Although my attention is generally on the Pacific Ocean, I can't help note the weather event that many meteorologists are talking about the last few days: the development of an extraordinarily intense cyclone in the north Atlantic, a storm much deeper than Hurricane Sandy.
The central pressure of Hurricane Sandy dropped to approximately 940 hPa and was huge in size. The storm that will be revving up tomorrow is forecast to hit roughly 924 hPa by Saturday morning (4 AM PST). The is one intense storm. Here is this morning's forecast of the European Center model made for 4 AM PST on Saturday. More isobars (lines of constant pressure) than you can make out. The shading shows sustained winds at roughly 5000 ft in meters per second (double to get knots). A large area of greater than 80 kts. I am pretty sure this is close to what will happen....a wide range of models are giving the same solution and the forecasts have been quite stable.
Here is the sustained wind field near this storm when it is predicted to be near its height (note gusts are much stronger than sustained, or average, winds.) Large area of 50-60 knot winds (shown by shading). The white lines are streamlines that are parallel to the wind direction. Huge storm.
The waves produced by this event will be immense. Here is the latest National Weather Service WaveWatch3 forecast for Saturday afternoon. Waves off the chart (more than 15 meters-49 ft). I bet the container ships will avoid this area!
The forecast for the Northwest U.S. will be boring, benign and normal for the next several days. No more inversions, fog, and crazy temperature variations through this weekend into early next week. We will get another ridge of high pressure next week...but the US model is suggesting the potential for a lowland snow event...a modest one...next Thursday. Too early to say much.