California hits precipitation record as spring warming commences

Filed in Uncategorized by on April 16, 2017 1,700 Comments

Record wet in Northern California; huge snowpack threatens floods

Record wet conditions occurred across wide swath of interior West this winter, including parts of NorCal. (WRCC)

It’s official: the Northern Sierra “8-Station Index”–comprised of 8 precipitation observation sites in the northern half of the Sierra Nevada watershed–has eclipsed 1982-1983 to become the wettest Water Year (Oct-Sep) period on record! Even more remarkable is that this record has been set so early in the calendar year–even though May-September is the dry season in California, some additional precipitation in this region is all but inevitable in the coming months, which will push this record total even higher. Statewide precipitation metrics are not far behind. Precipitation in 2016-2017 is closely paralleling 1982-1983, and stands a good chance at breaking the long-standing record later this year.

All of this beneficial, drought-busting water, though, hasn’t been evenly distributed throughout the state. While Southern California has been wetter than average this winter, precipitation accumulations have not been nearly as anomalous as in the northern portion of the state (the Los Angeles basin, for example, is hovering just slightly above average for the Water Year to date).

The state of California is closely tracking its wettest Water Year on record–with more precipitation in the forecast. (CNAP)

The record wet conditions, however, have not been confined to California–a band of record or near record wetness extends from the northern coast of the San Francisco Bay Area inland across the Northern Sierra and then further across the interior West (as far east as western Wyoming and Montana!). This band of exceptional seasonal precipitation is the product of a persistently active and somewhat southerly storm track this winter, which brought frequent atmospheric rivers to the coast.
California snowpack is also extremely impressive this spring, though (as has been previously noted) it has for the most part lagged total precipitation due to the relative warmth that has co-occurred with this record wet Water Year. The tremendous amount of accumulated water in the high Sierra snowpack is just what the doctor ordered with respect to drought relief, but may pose some problems in the coming weeks if it melts too quickly. Growing concerns over major snowmelt flooding have already triggered pre-emptive disaster declarations, especially east of the crest along the Highway 395 corridor and in far western Nevada. It remains to be seen just how much flooding may result from melting of this snowpack–and it will largely depend on just how warm temperatures get over the next few weeks.

Precipitation, snowfall, and reservoir storage in California all well above average–but snowpack greatly lags overall precipitation. (CNAP)

 

Yet more precipitation next 3-4 days, but then major drying/warming trend

Additional precipitation is expected across northern and central California this week. (tropicaltidbits.com)

A couple more modest spring systems are expected to bring additional precipitation to Northern and Central California over the next few days. The southern third of California will likely stay mostly dry, with some showers possible as far south as Los Angeles County. A few more thunderstorms could rumble across the Central Valley, and some additional accumulating snowfall is likely at the highest elevations of the Sierra Nevada. But by next weekend, there is multi-model ensemble agreement that conditions will dry out and warm up pretty rapidly as a strong ridge builds directly overhead. Temperatures could rise to 10-15+ degrees above mid-April averages by next week, which will likely accelerate snowmelt. It’s still to early to say whether there may be a subsequent pulse of snowmelt flooding downstream, but the upcoming warming trend certainly bears watching from that perspective.

Model ensembles have been strongly suggesting a spring heat wave is likely in the 5-10 day period. (tropicaltidbits.com)

 

 

El Niño may be back in the picture this year (yes, already)

The multi-model ensemble mean strongly suggests the development of El Nino conditions in the tropical Pacific by autumn. (CPC)

There are increasingly strong signs that El Niño may be making a comeback in the equatorial Pacific Ocean. With all the usual caveats (namely, that we’re still on the wrong side of the Spring Predictability Barrier), there is excellent multi-model agreement that a significant event may begin to unfold in the coming months. That would be pretty eyebrow-raising, since it has only been a year since the last big El Niño. It’s still far too early to discuss California implications, but if the current outlook holds then I would expect warm SSTs to begin having an influence as early as this coming summer. I’ll continue to follow developments in the tropical Pacific in coming blog posts. Stay tuned!

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  • maddogokp

    Cap’n is that you? Always thought the landing zone for the Donner Pass Road gap was into the trees, making it extra crazy. This drone footage shows otherwise. Maybe next year. 🙂 Love Donner Summit.

    https://youtu.be/Ev7Fk0bIFvc

    • Yolo Hoe

      Gnarley, gnarley

  • T’storm98 (Orcutt, CA)

    Im so tired of this wind! It has been windy everyday in the past 7 days.

  • mattzweck

    Here where i live Lancaster area. Windy the last 3 days ugh. And still windy..

  • HighWater
  • inclinejj

    Drizzle fo sizzle. Pup wanted to go out at 4 am. Wet muddy dog on the bed at 4 am. Not good. Still drizzling in Pacifica.

    Beast mode is a Raider.

    • Drew Stofflet

      my dog, car seats, bed, all in beast mode at the momes.

  • rob b-Truckee/East Bay

    Pretty amazing video from the rock slide in Leggett on 101….it says the video is from Weds night…I am guessing last week. I was surprised how long they waited to blow the horn after the initial rock slide.

    http://abc7news.com/news/rock-slide-sends-workers-fleeing-in-mendocino-county/1919562/

    • ben

      New slide, same spot. After being shut for a week, 101 opened for a day and a bit, now shut again.

      • Bombillo1

        Interesting area. Someone published an article here about the history. No paved road until after WW2. After which spawned the car culture of loading the family up and traveling by car. This then birthed all the kitsch roadside tourist traps a la Confusion Hill, One Log House etc. Now it is cool to go in and get fleeced by those guys, I feel like I’m supporting something historical.

        • alanstorm

          That area was booming in the 50’s for tourism with dozens of little towns all along 101 as it snaked along the Eel R thru the redwoods. All got erased on Dec 23, 1964 & swept out to sea. That area has never been the same since.
          Aside from the pot boom, there’s not much going on, & that’s even dwindling.
          Towns on high ground like Garberville & Fortuna are still going, so as a tourist, you have it all to yourself. A good weekend getaway

          • Bombillo1

            The demographics are confusing to me. In the 50s the population of Ca was something like 12 million yet there was more tourism/activity then now. What the hell is everyone doing these days, buying more comfortable couches?

