The Rise of the Ridiculously Resilient Ridge

Filed in Uncategorized by on April 1, 2016 974 Comments

Please note that this blog post summarizes peer-reviewed research that has been published in Science Advances. This means that findings presented in the following article are the product of a formal investigation by a team of scientists, which contrasts with more typical California Weather Blog posts that are primarily based upon my own informal thoughts and analysis. I would like to thank my co-authors in this work—Daniel Horton, Deepti Singh, and Noah Diffenbaugh—for their invaluable support in bringing this project to completion. 

The full paper is freely available to all (via an open access license) here.

Citation: Swain, D. L., Horton, D. E., Singh, D., and N. S. Diffenbaugh, Trends in atmospheric patterns conducive to seasonal precipitation and temperature extremes in California, Science Advances, 2, e1501344, 2016.

 

Persistent high pressure in recent years led to extreme drought in California

The Ridiculously Resilient Ridge, Oct-May 2012-2015. Quantity plotted is the seasonal 500mb geopotential height anomaly (m). Adapted from Swain 2015, GRL.

The Ridiculously Resilient Ridge, Oct-May 2012-2015. Quantity plotted is the middle atmospheric pressure (500mb geopotential height) anomaly (meteres). Adapted from Swain 2015, GRL.

Since early 2013, the state of California has been in the grip of an extraordinary multi-year drought. The accumulated precipitation deficit over the course of the ongoing drought is unprecedented in California’s century-long observational record, and when the additional drying effects of record-high temperatures are taken into account, the 2013-2016 event may in fact be the most severe in a millennium. The amount of water stored in the critically important Sierra Nevada snowpack reached its lowest level in over 500 years in 2015, and the loss of groundwater in the state’s aquifers has literally moved mountains. Drought-related impacts—including decreased agricultural and urban water availability, elevated wildfire risk, dramatically increased tree mortality, adverse effects upon riverine and marine ecosystems, and infrastructure damage to roads and pipelines —have been widespread.

Over the past several years, California weather watchers have become well acquainted with the now-infamous “Ridiculously Resilient Ridge” of atmospheric high pressure—the unusually persistent atmospheric anomaly responsible for redirecting winter storms over the Pacific and ultimately bringing record-breaking warmth and dryness to the Golden State. Like a boulder displacing a narrow stream of water, this sluggish atmospheric feature consistently deflected the storm track to the north of California during the typical “rainy season” months of October to May. As a result, much of the state was left high and dry—even during what is typically the wettest time of year.

 

California unusually susceptible to weather extremes caused by recurring atmospheric patterns

California receives the majority (66%) of its annual precipitation during just four calendar months (December-March), with less than 5% falling during the summer. Since the state lies just south of the typical Pacific storm track during winter, the region relies heavily on rain and snow deposited by storm systems arriving during short-lived southward dips in the jet stream along the West Coast. The most important of these storms are associated with “atmospheric rivers”—narrow plumes of concentrated atmospheric water vapor that can bring very heavy precipitation when they move onshore and interact with California’s mountainous terrain. Remarkably, most of California’s precipitation in a typical year falls over the course of a relatively small number of strong storms. This striking dependence of California’s entire water supply upon the occurrence of just a few atmospheric river events each winter means that a surplus or deficit of just one or two such storms can quickly increase the risk of flood or drought in any given year. As a result, seasonal-scale shifts in the Pacific storm track associated with unusually persistent winter ridges are the most common cause of California droughts—since there is little opportunity to make up for accumulated winter precipitation deficits during the rest of the year.

 

Patterns similar to “Ridiculously Resilient Ridge” increasing, but not at expense of patterns associated with wettest years

Since seasonally persistent atmospheric anomalies are so strongly tied to drought (and other meteorological extremes) in California, we investigated whether North Pacific pressure patterns similar to those which occurred during California’s most extremely dry, wet, warm, and cool October-May periods between 1948 and 2015 were occurring more frequently in recent decades. We found that certain unusual atmospheric patterns are indeed occurring more often. Most notably, patterns similar to those during California’s extremely warm and dry years of 2013-2014 and 2014-2015—years during which the Ridiculously Resilient Ridge rose to prominence—occurred more frequently over the past three decades. These years were characterized by unusually low pressure over the Pacific north of Hawaii and a very strong ridge of high pressure along the entire West Coast of North America, extending from southern California all the way north to the Alaskan arctic.

Left column: Maps depicting anomalous pressure patterns over the Northern Hemisphere during the 2013-2014 and 2014-2015 "rainy seasons," including the Triple R. Middle column: Similarity over time of each of the two patterns with the observed pattern in each year. Right column: Change in frequency of highly similar patterns between 1949-1981 and 1982-2015. Adapted from Swain et al. 2016, Science Advances.

Left column: Maps depicting anomalous pressure patterns over the Northern Hemisphere during the 2013-2014 and 2014-2015 “rainy seasons,” including the Triple R. Middle column: Similarity over time of each of the two patterns with the observed pattern in each year. Right column: Change in frequency of highly similar patterns between 1949-1981 and 1982-2015. Adapted from Swain et al. 2016, Science Advances.

Interestingly, however, we did not find evidence that large-scale pressure patterns associated with California’s wettest years have become less common. In fact, one of two methods we used in this study suggested that several wet patterns have actually increased in recent decades, while the other suggested little change. Therefore, while there is high confidence that patterns conducive to extreme warmth and dryness in California are occurring more frequently, this increase in patterns conducive to drought is not occurring at the expense of those associated with California’s wettest years.

We also found little change in the occurrence of atmospheric patterns leading to California’s most extremely cool years, despite a large increase in actual temperatures across the state. This suggests that the majority of California’s observed warming trend arises from a more uniform warming trend across all years, which adds to the effect of extremely warm seasons like 2014-2015.

 

Pattern of observed atmospheric warming tied to increased West Coast “ridginess”

In addition to changes in the frequency of atmospheric patterns associated with California’s most extreme years, we also found substantial changes in the average atmospheric configuration over the North Pacific. In a typical year, the West Coast of North America roughly coincides with the position of a preexisting high pressure ridge during winter—which accounts for the fact that eastward-moving Pacific storms that appear destined for California often “veer north” before reaching the state. Between 1948 and 2015, however, we found that this West Coast ridge has become notably more pronounced and increasingly persistent from month to month. The spatial structure of this long-term trend in middle-atmospheric pressure strikingly resembles that of the Ridiculously Resilient Ridge.

Map depicting the contribution of Oct-May temperature changes in the lower half of the atmosphere to changes in middle atmospheric pressure (500 mb geopotential heights). Red and orange shades show where thermal expansion due to warming have caused middle atmospheric pressure increases (meters/year). Adapted from Swain et al. 2016, Science Advances.

Map depicting the contribution of Oct-May temperature changes in the lower half of the atmosphere to changes in middle atmospheric pressure (500 mb geopotential heights). Red and orange shades show where thermal expansion due to warming have caused middle atmospheric pressure increases (meters/year). Adapted from Swain et al. 2016, Science Advances.

But why have middle atmospheric pressures been increasing at a greater rate along the West Coast than elsewhere over the Pacific or North America? We confirmed that regionally-enhanced warming of the lower atmosphere is primarily responsible for the observed increase in the average strength of the West Coast winter ridge. The physical reason for this is that the “thickness” of the Earth’s atmosphere in a particular region is proportional to temperature—in other words, warmer layers of the atmosphere take up more space than cooler ones, which occurs because air expands when temperatures increase (all else being equal). The particular spatial pattern of warming turns out to be critically important here—if temperatures had warmed by the same amount everywhere, there would be no change in the “sharpness” of the ridge. But because temperatures along the West Coast warmed much more than those in adjacent regions, the overall increase in middle atmospheric pressure reached a local maximum there.

 

Rising temperatures have already increased risk of California drought; future increases in extreme dry/wet may amplify this effect

A number of studies have already shown that the long-term temperature trend associated with global warming has increased the likelihood and severity of drought in California—even in the absence of significant changes in precipitation. Our new work demonstrates that the increasing frequency of atmospheric patterns conducive to extremely low precipitation and extremely high temperatures California is likely causing a further increase in drought risk on top of that contributed by more gradual long-term warming.

In the present study, we aren’t able to trace the exact cause of this increase in patterns similar to the Ridiculously Resilient Ridge, but we do find that the observed pattern of locally-enhanced atmospheric warming near the West Coast has led to increasingly strong and persistent winter “ridginess” overall. Other scientists have presented evidence for a rather wide variety of potential causes of the California drought—including unusual tropical Pacific Ocean warmth, random atmospheric variations, and even the dramatic loss of Arctic sea ice. Several studies have specifically addressed the potential role of global warming in increasing the likelihood of West Coast ridges, but at this point it remains unclear which of these potential causes is most influential. I will probably have more to say on this topic in the coming months as our research continues.

Long-term trends in California drought severity (upper left), temperature (upper right), Sierra Nevada snowpack (lower left), and precipitation (lower right). The red shaded regions depict the 2013-2015 drought. Adapted from Swain 2015, GRL.

Long-term trends in California drought severity (upper left), temperature (upper right), Sierra Nevada snowpack (lower left), and precipitation (lower right). The red shaded regions depict the 2013-2015 drought. Adapted from Swain 2015, GRL.

Finally, it is worth noting that climate model projections for 21st century California depict a much warmer future, likely characterized by increasingly large swings between dry and wet conditions. Our new findings support the notion that that the atmospheric patterns conducive to extreme California drought are indeed increasing, but that patterns conducive to very wet years may also be increasing. It is fascinating that such large changes in the character of California precipitation are occurring despite little or no long-term change in average precipitation—which highlights the critical importance of considering changes in the most extreme years when planning for the future.

 

Key Points

  • Persistent high pressure over Pacific strongly tied to dry, warm conditions in California
  • Atmospheric patterns similar to the Ridiculously Resilient Ridge have become more common in recent decades
  • Atmospheric patterns similar to those during California’s wettest winters have NOT decreased in recent decades
  • Detectible shift toward atmospheric patterns that favor dry/wet extremes despite little change in average precipitation
  • Observed warming trend and increase in dry/wet extremes consistent with climate model projections for 21st century California

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  • craig matthews(Big Sur)

    Something from the Caliente Hills-Carrizo Plain. Area did ok with the precip this winter, though still a bit below average but better then the last 4 years. My advice take or leave. Get out and enjoy the beauty of this precious state!!

    • Crouching Dallas

      Excellent, and a fantastic rebuttal for the next person who tries to tell me that California doesn’t have season.

      Heard reports of stunning wildflowers in Big Sur and around Andrew Molera SP as well, but Carrizo is next on the (admittedly hypothetical) list.

      • SoCal Al (El Monte-SGV)

        Just looking at all those wildflowers made me sneeze….damn allergies.

      • Flunking_retirement

        The wild daisies around San Diego are brilliant this year,

      • craig matthews(Big Sur)

        Didn’t seam like there were that many wildflowers in Molera, but I haven’t been thatta way for over a week. Been going south instead Lupins and poppies are glorious above Pacific Valley down toward above Salmon Creek area, and just beginning to carpet over in Hunter Liggett-Jolon Valley. Hopefully we’ll get some April showers here shorty.

    • Pfirman

      Right you are, but I would have gone with beautiful over precious. Word mongering, I guess.

      • craig matthews(Big Sur)

        both beautiful and precious 😉

        • Crouching Dallas

          Makes me think of Castilian Spanish – Spaniards sometimes use precioso in lieu of beautiful, but it seems to have more of an emotional undercurrent.

          • craig matthews(Big Sur)

            Every time I’m out on an adventure across the parts of this state, say like down the Diablos into the Carrizo, I think of what it was like back when John Muir wondered the land. A quote: ” Looking eastward, from the summit of Pacheco Pass one shining morning, a landscape was displayed that after all my wonderings still appears most beautiful I’ve beheld. At my feet lay the Great Central Valley of California, level and flowery, like a lake of pure sunshine…And from the eastern boundary of this vast golden flower bed rose the mighty Sierra, miles in height and so gloriously colorful and so radiant it seamed not clothed with light, but wholly composed of it, like the wall of some celestial city…..Then it seamed to me that the Sierra should be called, not the Nevada or Snowy Range, but the Range of Light” …John Muir.

    • Bombillo1

      Beautiful shot. The Capitol of our re-named state “Caliente”.

      • More like new State motto 🙂

      • Pfirman

        California roughly means ‘hot oven’. Supposedly that is what the Spanish soldiers trekking through the central valley called it.

  • thebigweasel

    The “covers all bases” forecast for Southern California:

    • Bahia (Novato)

      More like…anticyclonic!

    • weathergeek100

      Yup. This is extremely accurate for SoCal!

