As much rain as I can find

Those models have been titillating Arizonans with lots of rain in the coming days, but unlike most prize-winning1 meteorologists, I am going to only show you those with the most rain, rather than those in which the rain is skimpy,  not impressive, like the latest model run from last night.

This is because I want you to start your day in a good mood, not a bad one.  The summer-style rains in the area don’t return until about Thursday, but you probably already know that from TEEVEE weatherpersons2.  Then those rains go on for a few days.

Here’s the BEST of the model predictions, well, two of them, from IPS MeteoStar, whose renditions of the US WRF-GOOFUS model I favor.

Now the first one is a model prediction that’s a couple of days old, the second two are only about 24 h old, having originated with yesterday’s 11 AM global data! The last two have rains of two inches in 12 h predicted in AZ, one center of that rain is just about over Sutherlands Heights/Catalina!   Pretty excited and am glad I could find it for you.


Valid Monday night at 11 PM AST, September 8th. Well, it may not be “valid” anymore, but this is about as large an area of rain moving into Arizona as you will find in a model output, so its pretty great to savor.

Valid Sunday night at 11 PM, September 7th from a later model run. Note the purple spot on Mt. Lemmon, indicating about 2 inches of rain in 12 h.  Tropical low sits off Baja, and spurts NE into AZ after this map.

Valid at 11 AM, September 10th. That tropical storm remnant is now over Arizona producing a lot of rain, though the major portion is just west of us.


Now those last two panels of rain are due to a strange situation. A tropical storm brings a surge of showers into Arizona as it passes off Baja heading for death in the cold waters to the NW. But then it stalls, goes in circles for awhile, and comes shooting up into Arizona bring the rain shown in the last panel!  So, we get TWO rains from the same storm!

What are the chances this strange storm track will actually happen? Virtually none. But “virtually” none is not all NONE, to paraphrase a memorable line in Princess Bride, so there IS hope that major September rains WILL occur in Catalina/Sutherland Heights in the 10 days ahead.   I’m counting on it.  Waxing rain gauge now so that drops slip easily down the funnel and into the smaller measuring tube.  Be sure to at least wipe the dust off the larger collecting funnel before these major rains hit so that “no drop is left behind”, again paraphrasing something I heard somewhere.

Expecting 1-2 inches during the 7 days beginning this Thursday, with outside chances of it being even MORE.  I love predicting a lot of rain for a desert, so you’ll have to take that into account. If you’re upset at this disclosure,  being kind of crybaby, and want really good “objective” forecasting with great graphics, then go to Bob M or the NWS!  To HELL with you!

The End.


1It was a consolation prize in cloud seeding studies3, i.e., not that great,  that we (Peter Hobbs and I got) like winning the main prize would be.  Kind of fits in with my athletic “prizes”;  all second team this, all second team that, honorable mention this, etc.

2Some of these “weatherpersons” have not been well trained, and have been “on air”
(!) referring to sprinkles of rain as “drizzle.”  Unbelievable.  No university-trained meteorologist would make such an ignominious error, unless of course, they skipped classes in cloud microphysics.

3My role in getting that prize was due to finding fault in the work of others rather than contributing solutions to problems.






By Art Rangno

Retiree from a group specializing in airborne measurements of clouds and aerosols at the University of Washington (Cloud and Aerosol Research Group). The projects in which I participated were in many countries; from the Arctic to Brazil, from the Marshall Islands to South Africa.