Tag Archives: Bellingham

Lafayette, Louisiana to Bellingham, Washington

Today we embark on a lengthy, 5-day road trip from southern LA to the far reaches of the Pacific Northwest. 2,552 miles lay between us and our destination, so let’s not waste any more time!


There could be some scattered shower/thunderstorm activity developing over the region as we begin our trip this morning as has been the pattern over the last several days along the Gulf Coast. They shouldn’t affect us for very long, thankfully, as we travel away from them up towards Shreveport then continue westward into northern Texas. Most of the remainder of the day will be dry with increasing clouds as we pass by Dallas, but a chance of storms exists as we finish the day in Wichita Falls, TX.


Our trip continues a westward direction as we finish our Texas leg and push into New Mexico. Unfortuantely, the tail end of a boundary continues to linger over the Red River Valley, keeping showers and thunderstorms in the forecast for much of the day from Wichita Falls through at least Amarillo. Conditions should quiet a little bit as we pass Tucumcari, but a late evening flare up of storms could kick on our wipers as we make our way into Albuquerque for the night.


Some isolated shower could be lingering in the area when we head northwestward out of Albuquerque in the morning, but most of the morning in NM should be fairly quiet. Dry weather will continue as we pass on by the Four Corners are into southwest Colorado. Some scattered shower and thunderstorm activity will be possible again in the late afternoon/evening hours as we push into southeastern Utah, particularly as we get to Moab. Activity will dwindle during the late evening hours, however, and should be quiet as we finish in Price, UT.


High pressure building down over Southern Canada, mainly from Manitoba to Alberta, is keeping much of the diurnal monsoon thunderstorm activity down today, with isolated activity popping off only the highest areas in northern UT and western MT, with spotty activity found in N NV and S OR as well. Pretty much the entire day will be quiet weatherwise as we head by Salt Lake City and Ogden and then into southern Idaho where we’ll see Twin Falls and Boise before we finish our day in Ontario, OR, just a stone’s throw over the Snake River into Oregon.


A very quiet day is expected for the remainder of our trip as high pressure persists over the Pacific Northwest. Lots of sunshine is anticipated as we push through northeast Oregon and eventually into southern Washington near Kennewick and pass on by Yakima. The late-afternoon and evening hours will be quiet as we pass by Seattle and eventually finish our trip in Bellingham!

Packing in the precip

The west coast was raked wit ha couple of systems over the last two days, and they both struck direct hits on Bellingham, with a total of over half an inch over the two day period. Temepratures didn’t have much room to maneuver, varying only 10 degrees within the 48 hour period, owing to the persistent cloud cover. The lack of temperature fluctuation meant there was a logjam at the top of the leaderboard, with five outlets tying for the victory. The Weather Channel, Accuweather, National Weather Service, Weatherbug and WeatherNation all had different forecasts but the same net result.
Actuals: Wednesday – .26 inches of rain High 45, Low 35
Thursday – .32 inches of rain, High 41, Low 35

Grade: B

Bellingham, Washington

Good evening. Let’s head to the west coast and knock out a forecast, shall we?

At 853PM, PT, Bellingham was reporting a temperature of 41 degrees with overcast skies. There was light rain being reported at Whidbey Island to the south, and snow in the Cascades of British Columbia and Washington, where there is a winter storm warning in effect.  An area of low pressure centered near Sitka, Alaska is dangling the offending cold front along the west coast past the Olympic Peninsula.
The central pressure will remain stalled over the Alaska Panhandle, and moisture will stall along the coast, with overcast conditions around Bellingham and continued snow in the mountains. A vigorous jet streak will slide into the Pacific Northwest and cause moisture to flare up tomorrow evening and into the overnight, with some clearing for most of the day Thursday. Some of the precipitation on Wednesday will fall as wet snow.The next system forming in the North Pacific looks to take a direct shot at the Bellingham area on Friday. By Thursday evening, the leading edge of rainfall and wind will be arriving in town, with heavy rain and even some embedded thunder before midnight.
Tomorrow – Scattered rain/snow, High 44, Low 36
Thursday – Rain with isolated thunderstorms, High 45, Low 34

TWC: Tomorrow – Overcast with rain showers at times. High 44, Low 37
Thursday – Cloudy skies with periods of light rain later in the day. High 44, Low 35

