All’s not quiet on the western front

Rain beginning to pile up again in Cal as behemoth Pac storm moves in.   See an actual, professional level weather map below, not a mickey mouse one.  It will be good for you to see a complex weather map with all kinds of weather symbolia on it:

Surface weather map with satellite overlay from the University of Washington Huskies Weather Department.
Surface weather map with satellite overlay from the University of Washington Huskies Weather Department.  High clouds from this storm are already above Catalina!

0.01 inches at Opids Camp, LA area mountain site, already (at 5:30 AM AST) out of predicted by C-M of 10 inches or so in the next 24 h;  highest totals somewhere in central and southern Cal mountains likely between 10 and 20 inches for this one storm!   California dreamin’1?   Will keep you posted if I am right.

Here?

Really tough to forecast more than an inch in one winter’s day in a desert.  Goes against the grain and the cactus, for that matter.  Thought I would get some help from the great U of AZ Beowulf Cluster, but its still crunching the 11 PM AST data away as I write here at 5:30 AM.  So, can’t wait for a really accurate answer.  You should go there, though to get one….

Being crude, then, and I mean using a model with a huge grid spacing compared to that of the U of AZ Cluster model, the Canadian GEM indicates about 36 h of rain, 5 AM AST tomorrow to about 5 PM on Sunday, and even at a average of 0.05 inches over that time, you get 1.80 inches!  Good grief.  So, maybe now that BIG forecast by a BIG atmos sci faculty member at Colo State, “1.5 to 2 inches”, might be right, closer than my dinky 1 inch max forecast of yesterday.  Its great to be wrong when you under forecast precip, but that’s about the only time!

Higher resolution US WRF-GFS mod run from 5 PM AST last evening has fewer hours of precip, BTW, partly because it DOES resolve the forecast in 6 h blocks, not 12 h ones like the crude Canadian model.

Also, the winds above us, being more westerly than southerly during the coming storm, is better for us here in Catalina.  Deep southerly flows have to go over Pusch Ridge, and rain can be diminished locally that bit due to the downslope effect off the Ridge.  Won’t have that tomorrow and Sunday, so that’s a plus.

The cut to the chase:  minimum from this typewriter now HAS to be much higher than 0,25 inches as was indicated previously.  Will go to 0.75 inches as the LEAST we’ll get (things don’t go well, main bands just miss Catalina, etc), with 1.5 inches as max by Sunday evening 5 PM.

Will not mention this forecast again, of course, if the rain in Catalina is outside these limits.

Yesterday’s clouds

Nice patterns and nice small Cu yesterday with great visibility again.

1:53 PM  Finely granulated, and with a bit of color (iridescence) Cirrocumulus.  Here, the Cc is at mid-levels, not at Cirrus levels.  In our cloud classification scheme, which is a little funky, its only the tiny granulations that make it Cc and not Altocumulus.  Happens a lot.
1:53 PM Finely granulated, and with a bit of color (iridescence) Cirrocumulus. Here, the Cc is at mid-levels, not at Cirrus levels. In our cloud classification scheme, which is a little funky, its only the tiny granulations that make it Cc and not Altocumulus. Happens a lot.

 

5:13 PM. Delicate Cirrus uncinus (hooked Cirrus).
5:13 PM. Delicate Cirrus uncinus (hooked Cirrus).

 

6:18 PM.  Sunset Cirrus uncinus, so pretty.
6:18 PM. Sunset Cirrus uncinus, so pretty.

The End, except for a little peak at Opids Camp rain  just now…  Wow, was just 0.01 when I looked at the 3 AM ob, and at  6 AM is already over an inch!

Hope, too, you caught the beautiful sunrise just now.  Will reprise it tomorrow.

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1Some of you will instantly recall the initial words to this pop tune:

“All the leaves are brown, and the sky is gray, I went walkin’ for awhile on a winter’s day.”

These words were inserted after the “Mamas and the Papas” poke at LA smog in the original words were deemed by producers as less desirable in seeking a commercial hit.  The original words that the song began with, before it was commercialized,  were”  “All the leaves are gray, and the sky is brown”, words that might offend Californians.  Thought you’d like to know.

BTW, this video above is a PERFECT paradigm for this year’s sunny, warm and dry weather in the West, and the brutal winter back East.  Take a look!  Its great!