          • alanstorm

            A couple of things killed tourism in Humboldt.
            In the 80’s when I was a lad chainsaw carving on the Ave of the Giants, there were TRAFFIC JAMS of motorhomes, campers, etc.
            It was Humboldt’s biggest industry behind timber. Why it died:
            1. The “meth problem” turned alot of those areas in to run down tweekers towns.
            2. The pot boom with stories of drug cartels scared tourists off
            3. Fuel prices skyrocketed.
            So:
            Im going to propose a new tourist attraction: 64 FLOOD TOURS!!!!

          • Bombillo1

            Inflation factored in, along with the organic drop in oil price, fuel is actually very cheap now. This is all good by me. I dig riding my cycle on the coast without the hordes. Let them all go to Six Flags, the mall or wherever.

          • inclinejj

            For those of you who know Pacifica. It’s the only Beach town on the west coast that doesn’t take advantage of being a beach town.

            That’s the way the hippies who run things want it.

          • matthew

            Well, that and the fact that it is typically butt-cold there from June – August…

          • inclinejj

            We get our 3-4 warm days then the fog rolls back in. I love it! Beats the heat but then again I’m never cold at Tahoe.

          • Nathan

            Another theory: internet/social media has spawned “trophy recreationalism.” People wanna go places that look staggering on social media; aside from the national/state parks, nice forests just don’t cut it anymore. This is why Half Dome has permits now.

          • alanstorm

            That’s silly, considering they could be standing next to the tallest living things in our solar system.

            https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/16baf0d6ed9255b55d653340b4bc7227eb2c031b4b2694e8cdbf94ad7c47684a.jpg

          • Yolo Hoe

            Yes indeed; nothing is more amazing than water transport up and down those guys. If I recall correctly, not sure it’s fully understood yet?

          • Chowpow

            Just don’t go to Eureka.

          • Bombillo1

            Chow, are guarding your turf or have real umbrance with Eureka?

          • Chowpow

            Haha, I’m not a fan of Eureka, I’ve had less than stellar interactions with people there when I’ve gone down. They’re also rainshadowed more than Arcata.

  • Bombillo1

    Strange zonal flow right now. Even though it is scheduled to end today (drizzle) and things subsequently heat up, the loop shows this stuff going on indefinitely.
    http://www.goes.noaa.gov/dml/west/nhem/weus/rb.html

  • Pfirman

    Stormy looking clouds keep rolling over but all bark and no bite the last few days here in the lower Sacramento Valley..

    • Bombillo1

      Drizzling here for 18 hours with a total accumulation of .17. If this is a bite there aren’t any teeth in it. 50 mi N of Redding.

      • Cap’n

        Shnizzle fest here too for a few days, better than a shnitzel fest I suppose.

        • AlTahoe

          It’s been pretty remarkable on how little the sun has been out this month. There has only been a couple of hours of cloud free sunshine since Saturday up here. Just overcast skies with strong winds and rain/snow showers. Like you said earlier it feels like an October pattern.

          • Bombillo1

            The red bud and dogwoods have been in an endless holding pattern. However, the 10 day is showing an abrupt change. Getting the dry flies ready.

    • Yolo Hoe

      Light drizzle in Davis for 30 minutes earlier; that’s been the extent of things

  • happ [Los Angeles]
    • Bombillo1

      I have never seen a lake with a 90 degree turn in it like that.

  • Howard Goodman

    Drizzle all day .16

  • alanstorm

    Set up in Danville for a tree job last night & left tools out seeing no rain in the forecast.
    Then of course it rained on my tools.

    • inclinejj

      Leave tools out in Pacifica and there gone before you walk inside.

  • molbiol

    This is a nightmare from which I cannot awake..I guess I need to stock up on alcohol…

    ” Wind advisories will
    continue across LA/VTU/SBA County Mtns, SBA South Coast, Antelope
    Valley, Santa Clarita Valley and the Central Coast. These areas
    will experience wind gusts between 35 and 50 mph for the next few
    days. NW to N Winds will peak this evening across the LA/VTU
    county Mtns and Antelope Valley where isolated gusts around 55 to
    60 mph will be possible.”

  • Just ran across this. Of interest to Santa Clara valley and Santa Cruz Mtn folks WRT Mt Umunhum https://valleywaternews.org/2017/04/24/wettest-year-for-highest-peak-in-santa-cruz-range/

  • sezwhom

    Wednesday 12z fun run out 240 https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/77ff56220840a1a983016a89143c5255045788606e1ec6fb9d8ed00077c35548.png of EC shows system dropping in May 6th. Not strong but what’s interesting is that GFS showed this big time late last week then completely flip flopped. I’ll bet it puts it back in soon.

    • Lancaster will be opening up their first ancraophobia treatment center. There’s not much with this whenever it moves through. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/52a1a8501d920ffadb37283e58db237a3a2be6fb305d80ce18adae8558eefdbd.png

      • molbiol

        Too late…

    • inclinejj

      The GFS giveth and taketh away!

    • Rainmaker (San Jose)

      hopefully it sticks and slams into the high pressure system and drops temps 10 degrees.

    • Nathan

      GEFS also showing troughing and continental block around then too. Could be interesting! First “regime shift” since March.

      • Bombillo1

        WU is on this…

    • Yolo Hoe

      Please let this be a sign that troughiness is stubbornly going to stay with us through next season

  • Cap’n

    Nothing like watching your soccer ball float away with your crew of disabled adults in the rain. Try as I might with a flimsy twig to corral it to shore, Mother Nature taunted us as it drifted towards Al.

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/b4aa5796339d0e3342eadda94e19c958fe48f64af6b720c77a0531014ea72e42.jpg

    • gray whale

      🙁

      Shel Silverstein could write a poem about that

      • Cap’n

        Exactly! It was a symbolic moment really. Luckily I have 10 more in my truck. The trick was getting three individuals with OCD to be “ok” with leaving it after our attempts at rescue failed. We had people at Commons Beach trying to help, you would’ve thought there was a swift water river rescue going on.

    • AlTahoe

      I will pick it up on my way home and bring it back up tomorrow 🙂

    • molbiol

      “Wilson!”

    • Bombillo1

      Darn off-shore Santa Anna winds.

