The forecast in Monroe seemed promising. There was a little bit of rain in the early part of Wednesday, but then the heat was supposed to break. It certainly did not. Instead, high temperatures remained in the mid 90s, which was just as hot as it was before a weak cold front slid through. The National Weather Service and Weathernation weren’t optimistic about a cool down, and ended up claiming a forecast victory.
Actuals: Wednesday – Thunderstorms reported, not measured, High 95, Low 72
Thursday – High 95, Low 70
Everything is bigger in Texas, or so they say. The temperature readings were pretty huge in San Antonio on the 19th and 20th, with the highs reaching triple digits on the 19th, and the upper 90s on the 20th, all while failing to dip below 80 for the overnight lows. That is a big time heat wave. Forecasts all circled the same numbers, so there wasn’t much separation, but a nearer high on the 20th gave Weatherbug the victory.
Actuals: August 19th – High 100, Low 80
August 20th – High 97, low 80
Utica got the slightest bit of rain Monday morning as dissipating activity gave the city just enough to nudge the rain gauge. The rest of the day and Tuesday was fairly pleasant, though the morning lows were a smidge lower than most expected. Us here at VW anticipated that, however, and rode those cooler morning lows to an easy victory.
Monday: 0.01″ in a morning shower. High 82, Low 64.
Tuesday: High 82, Low 57.
Forecast Grade: A
The forecast for Birmingham was a fairly straightforward one, dry and HOT. Which is was, no doubt about that. The morning lows were a couple degrees cooler than most had anticipated however, which lead to some higher than average scores given the comparatively benign pattern. NWS and WeatherNation split top billing.
Friday: High 98, Low 67.
Saturday: High 100, Low 67.
Forecast Grade: B
Thunderstorms generally aren’t as widespread in the northern US as they are in the southeast this time of year, and that is a forecasting lesson I would do well to remember next time. There were storms on Monday in Rochester, just as was universally predicted, but none on Sunday, which only one outlet had left in the forecast. Oops! It was a good forecast all the way around, though, and Rochester was able to enjoy a pretty decent weekend.
Actuals: Sunday, High 83, low 64
Monday – .55″ of rain in thunderstorms, High 85, Low 66
Popocatepetl is a volcano in Mexico. Pocatello was a white hot city in Idaho last week. Popocatello is a portmanteau by a meteorologist who thinks he is funny. Victoria-Weather thought it would be even warmer in Pocatello as July faded to it’s conclusion than it actually was, but we still managed to collect a much needed victory.
Actuals: Tuesday – High 93, Low 55
Wednesday – High 93, Low 54
I don’t know what happened to Weather Underground, our traditional source for verification information. This time around, the problem was attribution. They kept reverting back to weather information for Florence when I sought info on Sumter. It’s too bad for us, because we verified better against Florence’s figures. When running the correct verification, Victoria-Weather fell off, and the cooler numbers in the afternoon, with cooler overnight lows gave the win to the trio of Accuweather, The Weather Service and WeatherNation
Actuals: Friday (the 26th) High 86, Low 68
Saturday – High 90, Low 64
Back in mid – July (that’s how far behind I am on these verifications) we looked at the western Michigan town of Muskegon, which was to receive a healthy wallop from a mass of storms moving through Minnesota and Wisconsin. Those storms proved stronger than expected in the Upper Midwest, and generally lasted longer in Michigan than anyone thought. What really surprised all outlets was how little the high temperature was impacted on Sunday the 21st. After a high of 89 on the 20th, it only dipped to 87 for a high on Sunday. Not really a terrific forecast, but not really terrific weather, either.
Actuals: Saturday – .51 inches of rain in thunderstorms, High 89, Low 71
Sunday – Thunderstorms reported, not measured, High 87, Low 69
That’s generally the rule of thumb for forecasting in Florida, especially in the summer months. Last weekend was our valid time for our forecast for Deltona, and there were a handful of outlets that unconscionably left rain out of the forecast one one or both days. Mistake. Because we stuck to our mantra, we won the forecast despite some pedestrian temperature forecasting.
Actuals: Friday – .36″ of rain in thunderstorms, High 95, low 75
Saturday – High 93, Low 75
A lot was made of the heat indices in the 110’s across a broad swath of the Plains east through the Great Lakes to the Mid-Atlantic, but Huntsville is at higher elevation, and was battling an area of low pressure that was bringing clouds to the region and some spots of rain near (but not in) Huntsville on Friday and Saturday. Temperatures, as a result, barely scraped 90. Still hot, but not as hot as it could have been. The problem was overnight, when lows were in the muggy low 70s. That’s tough, as the body can’t cool down and recharge, and is an underrated danger of heat waves. As for the verification of Thursday’s forecast, there was a quartet of forecasters on level pegging: Victoria-Weather, The Weather Channel, Accuweather and Forecast.io.
Actuals: Friday – High 90, Low 73
Saturday – High 88, Low 72