Dial “O” for rain; Odile that is

Unless the younger folks watch Turner Classic Movies or something like that, they will be clueless about what ther the reference to “dialing” is in the title.  Oh, well.  Heck, who even remembers what a Walkman was these days?

The heavy cloud shield of TS Odile is moving in with some light, spotty rain hereabouts right now.  It will be interesting to see if today’s rain amounts to anything.  Seems it could be a very Seattle-like rain day with those heavy layer clouds over us (Nimbostratus/Altostratus) and intermittent very light rain all day.  Boring!  (Is “boring” with an exclamation mark an oxymoron of sorts?)

NWS is excited about Odile, as any meteorologist not having snow in his veins would be,  and have posted some daily rainfall records for this week. Of course, we’ve already set some rainfall records for September; can it happen again?  They seem to be concerned about that possibility.  Many of those September records, as many of you will remember I am sure, were associated with tropical storm Norma that busted into Arizona in early September 1970 as you will see1.  Workman Creek got 11 inches in one day back then.  You can read about Norma’s doings here and whether the NWS forecasts were adequate.

The meteorological situation was very different with Norma, and that may be why we precipophiliacs could be “disappointed” by rain amounts with Odile–Norma had help from the configuration aloft; Odile not so much.  However, in the days following Odile’s passage, that upper level trigger does fall into place over southern Cal, and we’ll have to watch out for some big thunderstorms in the couple of days AFTER Odile goes by when that upper level trigger (trough) still has some tropical air to work with. So, some really “interesting” weather ahead, the kind of weather we’ve forgotten can happen here in the many droughty years we’ve had lately.

Here, just hoping for some nice steady rains, not just sprinkles, that add up to something significant like a half an inch or more, keeping the desert green that bit longer, and maybe, some good scattered thunderstorms for a few days after the big cloud shield of Mr. Odile fades away.  That will pretty much do it for our summer rain season I’m afraid.

Now, since we don’t like to do work that can be done better by others, these ones and this one, for example, so on to yesterday’s pretty cloud pictures.  (Can’t get over the thought  I might be disappointed in Odile’s rain here, expectations not real high, so don’t want to express them and make you a little sad; keeping a lid on thoughts of a big Odile rain for Catalina, don’t want to get too manic, etc.)  Will just lay back and enjoy it…whatever comes.

Yesterday’s clouds2

10:00 AM.  Cumulus development looked promising in the mid-day hours, but none over the Cat Mountains produced ice.  Was surprised that didn't happen.
10:00 AM. Cumulus development looked promising in the mid-day hours, but none over the Cat Mountains produced ice. Was surprised that didn’t happen.  Note glistening rocks dur to the recent rains.
Ann2 DSC_000811:59 AM. Towering Cumulus and Cumulonimbus clouds begin lining the International border. Warning: adult commentary included in photo, the kind you see every day on TEEVEE.



1:18 PM. High cloud shield from Odile’s advance creeps over Tucson from the south. Cumulonimbus clouds can be seen in the extreme distance.

4:06 PM. Cirrus and Altostratus have overspread the sky, and the darkening to the S-SW looks ominous in view of Odile’s approach after wrecking southern Baja.


Followed by a great sunset, one deserving of more than one example.  No details, just enjoy.

DSC_0034 DSC_0035 DSC_0045 DSC_0052 DSC_0066

 The End


1The present Arthur was in Durango starting his first job as a weather forecaster for the great Colorado River Basin Pilot Project, a randomized cloud seeding experiment,  when Norma’s remains hit and flooded the Animas River there.  I was inside a vaudeville theater listening to the rain pound on the roof, the audience of that melodrama, too, distracted a time or two, and also being distracted by Durango school teacher, Janet James,  whom I had taking a liking to.  She was there that night, too, but not with me.  Wonder what happened to her?

2 Caution: one photo is annotated with adult humor.