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Jim_H
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Mindless weather chit chat

Post by Jim_H » May 15 2009 8:25 pm

The endless chatter of weather.
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Reason: Requested by Jim H because of dead links
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big_load
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by big_load » Jan 22 2016 11:35 am

I'm glad the worst of it is expected to be more east and south. Even so, there I'm making waffles tomorrow and pancakes on Sunday. (Not really because of the snow, though. My stash of precooked breakfast is running low and needs topping off).

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azbackpackr
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by azbackpackr » Jan 22 2016 11:45 am

@big_load
I never cease to be astonished at the number of people who live in the East Coast area who do not have any way to keep warm if the power goes out. Just can't imagine living like that. When I lived up in Eagar we had a fireplace and a big pile of wood out in the backyard, just in case.
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big_load
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by big_load » Jan 22 2016 12:06 pm

@azbackpackr
We have a propane heater big enough to heat the living room and we keep a spare tank on hand. We could easily get through a day like that. The problem is with all the staff reductions in the energy industry, any outage is likely to last 3-7 days, and I don't want to keep a tank that big. (On a side note, the last time our power went out, the crew that restored it was from West Virginia. The time before that, it was Ohio.)

Fortunately, this storm isn't expected to be noteworthy for us. I sure wouldn't want to be in Washington, though.

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chumley
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by chumley » Jan 22 2016 12:12 pm

big_load wrote:I sure wouldn't want to be in Washington, though.
Because of the politicians?
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big_load
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by big_load » Jan 22 2016 12:17 pm

chumley wrote:
big_load wrote:I sure wouldn't want to be in Washington, though.
Because of the politicians?
There's not enough of them to bother me. It's the horrible combination of too many cars with not enough road-clearing capacity.

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Jim_H
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by Jim_H » Jan 22 2016 1:50 pm

Lovely, but slightly hazy with clouds, here in Arizona today. Shorts and a T-Shirt out at the farm.

Yup, Arizona.
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azbackpackr
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by azbackpackr » Jan 22 2016 4:10 pm

big_load wrote:too many cars with not enough road-clearing capacity.
Stay home and feed the birds!
There is a point of no return unremarked at the time in most lives. Graham Greene The Comedians
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big_load
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by big_load » Jan 23 2016 11:23 pm

The hype wasn't far off this time. Since the storm track moved 10-15 miles west of of the prediction, our forecast went from 6 inches to 18 at the last minute, but we ended up with about 26. As of news time, NYC had the third largest single snowfall in history, with about two hours of precipitation to go, an all-time record was still within reach.

A neighbor plowed our driveway in mid-afternoon, so we only have about 14 inches to clear tomorrow.

I'm glad this one didn't happen on a work day. I'm also glad the electric company spent the last three weeks trimming trees in the area.

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chumley
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by chumley » Jan 24 2016 12:31 am

The hype seemed ok for VA and WV for the most part. They seemed to drop the ball completely on the tristate area. As of yesterday they were still calling for 8-12. Then at the last minute it looked like 12-18. Ultimately, it ended up being as much or more than DC.

I can't ever remember JFK getting 27". JFK!! Not exactly a hotbed of winter snow accumulation! Impressive storm.

Must be El Niño. ;)
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big_load
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by big_load » Jan 24 2016 1:31 am

I don't view the predictions as being too far off, just a tiny difference in wind speed and direction and a little difference in how much moisture it picked up over the water.

How much snow is on the ground in Flagstaff now? It was so dry in November, but I heard a lot fell around Christmas.

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Jim_H
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by Jim_H » Jan 25 2016 7:47 am

The Bellemont webcam has maybe 6 to 8 inches of snow on the ground, but some other cams, like the one on NAU, don't have much.

The Peaks seem to have a very good pack now. Had I not been sick at the start of the month, I might have already gone, or would be headed up there to snowshoe Humphrey. I could almost go today, as the forecast dropped the call for high winds, but I am set on mid-60s in the desert. Also, after more than 2 weeks since the last storm, I would prefer to hopefully go after another decent storm, perhaps in February, and maybe on a day that isn't as cold as they are calling for today. Only low teens forecast for the 12,000' ridge top, and I am just not use to that. Either way, models are indicating a storm may be headed to the SW by the end of this coming weekend.
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chumley
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by chumley » Jan 25 2016 8:07 am

big_load wrote:a little difference in how much moisture it picked up over the water.
I view it as a pretty large margin of error when 24-hours out the forecast is for 8-12" and 24-30" ends up falling! That kind of surprise can be life-threatening.
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big_load
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by big_load » Jan 25 2016 10:46 am

chumley wrote:
big_load wrote:a little difference in how much moisture it picked up over the water.
I view it as a pretty large margin of error when 24-hours out the forecast is for 8-12" and 24-30" ends up falling! That kind of surprise can be life-threatening.
It shouldn't be that much of a surprise. I don't see it as being 16"-18" difference. It was about a 6" difference in what was predicted at the heart of the storm. The larger difference for individual areas was due where that heart passed, since the storm tracked a few miles west of predicted and continuing about 50 miles north of predicting before blowing away. That's not bad for something that moved about 800 miles and made turns of something 70 north then 50 degrees east in its last day. Just a little bit off on the strength of westerly winds can do that, and if it doesn't blow away quick enough, it picks up more moisture at the end, when half of it is over warm water.

Something else that made it harder to pin down is that it was the first big Nor'easter of the season. Storms tend to follow whatever track gets established and it tends to be stable over a time scale of months. This winter's track hasn't really set up yet, so there's recent historical basis on which to tweak the predictions.

What I find most disappointing is that while the front end of these storms is so cold, warm air gets sucked in behind them, so they're typically followed by a week of above-average highs. It was 9F this morning, but it's enough above freezing to make for unpleasant XC skiing. The next few days will be even worse.

I hope there's good XC skiing somewhere in AZ, because I doubt we'll have much this year.

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chumley
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by chumley » Jan 26 2016 8:12 am

The long-anticipated pattern shift (going on 3 weeks now) looks to be in the works for early next week. A traditional trough from the Gulf of Alaska may bring some cold rain and snow along with it. This kind of thing is completely unheard of in a typical Arizona winter, so let's not forget to credit El Niño. :y:
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Jim_H
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by Jim_H » Jan 30 2016 8:27 am

12003368_857102201038303_6561153523769027401_n.png
I like the forecast snow totals with this graphic, with potential for over 2 feet on the Peaks. If 10,000' is the approximate elevation for the 24" accumulation, that would be a nice addition to the mountain. The Peaks aren't a perfect cone, as the graphic implies, but still. I think this will be a fairly moist snow, too, which would be nice. Time will tell.
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big_load
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by big_load » Jan 30 2016 3:13 pm

How often does a forecast like that pan out?

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Jim_H
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by Jim_H » Jan 30 2016 7:12 pm

Pretty often, actually. Seems very likely unless the low shifts, but this time of year they are pretty accurate for these types of events. They did release a new graphic with some altered totals, less for the far western Rim near Williams, more for the Kaibab Plateau. Overall, pretty good, though.
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big_load
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by big_load » Jan 30 2016 8:27 pm

I was impressed by the area expecting significant snowfall in that first map. I've experienced a couple AZ snowstorms that widespread, but not a lot of them.

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Jim_H
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by Jim_H » Jan 31 2016 8:11 am

12003368_857102201038303_6561153523769027401_n.png
For your viewing pleasure, the updated snow forecast, which is still pretty decent. It does appear they trimmed it a bit from yesterday morning's AM optimistic forecast, but the Peaks still have a serious 2 footer predicted, which is great. Hopefully it pans out, but really, with the existing pack that is up there, even another foot would be a nice dressing.
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Re: El Niño's revenge.

Post by Jim_H » Feb 01 2016 8:30 pm

The accumulations proved to be less than the optimistic forecast in Flagstaff, but Snowbowl reports up to 19 inches, and there could be some more, so almost what was forecast for where it matters on the Peaks. I hope it is pretty dense, and the weather is good for mid-week. With any luck, I'll be laying fresh tracks.
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