    • Nathan

      Dude you’re a skiier/biker/off-roader etc etc etc….swim after it you wuss!!!!!

      • Bombillo1

        Left his Speedos at home.

        • Nathan

          “My earplugs!!!!”

      • Cap’n

        What Bombillo said; if I don’t have my banana hammock, I don’t dip.

        • Nathan

          alright fair enough. plus you can always just get it from the other side of the lake later.

  • AlTahoe

    I saw this on Mammoth Snowman’s site.

    “At this time Mammoth Mountain has a base
    from Main Lodge to the top of 185 to 350 + inches. Nasa did a laser of
    the base on Dave’s and came up with an amazing 60+ feet. Expect the top
    to have a base that is still there for the start of next ski season.
    Snowman has heard there is a small
    chance that the ski area could stay open right into next season. If you
    have a season pass expect it to get cut off in August”

    • DelMarSD

      Wow.

  • matthew

    This should be interesting…

    “The water flow from Lake Tahoe into the Truckee River will be doubling at 4:30 PM. This will raise water levels; keep away from the river’s edge, and keep a close eye on children and pets anywhere near the river.”

    • Bombillo1

      Great. Flushing the fish out 3 days before fishing season opens.

      • matthew

        The river was bone dry less than two years ago and now it is so blown out that it is close to unfishable. I cannot imagine that the fishing will be good until the trout have a chance to repopulate…maybe a couple years?

        • inclinejj

          Actually I have seen some huge browns in tiny pools of water during the drought. During high water they move in close to or under river banks. Mainly clay banks or behind fallen trees.

          • whisperingsage

            Cool. Our Honey Lake fish bury themselves in the mud and go dormant.

    • mbmattcor (TD 6400′)
    • Nathan

      Kind of wondering why they haven’t been extensively dumping prior to this…

      • matthew

        It has been pretty cool up here so I imagine they were waiting for the heat to turn up. That looks like it will happen later next week.

        • Nathan

          But they knew all that snow would have to melt…

      • Cap’n

        They’ve had anywhere from 6-17 gates open the past several weeks.

    • Cap’n

      I was reading about this on the Flood Advisory and also a FB link discussion. The Advisory is up until May 2nd but I couldn’t find anything about the outflow being double. It seems like that will easily sweep over those private bridges, if not touch the bottom of Alpine Meadows rd. Looking forward to seeing it on my drive to work tomorrow. Sidenote: the 89 between Alpine and Tahoe City has had some delays and will continue to; they are downing a lot of trees.

  • Jason Jackson Willamette

    While we enjoy the makings of spring, the lower Mississippi Valley is looking very stormy this afternoon. I think I’ll choose our weather over tornado warnings!

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/e7b702f7a0edc7999e1806e30ed08753abea47577d2e8e68a9f2c9a23b14b540.png

    • Bombillo1

      Someone left out the egg in our spring makings. Still raining here…

      • Cap’n

        Steady heavy drizzle, again. The wind is blowing pretty good today too.

        • Bombillo1

          Is that Charles Bukowski? I had a girlfriend that was into his stuff. She was rough, real rough.

    • Bobby M ( San Carlos/Tahoe)

      I’ll chose tornado warnings over our 6 month dry summer

      • matthew

        The 6 month dry season is the reason that a lot of us live here. Not so much the 10 month dry seasons of late.

        • rob b-Truckee/East Bay

          I’d agree, while rain is great enjoying the summer sunshine without fear of being rained on all day is nice. 90 degrees with 90% humidity isn’t my idea of a nice day. Plus, I would rather not deal with tornados and have to build a safe room to keep my family safe from one. But to each their own…

      • Trippin. Lol

      • Yolo Hoe

        With all due respect, nope; been there, done that and California with 7 month dry season is soooooooo much better!!

        • inclinejj

          Do you know what people mean in the south when the day, with all due respect?

      • whisperingsage

        Not if it picks you up and flings you.

      • I don’t want to be awaken by sirens. I’d pray more if I lived in the Midwest. I know that. No one who has lived there feels the way you think you do 🙂

  • HighWater
    • Thunderstorm

      Why are there no trees? Lightning fires?

      • Sfedblog

        High desert.

  • Bobby M ( San Carlos/Tahoe)
    • Steve Lutton

      Oh yeah! Loved it since I was a little guy. Thanks for the photo.

    • matthew

      Lot’s of great backpacking in that area (Graveyard Lakes, Silver Pass, Big Margaret Lake). Many great memories of that area.

    • scott

      Awesome! My wife and I tried to snowmobile over to there at least 15 years ago but never made it because its so far. There was an outfit that rented them for $135 for 8 hours and they were bad ass. They told me someone lives in Mono Hot Springs year around though I never made it there either.

    • FolsomPrisonBlues

      Beautiful shot there!

  • Arnold Weather Fanatic

    Down in SoCal. Hot!

  • Nathan
    • DelMarSD

      I just took a walk on the beach as well. Great sunset.

      • Nathan

        Is that you in the 2nd photo?

        • DelMarSD

          Yep.

    • Jim

      Great photo’s !!!

  • mattzweck
    • DelMarSD

      Is it ever not windy?

      • Charlie B

        11/24/98 was a calm day.

    • Thunderstorm

      Probably over 60 mph tomorrow in the western desert areas. Yesterday a cloud deck over the east bay hills (SF bay area) was completely black even the top in full sun. Has always meant high winds down south. Very rare to see the top black in full sun.

  • Nate

    Here’s some video of waves and the Carmel River that I shot during the strong AR back on 2/20. I hadn’t really done anything with it, so I put the clips together in this video. The wind gusts were strong, and I included footage of some of the trees at Point Lobos swaying around–they’re pretty far away, but clearly moving a lot. See if you can spot the surfer in one of the clips.

    https://youtu.be/hE6FrAgEYUg

    • alanstorm

      Hey man, I really enjoyed that. Thanks.
      Best part was Carmel River vs the waves. We’re fortunate to live where we do

      • Nate

        Thanks, glad you liked it. This state is an incredible place to call home.

  • David

    Wow. Absolutely pouring here in Paradise. Wasn’t expecting that…

  • mbmattcor (TD 6400′)
    • Rusty Rails

      I’ll definitely be cruising by River Ranch today!

      • Cap’n

        I’m looking at it right now (stopped for tree work). It doesn’t look much different than it has the last week or so, though there is a spot just south of River Ranch where 89 is low lying and the water is very close to the highway. I thought I’d see the private bridges overtaken! There is one that the water is touching now and the bridge at Alpine is closer to water than I’ve ever seen.

    • matthew

      Interesting that it only resulted in about a half-foot rise. Then again, the river is running so high right now that a half-foot will likely cause some problems.

  • sezwhom
  • Valkyrie

    As we approach the end of April, there is an average of 20 feet of dense snowpack above 9000 ft in the Sierra near Mammoth. At the same time, it’s interesting to monitor the DWR’s reservoir levels chart.

    • Pfirman

      Awkward, even.

  • mbmattcor (TD 6400′)

    The plow company is removing snow stakes for driveway for the year. Bye Bye winter of ’16-’17, you will be in our memories for a long time.

  • AlTahoe

    Took a walk through the meadow this morning and there is water everywhere https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/2a9582946f34e018cb95d569e5f31e6bc80e77b3d9da5c82ac130ed430d5b3c6.jpg

    • Damn if that’s Tallac to the left it still looks skiable

      • AlTahoe

        Tallac is buried and there are small Avalanches down all of the chutes right now.

        • Cap’n

          Yeah Talkac should have skiable sections well into June or later. Great picture.

  • Anyone get any skiing in this week so far? Thinking the conditions should be holding pretty good out there right now, a royal shame so much is closed right now.
    The live webcam is so dead with so much snow it’s depressing:
    http://www.kirkwood.com/mountain/web-cams.aspx

    • gray whale

      I have been unprecedentedly busy this Spring and only got 6 days on my Sierra pass this winter 🙁
      But my sister was just visiting from the East so I took her tromping around on Echo summit and there is just *so much snow*. I am hoping things will settle down and I can get some good days in on Ralston area in a few weeks.
      Anyway, long-winded way of saying I’m game for anyone’s Spring skiing pics and stories! Hopefully not too off-topic for WW

    • Jeff

      Went to mammoth earlier this week
      Sunday was really great
      Monday was not so great with icy slopes, mix of snow, graupel, low visibility and high winds
      Tuesday was spring conditions with softening up by 10 and the lower mountain turning to slush by 2 pm but the top was still pretty good

    • AlTahoe

      I am going to hit up Heavenly Saturday and Sunday for closing weekend! Sunday is looking like a T-shirt and shorts kind of day

    • PRCountyNative

      Since you asked…

      Snow all day, light gorgeous powder, here at Snowbird. First day first time. On top of 2 feet 2 days ago. Fluffy!

      Another 8 – 16 forecast tonite tomorrow morning. 4 full days to go!

      A little crowded this morning, an avalanche prevented one of 2 main lifts to top from running.

      Thanks for asking!

  • happ [Los Angeles]

    Can’t seem to break pattern of high pressure to the west, low pressure to the east w/ dry warm winds for SoCal. Fire season is not far off, I’m afraid.

    • click

      The wind has been much stronger the last few days for sure (as previously noted by many) but it does die down after sunset/dark. Last night we had a quasi-dust storm around 7 and by 9 it was calm.

      At least my area already burned (blue cut fire) so the chances of a large conflagration are smaller this year. Brush fires from the recent growth will happen, but most of the fuel is gone. Crossing my fingers I won’t have to evacuate on my b-day again haha. (Year before we had to leave on my wife’s b-day)

    • SlashTurn (Santa Barbara)

      It’s been absolutely relentless everyday up here above Santa Barbara. Sustained N/NW 25-30mph with a few gusts in the 60s… I wouldn’t mind if was cool air, but it’s been 80F for days without much RH recovery at night…not very typical for springtime weather.

      Usually the HP is anchored where we can have more eddy development offshore and then afternoon clearing NW winds near the coast.

    • happ [Los Angeles]

      There is a troubling pattern of dry warmer than normal conditions for 2 months. I get nervous not having a marine layer and recall May 2014 as a hot start to summer [mean: 70]

    • SlashTurn (Santa Barbara)

      I remember this dialogue heavy in the late 1980s…my beachfront property was supposed to be submerged in 3ft of water by 2000…So now all this polar ice and Greenland ice has melted, yet the high tide line is the exact same spot as 30 years ago minus natural erosion…can someone elaborate on this dilemma?

    • HighWater

      Didn’t Al Gores award winning Documentary ‘Inconvenient Truth’ predict Manhattan would be under water by 2016, gas would be $9.00 a gallon (getting close to that in Cali) Hurricanes would increase and intensify a gallon of milk would be $13.00 a gallon?

      Drought monitor for U.S. spring 2017 is 6% lowest it’s been in a long time.

      Don’t shoot the messenger please! Get mad at Gore

      • SlashTurn (Santa Barbara)

        Globalists shouldn’t be able set scientific standards. There only objective is to promote fear and scarcity.

        • I’m still interested to get to the bottom of this claim here. Are you saying that Al Gore, or other politicians, set scientific standards?

          • SlashTurn (Santa Barbara)

            Sorry Daniel it’s obvious our perspectives in this arena are at opposite ends of the spectrum.

            I fully respect your position on these issues and I’m in no place to vent my amateur opinions on this subject.

          • matthew

            Yet ironically, here you are venting them.

          • SlashTurn (Santa Barbara)

            thanks

          • supercell1545

            Go away

          • Tuolumne

            No, you are making a provably false claim. Al Gore does not set scientific standards, Not at all, FULL STOP. This is not a matter of perception or opinion. He is not a scientist and he has no control over scientific findings.

      • No, none of those statements were actually in that film–but in any case Al Gore is not a scientist, and what he says has no bearing on scientific estimates of ice sheet stability and regional gravitational effects.

      • Chris

        I think Gore did a partial disservice with his first movie.
        Too much exaggerated truths and “alternate facts”.
        For example, he cited the sudden uptick in El Niño’s from the 1970s to 1998 (when the movie was made) as a possible results of global warming.
        El Niño’s and la Nina’s have to do with the decadel Pacific Oscillation.
        From 1999 until a few years ago, it went negative and we had a huge surge of La Nina’s and very few El Niño’s.
        When you make even a small error, it makes it easier to manipulate an overall discreditation….. in my opinion.

