Aug 042009
 

The pattern just doesn’t appear to be changing. The middle of this week, Tuesday-Thursday, will bring a better chance for rain, but it doesn’t look like we will be seeing any thing huge.

Thursday night through the early weekend looks a little scary. While temperatures should be lower than average, there will be significant, gusty, dry southwest winds. There are several active wildfires in Arizona right now. The Wild Horse Complex, northwest of Flagstaff, continues to be managed. It’s been a while since we had much rain. Hopefully, the mid-week moisture will see us through.

The winds are being brought to us courtesy of a transiting low pressure system that would be more typical of winter. We’ll see the effect of it on the Shark Oil Barometer.

Jul 112009
 

Not a particularly wet July, so far. The shark oil barometer has been crystal clear for quite sometime. It looks like today could bring some rain, but we will taper back to dry conditions, again.

Dewpoints across parts the region have fallen and remained low over the last week or so. Check out the dewpoints for Phoenix, Tucson, El Paso, Yuma and Flagstaff.  Flagstaff is still near average, where the others have dropped significantly. For the month, with the rains before the 4th of July, we are still right about average for precipitation. That may not apply everywhere in the area due to the large variations possible in the monsoon season.

Flagstaff Dewpoint Tracker

Flagstaff Dewpoint Tracker

Jun 222009
 

Dewpoints have remained fairly high all month. We broached 50F for the dewpoint on Saturday. The average dewpoint (from Tucson NWS Tracking site) for the day was in the low 40′s. The moisture is trying to stream up from the Gulf of Mexico and is saturating Northern Mexico. It hasn’t quite made it to Arizona in full force, yet. One of the components of the monsoon is the formation of a thermal low pressure system. We are probably missing some heat to cause the lifting of the are to form the low pressure system.

Dones’t it have to get hot before the monsoon starts?

Jun 072009
 

Well, after May being mostly much warmer than normal, June is following the same trend as the end of May. This week’s normal high temperature is 77-78F, but we will be lucky to see temperatures above the mid-60′s. Forecasts and models for Tuesday are calling for precipitation, most likely scattered thunderstorms.  Here is a graph of June weather to date from Wunderground:

Weather to date, 6-7-09

Weather to date, 6-7-09

Jun 032009
 

There are three(3) things below that bear reading. First is the NWS May summary for Flagstaff. It was quite warm…until the end. In the end we had record breaking rain and cold.   Quite an interesting month… a quandry!

Below are temperature graphs for the month. They are self-explanatory.

It appears the trend will continue into June. Maybe not as wet, but probably more clouds than usual. Phantom Ranch had a record low temperature, yesterday.

NOUS45 KFGZ 011742
PNSFGZ

PUBLIC INFORMATION STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE FLAGSTAFF AZ
1042 AM MST MON JUN 1 2009

…A MAY THAT STARTED AS ONE OF THE WARMEST MAYS ON RECORD ALSO
TURNED INTO ONE OF THE WETTEST…

THE FIRST 15 DAYS OF MAY SET A PACE FOR THE MONTH TO BE ONE OF THE
WARMEST ON RECORD WITH AN AVERAGE TEMPERATURE OF 56.8 DEGREES. A
LARGE PLUME OF MOISTURE THEN MOVED OVER THE AREA AND THE RECORD
SETTING PACE WAS SLOWED DUE TO THE PASSAGE OF SEVERAL WEAK LOW
PRESSURE SYSTEMS AND INCREASED CLOUD COVER. STARTING ON THE
18TH…THE FLAGSTAFF AIRPORT RECORDED PRECIPITATION ON 12 OF THE 15
REMAINING DAYS OF THE MONTH. AT LEAST A TRACE OF RAIN FELL AT THE
FLAGSTAFF AIRPORT FROM THE 20TH THROUGH 30TH. THIS 11 DAY RUN RANKS
2ND IN MOST CONSECUTIVE DAYS OF PRECIPITATION IN THE MONTH OF
MAY…AND 40TH FOR MOST CONSECUTIVE DAYS OF PRECIPITATION OVERALL.
THE RESULT WAS AN UNUSUALLY WET MAY…WITH 2.08 INCHES OF
PRECIPITATION BEING RECORDED. MAY 2009 ENDED AS THE 5TH WETTEST ON
RECORD…1.28 INCHES ABOVE THE NORMAL 0.80 INCHES OF PRECIPITATION
FLAGSTAFF NORMALLY RECEIVES IN MAY.