  • Thunderstorm

    Going to rain starting this weekend, question is who will get the most? Won’t happen where I live so my best guess is in the mountains of southern central California. Time frame would be for the entire month of April. Santa Barbara maybe.

    • Pfirman

      This weekend is over. Do you mean next weekend? Question is, who will get any.

  • WarmEpoch4California

    You’re all gonna be mad at me for saying this but I hope that those 90s and 100s come to fruition for midweek…If the cut off low hits us when we are still “in heat” it could mean a good clash of hot dry air and cold moister air with the right ingredients for thunderstorms like we had the beginning of March.

    • SoCal Al (El Monte-SGV)

      When we get 90’s here it’s usually during an off-shore wind flow which tends to dry us out with very low humidities. This is what’s predicted for us this Tues and Wed and it will take that much longer to moisten up the atmosphere to get any rain. This seems to be the case in the forecast now with the possibility of rain pushed out to Friday.

  • Crouching Dallas

    00Z GFS pushes the second (& more importantly, cold) low to the south of SoCal, which is most definitely not what we want (especially for snow in the Southern and Central Sierra). I know that consistency and cold core cutoff lows don’t generally go hand in hand, of course, but it’s still annoying and also an unfriendly reminder that I should probably stop living my life according to 114 hr slides at 6 hourly increments.

    / rant

    • SoCal Al (El Monte-SGV)

      My fear was the Thurs-Fri low/open wave would move into Baja and Southern Arizona and leave us high n dry. Now the second “stronger” cut-off is trending that way too? We can’t catch a break. I hope the models change their tune (again).

      • Crouching Dallas

        Definitely not a trend (yet!), but just something to watch as the week progresses. It’ll be tough finding a balance between studying the model analysis and selfishly hoping for Central Sierra cement turns this coming weekend, though!

    • Damnit, here I was thinking that bullseye would hold. I too should probably get out of 260hr la la land for the sake of reality, a magic 8 ball is going to have competitive accuracy with the conditions we have now. Granted, I wasn’t really believing the 4.5 inches it was putting over us – if anything I was figuring half that.

      My mountain runs until the 17th, so it’s going to be a mad dash to hit the powder before the clock runs out. I was the last skier on Chairs 4 and 15 today, our backside is officially closed as of today. I took photos of the snowpack to post here, maybe tomorrow.

      • Crouching Dallas

        Haha, I feel ya duder. Usually I think most of us here do a pretty good job with the GFShitstorm, but the late season rush/model consistency of late has hoodwinked me. KW is definitely running against the ticking Baja Bomba clock for getting some late season powder, but hopefully this weekend and coming week delivers some goods for you guys. At least you’ll stand a better chance of fresh snow than the other Tahoe area resorts. I’ll be in Mammoth praying to Howard & da Dweebs for a weekend of turnage. Then my (first ever) pass kicks in on the 11th, at which point I might just forego all professional and academic duties and instead just camp and ride until Memorial Day.

    • Bartshe

      remember what the GFS looked like on April 1? joke is on us

  • Gordon Lehman

    ” We confirmed that regionally-enhanced warming of the lower atmosphere is primarily responsible for the observed increase in the average strength of the West Coast winter ridge.”

    The above speculation serves well for headlines, but it is supported by neither further discussion in the post nor by basic physics. Surface temperature increase is not the cause, but rather the effect of ridging. Surface temperature increase LOWERS the surface pressure such that convection occurs. This is why surface lows can take up residence beneath the ridge, as is forecast this week.

    While the 500mb pressure will increase as it is sandwiched between convection from below and the fundamental cooling and sinking regime above, this observation merely describes the situation.

    If you want to understand the resilient ridge, study the Arctic Oscillation Index. Ponder why that ridiculous ridge was clearly in place during glacial stages, when there was a mile of ice on Detroit, and a lake at Salt Lake City. It definitely was not due to surface warming.

    • If you read the paper, we’re not talking about surface temperature warming (we’re integrated the net effect of warming through the 1000-500 mb column). We also show that there is an in-phase (positive) trend in sea level pressure in the region, but it really is the differential warming that’s driving the trend for the most part.

      We don’t address WHY this warming is so spatially heterogeneous, which could well have roots in geographically distant regions (including the Arctic, etc.).

      • Gordon Lehman

        So what? What does integrating surface to 500mb warming mean except describing the situation? You have found a relationship between the column and temperature. Hallelujah.
        What caused the increase in surface temperature? Your automatic presumption is the surface temperature increase was caused by human CO2.
        You have NO data to back that presumption up.

    • Mike Stephenson(Riverside)

      How are you saying there was a similar ridge there during glacial eras? It’s well known the jet was displaced much further south and the entire southwest was much wetter place during the cold parts of the Pleistocene. Do you have a link?

      • Gordon Lehman

        C’mon. Look at the data in the form of ice distribution. You can rely on generalized preconceptions that the jets were displaced southward, which are doubtless true on average. The problem is that averages conceal enormous internal variation. Like ice on the Great Lakes and open water un Utah at the LGM. Like average SST increase in the satellite era when the spatial distribution is ridiculously irregular.
        Don’t rely on links to do your thinking for you. Think for yourself. Science is the exercise of questioning the self proclaimed experts.

        • Bombillo1

          So for those of us less adept at interpreting code, what do you base your assertion that an RRR was in place during glaciation?

          • Gordon Lehman

            What besides west coast ridging would cause this distribution of ice?

            https://www.isgs.illinois.edu/outreach/geology-resources/glacial-geology-overview
            Compare this with the typical inverse modern pattern of east coast/west coast toughing/ridging and code becomes unnecessary.

            ” We confirmed that regionally-enhanced warming of the lower atmosphere is primarily responsible for the observed increase in the average strength of the West Coast winter ridge.”

            The above speculation serves well for headlines, but it is supported by neither further discussion in the post nor by basic physics. Surface temperature increase is not the cause, but rather the effect of ridging. Surface temperature increase LOWERS the surface pressure such that convection occurs. This is why surface lows can take up residence beneath the ridge, as is forecast this week.

            While the 500mb pressure will increase as it is sandwiched between convection from below and the fundamental cooling and sinking regime above, this observation merely describes the situation.

            If you want to understand the resilient ridge, study the Arctic Oscillation Index. Ponder why that ridiculous ridge was clearly in place during glacial stages, when there was a mile of ice on Detroit, and a lake at Salt Lake City.

            ” We confirmed that regionally-enhanced warming of the lower atmosphere is primarily responsible for the observed increase in the average strength of the West Coast winter ridge.”

            The above speculation serves well for headlines, but it is supported by neither further discussion in the post nor by basic physics. Surface temperature increase is not the cause, but rather the effect of ridging. Surface temperature increase LOWERS the surface pressure such that convection occurs. This is why surface lows can take up residence beneath the ridge, as is forecast this week.

            While the 500mb pressure will increase as it is sandwiched between convection from below and the fundamental cooling and sinking regime above, this observation merely describes the situation.

            If you want to understand the resilient ridge, study the Arctic Oscillation Index. Ponder why that ridiculous ridge was clearly in place during glacial stages, when there was a mile of ice on Detroit, and a lake at Salt Lake City.

  • Which is most common or better spaghetti chart to look at for 500mb?
    I almost posted all six but I don’t like to cram the boards. I you guys/gals want to see them I’ve layered them into just one jpg.

    • OldSnwSrvyr (Paradise)

      Personally, I find the 528-570 plot most useful.

      • Thanks
        The 522-564 seems most ‘undecided’ right now.
        I really don’t understand why so many different options for 500dm and why some seem to be in lock step for a longer period of their run than others.

  • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

    06z and 12z looking good for SoCal! The 00z yesterday had a sharper ridge than the 18z with the trough behind the ridge upstream spinning up at a latitude further west and lagging a bit now pushing the ridge east fast enough causing the cut-off low downstream to dip further south
    Last SoCal and into Baja with energy splitting off and some shooting up into Canada on the northern jet while the rest misses us to the south for the most part.. The 12z ECMWF yesterday has a similar scenario, but with a stronger and bigger ridge and better placement of the cut-off low for SoCal than the 00z GFS..

    Well the 06z and 12z GFS has a stronger ridge similar to the 12z Euro from yesterday, but with even better placement of the cut-off low for SoCal Precip. Plenty of cold air in the weekend storm to work with.. There will already be a very moist sub-tropical warm airmass in place over
    SoCal by the time the weekend storm arrives making for a very convective event! Should be interesting to see exactly how this all evolves, but it’s looking good as of right now let’s just hope this forecast does not de-rail on us and stays on track! Confidence is high on this end! There’s definitely a better chance that these cut-off lows will have a bulls eye on SoCal rather than going south into Baja.. The storms dropping south and missing us is definitely the least likely of outcomes to happen.

    Here’s some images comparing the model runs and differences in the 18z, 00z and 12z GFS.. Aswell as the 12z ECMWF from yesterday.. As you can see todays 12z run has a much stronger Low downstream (960 mb!!) causing the ridge to its easy to strengthen more and in turn causing the weekend storm downstream to become deeper and also push it right into SoCal!! This is the best scenario!

    The stronger that low becomes upstream, the stronger and deeper our weekend storm becomes downstream! (With a higher likelihood that it makes a slam dunk into SoCal!!) I hope this makes sense!! I’m still working on how to word my analysis!

    • Mike Stephenson(Riverside)

      I also find it hard to believe the low will miss into baja, I hope you’re right Tyler!

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      Some decent late season rain in SoCal is better than no late season rain, and far better than the Spring heatwaves we got two years ago.

      • Dan the Weatherman

        We can certainly do without the spring heatwaves for a change. We have had enough hot weather during the last 4 years of this drought!

    • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

      Sorry I have some dates mixed up on this a bit! (I made this analysis in a hurry because I was on the way to work!) The 960 mb low upstream I was talking about is for next weeks storm, but today’s run still strengthens the low upstream to 980 mb vs. 986 mb from yesterday’s run which is still better for our weekend storm!! If this trend continues with deep troughs developing and pushing the transient ridges east in return making the cut-off lows downstream off the west coast to deepen more! Then it’s looking good!! In this case a stronger ridge smack dab in the middle of the pacific is a good thing! 😉

      • The Catalina’s may get into the game, too.

    • This would be a pretty remarkable pattern with very high, recurring thunderstorm potential for most of the state.

      • Crouching Dallas

        Any thoughts as to that second storm’s track, Daniel? Especially interested as it relates to phasing with the southerly subtropical moisture and convective potential for the weekend.

      • Cameron (PacPal/LA)

        Wow, excited to see how it plays out. That system around the 16th would really be impressive for socal. It’s a ways out, but hope it stays on track

  • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

    Today’s 12z ECMWF looking good for the weekend storm! The placement of the ridge is very similar to today’s 12z run of the GFS.. The Euro has the cut-off low a bit more offshore, but still brings it onshore at the right lattitude (SoCal). Both solutions look good for CA Precip and also ushering in cold air from the north on the eastern periphery of the NPAC ridge. With warm sub-tropical airmass and cold air aloft mixing along with subtropical moisture, should be a very convective event! And if the storm for next week comes into fruition that one will be even more convective!! Thunderstorm potential looks very high as Daniel stated below me! I looooovvve thunderstorms! Hahah ???????

    • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

      Forgot to add images

    • mattzweck

      Don’t know if will get any precip. Here in the high desert/Lancaster area. But sounds good maybe will get alot of conviction. bring alot of t-storms. we really need the rain to dry to many allergies.

      • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

        All the Deserts should fare pretty well with Precip with this set-up! ???

    • Crouching Dallas

      Tyler, you’re channeling CHeden in these posts! Great analysis!

  • Whittier weather dude

    Will it be a southwestern flow as well?

    • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

      The flow for late week will initially be a southerly flow then transition into more of a SW flow when the weekend storm merges with the leftover energy from the storm that’s comes up from the south late week..

      • craig matthews(Big Sur)

        I love these kind of set ups, especially in the spring.

      • palmsprings

        Finally a storm that looks promising for the low desert, S to SW flow is always good to us. We essentially haven’t gotten anything since early January!

        • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

          This set-up late week thru the weekend could possibly be the best set-up thus far for precipitation across the low deserts (Palm Springs)!

  • craig matthews(Big Sur)

    Gonna keep a close eye on how much moisture is tapped from the ITCZ ahead of the initial Low ejecting NE into Socal +48 to 72 hours. This 12zGFS run shows some decent 700mb moisture drawn up into socal.

    • Crouching Dallas

      Consider it primed! At least according to the 18Z NAM.

    • Eu shows some ‘stuff’ in store for SoCal. Hope it gets crazy fun.