      • scott

        I remember Gore saying that global warming (now climate change to make it more acceptable to us common folk) would cause record rainfall on the west coast. After years of drought, I say bring it on. Then he told us that global warming caused the drought. So who knows? One thing is for certain is that he is asking for $15 trillion for fighting it. And yet his dad was an oil executive for Occidental Petroleum.

        http://www.nytimes.com/2000/03/19/us/2000-campaign-vice-president-gore-family-s-ties-oil-company-magnate-reap-big.html

        Dennis Miller’s take on it…

        https://youtu.be/Gtnu9b701RE

        • Chris

          I think what his dads or any other of his family members business was is IRRELEVENT.

        • I don’t really see how Al Gore has anything to do with scientific estimates of sea level rise, or changes in precipitation extremes. But interestingly, the West Coast actually did just experience its wettest winter in the observed record.

          • scott

            Yes it did and without any El Nino support per se.

          • Chris

            And it accomplished that just THREE years after its driest winter.

          • HighWater

            I’m not trying to be a dick. I respect who you are and what you do. I believe your heart is in the right place.

            I’m thinking out loud. This record breaking winter in California is fact but our records only go back 150 yrs. Pretty small sample size I would argue considering how long it’s been between the last ice age

          • alanstorm

            I think California climate fluctuations are a pea-sized example of a global situation.
            However, as I recall, “extreme swings in climate” were part of the predictions, & I don’t think it could be more extreme then to have a RECORD DROUGHT followed the very next year by RECORD RAINS.

          • And I’d agree with you that if that was the only piece of evidence we had on go on. In that case, it would be a pretty weak argument indeed.

            But it’s not the only evidence. There is a huge volume of applied and theoretical evidence, along with our actual observations. I’ll try to pull some of these threads together in a California specific context in the not too distant future.

          • PRCountyNative

            You shouldn’t put words in people’s mouths that they did not say. See above.

        • Tuolumne

          “now climate change to make it more acceptable to us common folk”

          False. The big international bugaboo of U.S. conservatives, the IPCC (founded in 1988, almost 30 years ago), is the International Panel on (drum roll…!!!) Climate Change. Yes, the name was around back then. Why? Because effects on climate other than temperature, namely amounts, variability, and locations of precipitation, are really, really important and possibly a huge threat. The term “climate change” takes the focus solely off temperature. But it also creates an opening for false claims that it’s rebranding.

      • PRCountyNative

        No

      • Tuolumne

        There seems to be a few widespread and erroneous beliefs among U.S. conservatives regarding AGW that are worth unpacking.

        Belief #1: Al Gore is *the* primary source of scientific legitimacy for those concerned about AGW. So (seemingly*) taking him down wipes out the science angle.

        Response: As WW has noted, Al Gore is not a scientist so this is laughably false.

        Belief #2: Al Gore is some sort of patron saint and primary leader of environmentalists, who blindly follow him out of faith. So (seemingly*) taking him down proved the environmentalists wrong and leaves them without a leg to stand on.

        Response: See answer to #1. I’m not necessarily defending environmentalists, but frankly, Al Gore is a sideshow.

        Belief #3: Based on #1 and #2, take down Al Gore and you’re basically won the argument on AGW!

        Response: Far off base as per my responses above.

        So what’s my real point? Easy – don’t rely on political figures of any sort for authoritative answers to scientific questions, or on takedowns of such figures for authoritative rebuttals. This includes not just politicians but also bloggers who are not scientists in the field in question.

        *Not that Gore was/is necessarily correct about this or that, but a lot of the take-downs of him are simply inaccurate. Not every allegation made against somebody is accurate.

    • Mike Stephenson (Riverside)

      What would the real world implications and effects be? Bad storm surges? Sea level rise happens relatively slowly right?

    • molbiol

      Humans have the ability to adapt to many of the worst case scenarios described in that article. The underlying issue (as always) is money and a willingness. Also, overpopulation and the need for humans to stop breeding like insects. Who knows, 70 years from now, the world superpowers will have nuked the human race into oblivion. Either way, its hard for me to care when one has so many immediate issues, problems, and sufferings in their own individual lives…

      • PRCountyNative

        Are you serious? You are making a great point. We all have such immediate issues (imagine some), how can anyone care about the long-term future?

        You have perfectly defined the problem.

        • molbiol

          I’m dead serious. I’m not going to detail here, but there is immense disease and human suffering and other things that many people are dealing with in the immediate term that some people can’t even conceive of in their happy carefree lives. I doubt someone who is bedridden with chronic pain is even thinking of the long-term future

    • alanstorm

      Yep.This is inevitable & unstoppable.
      The HUMAN MACHINE with it’s voracious appetite for energy, growth, food, expansion & development continues at an unprecedented rate, with one common result: HEAT.
      Everyone can bicker & bitch about the effects, but my money is on the top scientists.
      “Every action results in an equal & opposite reaction”. (7th grade science class)

      • MetaGhost (Berkeley)

        300 billion stars in the Milky Way. Most all have planets. Maybe we’re not the first ones to hit the bottleneck.

        • Bombillo1

          Neanderthals, Denosovans, Homo Erectus, Cromagnon Ad nauseam. The only question is, as a species, when is it our turn to get snuffed.

          • Jason Jackson Willamette

            A species that gave us Da Vinci, Shakespeare, Beethoven, Mozart, Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein

            is worth saving.

      • SlashTurn (Santa Barbara)

        Sure I’ll bet on scientists. But when policy makers twist the data into massive control/tax initiatives, that’s when we have to question the intentions.

        • alanstorm

          I agree, but it’s like arguing about the kind of band aid to put on a severed artery. Whatever policies we twist & enact will do nothing to stop the Leviathan- like growth in places like China & India.
          Hard to fathom unless you see it in person.

          • Jason Jackson Willamette

            Indeed Alan, and as we weather watchers know, everything flows through the atmosphere from west to east, and we’re downwind… To see the drastic, melting retreat of the world’s glaciers, and the basic disappearance of high mountain glaciers, anyone who is attuned to nature’s forces cannot but agree that we’re pushing the bus over the cliff with our kids inside.

          • alanstorm

            “ROW ROW ROW YOUR BOAT!!!
            “https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/daeed6dd2b2dcab6c178a5308f91046041b594bc13d7926b82ad4e30ac536343.jpg

          • scott

            He was such an intense actor. If it weren’t for him, I don’t know if Dirty Harry would have been as popular. And that is me saying this an an avid Clint fan.

          • alanstorm

            He’s up there with my top cinema villians of all time:
            1.Dennis Hopper in Blue Velvet
            2. Henry Fonda in Once Upon a
            Time in the West
            & this dude!

          • Bombillo1

            Javier Bardine, No Country for Old Men. Scariest villain.

          • alanstorm

            Oops- forgot him. Anton Chiguhr. What a psycho.
            & Laurence Olivier as the Nazi dentist in Marathon Man.
            “Is it safe?”
            Oh, & De Niro as Max Cady in Cape Fear!

          • mbmattcor (TD 6400′)

            When was the tipping point? Was it the start of the industrial revolution? or when the dinosaurs went extinct? I wanna blame someone.

          • ben

            GOP denialism

          • PRCountyNative

            Reagan thru Clinton

          • Jason Jackson Willamette

            The tipping point will be when the polar ice caps no longer reflect more heat than the exposed oceans absorb. And then more ice melts, and the oceans warm further, and the melting ice slowly raises sea levels. Feedback loop.

            Blub blub, off we go. Next –

          • mbmattcor (TD 6400′)

            Makes sense, thx. Curious if the larger surface area created by the melt off into the oceans, starts to reverse the pattern at some point?

          • ben

            Unfortunately melting permafrost will release massive amounts of methane, another potent ghg, that will far outweigh any benefit derived from co2 uptake by the proliferation of phytoplankton in the newly expanded habitat for millenia.

          • Mike Stephenson (Riverside)

            *winner*

          • ben

            China seems to be doing more than we are to reduce it’s co2. They are soon to be a renewable power house.

          • PRCountyNative

            They (China) have a global plan, starting with individual national grids.

            Then, connecting the industrialized northern nations to renewable production in the sun belts of Africa and Central/South America with HVDC (high voltage DC long transmission), tying it all together.

            China is ahead of schedule on their part. They are also world’s #1 consumer and producer of solar panels, not even close.

            The USA – we’re lagging!

        • MetaGhost (Berkeley)

          If I were to question intentions, I would start with the only political party in the industrialized world that doesn’t recognized man’s influence on the planet. Pretty easy choice here.

    • mbmattcor (TD 6400′)

      Nice to see a rational discussion amongst differing opinions…

      • MetaGhost (Berkeley)

        I’m deleting this thread.

    • Jason Jackson Willamette

      Have we reached the feared “tipping point” ? That’s when nothing we do can reverse the ocean’s rise nor turn back the clock.

      • Bartshe

        Depends on your long-term outlook, and what your personal tipping point is. Every day we further insure future sea level rise. How much and for how long is still difficult to precisely define.

      • PRCountyNative

        Yes

  • Charlie B

    Egad, politics. So, something completely different.

    Let’s start the first annual “Weather West Tioga Road Opening Sweepstakes.”

    When will Tioga be open for traffic? Everyone predict a date. Save/remember your date. The winner gets bragging rights, and if Alan wants do donate a bear that would work as well. To help everyone, below is a link to a table of historic open and close dates.

    I pick June 25, 2017.

    http://www.monolake.org/today/tiogapass

    • matthew

      Friday, June 30th.

      • Pfirman

        Happy to pick June 27.

        • Cap’n

          June 26 1/2

          • AlTahoe

            $1 dollar. Wait that’s not how this works.
            I am going with June 16th

    • scott

      sounds like theyre working really hard to open it. not sure what else will be open once 120 is. i say july 3 before the holidays

    • SlashTurn (Santa Barbara)

      6/17

    • Chowpow

      July 3st

      • Pfirman

        I read this several hours and never got ‘thirst’. IPA or Pilsner?

    • Tuolumne

      I previously committed to July 3 a week or two ago on this site and I’m sticking with that date. I’m sure it’s not a date the Park Service would prefer – the preceding Friday would be much better – but with this much snow it’s not like you get to pick and choose which date you finally have the road ready.

      Looking at hotel rooms in the Yosemite Valley area for next month, it’s funny to see Mammoth popping up in internet searches. I wonder how many people from out of state are going to find out at the last minute that they can’t drive (in any reasonable manner) between the valley and the expensive lodging they reserved?

      • Pfirman

        May dwarf the the Oroville problem financially you are thinking?

        • Tuolumne

          Definitely! Hordes of bankrupt and desperate sleep-deprived tourists roaming the landscape like zombies….

    • Henry

      The central Sierra snowpack as of today is averaging 50 inches of water equivalent, which is 172% of April 1 normal and about double the normal for April 27.

      Snow has been melting slowly so far. I would expect the snowmelt in Yosemite to go into high gear starting May 1, except above 9000 feet and on north facing slopes above 8000 feet. I’m guessing that we will finally have sustained warm weather in May, considering that a cool wet May like we had in 1998 is very rare. Thus I would predict that central Sierra snowpack will decrease from 48 inches water equivalent on April 30, to 33 inches on May 15 and to 15 inches (or about 50% of April 1 normal) on May 31.

      I’m predicting that Tioga Pass will open on June 16. For comparison, Tioga Pass opened on June 29, 1983. Compared to this year, 1983 was snowier, the snow fell later in the season with unusually heavy precipitation in March and April, and snowpack continued to increase until the beginning of May. I think we can beat 1983’s opening date by a couple of weeks.

      • Bartshe

        I would bet strongly against June 16. Snow sensors in the Tioga region are at or above 1983 levels. A NPS employee died plowing the road in 1995 due to an avalanch, and the park is now far more cautious and methodical. Also, even after the snow is cleared, there are runoff problems to manage and if they open the road to early, damage ensues, problems compound.

        • SlashTurn (Santa Barbara)

          Will this hurt Lee Vinings economy?

  • Tazmanian

    1st heat wave of the season come the 1st week of May right on time

    • alanstorm

      86° up my way for next Wed.
      This will unleash the Insect Kraken

      • Yolo Hoe

        Which do you prefer, the mushrooms or the insects?

