Temperature records have been falling recently, lots of them, you can see them here. This is what the “lobes of anomaly” at 500 millibars and the circulation patterns associated with them did over the past three days. A lot of the cold ones were in Florida, as you will see. Too bad for those people in Florida who went there instead of to Arizona to escape winter cold. Their whole spring break vacation was probably ruined, if its spring break now. The Arizona Chamber of Commerce should be advertising heavily in Florida right now! “Sad about being in Florida on your vacation? Well, its not too late to come to Arizona where its warm, not cold!” (We won’t mention our recent snow, of course.)
Being cloud-centric, thought you’d want to see it1.
The storm ahead
Seems to be getting bigger in the Canadian model as time goes by, and so I thought I would allude to that before you even read what I was going to say with a fatter sub-title having color, one then filled with portent.
This Storm (yes, that’s right, I’ve improperly capitalized the word “storm”; I do a LOT of improper things with language here) is now going to be so great it may get its own name, like “Phil” or “Wanda.” Years later: “Remember how Phil saved our spring vegetation back in ’13? Put a dent in the drought we were having?”
Check the load indicated in the Enviro Can mod below, those accumulations expected by 5 PM AST, Friday, March 8th. This is stupendous. Notice the Canadians have gone from the usual green, maybe a little yellow, to seeing red in the amounts of precip for this storm. I was beside myself when I saw it, because when you live in a desert, you kind of expect storms to become less rather than more in the models. Should be some thunder in it, too. This will be a real chance to get above normal rain here in Catalina for the month of March (1.46 inch average) in one load spanning two days. Notice, too, how the whole Southwest benefits from this Goliath. Will it be a trillion dollar crop-saving storm like the one at the end of January? Might be, since crop-saving rains move out into those droughty areas of the Plains States, like Nebraska. Hooray! Literally millions of people will be made happy by this storm!
Also, when you have a great storm, meteorologists like me become important, too, and so a great storm is great for us since we might dominate the news, not just be an itty bitty after thought. Our favorite expression: “The one behind this one is even BIGGER.”
Unfortunately, there is no storm after this one, so let’s hope we get all that it can be from it.
In fact, as an impersonator of a true scientist, I have to report that the USA! WRF-GFS model makes this only a million dollar, oh, maybe a billion dollar storm (might not get its own name). Much less precip is indicated in our models, ones based on the SAME data as that in the Canadian model below, that from last evening’s global observations made at 5 PM AST. Not even going to show that output. Not happy.
Still sticking with 0.25 inches as bottom of this storm (bad things happen to it) and 1.00 inches at the top (that is, ten percent chance of less; ten percent chance of more, as perceived from this keyboard). Best guess median of these: about 0.60 inches, or about the same amount of liquid as the historic snowstorm produced on Feb. 20th.
Still looking forward to this.
1 Testing 1-2-3. There was some Cirrus, too, visible in the photo, and several other Cu humilis, along with their little brothers, Cumulus fractus.