  • Nate Wire

    Hey everyone, here’s a time-lapse of California’s snowpack so far, seen with satellite (almost all Terra/MODIS) data. I know that we’ll probably get more snow in the coming weeks, but I decided to cut it off right after April 1st, as that’s the average date of peak snow depth. I’ll add more to it as the snow melts away in the next couple of months. Also, if possible, I would suggest turning quality to at least 720p. Enjoy!

    • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

      Very well put together video!!! I will be sharing this with friends and family if you don’t mind!! ^_^

      • Nate Wire

        Thank you! Share as much as you’d like to!

    • Dan weather maniac

      Amazing!!!!

      • Nate Wire

        Thank you!

    • CHeden

      Out-freakin’standing! No idea how much time/effort went into this project….all I can say is thanks for sharing!

      • Nate Wire

        Thanks! I will say that it started off a lot smaller than what you see above…but it was definitely worth it!

    • 310weatherguy

      Awesome! It was really cool to see tje lakes fill too. Thanks for this! Will absolutely be showing this to some friends!

      • Nate Wire

        I’d say the lake part is my favorite part! Thanks!

  • mosedart (SF)

    18z is probably the best run of the year state-wide.

    • 82/83 El Nino Baby

      Interesting. The SF Bay Area NWS is being very pessimistic (for the Bay Area atleast). Pretty much saying rain in the interior mountains and that is it. Hope they are being conservative. I have not had my fix of rain yet for the year!

      • I think NWSBayArea is on the edge of what is more certain for SoCal right now. Precip runs are about the same but in different areas it seems. I’m in the mood for that April 1st forecast run.

    • Best model run I have seen in years!

  • MrTwister

    18z GFS is a thing of beauty! Nice to see some actual surface lows approaching SoCal with some real dynamics.

    • MrTwister

      Nice to see some classic coma structure in the 500mb RH maps! Sure this will change though.

  • SoCal Al (El Monte-SGV)

    The latest Oxnard AFD is using a term I haven’t heard for years (soggy), here’s some excerpts:

    LONG TERM…(THU-SUN)

    CONFIDENCE IS FAIRLY HIGH THAT THIS WILL RESULT IN SOME RAIN SOMETIME DURING THE THURSDAY THROUGH SUNDAY TIME PERIOD…WITH THE WORD OF THE DAY BEING SOGGY.

    AN ADDITIONAL COMPLICATING FACTOR IS THE POTENTIAL FOR CONVECTION WITH THE SECOND SYSTEM. BEING COLDER ALOFT (-20C AT 500MB) THE THUNDERSTORM POTENTIAL IS REAL…BUT SMALL ENOUGH TO PUNT FOR FUTURE UPDATES. WHILE CONFIDENCE IS STILL LOW FOR AMOUNTS…TOTALS OF 0.25 TO 1.00 INCHES SEEM LIKE A GOOD STARTING RANGE AT THIS POINT.

    Finally, some exciting weather for our area. Keeping my hopes high for at least 1″ before all is said and done.

  • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

    I’ve been hiding in the shadows lately while the models try to get a grip on the pattern coming up… But at this point with AFD’s coming in line and models trending really wet… How much longer could I hide? I’ll be off and on the blog until Thursday :). Cheers everyone!

    • From an earlier post came a reply from OldSnwSrvyr

      • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

        Thanks for this!

  • RandomTreeInSB
  • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

    Very impressive 384 hr. GFS total accumulated Precip!!! Now that’s some true dumpage for the whole state!!

  • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

    Very juicy PWATS for late week coming up from the south (thanks to the southerly flow)! These juicy PWATS hang around enough just in time for the weekend storm to merge with the leftover moisture and add the dynamics and lift needed to squeeze it out (especially in SoCal!) now let’s hope that air that drops down with the weekend storm is cold cold cold!! The colder air the better!

    • Atrocalypse

      Are you sure you’re not just posting those to appease us?

      • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

        Those PWATS are highly likely to encompass the southwest regardless of the track of the weekend storm.. Confidence is high right now that the weekend storm can “pick up” these leftover PWATS and squeeze out some good Precip.. This would be a tease maybe if it were 10 days out, but this is only a few days away now.

    • inclinejj

      That big spinning low gave me goose pimples.

      In the words of Tim McGraw. I like it, I love it, I want some more of it.

    • Thanks. This is going to be a big deal even if it’s just a few days and may give a hint to what will follow and where?

  • Atrocalypse

    Even if the current El Niño might become La Niña, I hope the RRR goes away for good.

    • inclinejj

      I would love a very cold wet and snowy winter. We haven’t had cold in the Bay Area for some time. But then again cold for Bay Area folks is below 60 degrees!

      • WarmEpoch4California

        Isn’t that a typical SUMMER day in San Francisco? around 58 and foggy

        • inclinejj

          It depends, the way the water off the coast is dropping fast. Cooler ocean water more fog. I remember some years Ocean Beach and the Cliff House don’t see sun for a month or longer.

          The different micro climates is what turned me into a big time Weather Dweeb.

          But then again I am never cold. I hit Diamond Peak today with just a long sleeve t-shirt.

          • WarmEpoch4California

            I HATE that cold fog with a passion. At least here in Orange County, the marine layer usually burns off by mid-day and on those days it does linger at the beach, it still warms up to above 70 or so but San Francisco summers are utter misery. I enjoy real summer weather like last summer; warm SST, good swimming, monsoon surges and EPAC remnants. My favorite weather of all time is thunderstorms!. Marine layer is just a waste of cloud cover. Is there any chance that this coming La Nina does NOT make our summer colder than normal? Can we have something like the last two summers even with the transitions? I don’t mind some moderate cold (by our standards) in winter if it’s paired with lots of rain BUT please give us a warm summer. Summer of 2010 was my worst nightmare.

            I am planning to eventually transfer to the University of Florida after completing my GE where I can experience lots of rain and sun together and of course, daily afternoon thunderstorms.

          • Jason

            San Francisco fog rocks! I know I may be the rare one who loves it, but there is nothing like the rush of low clouds coming through the Golden Gate.

            Plus, it make running (my favorite outdoor activity) so much more pleasant than sweltering in the heat.

          • WarmEpoch4California

            We had a very green summer in San Diego with almost no marine layer after the end of June; it was due to something called RAIN. Fell by the buckets for two days in July and then again for 2 days in September with a few short lived showers in between. The rain was warm and quite summery. Most of the days were sunny 80 degree days where you could comfortably swim in the Pacific Ocean without even thinking of a wetsuit. That’s what SUMMER should be about; not bundling up in a jacket to keep warm in 55 degree fog and wind. Only if every summer in Southern California could be like the last….

          • inclinejj

            Its great for fishing the beaches in summer. We covered about 7-9 miles the past couple days walking.

    • Thirsty Nick (Santa Maria)

      I hope I’ll never see the RRR for the rest of my life.

  • xeren

    i’ve only been half-following the weather for the past couple of weeks, so i apologize if this has been discussed recently – is this upcoming series of storms believed to be associated with the decay of el nino?

    • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

      That part has not been discussed too much as of late.. But IMO, yes! I do believe the decay of El Niño has a little something to do with this active pattern evolving for CA in April (especially for SoCal). While there are probably many other factors involved, I would say yes!!???

  • Skye H.

    Anybody have any info on how the snowpack/lakes are doing up in the Trinity Alps area?

    • inclinejj

      I am sure if you checked the local NWS page you can find it. Otherwise I will be up there fishing at the Trinity and Lewiston Lake.

  • inclinejj

    Hey Bandini, I cruised by the Casa De Bandini this morning before 8 am. I tipped my coffee cup to ya!!

    • Crouching Dallas

      Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!

    • Barney

      Pulled the trifecta today: work, slopes, bike ride… The weekend warrior work trifecta.

      Now watching Los Angelitos lose to the Cubbies

      • inclinejj

        When I grow up I want to be just like you!

        Watching A’ s white Sox’s

      • AlTahoe

        I am waiting for my new tires to show up so I can do the same. The Tahoe mountain trails are good to go here.

        • Barney

          Lots of snow on most my favorite trails here above 6500 K but definitely some good sections of the emigrant trail opening up. Might try sawtooth on Thursday

          • MoonWatcher

            The Sawtooth out of Mineral King?

          • Barney

            No it’s just a loop trail above Truckee. I tried hiking up Sawtooth peak out of Mineral 4 summers ago and got denied by large hail and lightning.

          • mosedart (SF)

            I tried two years ago and for the life of me couldn’t find the path to scramble up. Ended up turning back about 500 ft from the top.

      • matt (truckee)

        The Truckee Triathlon.

  • AlTahoe

    Not sure if this has been posted yet but Jeff Masters at Wunderground has a new article out and the last paragraph is about Daniel’s latest research paper. Congrats Daniel!
    https://www.wunderground.com/blog/JeffMasters/californias-water-supply-for-2016–context-is-everything

    • Tom P (Trabuco Canyon)

      Masters’ article well worth reading. Comparisons with 82-83 and 97-98 mentioned.

    • WeatherWest

      I’m a way better snake oil salesman than that idiot at Wunderground

  • WarmEpoch4California

    Bring on those cut-off lows! Hoping for a big t-storm outbreak soon!

    • Mike Stephenson(Riverside)

      Hoping so!

      • WeatherWest

        I’m hoping for a late night male dog circle jerk with these fine fellows: Daniel Horton, Deepti Singh, and Noah Diffenbaugh

        • Mike Stephenson(Riverside)

          Honestly that’s kind of like drawing private parts, you have something weird going on in real life. I hope you figure it out

  • mattzweck

    by the way every time we end up getting a Storm system cut off low. By the time it ends up getting here it falls apart. Than all we get is clouds.hopefully this one will hold together.

    • WeatherWest

      Sorry Matt. This one will not be holding it together. That would be like me holding it together at the Westminster Dog Show. I go every year with a box of Cialis

  • WeatherWest

    Quick update to the paper that was published earlier. Summer monsoonal months this year could see some serious action south of Point Conception. An Equatorial shift of warming water is moving off the Guatemalan coastline. Those downtrodden redskins have been bumping uglies like rats pumping a mix of backyard brewed tequila and cum into our pristine Pacific Ocean causing a mini El Niño. I regress. Picked up a Mastiff puppy from a Korean puppy mill in San Mateo. Male of course. This little guy is going to have a nice veiny lipstick soon. I can’t wait.

    • HD

      Troll Alert! And flagged.

  • RandomTreeInSB

    make it a reality please.

    • bnweather

      topical reaction image… these are joy tears though

      • WeatherWest

        I tear up every time I see a hunched over pooch slamming those hips like a champ

    • RandomTreeInSB
    • RandomTreeInSB
      • WeatherWest

        Is it a pic of a dog fully erect?! I hope so I hope so I hope so.

      • SoCalWXwatcher

        Edit: nevermind, those totals are in mm. I thought it was depicting inches at first, and spilled coffee in my lap.

        • You can run a 3hr if it’s w/in 10 days
          http://mag.ncep.noaa.gov/
          Just please don’t snort it though your nose instead of swallowing, okay?

          1/4 inch an hour ain’t bad though

    • Wow!

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      Looks very potent for an April storm system. Maybe this was one of the several missing storms from February that finally found its way to CA. 😉

    • Crouching Dallas

      I will crouch for 228 hours if needed to make this happen. What a beast!

      • SoCalWXwatcher

        Get to crouchin’. I’ll wash and wax my car and plan a picnic & barbecue. That should do the trick.

        • GusLevy

          I washed my car today and we have a big beach outing scheduled in Santa Monica on Sat…obviously, we are going to get plenty of rain.

          • inclinejj

            Every-time I do siding with Hardy board, it rains like all get out.. May of 2011 5 rain days and many days working in the light rain and or drizzle or showers.

            Just ordered my hardy board for the current project I am working on.

        • Kayaks (Atwater Village)

          Leaving my chop saw outside and convertible top down should help.

        • inclinejj

          Ha Ha nothing stops us from BBQ’n in Tahoe. Not 0 degrees nor snow sleet rain or hail.

        • Flunking_retirement

          And im painting the backyard fence, and the wife is re- potting orchids,come on guys we need a team effort here!

          • On Dre

            I’ll plan a outdoor party for my son and invite everyone!

    • Dan the Weatherman

      It surely would be nice to see a forecast like this verify! It seems that it has been so rare in recent years for a low to sit off the coast of CA like this to bring a sustained SW flow into Socal.

    • Sure wish we were looking at this a few months ago. For CA as a whole THE BEAST didn’t do like I wanted it to. This looks good though.

    • craig matthews(Big Sur)

      I like that.

  • Mike Stephenson(Riverside)

    Could anyone explain the dynamics for the upcoming systems at all? What is looking to be the main thunderstorm driver? I know we will have some good daytime heating if it isn’t too cloudy, but what else is looking good with this setup, cold air aloft or upper level divergence?

