Might be worth MILLIONS…
First rain drops here at 3:30 AM. Checked sat images and they’re looking about as good as they could for us, clouds to the southwest of us, curling around that little upper level low center like a boa constrictor, buckling, and dragging all that tropical air toward us. You can see that here in a loop of the satellite imagery from the U of AZ. and take a look just off Baja and in the Gulf of California.
Cloud bands curling around the center and the center heading this way? Its as good as it can get for us, and means the rain bands should be pretty potent. Some Cumulonimbus clouds can be seen in the sat imagery, too, in the main rain band. Looks like it will take about 8 h for the main part of this to go through, too, with passing light showers into the afternoon and evening. So, light to moderate rain for maybe 8 h should lead to around half inch to an inch. Yay!
Paulden, near Prescott, has, as of 4 AM AST, received the greatest amount, already recording 0.95 inches. You can see the statewide totals at the US Geological Survey network here. The Pima County ALERT gage data are here, with the first measurable rain being reported at 4 AM AST. With southerly flow at mountain top level, the south sides of the Catalinas will likely get the most from this storm compared to Catalina townlet, Census Designated Place, proper. Hoping for some lightning, too, today, as there are some Cumulonimbus clouds in the main band here and there.
The best part of this situation is that most of Arizona gets drought-reprieving rains over the next 72 h, counting today, with the models thinking that all of this may amount to several inches of water in the mountains of central Arizona where its so badly needed. And with just this ONE storm sequence, January will come out looking like a decent rain/snow month in the record books.
In the model prediction business, today’s rain was not even seen at first while rain on the 28th has been there for at least 10 days! Then, rain began to show up today, Saturday, about 5-6 days out, but it was hardly anything at all–wasn’t even mentioned here the first time it did because it seemed so tenuous.
But look how reality has turned out! This little circulation from the sub-tropics is certain to dump more precip than the storm on the 28th, the one so long foretold. I guess this is why we weatherman like weather. The unknowns, the surprises, are still pretty great.
4:30 AM. First hundredth of an inch, off to slow start, but like that legendary horse of old, Silky Sullivan1, should end in a hurry.
Quitting here–haven’t even looked at models (oops, except Canadian–just remembered that; just eye-balling stuff, but this piece, long enough!
1Hardly a person alive then in the late 1950s did not know of THAT horse, yes, just a horse! Check the video for something truly amazing! Silky Sullivan gave hope to all those that fall behind. His reputation lives on.