AW: Tomorrow – Cloudy with occasional rain followed by a steadier rain, High 43, Low 35
Thursday – Chilly with rain at times High 45, Low 35

NWS: Tomorrow – Rain and snow showers likely before 10am, then rain likely. Mostly cloudy, High 43, Low 36
Thursday – A slight chance of rain and snow before 10am, then rain likely. Mostly cloudy High 44, Low 35

WB: Tomorrow – Mostly cloudy. A chance for rain and snow showers in the morning, then a chance of rain and snow in the afternoon. High 41, Low, 35
Thursday – Mostly cloudy. A slight chance of rain and snow in the morning, then a slight chance of rain in the afternoon. Snow level near sea level in the morning. High 42, Low 34

WN: Tomorrow – Cloudy with light rain, High 43, Low 36
Thursday – Mostly cloudy with light wintry mix likely, High 43, Low 36

FIO: Tomorrow – Light rain starting in the morning. High 41, Low  36
Thursday – Light rain starting in the morning, continuing until evening. High 45, Low 35

So there you have it. Pretty dreary for Bellingham. We can see rain on radar already south of Bellingham. More to come!

A few drops

Bellingham was at the very southwestern cusp of precipitation on Memorial Day, and there was certainly a great deal of disagreement on whether or not it even would rain. In the end though, the area of low pressure in the Yakima Valley was strong enough to cycle moisture through the Rockies, across the Vancouver Channel and into far northwest Washington. The temperatures didn’t separate our forecasters, but the precip forecast gave Weatherbug a leg up on the competition.
Actuals: Monday – .04 inches of rain, High 62, Low 52
Tuesday – High 70, Low 55

Grade: B-D

Lewiston, Idaho to Bellingham, Washington

My, if this isn’t an interesting drive, one not often dreamt up in a place like this. We are going from Idaho to Washington, though that just requires a quick river crossing. What will be more impressive is the 6 hours it takes to cross the state. In total, the one day journey will cover almost exactly 400 miles at a pace of a mere 59.4mph. Hitch the wagons and tally-ho!

A developing low over the Yakima valley will make the typically dry eastern Washington area a little damper than is usual. On Memorial Day itself, much of the heavy rain will be near Spokane, so some of that may filter south towards Colfax before we turn east. It’s always a little turbulent when driving through coastal ranges when there is a system in the area, so grab the steering while tight around the Cascades. There will be some overcast, and maybe a spit of rain in Bellingham.

Bellingham, Washington

Still in the Pacific Northwest today, but more Pacific, more Northwest.

At 553PM, PT, Bellingham was reporting a temperature of 61 degrees with clear skies. An on shore flow had filled the Puget Sound with low clouds, though it hasn’t built as far north as Bellingham or Vancouver as yet. A directional trough with little flow through it was angled towards the region, though the slight instability was more than enough to drag Pacific Moiture into the region.
After today, however, the center of low pressure will become centralized over the Yakima Valley, and will pivot between there and Glacier National Parkthrough the forecast period. With this being the focal point, and the Gulf open to the point that moisture was wrapping into western Canada, the inland Pacific Northwest will be much more active than usual,. Models agree that one lobe of moisture will pivot through coastal British Columbia tomorrow, but by Tuesday, most of the activity will be foud east of the Cascades.
Tomorrow – Chance of showers in the afternoon, otherwise mostly cloudy, High 65, Low 53
Tuesday – Mostly sunny, High 68, Low 52

TWC: Tomorrow – Cloudy, High 65, Low 52
Tuesday – Partly cloudy, High 68, Low 53

AW: Tomorrow – Pleasant with variable cloudiness High 65, Low 52
Tuesday – Pleasant with areas of low clouds early; otherwise, mostly sunny High 68, Low 52

NWS: Tomorrow – A chance of drizzle before 11am. Mostly cloudy High 64, Low 53
Tusday – Partly sunny, High 65, Low 53

WB: Tomorrow – Cloudy in the morning then becoming partly sunny. A chance of drizzle in the morning. High 64, Low 52
Tuesday – Cloudy in the morning then becoming partly sunny. A chance of drizzle in the morning. High 66, low 53

WN: Tomorrow – Mostly Cloudy with Chance of Light Drizzle High 63, Low 52
Tuesday – Partly Cloudy High 63, Low 52

FIO: Tomorrow – Mostly cloudy throughout the day. High 64, Low 50
Tuesday – Mostly cloudy throughout the day. High 65, Loe 49

Not terribly drizzly, I don’t think, and I almost left it out of the forecast. Here is a look at the soup that has filled Puget Sound.