    • WeatherWest

      I can explain the dynamics for you Michael. So many Mexicans and ghetto folk moved out to IE that their body heat keeps the low pressure from moving in. Simple.

    • Well the sun angle will definitely help if some of these systems main dynamics hit during the day and if the sun is out the cold air and upper level divergence combo will make for extremely convective events.

  • WeatherWest

    Quick update to the paper that was published earlier. Summer monsoonal months this year could see some serious action south of Point Conception. An Equatorial shift of warming water is moving off the Guatemalan coastline. Those downtrodden redskins have been bumping uglies like rats pumping a mix of backyard brewed tequila and cum into our pristine Pacific Ocean causing a mini El Niño. I regress. Picked up a Mastiff puppy from a Korean puppy mill in San Mateo. Male of course. This little guy is going to have a nice veiny lipstick soon. I can’t wait.

  • WarmEpoch4California

    Looks mostly like a Southern California event 🙂 🙂 :)…

  • Thirsty Nick (Santa Maria)

    Sure hope the upcoming storms come in much like the Dodger offense in opening day.

    • The Giants were a force of their own yesterday. The 06Z is moving a few things a wee bit more to the north now. ????

      • inclinejj

        I wish I was the owner of this blog.

        I would ban a few people

        I would ban the mention of SF GIants.

        • Give it a shot.

          • inclinejj

            I would make Judge Roy Bean look like a nice guy =)

        • Martin (Santee)

          Haha, AND the Dodgers!

          • inclinejj

            Kirk Gibson brings back bad memories

            That home run to beat the A’s with two bum knees

          • Martin (Santee)

            Yeah, I remember the “fist pump”!

  • Martin (Santee)

    San Diego’ April rainfall record is: 4.83 back in 1941. I think we are going to be close with the upcoming events?

    • CanyonKid

      Short answer, no. Long answer, not even close.

  • “xeren” mentioned if this upcoming rain forecast as typical or associated of a decaying El Nino. Here are all VS to SEN from 1877-78 to 1997-98 500mb height and SST anomalies (note these are Skin ST’s ‘cuz it this is 20CFv2) for April. Not drawing a conclusion. THE BEAST is rapidly decaying, though. One could look into other spatial and atmospheric anomalies in the Atlantic, IO and Arctic, I suppose.

    • CHeden

      Excellent data! Thanks for sending it on. Here’s some of the other expected indices you mentioned. All seem to be pointing to a significant pattern change in Wk2.

      • I’m much better at colors and pictures than I am graphs. Thanks!!

  • CHeden

    Current 500mb atmospheric setup is showing a Rex Block, with the western ridge of the block off well off the west coast and a cutoff low/trough located west of Baja…pretty much as expected. Not unexpectedly, as dry continental air from the block drops into the cutoff low, dry and subsiding NNE winds are starting to ramp up over most of California. Upstream just east of the Dateline, a deep trough associated with GoA LP to the north is digging south with little eastward progression ATTM, (but will become more progressive in another 48 hrs or so). This trough is pumping up the Rex Block ridge to the east which will bring California a major boost in temps (perhaps record breaking near the coast) due to downsloping winds as the ridge axis shifts overhead around Wed.-Thurs. time frame. As the Rex Block continues to shift east, the cutoff low will drift NE to off the SoCal coast bringing rapid cooling and the first round of showers around Friday. Then, the trough now out by the dateline will phase with the cutoff low, thus turning steering winds weakly SW-NE and help slowly lift the cut-off low even further north over Calif. At this time, it is uncertain whether the consolidated upper low will eject east or just dissipate over Cent. Calif., so scattered showers (and residual instability) might remain over Calif. a while longer than expected before a new cycle begins with a more transient ridge building offshore and a new (perhaps stronger) cutoff low dropping south along the west coast. As long as the west coast ridge(s) keep re-building in the same general area of the north Pacific, we may see as many as three separate cycles before a bona-fide GoA CF sweeps down the entire west coast later in Wk3 bringing a possibly significant precip event before things quiet down. A wild card not shown by the models ATTM is the possibility of a baggy post-frontal trough to develop…which could extend the unsettled Wx into the end of April with general troughiness hanging off the coast. While unusual, a persistent tendency for EPac troughiness in Spring is often times seen during those years when we do get late-season rains.

    • AN50

      Great summary, thanks. I remain solidly pessimistic. I see no reason that those atmospheric conditions which have made a mockery of past rain predictions are somehow going to change. Cut off lows to the south of socal are at best fickle and on average are not rain makers for the south land. And yes I understand the phasing aspect of the LP to the west. But for us to get meaningful precipitation would require far too much faith in everything thing going our way in a year where it clearly has not.

      • Upslope

        Hard to disagree with this. While CHeden has the science and the pattern recognition correctly, climo this year would tend to argue against this coming together in a favorable pattern/outcome for SoCal. Until we see actual evidence of these possibilities manifesting in our observed weather, I think it’s wise to remain skeptical in such a crazy year.

        • CHeden

          Wholeheartedly agree.

        • AN50

          So true. I look forward to his every analysis.

    • craig matthews(Big Sur)

      CHeden your thinking is so clear. I’m jealous of your ability to write weather. Outstanding summary!

    • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

      Spot on, Bravo! Can’t wait to have to the time to get on the blog more, but definitely had to read up on your thinking. I’m supposed to haul an engine up from Long Beach next week, and it seems that every time I try to do my new build it wants to rain during the process. Seriously, every time!

      • AN50

        Ah ha! It’s been you all along! If you would have just done that build we would have been guaranteed rain! My suggestion is you get cracking and sacrifice your build to the evil rain God’s.

  • alanstorm

    So it’s NOT over after all. Talk about statewide.
    The big question is how many severe thunderstorms & TORNADO reports

    • Thirsty Nick (Santa Maria)

      Of course, we’re right at the edge of this storm. All I need is a three-day downpour. 🙁

  • craig matthews(Big Sur)

    Comparing El Nino’s 1983, 1998, and 2016 January through March 500mb geopotential heights. Looking at the height anomaly pattern across the Northern Hemesphere, seams Npac and Atlantic were singing a different tune this time around, whereas, in 1983 and 1998 jan-mar, there was a Nino induced connection in the pattern between the Npac, and Atlantic. This is the way it looks to me but really don’t know for sure. What do you think? This is just one of many aspects in comparisons to past Strong/Very Strong Ninos.

    • One word HeightAnomaliesAcrossPacificAt30NSaysALot

      One note and in your example it’s no big deal. The contour interval is different in your 1998 example.

      • craig matthews(Big Sur)

        Don’t know why the contour interval changed w/o my say so lol. But thanks for pointing that out. I’ve got 200, 500, 850 vector wind anomaly comparisons, along with velocity potentials for these years, which really shows some striking differences between ’83-’98, and 2016. Check it out on ESRL if you haven’t already, takes too much room to post ’em all.

        • I’ll bet! You will need to override and input a contour interval that matches the others or do one interval for every example.Sometimes it won’t kick out the new parameters. LOL go figure…So when you do 1998 you’d put in 15 and -150 and 150

          • craig matthews(Big Sur)

            Thanks for that info, didn’t know that. I see the default override contour now I know. LOL on me 🙂

    • CHeden

      Excellent data-grab! Aside from your comments, another key difference I see is the much-discussed limitation of Pacific moisture penetrating inland in 2016 vs. ’83 and ’98 as evidenced by the lack of lowered heights over the SE continental US. Note that the accentuated land-sea effect is seen not only in the west, but the same can be seen for the east coast as well.
      As you say, each SEN is different, but it’s clear the upper-air set-ups are radically different this year than in previous events.

      • One more obvious comparo for West Coast CONUS, yet the latitude of the EQ precip as well as S of EQ: New Guinea through Indonesian archipelago. MJO in the west Pacific and ITCZ in the east Pacific, both or one effecting the other maybe??

        • craig matthews(Big Sur)

          Looks like Barney and friends hung out a lot in Tahiti in ’83 & “98.

  • SoCalWXwatcher

    As of now, the upcoming systems look to hit SoCal in a manner reminiscent of what we saw in early January (which was really the only period which resembled a traditionally strong El Niño stormy period down here this season)

    Let’s hope it plays out as models suggest, because local ecosytems are facing a tough Summer given our current 47% of normal rainfall thus far down here.

    https://twitter.com/zlabe/status/717360952547495937

    • craig matthews(Big Sur)

      Yeah its nice to see Socal in the brunt on these model runs for a change. If it happens in the real world, party on socal!! Exactly what you guys need.

      • I’m with you….yet there might be a part of most all of us who want it always in our backyard, sharing of course, but always invited to the party.

    • Thirsty Nick (Santa Maria)

      Holy cow.

  • Crouching Dallas

    While I wouldn’t call it a classic model battle, does seem like we’ve got a GFS/ECMWF skirmish on our hands regarding this weekend! GFS, keeping with the past week(ish), brings the cutoff onshore and the dynamics we need for rain and some snow in the mountains, whereas the EC just keeps the low off our coast…along with the cold air!

    While we all know the Euro is generally superior, I do feel like the GFS has had a better handle on these cutoffs (the EC had been showing ridging for this time period until recently coming around). Can we assume that the Euro is effectively “caught up” by now, or that it’s still behind the GFS’ analysis?

    Full disclaimer: I’ll be in Mammoth this weekend and want fresh snow in my face. So there’s some bias on my part, for sure. That said, though, the GFS has been way more consistent on this pattern change, and I’m therefore inclined to believe it more than the Euro.

    Any thoughts?

    • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

      I do agree with you that the Euro has been playing “catch-up” with the GFS as of late.. While we do know that the euro usually does better with Long Range, I think your right that the GFS seems to have a better handle on predicting the track of cut-off lows in the NPAC. We shall see, but my fingers are crossed! Things are looking good though and the potential is certainly there for some serious storminess (especially for SoCal!). Who would of thought that SoCal would be seeing the best series of storms and prolonged storminess in April during a super El Niño year? And NOT winter?!? Lol this season is so out of whack, but hey can’t complain aye?! At least we got west coast troughs to talk about and not death ridges! 😉

      • Crouching Dallas

        This is from a few days ago, but Howard had some thoughts regarding the Euro playing catch up:

        Some Comments about the MJO: In my platinum powder email yesterday PM, I discussed changes in the pattern coming up by the end of next week. Looking at the updated MJO Phase Space this AM, it was interesting to note that this was one of those unusual times that the GFS scooped the ECMWF in indicating a stronger MJO. When one model does that over the other, its week two forecast is more reliable! The CPC commented on that in their Briefing last Tuesday. I like their briefings because they know which phase space to use and thus makes for a better week two outlook or at least which model’s week two forecast is the best. In this case, it is the American models week-two forecast. Looking at the new update this morning at 8:00am, the ECMWF has come around to the GFS thinking and so I would imagine that it’s week two forecast on todays 12Z run will be more like the GFS. It is playing catch-up. – See more at: http://mammothweather.com/2016/04/01/beautiful-spring-weekend-shaping-up-with-mild-temps-and-light-winds-the-last-gasp-of-el-nino-is-on-its-way/#sthash.Ry7PprD2.dpuf

        • The significance moving into spring is very low for matching phases and precip. Not saying Howard is wrong.

    • Either model will break your heart at some time for every type of forecast. Some claim one is superior for this reason or another is bad for another. You make a good point that for some situations and at different times of the year one model may have an edge over the other. Or for a type of pattern one model has it over the other. I think one has to really know their stuff and what each model has a bias for a particular parameter and think/decipher/know how to look at each models deficiencies rather than strengths to make a better forecast some how blending both or discounting one entirely. Oh, I hope you didn’t want thoughts on snow at Mammoth. That’s above my pay grade. LOL

      FWIW the Eu still seems to be flipping every 12 hours on total precip. The GFS has an advantage in likability ATM only because if you don’t like the **Z just wait six hours. With the Euro if you don’t like the **Z wait till tomorrow.

      • Crouching Dallas

        Haha, this is a fantastic response! Super helpful for thinking about model wars. These types of scenarios are both maddening and wonderful opportunities to learn about model divergence, blending, etc, you know? I try (in my spare time as a graduate student) to use the AFDs to inform my model watching. It’s an insane hobby, isn’t it?

        Speaking of which, here’s Reno this afternoon:

        For Saturday, model simulations continue to show an upper low
        spreading showers across both CA and NV. It`s part of a split flow
        pattern which is often a low confidence scenario. However, on
        Saturday the jet is positioned south of the low which increases
        confidence somewhat that the system will progress onshore/inland as
        advertised. Forecast confidence is medium-high for showers Saturday
        but duration/amount is still a low confidence proposition. Latest
        model simulations for liquid precipitation Saturday-Saturday night
        range from less than a tenth of an inch up to around an inch if a
        persistent deformation band sets up. Snow levels in the Sierra are
        expected to drop to around 7500 feet by Sunday morning, so travel
        impacts are possible for higher passes including Mt Rose and Carson
        starting Saturday night.

