Hydrometeors shower down on Catalina

Note redundancy in title.  A “meteor” is already going down, so you don’t need the word “down.”  Hahaha.

They were small drops, some were as small as drizzle-sized (500 microns in diameter or smaller) and too far apart to be called an occurrence of “drizzle”, but they fell throughout Catalina allowing Catalinans to register a trace of rain yesterday, a trace that was not predicted by the best model we have around these parts just hours before the “rain” occurred.   It’s not clear what the benefit of a trace of precipitation is, but we are sure some ants and other insects were made quite happy yesterday as a virga from a higher level snowstorm spit out a few drops.

Drops that reach the ground in these kinds of situations are due to melted aggregates or clusters of single snow crystals locked together that most people would call “snowflakes.”  Single crystals can never make to the ground on a day like yesterday.   And, “yep”, that “fog” you saw drooping down on the Catalinas from time to time yesterday afternoon was due to light snow.

No Catalina, Arizona,  rain in US mod forecasts through the next 15 days (!–just horrible) as the US models  continue to evaporate rain chances on the 6th-8th.  A few days ago the system going by then was supposed to bring a substantial rain to most of Arizona.  Now its just a dry trough passage in the model, like at watering trough1 with a hole in the bottom.   Phooey.

Oddly, the Canadian model, which first calculated a bust for rain here on the 6th-8th when the US model had lots, now has MORE rain in it near us here in Catalina on the 6th-7th than the lugubrious US model.  The US model  has NO RAIN whatsoever in the WHOLE State of Arizona ending on the morning of the 7th!  How odd is that?

Below is the salubrious Canadian depiction for Arizona rain by the morning of the 7th, a rain that could be good for health of all of us and our desert:

Valid at 5 AM February 7th.  Ttrough is already past us, but the Canadians believe that widespread rain will have occurred in Arizona during the prior 12 h as the trough went overhead.   No such widespread rain in US model based on the same global dataset, the one based on 5 PM AST obs yesterday.
Valid at 5 AM February 7th. The upper level trigger for clouds and rain, a trough, is already past us and in western New Mexico, but the Canadians believe that widespread rain will have occurred in Arizona as it went by during the prior 12 h !  See lower right hand panel green and blue areas;  use microscope.

Its interesting how you still can remember with fondness those people who affected your life so much, even if for a short time.

Below, after an important aside, your cloud day picture jumble, one that began with a brief, but memorable sunrise “bloom”, and one that also ended with great sunset color on the Catalinas.

7:23 AM.  Sunrise over the Catalinas.
7:23 AM. Sunrise over the Catalinas.
3:14 PM.  Dog and virga.
3:14 PM. Dog and virga.
9:43 AM. A brief clearing of a couple of hours duration led to pretty scenes of Altocumulus floccus trailing virga.

8:21 AM. Altocumulus floccus/castellanus trailing long trails of snow virga trails.


5:57 PM. Color on the Catalinas.
4:03 PM. Snow on the Lemmon.

The End.


1Images of watering troughs, in case you’re from out-of-state and a city person and unfamiliar with western culteral expressions and don’t know what a watering trough is.

————–sports cultural note re Seattle—————

The polite, law-abiding folk of Seattle,  celebrating Super Bowl victory at an intersection,  waiting for the light to change.