        • alanstorm

          I’m in no position to have a preference. However, I will prepare for war.?
          Given a choice right now, I’m pro sunny springtime, & if that includes said insects, then so be it.?
          I have an awesome electric handheld mosquito zapper?

          • Yolo Hoe

            Nice, those things are a blast — once occupied myself for a week in a mosquito infested part of Italy — then it died and I nearly also did after thousands of bites — enjoy and enhance the fascination of the ?? with the magic combo of a Sierra torpedo + one hitter!

          • alanstorm

            I have one that’s the latest model available, powerful enough to give yourself a SHOCK of your not careful.
            Aaaaah. Nothing like the smell of frying mosquito in the morning….

          • Yolo Hoe

            ???????

          • Pfirman

            Joseph Conrad recoils in his grave and wonders what napalm is.

          • Tuolumne

            Bug zappers produced aerosolized bug guts (and sometimes human blood), not necessarily well cooked. Happy breathing! Don’t use them near food – restaurants aren’t allowed to do that for public safety reasons.

          • alanstorm

            HOLY CRAP.
            I didn’t know that.
            I’ll hold my breath as the crackle & pop?

          • Pfirman

            More messy than holy.

          • Pfirman

            My policy is to build up a resistance while I still have a chance. Stop sanitizing is my creed, but I don’t lick the dog bowl, just saying.

      • whisperingsage

        Put up purple Martin houses. I didn’t know we had them here until I saw them at a nursing home in Loyalton that put up a Martin house for the residents.
        Build it and they will come.

        • alanstorm

          Are they native to this area?
          I do have these little “fly catcher” birds that nest around here & make acrobatic maneuvers catching bugs

    • Charlie B

      Thanks, Taz. When do you think Tioga will open up? Join the contest!

      • Tazmanian

        july 1st there is a lot of snow up there this year so a late opening is comeing

  • Craig Matthews

    The super bloom still going strong out in the Carrizo Plain National Monument. Good time to go check it out because wont last much longer with dry windy weather in the forecast. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/bc647b4356b02a4928aaf5c27a03061de90bffb8c69465954624915c49759f72.jpg

    • mbmattcor (TD 6400′)

      thanks for posting that!

    • Yolo Hoe

      That actually does qualify as ‘psychedelic’ in all the best ways — great pic and glad to know something like that exists.

    • roseland67

      Looks like a Dickey Betts tee shirt,
      Awesome

      • Pfirman

        That would be Stupor Bloom.

    • Telegraph Hill

      Anywhere in NorCal one can see a super bloom?

      • William_LeGro

        https://www.wildlife.ca.gov/Lands/Places-to-Visit/North-Table-Mountain-ER

        Phone (916) 358-2869, maybe they can tell you if there’s a super bloom.

        We were there a few weeks ago but it was probably too early – maybe it’s brightened up some by now, though probably not to super-bloom level. This (tiny) photo from the website shows what it can do, good views of the Valley and the Coast Ranges on the other side – it’s still a cool place and way off the beaten track.
        https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/55461d2b24f4402ed4c0d029606ef651555d5a58c3d252e6280b233ed27b9447.png

        • Telegraph Hill

          Thank you!

        • Craig Matthews

          Wow that is a nice shot! Is that off Cherokee Rd north of Oroville?.

          • William_LeGro

            Wish I could tell you – only the webmaster knows for sure, I guess. Cherokee is the only road that goes into the reserve and even it just skirts the southeast corner. To really see the place you have to walk around.

      • Pfirman

        Algae in the Bay soon?

    • William_LeGro

      Terrific shot, and composition. I love Carrizo but never saw it like this. I did see something similar on the Grapevine a couple weeks ago – but it paled in comparison to this. Thanks!

      • Alice Paul (LA)

        The colors are so intense, I couldn’t quite figure out what I was looking at until I read Craig’s post. Just beautiful!

    • Dan the Weatherman

      What a colorful shot and a great contrast between the yellow and purple flowers! It is almost as if they were planted there as opposed to being wild.

      • Craig Matthews

        When I went out there last spring, 2016, the south facing part of those hills in the pic I took were completely barren. So its good to see the wildflowers, and vegetation for that matter, make a good comeback on the south facing slopes thanks to this last winter’s plentiful rains.

    • CHeden

      Never seen anything like this. Simply awesome.

      • Craig Matthews

        Thanks. I hear the hills around Redding area look like Ireland right now…lush green. Any wildflowers up by you?

  • happ [Los Angeles]

    Winds really cranked up this afternoon; gusts close to 50mph at my home w/ some broken tree limbs

    • Dan the Weatherman

      50 mph winds in your area today? I didn’t know there were any winds that strong west of the mountains today, as it was only breezy here in Orange. There haven’t been any strong winds here in Orange for quite some time, as it has only been on the breezy side at times.

      I was outside doing yard work this afternoon and evening including repotting some plants, and the weather was very nice for this kind of activity in almost typical spring fashion minus the marine layer.

    • whisperingsage

      Horrible wind this last couple of days in Herlong CA, even after dark, usually the dark it stops.

  • DelMarSD

    Saturday high is 83. Will be interesting to see if it actually gets that warm. Long range looks warm as well.

    • Bobby M ( San Carlos/Tahoe)

      Mid 80s here likely for 3 days which I’m not ready for, maybe even 90 on Wednesday 🙁

    • happ [Los Angeles]

      It seems like it has been warm all month but I have only counted 9 days 80 or above [including 2 days in the 90’s] so far. But it has still been warmer than normal all month and bone dry
      83/ 60

      • Dan the Weatherman

        It has been bone dry since March 1!

    • Dan the Weatherman

      A strong Santa Ana wind is forecast here in Orange County tomorrow night into Saturday. I haven’t had any Santa Ana winds here since early March, and it will be interesting to see if they really come up or not, since the weather pattern has been so benign for well over a month. A High Wind Watch for Santa Ana winds is in effect for the area for Friday night through Saturday morning, which is almost unheard of this time of year.

    • DelMarSD

      Bizarre indeed. Lots of high clouds recently.