        • I hope you get pasted with snow. 🙂

  • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

    Once again sifting thru differences in the LR and possible outcomes/scenarios that can happen.. The 06z solution is looking much better than the 12z in terms of next weeks cold and unstable storm (around the Thursday timeframe). The 06z has a much larger and deeper (967 mb low!) LP near the aluetions stalling out around 55 N and 170 W.. Pumping up the NPAC ridge in a perfect position to deepen the west coast trough and in a manner which pulls more cold air down into the west coast Cut-off low. This scenario gives the west coast LP ample time to deepen (becoming stronger) before slamming into CA bringing heavy Precipitation. The 12z scenario still brings a west coast LP system to the west coast, but much weaker due to the LP near the aluetions moving more eastward and flattening the ridge a bit more.. The 12z solution has a weaker LP near the aluetions aswell and if it moves eastward and pushes the entire set-up too east then that could be it for our wet pattern as the storms will then be re-directed back to the pacific NW after the Thursday storm next week..

    Like I said though, BOTH solutions (06z & 12z) brings another storm to CA around next Thursday, but I would prefer the 06z solution over the 12z obviously! Because the 06z bring us a stronger and even colder storm and is better for the Long range for a continuation of a west coast wet pattern! Both solutions also will bring a cold unstable storm with impressive thunderstorm potential, but the 06z would have even colder air to work with and a much stronger storm too! Anyways here’s some attatched images of the comparisons I speak of!

    • I like to go to TT and pick a run time say 18Z and go back a day at a time for three days if not too far into fantasy land and do it with 00, 06 and 12.
      I know the models correct for diabatic heating, yet I’m leaning that it’s not without error.

      • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

        I do the same! Especially when there’s possible precipitation in the forecast! Nice to see the differences in the model runs from day to day to find most likely outcome and possible scenarios.. You can keep track of which model is the most consistent and find errors that way.

        • Pfirman

          If you have a spouse and a system that does not involve kayaks, I am all ears.

  • Barney

    I found out what happened to El Nino this winter

    • Upslope

      Nvm: Didn’t see the picture. My eyes!!

    • craig matthews(Big Sur)

      Wait, I thought he fell off that cliff up Mendocino Co coast.

    • inclinejj

      Cancel, What I said this am. I don’t want to be like you when I grow up. I need a new role model ha

    • I would have fired off the evac slides, too.

    • Crouching Dallas

      I miss the winter days when you posted pictures of things covered in snow – is this what the season has come to?

      • Pfirman

        Snow covers a lot of sins.

    • Sokafriend

      Uh huh. I really don’t like to fly much anymore unless it’s in the front of the plane.

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      He looks to old to be a “Niño”. I believe that one is called “El Fatso Viejo”.

      • craig matthews(Big Sur)

        I think you just discovered a new oscillation. The kind that moves from McDonald’s to Burger King then back again.

        • Flunking_retirement

          The McDBKO, characterized by rising HCL and fries.

          • Bombillo1

            I’m guessing a major CH4 producer as well.

    • sdmike

      Y’know … some things can’t be unseen.

      Just sayin’.

  • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

    Here’s what the 12z ECMWF looks like for next week.. Similar to the 06z GFS with some small differences.. The big LP near the aluetions is a little more eastward than we’d like to see it on the 12z GFS and 12z EC.. They both pump up the NPAC ridge and drop a cold cut-off low down the west coast on the western periphery of the ridge, but the Euro brings that cut-off low inland earlier than we’d like it to see it. The 06z GFS solution has the big aluetion LP further west and deeper also stalling out allowing ample time for the west coast cut-off low downstream to deepen offshore the CA coast bringing a much more significant storm to the state!

    The 12z Euro solution is still better than the 12z GFS as far as the entire set-up for LR looks and west coast Precip from the cold cut-off low around the next Thursday timeframe. Here’s what the NPAC set-up looks like In the Long Range for late next week..

    This is the 06z GFS (best), 12z GFS, and 12z Euro.

    • craig matthews(Big Sur)

      No likey the inside slider trend. Lets hope that’s not the case again.

      • Pfirman

        ‘No likey’ works for most of the weather discussed here, as far as outcomes, with too few exceptions this season. But I love those exceptions.more than ever.

  • Thirsty Nick (Santa Maria)

    91 degrees in Santa Maria. #makeitstop

    • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

      Currently 87 degrees here, will probably hit 90+ tomorrow in the SFV.. (Especially west SFV, Woodland Hills)

      • Thirsty Nick (Santa Maria)

        We need a massive rain prayer now. I’m sick of this heat.

    • It will be 94 in here tomorrow. Ugh!

      • inclinejj

        87 cruising through Vacaville on I-80

  • 310weatherguy

    90+ in multiple areas.. hard to believe what’s to come, almost. Fingers crossed and cars washed

    • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

      Hit 90 degrees today for the high!

      • Pfirman

        You are not alone. We in the north interior are having a time of heat along with North Wind, our equivalent of Santa Ana in terms of vilification.

      • Phil(ontario)

        95 degrees here in ontario. What the crap month is this, February??

      • 310weatherguy

        Ugh, this weekend can’t come any sooner.

    • Flunking_retirement

      Cloudy and cool down here (SD), after a heavy fog this morning. Very red sunset this evening, but still only expecting around 70 near the coast tomorrow.

      • 310weatherguy

        Nice! Normally I would be hating our heat but with the storm coming this weekend, its not to bad knowing it has an end.

  • WarmEpoch4California

    HOT AIR + COLD CUT OFF LOW = THUNDERSTORMS!
    Today’s and tomorrow’s heat might make things MUCH more interesting than if the cut low hit us back in January it was much cooler.
    Take into account the higher sun angle in April.
    I’m predicting even better thunderstorms than the ones we saw at the beginning of March.

    • inclinejj

      The atmosphere might just be as unstable in a couple days, as some on this blog.

      • Flunking_retirement

        LOL :^))

  • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

    Regarding timing and this first hybrid system coming into California.

    It looks like the northernmost cut-off low is going to cool things down before any precipitation starts falling. On the other hand, the southernmost cut-off low has been hanging down south for quite some time and is really going to start cranking up in PWATS on it’s eastern edge over the next 36-48 hours. NAM is suggesting a sub-tropical surge will be the outcome of those PWATS, likely leading to a humid airmass moving up from the south. In all honesty this could feel a lot like the Monsoon season. Wouldn’t doubt a thick cloud shield over SoCal with the sub-tropical surge before the second cut-off low merges off the coast and comes onshore… Sometimes that can be a bad thing to have a thick cloud shield, especially if the lower levels are much drier leading to a lot of visible virga from the ground and less rain reaching the surface. If there isn’t much of a cloud shield though, more day time heating can get under some of those tropical clouds leading to a hell of a lot of puffy cumulus and some angry thunderstorms. With such high PWATS rolling over the region I’m sure the sky’s gonna squeeze out whatever it can for us before the main system begins. https://twitter.com/805Weather/status/717486220318642176

    • SoCal Al (El Monte-SGV)

      Your right-on with the PWATS as the AFD states reaching 1.25 inches but are somewhat pessimistic on the rain totals.

      Here’s a quick excerpt for the Thur/Fri cut-off low:

      THE SYSTEM WILL HAVE A SUB-TROPICAL AIR MASS ATTACHED TO IT…WITH PWATS AROUND 1.25 INCHES WHICH IS HIGH FOR THIS TIME OF THE YEAR. WHILE THE MOISTURE FACTOR IS GOOD…THE LIFT INGREDIENT IS LACKING. THE ALREADY WEAK LOW IS NOT VERY COLD ALOFT (AS THE 8000+ SNOW LEVEL ATTEST)…AND THE VORTICITY ADVECTION IS FAIRLY BENIGN.

      • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

        I believe the system will be strongest once it is actually considered a hybrid system (the two lows converge).

  • rob b-Truckee/East Bay

    A bit of a surprise but CalFire and Tahoe Nat’l Forest crews are working a fire in the Sierra City area. Hopefully not a sign of things to come later this summer.

    http://yubanet.com/2016Regional/Sacred.php?

    • Pfirman

      Went away for a week and the weeds grew and the ground dried out. Sierra City should be wetter than me in the lower Sac Valley, but maybe it is just dead trees. Certainly tons of that.
      Still, California wildlands are between a rock and a hard place. No rain and they die. Rain, and they burn.

      • Charlie B

        Fire is on a relatively sparsely vegetated south facing hillside.

  • J Tang

    Is Concord area raining?

    • WarmEpoch4California

      No, a city or a town is not capable of “raining”. It’s the clouds and the atmosphere above it that do the work.

      • StormHiker

        Well I’ve been living a lie!

    • It’s radar interference from the Delta windmills. Clear skies all around.

      • J Tang

        Thank you for your expertise. I shall learn more about radar interference!

  • Los Alamitos Creek running into Almaden Lake. Haven’t seen it like this in years.

    • Pfirman

      Just say it is as big as the Truckee. At least, that is what I am visualizing.

      I did note that Cache Creek in western Yolo County was covering the creek bed fairly well today. Either way, I’m good.

  • Maybe I’m out of touch but jets flying over are leaving contrails almost 2/3 across the sky this evening. It’s nice here in T2 land. I guess air quality should be good tomorrow for SF Bay Area?

    • inclinejj

      Not this again.

  • Sokafriend

    Heh guys nice to see you all avidly peering into the skies and currents. Very interesting post, Daniel, thank you very much.

  • Sokafriend

    Here’s the blended 2/16 00 Tri national take on those things happening over the Pacific. It does seem a bit slower initially, but looks pretty good for the weekend and overall. So hope it doesn’t blow up, never know til it does.
    http://met-wrf.cicese.mx/WRF/D01/P01M/animacion_wrf_d01_p01m.gif

    • Flunking_retirement

      I like all that colour for San Diego – LA coast for a change. Hope it holds.

      • Sokafriend

        Looks good, doesn’t it, especially for the week end. Yay, something trying to rain overland.

    • Pfirman

      Go east, young man.

    • Sokafriend

      Since we are growing accustomed to the reality that ridging is a given and determining factor to contend with for generations, apparently, are there any clear indications as to the degree or extent of higher temp anomalies- surges like this one- that we might try to prepare for, that would co exist and I suppose aggravate the effects of increased warming and drought associated with the rotten ridge and our changing climate in California?
      We really do need to be able to talk about what our weather is going to look and feel like, now.
      This new study with your team gives us a good starting point, Daniel.

      • finnster

        I agree it is prudent to plan based on what the weather might be like in the future. With climate though, there are few ‘givens’ other than it will continue to change and nothing is set in stone. Ridging has certainly been a determining factor the past several years, but I do not believe we can know with any certainty that this is a factor to contend with for generations.

        • Sokafriend

          Thank you. I hesitated in associating the ridging with long term factors, but then again,why not? What would make it go away? La Nina? N Korea?
          So about prudence and temps forecast above old world seasonal normals for the coming year, S Cal is under an advance warning for summer Blackouts, now scheduled to roll along during 14 days due to the stupid enormous gas loss at Aliso Canyon Porter Ranch, with even more programmed blackouts announced for later on in the year. This ‘programmed’ cut in power to virtually all of S Cal, has been arrived upon by normal summer consumption plus likely higher heat values in the seasonal forecasts, I suppose. It would be prudent to keep that factoid in mind and prepare ourselves for heat and drought in our changed climate the same way we prepare for other emergencies.

    • Barney

      Wow looking great for the whole Sierra range. Of course I’m camping Saturday-Monday in Yosemite, seems I have a knack for timing out camp trips with rain. Hooray for the Weekend Warriors.

      • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

        Keep camping! Lol

    • Intljock

      Where’s Barney? We need more purple in SoCal.

  • Bombillo1

    Let the record show that this heat wave and its location and extent has been accurately predicted and is verifying. Here, 50 mi N of Redding at 2450 elevation at 9:15 PM it is 65 degrees. We are having howling downslope winds which means a scorcher tomorrow. Guaranteed records will be set, certainly for April 6th. Were it not for the storm that is to follow on its heels this would be as depressing a weather event imaginable. One of the most remarkable whipsaw events ever seen.

    • Sokafriend

      Whipsaw is a great descriptive term- is it really that intense?.
      How high are the winds now?

      • Bombillo1

        I don’t have an anemometer but I would guess that one hour ago we were having 25 MPH gusts. This is very unusual as we are very densely forested and with the mountains as they are around us we seldom get any real wind unless we have some dramatic gradients taking place. Especially after dark. I am wondering what is going on at Weasel’s place, on the south flank of Mt. Shasta.

