Saturday, December 20, 2008
8:30 PM Update
There has been some "hot" comments about meteorologists hyping the weather....please be patient...it is too soon to throw in the towel on this event...although there are clearly deficiencies in the model's solutions. The winds have not accelerated as much as forecast...yet the pressure different across the mountains is extraordinary...nearly as high as I have ever seen it...nearly 16 millibars across the Cascades (Seattle-Yakima pressure difference). The highest I have seen occurred on Dec 24, 1983 (17.1 mb) ..the great Enumclaw windstorm of the century when winds exceeded 120 mph in the foothills. Winds have increased aloft (see plot from the profiler here at Seattle Sand Point,heights in meters, time increases from right to left and is GMT--21/03 is 7 PM) and Sea-Tac is reporting gusts 26 kts and one of the individuals commenting to this blog reported 45 mph. At northbend, WA a NWS spotter reported sustained 35 mph, gusting to 45. But this event is not over yet. I think one thing all of you have learned from following the weather is that timing errors are not unusual...particularly ones of 3-6 hr.
Regarding the snow, it is now picking up as the main warm frontal band comes through (see image)...then there will be a break and the snow will pick up with the cold front band. I have about an inch at my house now.
Posted by Cliff Mass at 8:27 PM