THE ABNORMAL PRECIPITATION STILL WAS NOT THE ONLY STORY OF
MONTH…ABNORMALLY HIGH TEMPERATURES ALSO WORKED THEIR WAY INTO THE
MIX. MAY 2009 WAS THE FIRST MAY EVER…TO NOT RECORD A LOW
TEMPERATURE OF 32 DEGREES OR BELOW. THE MONTH ENDED AS THE 2ND
WARMEST MAY ON RECORD WITH A MONTHLY AVERAGE TEMPERATURE OF 56.0
DEGREES. BREAKING THAT DOWN INTO THE HIGHS AND LOWS…THE AVERAGE
MINIMUM TEMPERATURE WAS 39.6 DEGREES…THE WARMEST AVERAGE MAY
MINIMUM TEMPERATURE EVER RECORDED. THE AVERAGE MAY MAXIMUM
TEMPERATURE CAME IN AS THE 8TH WARMEST MAY MAXIMUM WITH A VALUE OF
72.3 DEGREES.

CLARK

May Temperatures

May Temperatures

may-2009-ave-temp

May 032009
 

May is here. It is one of the dryer months for Northerm Arizona. This May isn’t looking much different. It should be dry and nice for the most part. I don’t see any big drivers for warmer than normal temps.

But, what about sea ice. If you remember a couple years back, there were great expectations of the North Pole being ice-free. Well, that doesn’t seem to be in the cards for now. Here are a couple charts that tell a diffferent story. Northern Hemisphere Sea Ice did recede drastically a few years back. But, it is currently the highest coverage since 2002 at the start of May.

Northern Sea Ice Coverage 5-1-09

Northern Sea Ice Coverage 5-1-09

However, the departure from average for 1979 until now is still negative, but moving in a growth direction:

Northern Sea Ice compared to average 79-09

Northern Sea Ice compared to average 79-09

One more consideration is the Southern Hemisphere Sea Ice, where it is above average and growing:

Southern Sea Ice 5-1-09

Southern Sea Ice 5-1-09

Finally, overall, Global Sea Ice coverage is above average: Granted, recent levels have been below average:

Global Sea Ice 5-1-09

Global Sea Ice 5-1-09

So, shouldn’t the mainstream media give us a general update? If this trend continues, it might snow in London, or Lousiana, or, maybe just maybe we will see two back to back seasons where we can skate on Lake Mary, south of Flagstaff. Oh wait those things already happened.

Apr 282009
 
Summer 2009 Prediction

Summer 2009 Prediction

This picture is a summary of previous analog years from Joe D’Aleo at Intellicast. The accompanying article can be found at ENSO Update. This analysis is based on analog years of solar activity and El Nino Southern Oscillation(ENSO).

If this summer is like the analog years, we could be looking at summer being a couple degrees below normal in Northern Arizona.

This outlook contrasts with the Climate Prediction Center‘s outlook below.

Climate Prediction Center Outlook May-July 2009

Climate Prediction Center Outlook May-July 2009

Apr 222009
 

There is suddenly a slight chance of rain this afternoon. I bet we don’t get more than sprinkle, if that. But, we are going to see temperatures coll over the next few days to a normal or slightly below normal level.

There is an chance of some moisture showing up early next week. Again, I doubt it will be much as our dry trend will probably continue until the Monsoon Season. Sorry folks.

Apr 172009
 

Below is the record report from the National Weather Service for our Record Low Temperature at the airport. For comparison and a little validation, I recorded 15.1 degrees F this morning at my house.  It was chilly. With a record low of 15F, the average temperature for the day was 10 degrees below normal. For teh Month to date, we are 2.1 degrees below normal.

Better times are ahead.  Temps should move into the 60′s and 70′s for the next few days.

Statement as of 05:54 PM MST on April 17, 2009
… Record low temperature set at Flagstaff AZ Airport…
a record low temperature of 15 degrees was set at Flagstaff AZ Airport today.
This breaks the old record of 16 set in 1924.
Apr 152009
 

It snowed all day, but the accumulation was minor. But, holy cow, it got cold by noon. It was 26F in my car at lunchtime. Tomorrow, we will see what the official precip was. Not a hefty amount, but it did snow most of the day.

There could be as much as another inch of snow tomorrow. This is only being forecasted by Accuweather, but they are pretty conservative about precip forecasts for Flagstaff.

The good news is that we should be warming up for a good while. Still, we may see another bout of winter weather by the end of the month.

Hopefully, I will get my weather station back on line by the weekend. It will be really nice to read my own graphs again. I will start posting about Lake Powell Weather after that.

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