Clear as a Bellingham

Clouds and rain were indeed on the menu in Bellingham on Tuesday. It was only a little bit of drizzle, but enough to verify the forecasts of those who called for rain. Temperature forecasts were pretty good across the board, as there wasn’t much variation through the day. The real problems came on Wednesday. Skies cleared out fairly early, and temperatures, expected by some to be cooler than they were on Tuesday, actually climbed a few degrees and outpaced every forecast. The clear skies then led to a significant drop in temperature. Those that called for non-standard days were correct, but they didn’t anticipate just how much it would cool off. Temepratures ended up in the mid-30s. Accuweather and the Weather Service collected the top forecast for the day.
Actuals: Tuesday – .03 inches of rain, High 52, Low 44
Wednesday – High 55, Low 35

Grade: B – D

Bloomington, Indiana to Bellingham, Washington

It took a long time, but the active clipper pattern finally turned into a massive Nor’easter out east. We were able to track it from the upper Midwest and Great Lakes all the way through the Ohio Valley to its present state, where it is crushing the east coast. Let’s see if we can find any other clippers or looming disasters on the way from Bloomington to Bellingham. It’s a 5 day, 2402 mile journey. The 5th day will be shorter than the first 4, which will cover 512 miles. Our pace will be about 64mph. Let’s rock and roll.

DAY ONE (Tuesday)
This is fun. You know that nasty, historic storm headed for New England? Well, it’s being chased out by a pretty strong ridge. It will be cool in Bloomington as we leave, and we may even be under a fine dusting of recent snowfall, and it could be a little cool as we head northwest through Illinois, but we will pass into the surface thermal ridge around the Quad Cities, and rather than temperatures cooling off after sunset, they may even sneak up as we head west West Des Moines, Iowa.

DAY TWO (Wednesday)
There will indeed be another wave moving into the northern Plains as we head west through South Dakota. The best news of all, though, is that on Wednesday, this wave will only draw warm air north, as opposed to bringing precipitation to our route. There will be a splash of rain out in the Black Hills very late in the day, but our day will be marked by unseasonably warm temperatures and partly cloudy skies. Winds could get a little brisk, so keep an eye out for swaying semi trailers. We will nearly make it to Wyoming by the end of the day, stopping in North Spearfish, South Dakota.

DAY THREE (Thursday)
That system over the northern Plains, the one that will kick up some light precip over the Black Hills Wednesday night will indeed blossom over the Great Lakes, and then move into New England as a decent snowmaker in New England late in the week. For us, hardly a thing. By the time we get going Thursday, there won’t be anything to worry about. Time to don the jacket though, as it will be a bit cooler through Wyoming and eastern Montana. We’ll make it to Livingston, which is in the south central part of Big Sky country.

DAY FOUR (Friday)
A wave will be moving through Canada, and a deep system setting up over the Four Corners will be impacting the Rockies rather significanty on Friday. Between those two features lie the northern Rockies and interior Pacific Northwest. We shouldn’t have any problems, save for fog in the Spokane Valley, and we will make our way to Warden, Washington, without really struggling with anything beyond visibility and elevation.

DAY FIVE (Saturday)
We’ll be arriving along the Puget Sound at an opportune time. For once, there won’t be a Pacific system slamming into the coast, not at the time we head from Seattle north to Bellingham. Kick back and relax and enjoy a pleasant day of mostly cloudiness with little chance for drizzle. That’s a good day in western Washington in the winter! Especially when New England willj ust be getting done with another snow storm.

Bellingham, Washington

We’re going clear to the other side of the country from a massive system slamming New England. Let’s check out the situation on the west coast and see if we can’t catch some other outlets sleeping.

