Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Finally, Spring is coming

Most years there is a transition after Feb. 15th that makes one realize that Seattle winter is over. When thoughts trend to the garden center, rather than the ski slopes. And for us, this shift will occur on Thursday through Saturday of this week. It is clear now that with the low developing offshore, southeasterly flow will bring warm air from the south and descent off the mountains. Temperatures will climb to between 55 and 60 over most of the lowlands, with Saturday probably being the warmest day over the Puget Sound lowlands. Some locations will be even warmer (low sixties...such as the Oregon coast and in the immediate lee of the Cascades. Just to give you a taste, I have attached surface temperatures from our regional model (12-km WRF), which shows the story. One image is for 2 PM on Friday, the other for 1 PM on Saturday.
On Sunday our luck runs out and showers and clouds move back in. But after the warmth, it won't seem the same. My grass is already growing.

If any of you are going to the garden show on Sunday, I will be there at the University Book Store area from 12 to 3 PM.

36 comments:

Justin M. said...

It looks like on Sunday our luck finally comes with us and we finally get WEATHER again! I like weather! That's why I'm here. :)

I can't wait until October when I can say that AUTUMN is finally here, and December when I can say that WINTER is finally here!

Anonymous said...

Well, there's always next winter I guess.

I really enjoyed the snow we had, but in the end I don't feel that it makes up for the overwhelming lack of weather the other 75% of the time.

It may not be over yet, but at this point I'm ranking this winter below both of the previous two in terms of interesting weather.

Jessica P. said...

Anonymous and Justin M,

I TOTALLY agree! I really wish spring wasn't coming yet. I want a winter first.

Julie Anderson said...

You can say that again. It's getting WAY too light too fast in the mornings. And it's only February. I dread the summer.

Anonymous said...

Uh-oh...he said "won't be the same"...somebody is now gonna ask, what do you mean by that??
LOL.

Cliff Mass Weather Blog said...

All...severe weather is fun, but so is our spring and summer features. The onshore push, the alongshore surge, downslope warming, sea breezes and slope winds, are all great. The subtleties of warm season weather are worth exploring and understanding...cliff

Mike of MLT said...

...and PSCZ season and our version of a convective season.

Some of the best skiing can be had at Stevens Pass in March. A quick cold front followed by a PSCZ and then the cold air mass behind the system. Could be especially true this winter, er, spring.

WeatherNerd said...

Looks like our sun hater is back Cliff. :) I believe that is the "All" you were writing too.

Mike of MLT
I hope your PSCZ event comes to fruition at Stevens Pass, I have experienced it in the past where they get slammed with great snow late in the season. I was at Whistler this weekend and despite getting half their normal amount of snow coverage was quite good. Having said that, not the best skiing conditions for February.

I know what you mean Cliff by it being different once we have a couple of nice 60 degree days--you suddenly catch spring fever. I love a stormy winter but if it's gone for good bring on the warm sunshine!

Mike of MLT said...

The cut off low finally kicks out next Monday, the 23rd--the door seems to be open for new snow through next week and a much more zonal flow across the Pacific. And the 6-10 day outlook yesterday was below normal temps above normal precip. I'm planning on skiing next week. I'd be up there today if cold and flu bugs hadn't swept through my family this past week. And with a post like "Finally, Spring is coming" from Cliff, why not go back to cool wet weather, heheh. A couple of early springlike days, then wetter and cooler is a good guess.

As far as the PSCZ, well we could see a dozen cold fronts followed by a handful of decent PSCZs in March. March can be a very active blustery month with plenty of snow for the mountains. And we are due...and things do regress to the mean.

andycottle said...

Hey Mike of MLT...

have ya checked out the 12zGFS? If not, then the lowland snow chance for later next week has been put on the back burner. In other words...no snow. On the other hand, 6zGFS looked really good for around the 26th/27th time frame.

Anyway, here`s my outlook...
-----------

Latest 6z/12zGFS still shows an area of weak low pressure taking place this weekend just off the west coast. However, while this low may be far enough off shore to really have an impact on us, it still appears that it may send rotating pieces of energy up toward our area under SW flow aloft for late in the weekend. 500mb heights also drop down from the upper 550`s/ low 560`s to the lower 550`s as this system get closer to our coast with thicknesses getting into the lower 540`s. Both GFS models also have weak area of low pressure moving in over Western Wa by around middle of next week for a better threat of showers. And looks to be more a dissipating feature as it weakens to 1000mb as comes to the Wa coast during this time frame. So probably a cool and some showery day with heights/thicknesses both in the 530`s for Tue time frame. Also appears that the MRF/GEM/ Canadian and UW WRF-GFS12z show the weak low moving inland by early or middle of next week for the better shot at some showers. So we`ll see what happens.

