Muncie, Indiana to Yakima, Washington

While neither scity at the end points of this road trip are typically through of as tourist destinations, a late summer drive along this route would be quite interesting. There will be praries and mountains and valleys and national parks all along the way for us to stretch our legs and enjoy. We are in for a 4 day trek covering 2187 miles. We’ll just be quartering up the days, so our approximately 68mph pace will mean a daily goal of about 547 miles.


DAY ONE (Saturday)

Unusually cool air is expected to develop behind a cold front moving out of the Great Lakes, setting up the terrible pattern of being cool when you get into the car, but too warm after driving with the sun beating down on you. Do you turn on the AC? Roll down a window? Heaven for bid you try to take off a layer while driving through central Illinois. A developing system in the central Plains will kick some clouds and warmer air north late in the day, but we will stay dry to start the weekend, stopping in Rudd in northeastern Iowa to finish our first of four days.

DAY TWO (Sunday)
That developing system in the central Plains is going to be a heck of a rain maker in Missouri and southern Iowa this weekend. As we get going, some of that might bleed into Rudd, and stay with us during the first leg of Sunday’s drive to Mason City. Unlike driving in the wake of the feature on Saturday, we will not be blessed with dry air and clear skies. Instead, expect moisture to wrap into the still developing upper level trough behind the leading edge of the feature, leading to cooling clouds and rain showers. This is a broad, open trough, and these clouds and showers will stay with us all the way to Wicksville, South Dakota, between Wall and Rapid City. This will be our stop to conclude the weekend. Hope the sleeping bag is warm!

DAY THREE (Monday)
One other difference between the Day One Great Lakes low and the Day two Plains low, is that the high pressure behind the trough will be much stronger in the northern High Plains. Expect it to settle in and keep things mostly sunny, dry and increasingly warm from Wicksville to Whitehall in southwestern Montana.

DAY FOUR (Tuesday)
There was a lot of rain in the High Plains this week, but the Pacific Northwest will remain completely dry through the 4 days we are headed out towards Yakima. The central Valley will remain very hot as we move in, and it will continue to be quite smoky throughout the region, as there is a continue threat for wildfire initiation to go along with the fires that are already raging. It will be hot and smoky in Yakima, so maybe find a spot with a good air filtration system.

Yakima, Washington

Without getting too deep into things right away, I can tell you one thing for sure about Yakima for the ext couple of days: it’s going to be hot.

At 953PM, PT, Yakima was reporting a temperature of 75 degrees with clear skies and smoke, thanks to some wildfires in the area, born of the near record breaking heat of the last several days. The most notable fire upwind from Yakima was in the Cascades outside of Portland.
Over the next few days, the thermal ridge doesn’t look like it is going to deteriorate any time soon, however the ridge aloft looks to dampen slightly over the next couple of days. This will lead to some increased westerly flow, which may bring a dose of mid level moisture, and a little bit of relief during the heating of the day.
Tomorrow – Sunny, High 102, Low 66
Saturday – Partly cloudy, HIgh 99, Low 66

TWC: Tomorrow – Sunny skies. High 105, Low 68
Saturday – Sunny skies. High 100, Low 68

AW: Tomorrow – Very hot and smoky with hazy sun; extreme heat may be dangerous for outdoor activities High 104, Low 64
Saturday – Hazy sunshine and very hot; extreme heat may be dangerous for outdoor activities High 99, Low 65

NWS: Tomorrow – Widespread haze. Patchy smoke. Sunny and hot, High 103, Low 61
Saturday – Widespread haze after 11am. Areas of smoke. Sunny and hot,  High 100, Low 65

WB: Tomorrow – Sunny. Haze with patchy smoke High 102, Low 66
Saturday – Mostly sunny, Areas of smoke through the day, High 98, Low 67

WN: Tomorrow – Sunny with haze. High 102, Low 61
Saturday – Partly cloudy with areas of smoke, High 100, Low 64

FIO: Tomorrow – Clear throughout the day. High 99, Low 70
Saturday – Clear throughout the day. High 94, Low 66

So it’s not much relief, but it is a little bit cooler this weekend. Still, I think heavy use of the air conditioner is in order. Satellite shows a big area of subsidence over the Pacific Northwest.

Coming soon…

It’s going to be a cool week this week in the east, and with near record breaking heat on the west coast. Will we find a common ground soon?

Cincinnati, Ohio

Manchester, New Hampshire

Road Trip from Manchester to San Jose, California

Ann Arbor, Michigan

July forecaster of the Month

It always seems like a slow month here, but once again, we pumped out 12 forecasts, which isn’t bad. Also not bad, the competition. There was a tie at the top, with a half a point separating those two from third place, The Weather Channel. It came down to the very end, but Victoria-Weather was able to catch up to the National Weather Service, and we will both end up having to share this trophy.