        • Sokafriend

          You are right on about the whipsaw issue, what a trip this will be…. I’m sorry I had no idea how high the temps are, plus that wind. It’s only 61 here, pretty much the same as it was at 4:00 PM. I just did a quick glance, at least at Shasta there’s supposed to be 35-37 winds now with gusts to 55 tonight.

  • Bombillo1

    In reading about past glaciation events it appears that the tilt of the earth’s axis has been implicated. Since the axis migration is periodic it can also be measured where we are in its current periodicity. With that as a backdrop, does anyone know where we are in that cycle? Just looking for a way out of this slow burn.

    • Mike Stephenson(Riverside)

      The next glacial period could start very soon or in 10,000 years if this interglacial ends up being different than the last few somehow.

      • Bombillo1

        I think that with our record Nino behaving as it did, I will assume that events will defy recent history.

        • Mike Stephenson(Riverside)

          Only kick is its coming for sure at some point

          • thebigweasel

            This is the image that really tells the tale of the end of the ice age era:

          • thebigweasel

            This is the image that really tells the tale of the end of the ice age era (Note that CO2 atmospheric concentrations never rise above 300ppm in this chart):

          • Mike Stephenson(Riverside)

            We may be prolonging the interglacial, but once the switch flips there is no stopping it. The temperature drops even before co2 does in the chart. As long as the isthmus of Panama exists, and warm equatorial water cannot circulate freely around the globe, these glaciation periods are inevitable with the current continental and ocean current setup.

          • thebigweasel

            Your own chart shows that one doesn’t always precede the other, and the closer to present day you get, the less of an MoE, until by100,000 BCE, they are in complete lock-step–which I suspect they have been all along.
            And there’s absolutely no indication CO2 levels are dropping or about to start dropping. Instead, they have soared from around 270 for most of the Holocene to 405 today — and 90% of that has occurred since 1950.

          • Mike Stephenson(Riverside)

            I agree there! But do you really think our glaciation periods are over? If so, why?

          • thebigweasel

            I think they’re over for a good long time–100,000 years, possibly a million. It’s going to take a long, long time for CO2 levels to drop back below 350–the last time they were above 400, it took 1.2 million years. And the record suggests ice ages don’t occur when that sort of forcing is present.

          • Mike Stephenson(Riverside)

            When was that period where it took 1.2 million years? After the isthmus of Panama formed about 3 million years ago, the pattern dominated anything else going on. Co2 was high then also from volcanic eruptions. Although as co2 dropped about 800,000 years ago you can see we transitioned from 40k intervals to 100k intervals as co2 declined. Even the last interglacial, the Eemian, was much warmer than today and it plunged back into an ice age pretty drastically. I am not by any means arguing against co2 being a greenhouse gas, just pointing out that over the last 2.5 million years, the pattern has prevailed regardless of co2 even at levels similar to today’s.

          • Mike Stephenson(Riverside)

            Pic

          • Jeff

            that in no way means there is any causation involved, simply an association. i am sure there are a hundred other similar associations in a massive climate change such as this. the temperature change seems exponentially more likely to follow the massive energy effect of the earth axis shifting to the point that it seems illogical to even suggest that CO2 was the driving force in changes of this scale.

          • thebigweasel

            The ‘greenhouse’ properties of CO2 have been well known for 150 years. I recommend doing some reading on the topic.

          • Jeff

            You are trying to combine an association with a known effect of CO2 and in some way derive causation. That is not how science works.

          • thebigweasel

            That’s like saying that if I light a stove burner under a kettle, and the water in the kettle gets hot, to say that the burner caused the water to get hot “derives causation.”

    • Sokafriend

      Wow. Interesting question. I think it happens about every 40,000 years. Looking at the chart, I think we are about 30,000 years away from the next one, so sorry for your quick escape. But, I also don’t know how much a difference was made -or if it is a factor- by that 4 inch shift that occurred after the 2011 earthquake that wreaked havoc.
      http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Features/Milankovitch/milankovitch_3.php

    • rainingintheLBC

      We are at 23.5 degrees and we are decreasing towards the minimum obliquity of 22 degrees(It’s a 41,000 year cycle) . This means less annual insolation and cooler summers at the high latitudes, and a greater chance that ice sheets can build. This doesn’t mean cooling will occur though, due to other Milankovitch cycles at play(eccentricity, precession, etc).

      • Bombillo1

        Is it unknown where we stand with those competing oscillations? Thanks for entertaining this.

        • rainingintheLBC

          Orbital eccentricity is approaching zero(circular). Eccentricity, if I remember correctly, has a greater impact on climate than precession, especially at such a low value. The evidence isn’t definitive but most estimates think the present interglacial climate will exist for another 25,000-50,000 years. After that another glacial is likely imminent.

          • Bombillo1

            Thanks. This could be the geoengineering solution to our warming. We just have to tweak the axis. What could go wrong? I’m sure Daniel will sign off on it.

        • Arnold Weather Fanatic

          24 degrees

        • CHeden

          The minimum tilt is 22.1 deg, with the max 24.5 deg. We are currently at 23.44 and moving towards Tilt/min. A lower tilt angle means the mid-latitudes will see less insolation during Summer than now and and more during Winter, with an overall cooling trend in the base-state. By rights, we should still be in a cooling trend that started ~ 6,000 years ago.

      • Sokafriend

        Inuit elders have warned Nasa, did you know that? I trust their observations and know they must have felt very strongly about it or they would not have sent a letter to NASA. They say there has been a shift or wobbling, a change, based on empirical, life, oral history, traditional knowledge and navigational experience. The Milankovich Theory is a theory from maybe a couple of hundred years ago, right on, but not even supported by science until recently so there may be other things at play. The Inuits have been where they are, living the way they live for thousands and thousands of years.

        • Thunderstorm

          They may indeed know something is a-miss. Check out on the internet. Cal Tech-new planet. Lots of buzz out there about an incoming planet from several sites. As orbiting objects approach each other they exchange energy. What has caused the Arctic to stay so warm for so long with no let up in sight. Human activity, hardly. Be interesting to see if the Arctic continues to warm further this year.

  • River Man

    This could be our last stand

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      And probably our Alamo, considering the rainfall deficit that must be overcome.

      • River Man

        Anybody who does not believe we will get massive amounts of rain over the next couple weeks is unpatriotic.

        • Tuolumne

          Ungodly, too!

  • Crouching Dallas

    THE LONG RANGE PATTERN FOR MOST OF NEXT WEEK SHOWS AN UNRELENTING SERIES OF PACIFIC SHORTWAVES TRUNDLING AROUND THE BASE OF A MEAN WEST COAST TROUGH FOR COOLER THAN AVERAGE WEATHER AND ABOVE AVERAGE CHANCES OF INTERMITTENT PRECIPITATION

    Trundling, you guys. TRUNDLING. NWS is tired of your ridgy BS and is ready to party in the pitter patter of real live rain drops. Bring it!

    • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

      Which NWS spilled these beans?

      • Crouching Dallas

        ¡San Diego!

        • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

          Only from the best I suppose.

    • From Oxnard, “THE WEATHER PATTERN WILL CHANGE SHARPLY ON THURSDAY AND SOUTHERN CA WEATHER WILL MORE RESEMBLE PORTLAND’S.”

      • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

        Impressive…

    • Mike Stephenson(Riverside)

      This text is prophetic. We will soon be liberated

    • CHeden

      The forecaster must be a golfer!

    • “ABOVE AVERAGE CHANCES OF INTERMITTENT PRECIPITATION”
      Sure this is comprehensible, yet read it word for word and it means ‘Above average chances of precipitation happening at irregular intervals’

  • inclinejj

    63 degrees up from 60 at midnight. Wind starting to pick up. No cool side of the pillow. Fan on and the Windows open. Even the dog Is panting.

  • weathergeek100

    Can’t wait for some rain. Horrible Santa Ana winds this morning in Berkeley. I was biking to Bart and would go through a gust of wind where the temp would spike 10 degrees like they’re winds from a nearby fire. Reminds me of SoCal.

    • mosedart (SF)

      Santa Ana winds?

      • weathergeek100

        Yeah, they don’t call them that up here but I do;) These are classic Santa Anas. Exact same pattern that’s so common in SoCal.

        • J Tang

          In SoCal, usually after a rain episode, Santa Ana wind can get really crazy. It’s a bit different here in NorCal. Didn’t know it’s not called that here. What is crazy wind called in NorCal?

          • 310weatherguy

            Rob-B up above said there called tje Diablo winds. Sounds cooler then santa ana but also kinda bad too haha.

          • Thor

            Anyone else have that Steely Dan song ringing in their heads??

            Devil winds? not bad…

            it was cool and calm in Marin this morning – down to 47 degrees at sun up…opened all the sliders and doors in hopes of cooling down the house even more before the big heat up (no AC)- then will close up. Although, earlier forecasts had San Rafael at 95- my current local WU forecast for my Zip says 86 – so perhaps not so bad.

          • malnino

            Babylon sisters!! i cant get it outta my head now!

          • 310weatherguy

            Well hey it hit 94 here yesterday. It could always be worse haha

          • Mike Stephenson(Riverside)

            Are you talking about post frontal winds? (Which are not the same)

          • thebigweasel

            I’ve heard them called Dancing Ghost winds, since they come from the general direction of that range of mountains. They’re nothing like the Santa Anas or the Sundowners, though. THOSE are fierce.
            BTW, I’ll be gone for a week or two on family business. So I haven’t gone off in search of the lost Bandini, OK?

        • mosedart (SF)

          Dead calm here in SF, strange!

          • weathergeek100

            That’s because you’re right on the coast. In SoCal, it’s the same situation- it can be dead calm at the coast and very windy just inland or in the hills. In a stronger event, they’ll blow at sea level all the way to the immediate coast and that’s forecasted to happen today at some point.

          • FolsomPrisonBlues

            The air is very still in Folsom also. We had some nice breezes yesterday. Today it is just eerily at rest.

          • weathergeek100

            Also, if it’s fall or spring (more likely fall) and it’s going to be 85 degrees in SF, it’s basically…..usually….. a Santa Ana type day (if you’d like to call it that;), regardless of how much wind at the coast.

      • rob b-Truckee/East Bay

        I am guessing he means the Nor Cal version of Santa Ana winds…the Diablo Winds.

        • Mike Stephenson(Riverside)

          Is there any differences in character of the winds?

          • rob b-Truckee/East Bay

            Not that I can point out, tend to be warm breezes/winds blowing out of the East. Just like Santa Ana winds usually happen in the fall Sept/Oct (Think Oakland Hills Firestorm).

          • shampeon

            Just a guess here, but wouldn’t the compression heating from going over the higher ranges in SoCal cause Santa Anas to be generally hotter?

            That is, east winds blowing from the Central Valley to the Bay Area are descending from ranges around 1500-4000 feet. Winds blowing from the Mojave/Colorado desert to SoCal are descending from 3000-11,000 feet.

          • Tuolumne

            Speaking from some decades of experience in the north and about seven years in the south, the northern winds just can’t compare in severity or frequency to the southern ones.

          • shampeon

            That’s my impression, growing up in San Diego and now living in NorCal for over 20 years.

          • weathergeek100

            Nope. No difference. Exact same setup and exact same character. Surface high pressure in the Great Basin resulting in northeast winds in the hills and reaching sea level during stronger episodes.

        • weathergeek100

          Yeah someone else on this blog mentioned they’re called Diablo winds, but haven’t heard of any locals calling it that yet so I’ll stick to Santa anas for now 🙂

          • jstrahl

            I’ve heard Diablo winds as a term quite often, FWIW, after all Mt Diablo is east from us in Berkeley over the hills.:-)

    • Mike Stephenson(Riverside)

      It’s strangely calm this morning here

  • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

    A little relief is on it’s way folks. If you have been paying attention to the last 36 hours of the VIS/IR satellite have really exploded in the EPac!

    • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

      Currently we have a comma under all the high clouds, here’s a better visual. This will likely be the tropical surge & cloud shield over much of California tomorrow that I had mentioned, sorry having trouble uploading the screenshot.

      • Crouching Dallas

        Does look a little better organized than expected!

        • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

          It was the high clouds that throw you off on the VIS, it’s starting to get some circulation in there, could be a good thunderstorm chance by the afternoon tomorrow.

  • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

    Crazy, just when I thought, “Ah this ain’t so bad of wind and heat, it’s actually a little chilly!” That was back at my house just a few miles from the coast… I drive 6 miles inland to Camarillo Springs under the Conejo Grade and it’s quite warm and breezy here. High clouds might or might not help aid in some cooling, we’ll see.

    • Randy Finch

      I work at the Springs and very gusty hot and dry Santa Ana’s..is this September??

      • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

        You do? I also work over there lol. Wasn’t it really something over this morning?

        • Randy Finch

          Very strange indeed.

  • mrzz

    Sorry if it’s been posted before – didn’t see it in the first couple of scrolls down…. Interesting read on Panasonic developing an improved GFS model using hi-res airplane data.
    http://arstechnica.com/science/2016/04/tv-maker-panasonic-says-it-has-developed-the-worlds-best-weather-model/

    • Thanks for posting this–I was actually not aware. That certainly came in under the radar. Sounds like it’s actually a modified version of the GFS (the underlying code for which is freely available, as it was created with federal tax dollars). Sounds like the main advantage Panasonic has is access to thousands of aircraft-borne sensors and a way to assimilate all the additional observational data in real time.

      Like Cliff Mass says in the article, though, I’d be skeptical of those very bold claims until they actually release full verification data for all seasons.

      Unfortunately, it’s very unlikely this new model would ever be made available to the public, since it is entirely privately owned and probably worth quite a lot of money. I imagine it will end up being something like an even more restrictive version of the ECMWF…

      • mrzz

        I agree- however I hope it spurs the NWS programmers to take a close look at crowd-sourced data sets (big data – everyone *loves* big data right? Lord knows the NSF is certainly on that bandwagon). I realize this isn’t exactly that type of dataset since Panasonic bought the company that implemented the airplane sensors and so it might be proprietary.

        The common refrain I’d been hearing about the underperformance of the GFS was compute power, not improved initial conditions or up-to-the-minute data access. As an HPC person myself I know we all love more cores, but there are many avenues for improving codes and hopefully the parallel programming rockstars at NWS will take a look at alternate methods for improving the model.

  • Bob G

    Per Howard S this morning

    The Dweebs this morning like the way the pattern is shaping up the next few weeks with good potential of beneficial rains and snow in the high country for the southern 2/3rds of the state. Medium Range forecasts and long-range outlooks show a strong for Mid April, belt of Westerlies carrying a series of closed lows through Southern and Central CA. Although in the short-term the snow level will be high…deeper systems will bring colder storms next week. The global model spreads of the 10 day QPF’s are pretty large at the moment. The European showing about 3 inches of water for the San Joaquin drainage while the GFS has a whopping 6.5 inches. Odds are it will end up somewhere in the middle by mid-month with storminess possibility persisting through the end of the 3rd week of April……Leading to an “Awesome April”…. – See more at: http://mammothweather.com/2016/04/06/strong-upper-height-blocking-over-the-pacific-nw-to-western-canada-will-force-undercutting-of-the-westerlies-the-next-few-weeks-bringing-good-central-and-southern-snows-and-colder-then-normal-temp/#sthash.iD6kfZbl.dpuf

    • Didn’t John Curtis copyright — “Awesome April” LOL

      • River Man

        No. He copyrighted April Answer©

        • Mike Stephenson(Riverside)

          And PC Fizzle!

        • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

          April answer!!! I love it! ^_^ wow love to see that the southern 2/3rd of the state is recieving most of the action and not vise Versa!

      • Bob G

        LOL, patent infringement

  • mrzz

    Looking at the GFS it stills seems like the south coast (Santa Barbara, Carp) may end up in the dry easterly flow on the north side of the low… I hope the low wobbles a bit more north.

  • Chowpow (Arcata)
    • Bombillo1

      Please, no netting of the new salmon runs. Tribal communities need to allow the full benefits of this event to take place.

      • WanderingTattler

        I think they are probably the more responsible players. I applaud their efforts all over N. America to force better decisions.

    • matt (truckee)

      About time. I used to fish the Klamath from the early-80’s up to about 10 years ago. The fish population noticeably declined during that time, both in quantity and quality (size). Very nice to see that we are actually doing something to reverse it.

    • Sokafriend

      This is great news. Finally, absolutely fantastic accomplishment.

  • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

    The coast is doing pretty well today with cooler temps, just 6 miles away from me in Oxnard and Port Hueneme it’s about 72-73°F. It’s currently 90°F here.

  • Jay W

    Meanwhile up in the frozen north of Seattle, we’re getting a heat wave! It is supposed to be 80 F tomorrow, which could set a daily record. The upcoming weather pattern looks like a win-win for both Seattle and California – mild and sunny up here, and cool and rainy in the south.

    • WSDTLA

      I grew up there, I’m not even that old (less than 30) and 80f in April (and this early in the month!!!) is unbelievable.

  • alanstorm

    Instead of looking at the friggin 49ers News of the day, I look at THIS.
    Plus, I’d like to personally thank those who did a Rain Dance to bring forth this Ample April.
    My only complaint: HOW COME U GUYS IN
    SOCAL GET ALL THE RAIN???

    • WanderingTattler

      You don’t think we need it 🙂

      • alanstorm

        Well, you’re certainly getting the Los Angeles Lambs & a Trundle of Troughs.
        BTY- I personally busted a move on the dancefloor all winter for my SoCal brothers & sisters.
        You’re welcome.

        • WanderingTattler

          Thanks for busting. Appreciated. (btw, my comment was meant to be humorous with the emoticon)

          • alanstorm

            Wildflowers are just starting to pop here. This next round will really make a colorful spring. No LSD required!

          • More likely the bright orange of wildfires at night.

          • alanstorm

            Why don’t u save that negativity until late August. I wanna enjoy this lush spring

          • Sokafriend

            The native flowers and trees around here are happily spectacular now. We’ve been getting a lot of fog and considerable onshore flow, sustaining them nicely.

          • shampeon

            Aww man.

    • SoCalDrought , Catalina Island

      I feel a lot of irrational exuberance on this board.
      The GFS is strictly for entertainment purposes only.

      • inclinejj

        Thanks Mr Greenspan

    • Crouching Dallas

      Thanks, alanstorm! No Barney (the color, not the mandini) to be found, too!
      And yet the SoCal bretheren are largely quiet as a trundleless trough? What gives?

      • alanstorm

        I dunno. Maybe shock & disbelief. Kind of like when the fans leave the stadium & head for the parking lot in the 4th quarter when their team is toast, only to have C.Brown & Lucy trundle onto the field to kick the game winning field goal.

        • Sokafriend

          Shock, disbelief, joy too, are part of what happens in my household, among my friends and neighbors, too, when the sky is able to bestow some moisture upon us here is this dry and drying out habitat. It wasn’t until mid evening March 29 that I realized how profoundly rain is cherished- silently longed for- by the 11 year old. Unexpectedly, not forecast as far as we knew, we heard the chimes then a sudden 20 second big raindrop blast. With the first sounds he looked at me in disbelief then ran to the throw the door open with eyes, heart and soul open to the unexpected and amazingly mystical experience. Were we saddened by the brief duration? Yes. But an unspoken need along with hope was kindled and appreciation was renewed, a primal need was briefly met.
          So, if we get some light stratiform, if we get a shower or two, we will be delighted by every single drop, sound, smell, and feel. I am very happy about the prospect. At the same time, although we are aware of the possibilities while we quietly anticipate those drops, we guard the hope closely preferring the unexpected pleasure, a beneficial response to collective and individual dances, prayers, wishes and needs.

          • alanstorm

            Looks like there are at least 2 lows targeting your area over the next 2 weeks. About friggin time

          • Sokafriend

            Si, compadre, gracias. Just saw the potentials have increased and expanded through next week. Pura fiesta!
            On another note, the beaches are gone, I mean like, really no sand no more gone sucked out to sea from the border through Rosarito, reports same south past La Mision. Unsuspecting frolickers who came out to do beaches with umbrellas, chairs, etc. during Easter week ended up milling in the streets. Over the winter outrageous wind events through March combined with the colossal swells/tides to thoroughly devour and disappear the formerly wide beaches.

        • inclinejj

          The Heidi game!!!

      • SoCal Al (El Monte-SGV)

        We’re quiet cuz we don’t want to jinx anything or until the first raindrops fall.

    • Bob G

      Didn’t I tell you that a few weeks ago, LOL. Norcal is out of luck this time. Norcal reservoirs are doing better than our reservoirs and So Cals. We need it more than you.

      • alanstorm

        Yep. Looks like Newman will get more than Willits.
        “NEWMAN!!!”

        • Bob G

          According to Howard S, theSJ River system could get 3 inches of precip which would help if that happens

      • The spread is pretty even.

        • Bob G

          Spread? Precip?

    • Dan the Weatherman

      We haven’t received any rain so far, and your area up north has been much wetter than Socal this winter. I am hoping we get some decent rainfall over the next few weeks to make up some lost ground.

  • Pulling out each of the 20 members in the GEFS 16 day (384hr) 12Z total precip run, I am glad to note the consistency throughout 95% of the individual runs. You guys can do the math to see how many are ‘outliers’. LOL Much of the differences between all of the runs is the latitude The 7-day (168HR) total QPF is also consistent.

    • The Eu control is still fighting the latitude thing. The EPS is lighter in precip compared to GEFS but not by too much, yet paints all of CA pretty even for their 7 and 15 day QPF

  • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

    Got up to 94°F with pretty good winds not too long ago then it dropped to 70°F… Had everyone scratching their head about WTH is happening. Lol

  • Pacifica weather observer

    Hot weather for Pacifica standards. 88.3 degrees and Rising. Not sure if this is a record but it’s the second warmest temperature I’ve ever recorded for the month of April. I’ve been keeping track of weather here in Pacifica since 1980.

    • Sokafriend

      What and when was the warmest? That is hot.

      • Pacifica weather observer

        The warmest temperature was on this date in 1989. 89.2 degrees

        • Sokafriend

          Thanks. So you might break it this afternoon, wow.

    • inclinejj

      Actually the hotties were out on the beach today. Am going to take a quick run out for stripers later.

      Actually I hit 90.5 as the high.

  • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

    Currently 95 degrees right now with a “real feel” of 102! Whew it’s hot today! ?

    • WSDTLA

      according to weather underground, in West LA it’s only 66. microclimates, everyone!

      • xeren

        and windy. i seriously need a jacket right now!

  • Dan the Weatherman

    There is quite a temperature contrast from inland to coast today. For example, it is 82.5 right now here in Orange, 80 in Fullerton, while it is in the mid 90’s in Corona and Chino. It appears from observations that the Santa Ana winds are blowing east of the Santa Ana Mountains, while they didn’t surface here in Orange, or at least in my area. Some areas along the immediate coast are only in the low-mid 60’s, such as Lindbergh Field and LAX.

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      The onshore push is kicking in. Steady breeze from the SW here in Costa Mesa, temps dropping, the cloud deck is thickening up and humidity is increasing.

      I was worried that dry air in the lower levels would hinder rain tomorrow, but if this onshore flow at the surface continues to push inland and moisten things up we should be in good shape when the showers move ashore later tomorrow.

    • Nate Wire

      This map shows it nicely:

    • William_LeGro

      Here’s a temperature contrast for ya: Weather.com website says it’s 87º in central LA. The Weather.com widget on my computer says it’s 72º. Ain’t the Information Age great?

      My late f-in-law’s ancient outdoor thermometer says it’s 81º in the shade and 50% humidity. Cirrus clouds are blotting out the sun, and there’s a good breeze from somewhere – hard to tell in the hills, but it feels muggy, so I think the breeze must be southerly.

  • mattzweck

    Here in the high desert Lancaster area it’s about 90 degrees according to my weather station. And little bit of santa ana winds. And cirrus clouds. streaming by.

  • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

    Not even a breeze today! Just hot! Currently 96 degrees!!

    • malnino

      93, hi clouds and windy out here in Rancho C … temps starting to plummet here, it was 97 an hour ago, woohooo!

    • Mike Stephenson(Riverside)

      98 here in Corona but it feels a bit cooler…

      • Sokafriend

        66 in Imperial Beach, high forecast at 68- 7 MPH WSW, 30.06, 75% humidity, 58 DP, overcast, forecast for sunny this afternoon, but it isn’t going to happen. Rain chances for tonight downgraded from 60-40%, but Saturday up to 50% and chances extended through Tuesday. 🙂

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      Onshore flow really kicking in here in coastal Orange County. It really cooled off quick. It will probably take a while to work its way into the valleys and inland areas, but your temp will drop like a rock when it does.

      • thlnk3r

        Thanks for that update. Looking forward to it this evening!

  • thlnk3r

    102F currently per this station in Corona, Ca : https://www.wunderground.com/us/ca/corona/zmw:92877.1.99999

    My station in Eastvale is reporting 101.1F. Thankfully the winds are only 10-15mph.

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      Wow. Currently 68F here in Costa Mesa.

      • Tom P (Trabuco Canyon)

        85 here at 2:45 PM

    • rainingintheLBC

      Crazy, only 70F in Long Beach!

      • inclinejj

        what part of the LBC??