      • Dan the Weatherman

        I don’t remember if I have seen so many days in a row with high clouds here in Socal during late April. Usually the marine layer starts to become dominant at this time as we settle into our typical May Gray / June Gloom spring pattern.

    • whisperingsage

      Southern Lassen county had rain yesterday am before dawn.

  • Thunderstorm

    A good trick I learned a long time ago when camping. To keep the ticks away have some dry ice under a cloth. They are drawn to carbon dioxide. We give off carbon dioxide when we exhale.

    • Pfirman

      So I can stick some in my socks? Oh, wait.

  • inclinejj

    Pacifica it’s windy as heck. Drive across the Bay Bridge same thing. Gusts to 38.

    • Alice Paul (LA)

      Same with Los Angeles, windy. Tonight through tomorrow morning are likely to be the strongest winds of the week. So far the highest gust in my area was 43.

      I’ve enjoyed listening to the howling winds instead of traffic.

  • Cap’n

    Nice skyline lurking around Hobart Mills https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/3d3594b0d8bd0bfd76352bf3b28e51c4e33f167184159a807e70787eea3fbb50.jpg then Prosser Creek this evening.

    • mbmattcor (TD 6400′)

      I was riding near Prosser and was shocked how low it is still. I guess they are anticipating the big runoff soon?

      • Cap’n

        That’s my guess, it was way higher in November after those big October rains. Donner Lake is lower than it was all winter too, they’ve been letting it out big time. Hey I cut through TD from Alder Creek Rd this evening. You guys will have spots with snow until late May early June no problem. I’d imagine Ski Slope is still buried.

        • mbmattcor (TD 6400′)

          SkiSlope has 25′ high drifters still as of last Sunday.

    • mosedart (SF)

      Great picture!

  • alanstorm

    US 101 closes AGAIN at the Leggett Landslide on the S Fork Eel R in Northern Mendocino Co.
    Look at the video!!! WOW!!! RUN FOR YOUR LIFE!!!
    https://m.northcoastjournal.com/NewsBlog/archives/2017/04/26/101-closure-cleanup-begins-anew-at-leggett-landslide

  • Fairweathercactus

    Models picking up on a little feature towards No Cal that is kind of interesting. Showing a little slug of upper level moisture bringing some thunderstorms to the highest elevations. Something to watch out for.

  • Some crazy wind a couple hours ago, now it seems like it calmed down.

    • inclinejj

      Are you down by the Flea Market? Or further south?

      When we remodeled I put on 1/2 plywood and somehow, someone had too many bong hits and we received the partially wrong window order. The manufacturer upgraded them to the top of the line windows and sliders. Long story short we can’t even hear the wind unless it’s blowing over 40.

  • AlTahoe

    The back part of the meadow in my neighborhood is a lake right now. From talking to neighbor’s 2005-2006 was the last time it happened. Took https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/ac7abb6d76c4055b6decd25dcbb8d2c0d5d78864919ceafef114e5a895303039.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/e2ab325f09d620aa6bfc831105461e1c2008073ee52a183f008fc5e646aa9ce6.jpg these photos on this morning’s dog walk.

    • Wow it seems like everyday it grows which makes sense. Have you seen it so large before?

      • AlTahoe

        No. I am looking for a photo that I took in March of 2015 where it was just dead dry grass for a comparison.

  • Howard Goodman

    What happened to the warm up ? 32 this morning

    • AlTahoe

      NWS Reno had been forecasting cold for today for about a week now. Sunday is the big warmup for us in the mountains with a high of 65F forecast for South Lake Tahoe.

    • Rusty Rails

      Ehh it’s Spring in the Sierra. I’ve been out shooting pics at Boca in 25F sunrise temps on a day that ends up being 80.

  • Rusty Rails
  • janky

    Down to checking WW once every few days now instead of multiple times a day. Ski season done, tennis, fishing, mt biking, backpacking, hiking season ON.

  • Tahoe folk: This link seems to work for me in iexplorer and firefox but not chrome. It’s a little wonky and data reporting is sporadic. Maybe all of you have seen it.
    http://www.tahoeclim.dri.edu/ https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/46d559d840d23b878b73c6ef012bae8da96d71a532d4863ecba4e38c8a07d5f3.jpg

  • Thunderstorm

    3 MPH from the west at 10:30 AM. SF bay area by Fremont close to the bay.

    • Pfirman

      Ha, gusts to 30mph here in eastern Yolo County. Good old north wind.

      • Alice Paul (LA)

        Los Angeles wind speeds in my neck of the woods have been relatively consistent since yesterday afternoon-15 to 18 MPH. Gusts have been mid 30s to mid 40s. I’m looking forward to a little calm. It’s been a heck of a week.

  • Rainmaker (San Jose)
    • SlashTurn (Santa Barbara)

      Now this is a spring pattern I can get behind. Stalled, cold core lows in May! That’ll keep this board/blog busy for sure.

  • SlashTurn (Santa Barbara)

    Interesting today was forecasted increased lower level offshore gradients but it’s all marine air in SB right now. Maybe that will all change soon.

    • happ [Los Angeles]

      Wind is still NNW here but much lower gusts compared to last night’s blast. Should shift to the NE tonight

      • SlashTurn (Santa Barbara)

        Ya, I think you guys in the LA basin might be in better position for the offshore winds…

  • mbmattcor (TD 6400′)

    Off-piste season is happening. My friend and I rode a crest loop on 4 resorts today, ASC, Boreal, Donner Ski Ranch and RG. The conditions were perfect from 6 am to 10am. the last pic is weather-related if you know where we were.
    Looking across to Castle Peak
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/9d94e50deeb6aafea62e0b030306f3f1731cfae344a0436fd91a076dbc7af44d.jpg
    Top of Boreal
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/cf1f27511599909e6b13fc727d4a748f3cc1d65f568ca47e5a00810ca71c8841.jpg
    Waving to Cap’n
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/d3ee808ce5b97fe1c25e1352e02c4497090beb70b0903e7d3521a933ef7376de.jpg
    On Lake Van Norden
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/db8c76cd80ebd77c45aeeaedceeeadb50c433ed71a70ec94a8ad4c709629114a.jpg
    Some important place with a bunch of instruments 😛
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/05a18ab6098cdaede9c115e77a6b457cebd2f3078a487ec922373d820d51c7ef.jpg