At 753PM, PT, Bellingham was reporting a temperature of 46 degrees with dense fog and low clouds. A weak ridge has moved over Puget Sound, leading to a persistent, unwavering inversion over the north end of the sound, Everywhere from Victoria to Bellingham was seeing the dense fog.Further to the south and north, dew points were slightly depressed and winds weren’t off the Sound, and fog was not as dense.
As the tail of a jet departs the region, overall flow will become westerly off the Pacific Ocean. This will help to eliminate the inversion, but it will render the region cloudier at higher levels, with some showers in the higher terrain to the east of town. Temperatures will continue to be cool.
Tomorrow – Cloudy, High 52, Low 45
Wednesday – Cloudy, High 49, Low 40

TWC: Tomorrow – Cloudy, High 52, Low 46
Wednesday – Mostly sunny, Highh 52, Low 40

AW: Tomorrow – Mostly cloudy with a bit of rain; areas of fog in the morning High 52, Low 44
Wednesday – Mostly cloudy Mostly Cloudy, High 53, Low 41

NWS: Tomorrow – A 40 percent chance of rain. Cloudy, High 52, Low 44
Wednesday – Mostly cloudy High 54, Low 42

WB: Tomorrow – Cloudy with a chance of rain High 52, Low 42
Wednesday – Mostly cloudy.High 53, Low 42

WN: Tomorrow – Mostly Cloudy with Scattered Showers High 52, Low 43
Wednesday – Partly cloudy, High 52, Low 43

FIO: Tomorrow – Mostly cloudy throughout the day. High 49, Low 44
Wednesday – Partly cloudy throughout the day. High 48, Low 41

I feel it’s necessary to point out the NWS, Weatherbug, WeatherNation and Forecast.io are calling for calling for non standard days tomorrow. That’s something. Here is the fog imager, showing some bright spots up by our forecast site.

Bellingham, Washington to Washington, DC

Cross country road trips usually take a full doggoned week, and this trip is no different. Expect 5 1/2 days to cover the 2850 miles between western Washington and…. Washington. So much time on interstates will mean a travel pace of a delightful 64mph. This means that the 5 full days will be through after about 512 miles. We have some ground to cover, so let’s be on our way.

DAY ONE (Friday)
We head from the Puget Sound, south through Seattle and then off into the wilderness of the Cascades and the Pacific Northwest to begin our cross country trip. We will be racing to beat a Pacific cold front attempting to come ashore in Washington tomorrow. As we head up through the Cascades, we will likely see some clouds, fog and showers, but when we start heading back down into the Yakima Valley, it will clear out. Clear skies will continue to prevail through the Chimney of Idaho and to Tarkio, Montana, where we will end the day. If you don’t know, Tarkio is about 40 miles west of Missoula.

DAY TWO (Saturday)
Flow will come sweeping gently down the Rocky Mountains, providing a bit of a Chinook wind effect, and raising temperatures to something fairly comfortable for this time of year in Montana. We will cover most of the state with our trekking on Saturday, ending the day in rural Hathawaym which is barely there, west of Miles City.

DAY THREE (Sunday)
It’s almost unforgiving how straight I-93 is through North Dakota. At least for the first couple of days, the road twists and turns through the Mountains, and even has to swing south to hook up with Billings in Montana, but essentially as soon as we cross into North Dakota, it’s a straight shot across the state. We will make it the whole way across North Dakota free of anything particularly frightening climatically, and make it to Barnesville, Minnesota, which is about 25 miles southeast of Fargo.

DAY FOUR (Monday)
It’s way too early in the year to be calling it this, but there is sort of an Alberta Clipper forecast to swing out of the Canadian Prairies into the Great Lakes over the weekend into early next week. The drive between Barnesville and the Twin Cities shouldn’t be an issue, but we could start to encounter the back end of this system by the time we pass through Eau Claire, Wisconsin. it won’t be much, just overcast skies and drizzle, but it will be the first precipitation we will have seen since the Cascades. We’ll stop in Janesville for the night.

DAY FIVE (Tuesday)
That wave will still be attempting to pull out of the Great Lakes as we drive through the region. Conditions are expected to be clear as we get started, and should remain so through Chicago, but clouds will make their way back into the picture as we reach South Bend. By the time we hit the Ohio border, drizzle will have already begun to enter the scene. Light rain, nothing too terribly heavy, but certainly persistent, will dominate the drive through Ohio. We will nearly make it thorough the Buckeye State, ending in North Lima, about 10 miles from the border.

DAY 6 (Wednesday)
The system will continue to spiral out to sea overnight, and driving through the mountains of western Pennsylvania should be a scenic treat. When we clear the mountains, however, the Potomac Valley will still be socked in. Clouds and showers look to hang on through the early afternoon, meaning it will be tough to see even the Wsahington Monument from great distances.