Baked Potatoes

Late last week, we took a hard look at Boise, where rain had cleared out, and hot dry air was on its way into the Sun Valley. We all knew the hoot air was coming, but even given that, nobody was quite warm enough, with highs of 99 and 103. Forecast.io was closest, though, with highs in their forecast of 97 and 103. Almost there!
Actuals: Friday – High 99, Low 69
Saturday – High 103, Low 68

Grade: A-D

A dose of autumn in August

Usually in the summer, we see a lot of thunderstorm activity over the Plains, and the eastern Seaboard, but for the beginning of August, we can look forward to an alternative forecast, at least for a few days. The CPC is forecasting temperatures to be below normal, perhaps substantially so in the southern Plains

Don’t get too excited over this chilly spell, and for the time of year, it will be chilly, the forecast for the region for the month of August is for slightly warmer than normal temperatures. Given the fact that a big chunk of the middle of the country is going to experience a chill early in the month, you can only imagine what kind of a warm up the country is in for (relative to average) later in the month.

Snow in Wyoming?

If there was any snow in Wyoming yesterday into this morning, it would have fallen in the highest terrain, without any real observations. I haven’t seen any news reports about this snow as of yet, so it may not have verified, but it is still very unusual to even see a forecast for snow anywhere in the Lower 48 for July!

The system that would have brought the necessary moisture to the region has already shifted into the Plains.

Weather Wayback…. Always in Longview

It seems as though Anthony is the only one to ever forecast in Longview, and this Eastertime forecast was the second in a row that he did that we looked at a verification a few months later. It was something of a secret because of a certificate issue with Weather Underground, the best almanac for historical weather on the web. I figured it out, though, and saw that Easter did turn out to be wonderful in east Texas. There was a threat for some isolated thunderstorm activity in the area, but it held off until Monday, and even then was light enough that it certainly didn’t ruin anyone’s day. Victoria-Weather was the only outlet with a proper precip prognostication, but Weatherbug had a spot on temperature forecast, earning a victory in this weather wayback.
Actuals: April 16th, High 84, Low 65
April 17th – Trace of rain, High 80, Low 67

Grade B-C

Pueblo, Colorado to Boise, Idaho

There isn’t much of a direct route between Pueblo and Boise, so despite a somewhat short distance between the two cities as the crow flies, it will take nearly two full days to cover the distance between the towns in the car, covering 936 miles. We’ll move at a pace of 67.6mph, or in other words, we’ll cover 541 miles on Sunday’s drive.

DAY ONE (Sunday)

High pressure in the Plains is working to shove a whole lot of moisture right up against the Rockies this weekend, and after some widespread showers and thunderstorms today, there will be more isolated showers and storms tomorrow. There could be some rain as we head north along the Front Range, with the best chance for coming south of the Palmer Divide, but most of the thunder will wait until later in the day, after we have made a westward turn at Laramie, Wyoming. After Laramie, we won’t have any weather issues, stopping near Evanston in the southwest corner for the night.

DAY TWO (Monday)
Expect hot and dry conditions to continue to build through the day on Monday. Triple digits will be possible in the valleys, but fortunately, upper level ridging should do a good job of stamping out too much wind across the region, which will limit the dust and threat for spreading wildfires. Nevertheless, expect to pull into Boise with an immediate need for a glass of water.

Boise, Idaho

Boise is a tough town to forecast for, as they all are in the mountains. It’s isolation in southwestern Idaho only makes it tougher, because there isn’t really a good comparable town. Let’s see what’s going on.

At 1053PM, MT, Boise was reporting a temperature of 80 degrees with clear skies. Temperatures remained warm throughout the Sun Valley even at this late hour, with dew points into the mid 50s as near by as Caldwell. Clear skies and dew points that warm indicate a chance for some fog early tomorrow morning.
A weak upper level trough is moving through the northern Rockies, and while it won’t bring much change to Boise, it will bring a little. There will be some isolated thunderstorms in the higher terrain northeast of Boise, which will add some isolated clouds to the picture. In the wake of more robust, widespread thunderstorms earlier in the week, things will dry out, and the added sunshine will lead to very warm temperatures, with a shot at 100 on Saturday.
Tomorrow – Sunny, High 97, Low 68
Saturday – High 100, Low 67

TWC: Tomorrow – Sunny skies. High 98, Low 67
Saturday – Sunny skies. High 100, Low 68

AW: Tomorrow – Sunny and Hot, High 98, Low 66
Saturday – Mostly sunny and hot, High 100, Low 67

NWS: Tomorrow – Sunny and hot High 95, Low 59
Saturday – Sunny and hot High 97, Low 63

WB: Tomorrow – Sunny, High 96, Low 66
Saturday – Sunny, High 98, Low 68

WN: Tomorrow – Sunny, High 95, Low 63
Saturday – Mostly sunny, High 97, Low 64

FIO: Tomorrow – Clear throughout the day. High 97, Low 68
Saturday – Partly cloudy starting in the evening. High 103, Low 68

Man, that’s hot. There are only two of us calling for triple digits though. Look how empty satellite is.

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