Though this is in the longer term, the 6z showed a rather cold few days along with lowland snow for around the 26th/27th as a lobe of colder air from the north dropped down over us with 850mb temps of -12 to -15c where as the 12z just shows coolish conditions along with showers at times. So as always, just take it for what their worth and keep checking the models.

http://www.nco.ncep.noaa.gov/pmb/nwprod/an...p096114_m.shtml

http://www.nco.ncep.noaa.gov/pmb/nwprod/an...p096114_m.shtml

4pm Mon.| Weak low moving inland.
http://www.atmos.washington.edu/mm5rt/data...lp.132.0000.gif

Julie Anderson said...

WeatherNerd,

Do you mind if I call you a Weather Hater? I suppose you shouldn't because of the term you used for me. :)

Zach said...

Nothing too major this year :( Hopefully next year we get a big windstorm.

Anonymous said...

Oh my gosh, today was so sunny!

Looks like the looonnnggg spring/summer is already upon us, and it's only mid-February for goodness sakes!!!

I long for the days that are seemingly long ago, when spring didn't use to come until at least late March, if not later, and summer never arrived until later June. Then fall would come in early September and winter would be here by early November. We actually had seasons then. We actually had nice weather for over half the year. Now it seems the dry season lasts all the way from February/March (even much longer this year) until October or November. Terrible.

Sun season has already started. And that means constant headaches for the next eight or nine months. Why is it so bad this year?

Anonymous said...

Grow some vegetables and make good use of the weather instead of complaining.

WeatherNerd said...

Because they are coo-coo for Cocoa Puffs!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous at 5:30, thank you!!!

I'm really tired of the people complaining on here about the weather too! My gosh, we might actually get weather this weekend and all people have to do is complain about it!

Yet they don't complain about the lack of weather. It's people like that that make us meteorologists look bad, like we don't like weather. :)

NE said...

You're right anon... take a look at these comments today from the National Weather Service discussion. They do seem to indicate meteorologists really don't like weather and I can kind of see your point:

SKIES CLEARED OUT AS HOPED WITH EXCEPTION OF SOME CUMULUS CLOUDS DEVELOPING ALONG THE COAST AND OLYMPICS.

EXPECTING ANOTHER NICE DAY FRI WITH A GOOD AMOUNT OF SUN AND MILD AFTERNOON TEMPERATURES.

THEN...IT ALL BEGINS TO CHANGE...DOWNHILL FOR SOME (LIKE ME)

WINTER INVADES THE REGION SATURDAY NIGHT

At least they somewhat acknowledged the fact that some of you can't wait until the sunshine "finally" goes away for a little while. But it does seem like for a meteorologist, the person writing that really doesn't like weather.

Josh-B said...

I wouldn't bring out the sun screen and swim shorts yet. Oh yea, you might want to reconsider that California needed a little bit of our exciting weather. Though it's easy to knock Cali, a whole bunch of our produce comes from there.

Jessica said...

Thanks NE! You confirmed that Cliff is not alone (and thus, should not be flagellated) in using the word "nice" for description of the days weather. Looks like NWS is afflicted with the same generality and it didn't cause a flurry of hand-wringing.

When I was a kid living on Cape Cod, I used to make mom take me to the lighthouse to watch storms roll in - - to this day I LOVE it. But nice is nice. In the same way that fine means fine. It means nothing important going on, doesn't it?

I'm sorry; I don't mean to get fired up or seem rude. It would be great to get some more wild & wooly snow.

Love the party hat Mutton.

Anonymous said...

Jessica, but the NWS doesn't have the ability to leave comments. ;)

Justin M. said...

Yea Jessica, isn't it awful? We all knew that Cliff wasn't alone in the further brainwashing of people, which is the primary reason why it's so incredibly frustrating. People who say they like weather really don't like weather and instead use all the positive subjective language on days when there is NO weather. Furthermore, they don't care one iota about the fact that there are people in the world that not only prefer nicer weather, but have medical conditions that are much more conducive to the nicer, more comfortable cooler and cloudier weather. I have a friend, for instance, that can't go out in the sun because her eyes are so sensitive that the sun will damage them - even if it's just a little at a time. But do these people care at all? No they don't. It really irks me.

Jessica said...

I feel like I just slipped on a banana peel - you're right Anon, no comments on NWS.

Maybe my work-addled brain isn't functioning but I meant I don't think Cliff should be faulted for using the word nice, as I think it conveys a certain neutrality in weather systems. Yes, it assumes that the larger audience "likes" clear, cloudless and sunny.

I'm ok with generalizations like that when there is no weather system to discuss & analyze & attempt predictions about.

So I'm a novice. But I'm learning alot here and maybe I'll just zip my lip for now. Sorry about your friend Justin M; I can empathize, as a migraine sufferer.

andycottle said...

