“Back door man”, synoptically speaking

Who can forget Jim Morrisey and the Doors, and their raw, lusty,  “Back Door Man“?  Speaking of weather, though, and lows going the wrong way, that is, sneaking in the “back door” as it were, check out this forecast from the Canadian model for the next 24-26 h, an upper level low comes back over us from the EAST!  First, its over Las Cruces, NM (last night at 5 PM AST), and then, as in a shell game, its over there! On top of Nogales, at 5 AM tomorrow morning!

This is great because as the little center retrogrades back over us, with the little water it has in it, we are guaranteed moderate temperatures that will delay the burning out of our wildflower bloom, 2) virtually guaranteed nice sunsets with a few scattered Cumulus clouds around today and tomorrow, 3) will say it again, they should be virgae-ing here and there (snowflakes falling out), 4) Virgae means one or two drops could land on the ground in Catalinaland, perhaps benefitting an ant colony somewhere, 5) but you always hope for a busted forecast in these situations, some errant injection of moisture that will lead to a real shower.  Its not out of the question in these situations, but you’ll have to be watching since I won’t be expecting it.  You’re on your own, especially tomorrow.

The best part of this odd movement?  All the rain that will fall in drought stricken regions like New Mexico and Texas.  Yay!

From the University of Washington Huskies’ Weather Department, this link showing what the moisture pattern looks like over us and the rest of the US.  In this loop you can see how complicated the atmospheric motions are because you are looking not just at the clouds, but also moisture in the air even where the skies are clear.  Enjoy.   And you can also appreciate how darn hard it is for a computer model to get all of this right.   You will see that a moist tongue of air is feeding into our low from the northeast.  By tomorrow, it should have wrapped all the way around, and with luck, a blob of showers somewhere in AZ.  Doesn’t look like it will be here, but rather to the north of us.   Let’s hope this thought is WRONG.   I love being wrong when I think it might be dry!

 The weather ahead model dreamland

The longer term 10-15 day forecasts continue to have a couple of rains here in Catalina.  Rain is indicated on the 17th, 19-20th, and 24th.  This from the Weather Research Forecast model (WRF) -Global Forecast System (GFS) usually pronounced “Werf-Goofus” for those forecasts beyond about a week, which the last few are.  Don’t count on them except in our dreams for now so why did I even mention them?  I like dreaming about what could be.

Yesterday’s clouds

They really wasn’t what was expected yesterday from this viewpoint, scattered small Cumulus, some with virga.  Here’s what we did see, the second photo showing that there actually was one by Flagstaff: