstorms likely in the afternoon. Some storms may be severe in the afternoon. Locally heavy rainfall possible in the afternoon. High 75, Low 55

So that’s it. Doom and gloom coming Saturday. Here you can keep an eye on it as it approaches off to the west.

Sunny south Florida

Our forecast for Naples called for some typically active Floridian weather. Fortunately for them, all the thunderstorms that Florida saw the past two days went up inland, away from Naples and then continued to drift off towards Orlando and Lake Okeechobee. Florida thunderstorms are always tough to pinpoint, but it’s never a good idea to beat against them, regardless of what today’s verification suggests. The top forecast went to Weatherbug.
Actuals: Tuesday – High 79, Low 64
Wednesday – High 78, Low 69

Grade: A

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

A late night forecast for OKC, and we are in the midst of tornado season. How fun!

At 1052PM, CT, Oklahoma City was reporting cloudy skies and a temperature of 55 degrees. A perturbed jet over the Gulf and northern Mexico as generated several somewhat weak disturbances that have swung from the high plains to the Gulf and into the Atlantic. Currently, the next wave is developing over the Oklahoma Panhandle and is generating thunderstorms over northern Texas.
The southerly jet is expected to shift off east, taking support from the thunderstorms over the southern Plains, however this will be motivated by a developing closed upper low over the Rockies. A stationary to warm front will develop through Kansas, indicative of the warm, moist air moving into the Oklahoma City area over the next two days. Showers will not be widespread, but they will be possible in the afternoon each day, with stronger thunderstorms becoming a concern late on Thursday.
Tomorrow – Partly to mostly cloudy, with passing showers and thunderstorm, High 71, Low 51
Thursday – Partly to mostly cloudy, with isolated severe storms before midnight, High 76, Low 59

TWC: Tomorrow – A few showers in the morning with scattered thunderstorms arriving in the afternoon. High 71, Low 54
Thursday – Partly cloudy with a stray thunderstorm. High 76, Low 60

AW: Tomorrow – Mostly cloudy with a shower or thunderstorm around High 74, low 53
Thursday – Mostly cloudy and breezy; an afternoon shower or thunderstorm High 78, Low 60

NWS: Tomorrow – A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy high 70, Low 52
Thursday – A 30 percent chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy High 75, Low 59

WB: Tomorrow – Mostly cloudy with chance of thunderstorms High 73, Low 53
Thursday – Mostly cloudy with chance of thunderstorms High 77, Low 59

A look at the satellite shows the looming nastiness over the Rockies.