        • rainingintheLBC

          Eastern LBC near PCH. Really nice day!

          • inclinejj

            Nice my brother was on PCH/

  • palmsprings

    Currently 99F out here with only 6% humidity.

  • RandomTreeInSB

    Looks like I missed out on the heat. Only 72F in Downtown SB ?

  • Brentwood_NorCal

    Only 85 in Brentwood and the only breeze to be had is self made.

  • Dan weather maniac

    89 on the back porch in Orinda, much higher than forecast. Will be interested in records posted later today….

    Humidity 27% gaaaag.

    Yuck. Doesn’t “feel” as hot though at least. It’s a dry heat I guess….

    Hoping for up to a half inch on the hi side forecast starting tomorrow evening for coastal hills, my area.

    Bring on this southerly surge and let the so cal contingent get some much needed rain!!!!

    • alanstorm

      91° in Ukiah.
      The rattlesnakes will definitely awaken

      • rob b-Truckee/East Bay

        already reports of rattlesnakes out around Mt. Diablo. Keep your eyes open if you’re hiking!

        • alanstorm

          Tell me about it! Just a part of life up here in interior Mendocino Co. I live just below this big rock everyone calls “Rattlesnake Rock”. Right now, they’re groggy & come out to warm up. In summer, they’re out at night. I’ve caught (shovel & bucket)& relocated quite a few over the years off my property, & now I see maybe only 1 a year. They don’t hang out around my living area anymore because of the chainsaw noise & my cats have killed off the rodents! They do pass through to better areas, believe me. Its best to always assume there’s one under every woodpile or in every gully, esp during heatwaves.
          I’m more worried about ticks & lymes disease these days

          • inclinejj

            hmmm you ain’t livin unless you had a good rattlesnake stew!

          • Tuolumne

            Snakes are deaf to sound in the air but can readily hear sound passing through the ground. Normally a chainsaw will be cutting wood that’s attached to the ground or directly/indirectly resting on it, so that sound will usually get to them.

          • alanstorm

            Plus my screaming & cursing at logs/chainsaws

  • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

    Classic coma shape becoming much better defined within last couple hours.. Hopefully this cyclonic motion is a sign of organization and serves as a better lifting mechanism to squeeze out some more rain when the juicy PWATS arrive! After all, systems of tropical orgins are usually full of surprises when they arrive in SoCal! NWS Oxnard seems to hint at possible surprises in store! 😉

  • Bob G

    NWS Fresno’s forecast more bullish on rain than NWS Sacramento with the NWS Frenso office posting thunderstorm alerts and higher precip amounts. We are in between the areas they cover in Central CA so it will be interesting to see how much we are affected by the upcoming storms, if at all.

    • Patrick McGuire

      Tell me about it. KCRA Sacramento is showing rain possibilities 5 of the upcoming 7 days for Sac where weather.com is showing only 2 days for the same cycle and zero beyond that out 15 days. Obviously there is uncertainty. Looks like latest GFS runs trending dryer now in LR

      • inclinejj

        Actually If i was a betting man I would put money down in Vegas on 7 out of 10. But I don’t bet.

  • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

    Satellite image looks cool right now!! CHeden can you decipher the set-up across the pacific right now?! Any thoughts on the system to our south? Do you think there will be enough vorticity for a decent lifting mechanism?! You can probably just look out the window with binoculars and decipher what you think this storm will do! 😉 hahaha better yet grab a telescope and point it south! Tell us what you think this storms gonna bring to us SoCal brethren!

    • mattzweck

      Hopefully we’ll get some lift with it and moisture. well were i live in Lancaster don’t know. If will get anything.

      • SoCal Al (El Monte-SGV)

        Actually, Lancaster and points east of LA (the I.E.) are shown to get the most rainfall. I’m not sure why but most precip models show it this way. Anyone?

        • AN50

          To the west these southern lows draw their inflow off the dry land and thus no precip. To the east you still get enough inflow from the ocean to supply precip.

  • Barney

    It’s hard to imagination that weather is coming, pretty much a perfect spring day in the mountains. Emigrant trail is good to go for training rides.

    • rob b-Truckee/East Bay

      I skied for a few hours early today (you made me jealous talking about your adventures earlier this week). Conditions went downhill quickly-by 3rd run it was slush. But, figured it was probably the last runs of the year best get out and enjoy it. Now bring on boating on Donner Lake!

      • Barney

        I’m thinking next week might be it for me, hopefully score a couple storm days. I’m ready for biking and camping.

        • inclinejj

          I am being really nice to the wife, trying to get the kid out of school next week for a couple ski days.

    • inclinejj

      Spring is the season of unstable. It is like the crazy x girl friend and some of the socal posters wrapped up in one!!

      • Barney

        Have fun next week. I’ve got the week off, hoping to score some fun days and maybe even get lucky with some fresh snow, not get lucky with an ex girlfriend… Though I’m arguably unstable enough for that as well.

        Might even venture down the hill to watch the A’s take on the California Angels of Anaheim of the North American Southwest.

        • inclinejj

          Nice my first A’s game is the middle of May vs the Yankees. I like cuttin out of work for the midweek 12 and 1 pm starts and the Saturday twilight games.

          Haha, your wife kept you around when you made her stack firewood!

  • Nate Wire

    MODIS image of the system coming up from the south.

  • Pacifica weather observer

    90 degrees here in Pacifica. This is now the warmest temperature recorded since 1980 for my location in Pacifica for the month of April.

    • Charlie B

      Right now in Barrow, Alaska, it’s 8 above but with the wind chill it feels like 14 below. Not sure why I mention this, but………….

      • inclinejj

        Awesome cause I wish I was in Barrow right now.

    • inclinejj

      Justify!!. I got 90 not only in my truck but at home in the of the valley.

      Keep up the good work Glenn!!

  • Pacifica weather observer

    this observation was taken about a quarter mile from my house.

    • inclinejj

      That sort of looks like it was San Pedro County Park? The ranger station. I have had it much warmer back in that valley then at my house.

  • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

    Back home now, and my weather station said the temp was 61ºF @ 9AM. It rose to 76ºF by 10AM, and then 90ºF by 11AM… Here’s the best part, by 1PM the temp was back down to 66ºF and the dew point made a major drop to 31ºF from 52º within 2 hours. Impressive day for temps here in the Oxnard Plain. Tropical moisture has been streaming more and more overhead, currently outside I can see to the south what would totally look more familiar during the monsoon season, it’s going to be an interesting day tomorrow for sure.

    Current Temp: Steady 66ºF @ 4:05PM since 1PM
    Current Dew Point: Rising slowly 58ºF @ 4:05PM

    This is technically the beginning of my weekend since I’m at work on actual weekends, so I will have quite a bit of insight on the set up over the next 48 hours into Saturday. 🙂

    • Boots

      Ojai was up to 92F when I went home for lunch. Down to 83F now. Change is coming.

      • River Man

        Yes. It really cooled down tonight!! Good observation Boots. Are you going to do before after pictures of Ventura River??

  • Barney

    Donner Creek is running very nice right now behind our neighborhood. Forest is starting to get real fragrant under the warm sun.

    • inclinejj

      The fish are happy. The kid is going to have a blast this late spring & summer catching them.

    • TruckeeLover

      This is why we love you so much Barney!

      • inclinejj

        Even though your an x surfer your ok!

    • alanstorm

      You must have stood in the middle of that ice cold creek to get those shots. That’s dedication!

    • inclinejj

      Top bank by that snag looks really fishy.

  • Mike Stephenson(Riverside)

    This is one odd day! I can’t really recall a day with strong off shore flow transitioning into a moist tropical onshore flow and dropping from 100 to 80 degrees like this.

    • Tom P (Trabuco Canyon)

      Very unusual here too..was 85 a few hours ago, now down to 70 with SE wind.

    • SoCal Al (El Monte-SGV)

      Never seen anything like this temp wise. Left El Monte at 1:15 and it was 90 deg, got to Montclair at 1:40 it was 96. Left there at 2:00 and it was still 95. Stopped by Walmart to pick-up some fishing supplies and In-n-Out for my usual dbl/dbl and fries. Got home at 4:20……76 degrees!

      • Skye H.

        There’s a weed joke in there somewhere…first person to come up with it gets an upvote and maybe, if they’re lucky, a “nice, bro”

        • Pfirman

          Assuming the H. stands for High.

  • inclinejj

    My wife sent me a text earlier. For the love of God and his green earth can you please blast Metallica tonight. Come on JJ make it rain!!

  • Sfedblog

    Wondering how this study published in Nature debunking prevailing opinion about increased wet and dry extremes in the 20th Century jibes with Daniel’s study. For one thing, that is a global study and changes in California precipitation amounts could run counter to other regions. But the study does question the idea of increasing extremes.

    Scientist: No evidence of extreme drought and floods in the twentieth century

    April 6, 2016 – 18:59

    Climate records show no evidence of increasing extremes in wet-dry climate in the twentieth century that is projected by current climate models, shows new study.

    By: Catherine Jex

    A new study presents the largest record of past water availability that goes back 1,200 years. Scientists used climate records, including tree-rings to identify patterns of drought or flood, but their results are at odds with climate models for the last century. (Photo: Paul J. Krusic)

    A new study published in Nature has looked at 1,200 years of water history in the northern hemisphere, and found a rather different story to that simulated by climate models for the same period.

    While climate models suggest that the twentieth century witnessed many periods of extreme wet and dry climate, records of past climate apparently do not show any evidence of this.

    “Climate models indicate that in general, wet regions will get wetter and dry regions will get drier in the future with global warming. But we haven’t really seen [evidence of] this yet,” says lead-author Fredrik Ljungqvist, from the Department of History, Stockholm University. (End)

    • The far more likely explanation–which has been extensively documented in the existing literature–is that tree ring data substantially underestimate past extremes. While the underlying research here appears sounds, the interpretation of the results seem potentially way off base.

      There is an incredibly wide array of theoretical, observational, and model-based evidence indicating that many kinds of precipitation extremes do in fact increase when the Earth warms.

      • Sokafriend

        Thanks.

      • Jeff

        If tree ring data underestimates prior extremes, then the recent studies of tree ring data indicating the severity of the current california drought to be the most severe in the past 500 to 1200 years would similarly seem to be subject to broad interpretation as well?

        • WanderingTattler

          Is it not a difference in the use of the data. Relying on paleo data to predict future trends, as opposed to data that merely indicates the state of drought at the time.

      • Here are some thoughts from a person more qualified than I am to assess paleoclimate research:
        https://www.facebook.com/MichaelMannScientist/posts/1066041300118738

        • Sokafriend

          Great response and background info including studies and reports. Thanks to you and thanks to Michael Mann.

      • Sfedblog

        Just throwing this out there for discussion among the knowledgeable since I’m not a weatherwonk nor I have I read either study. The one published in Nature used tree ring, ice core and marine sediment samples.

        • Sfedblog

          Even if paleo samples are problematic, what about the findings on the 20th Century?

      • alanstorm

        It seems like one long lasting stuck AR could seriously skew the tree ring data in a particular spot during an otherwise dry season.

        • Tuolumne

          Depends how much of that water actually gets into the ground where it would make a difference. An AR would tend to produce disproportionate runoff (vs. soil infiltration) for the amount of rainfall involved.

          Other factors matter too. The 12/14 and 2/15 ARs helped some but were considerably offset by relatively warm, dry, sunny weather the remaining time during that winter. The result was conditions drier than would be expected based on just total rainfall.

      • inclinejj

        WOW when I was a kid everyone thought tree ring was a perfect book to winters past.

  • Very strange went from calm winds in Temecula 89 degrees to very windy mid 70’s.

  • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

    Cool breeze has kicked in within the last couple hours and cooling becoming much more noticeable as of right now.. Currently only 73 degrees.. Yesterday at about 8:30 pm it was still 81 degrees so you can certainly “feel” the change in weather coming and rather abruptly as NWS Oxnard said in their AFD. Tropical overcast skies ATM. High today was 97 degrees! Didn’t get any offshore winds with the short-lived Santa Ana wind event today (barely a breeze at all), but I am getting cool breezy conditions now.

    • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

      Less than 30 minutes later and now it’s only 67 degrees outside! Talk about a cool down! High of 97 and now temp has dropped 30 degrees!

      • You guys are lucky. Still in the 80’s here.

      • Pfirman

        High of 97 is one thing. Having it in the first week of April is another thing altogether.

  • Tyler Price (Van Nuys)

    Is this storm to our south already doing something out there? Radar seems to think so.. Already picking up some echoes out over the ocean, I wonder if any of it is actually reaching the surface..

  • thebigweasel

    It hit 87.6 here today–record for the date, and third highest recorded for the month of April.

    • Pfirman

      Right, and it is early April.