In the short term, it appears the 18zGFS/NAM both have showers over us for Sun as an area of low pressure will be slowly spinning it`s way toward our coast. And so, our ridge lasts through about Sat with highs possibly getting into the lower 60`s for many locales. But after Sun and into early-mid work week, it looks like the low finally moves inland over Wa or Oregon with cool and showery conditions.

Anonymous said...

Bring on the sun! I'm ready to put the snowshoes away and get my trail runners on for some serious hiking. Enough with winter, let the snow melt begin!

Anonymous said...

There is no need to argue about Spring and nice weather yet. Next week, it looks as if we will be experiencing cooler than normal temperatures.

Anonymous said...

PLEASE--Justin M and others...please refrain from debating about the mean of "nice weather"--this is just silliness. Everyone has the right to decide for themselves what nice weather is!

JayDee said...

OK, if you live in Seattle you take the good with the bad. For some of us, good is 75 degrees, no air conditioning needed, and bright sun during the late spring/summer. The bad could be the same for some folks, in which case, there isn't much of an option besides Juneau or the Aleutians. It gets awfully warm in Fairbanks and Anchorage during the summer.
-
My personal pet peeve is 3 weeks of warm fronts, drip drippy drip. If it is gonna rain give me Sturm un Drang--cold fronts. They are dramatic, and sometimes you get windstorms--which are "nice" as long as you have power, shelter, and are not in a boat. But complaining about the tags people apply to weather...meh. Say it, but don't expect agreement. After missing 3 vacation days to lowland snow in December, I am not so fond of it...but I like the snowlight. By July my lost vacation days will be a memory.
-
Take the weather like the slow food movement--enjoy what is, when it is, and wishing for something different is fine, but it maybe futile. After all, everyone talks about the weather, but...

Jessica said...

Sorry - unzipping my lip.

Yes it is silliness and I guess my sarcasm went under the radar. I was trying to point out that Cliff can use the word nice and that it isn't a capital offense. He is beat up for it often and I think THAT silly.

ZIP

andycottle said...

Today did turn out to a nice afternoon with a high of 54 at my locale after and overcast morning. Should be a tad warmer for tomorrow and into perhaps Sat.

Phil said...

Hey Justin-

I don't know if you know this, but a sunny or partly cloudy day is also "weather". It doesn't have to be snowing or blowing 50 mph for it to be considered weather. For you to say Cliff is brainwashing people into disliking weather is ridiculous. If he didn't enjoy weather or wasn't fascinated by it like the rest of us, he wouldn't be doing what he does for a living. And you are right, nobody cares about your friend that can't go out in the sun. Are you saying because 1 percent of the population has a condition like that, the other 99 percent should have to deal with cool cloudy weather all the time for that person's sake? That's tough luck for them, but at the same time, they will probably live a lot longer than the rest of us because we are constantly exposed to the harmful effects of the sun. Everyone has their own opinions of what good and bad weather is, but the way you try to justify your argument is not rational. And to the guy that is rooting for a big windstorm...why?? When a tree splits your house in half or your power is out for a week, I have a feeling you might change your tune.

WeatherNerd said...

....in addition to your comment Phil without the sun we would not get the potent storms we sometimes get here in the Northwest. The sun is the driver in all of our weather, as it warms up our planet, some areas more than others, which in turn produces our more active weather, such as the Pacific storms we experience, hurricanes in the south, etc. The atmosphere is not heated in the same manner everywhere and the atmosphere is trying to equalize itself.

AEM said...

Cliff's right...the nuances of summer are awesome! I'd take 75 and sunny any day :) Plus, Gold is almost $1000/oz so all is well :)

Anonymous said...

Justin,
Tell her to get some sunglasses.

Anonymous said...

Justin,
Tell her it's all Bush's fault.

Justin M. said...

Anonymous at 7:45 said that "everyone has the right to decide for themselves what nice weather is." Thanks. That's so true. So stop convincing others that nice is only if there's nothing going on.

Phil, I never said the other 99 percent should have to deal with cool cloudy weather for the sake of a small portion of the population. I was simply saying that people should realize that there are in fact people out there who have different opinions (some because they need to), and not chastize us because we do have different opinions than you. I'm not proud to be sharing the same Earth with you right now.

Also Phil, a sunny day is in fact NOT weather. Weather happens in our atmosphere. The sun is not in our atmosphere, last I checked. If it was we'd all be dead.

Anonymous said...

>Also Phil, a sunny day is in fact NOT weather.
>Weather happens in our atmosphere. The sun is not
>in our atmosphere, last I checked. If it was we'd all
>be dead.

Pretty sure that most people, when referring to a "sunny day" are not actually talking about the condition on the surface of the sun, but rather how things are right down here with the rest of us. SO I'm going to go out on a limb and declare a sunny day to be "weather" since I think we can also agree that we're not talking about a day so sunny that the entire atmosphere has blown away.