Today, there were huge contrasts across the the state.
In the northern two-thirds of western Washington the clouds held in most of the day with temperatures only reaching about 50F---roughly 8F below normal (see satellite picture at 4 PM below to see cloud distribution). Many of you awoke to light drizzle-- a very bad sign, since drizzle is associated with deep stratus/stratocumulus that are difficult to burn off.
Here are the max temperatures today. What a huge contrast! Highs in the 40s over Puget Sound and parts of NW Washington, while 70s occurred over the eastern slopes of the Cascades, portions of eastern Washington and over far southwest Washington. Nice in the Willamette Valley. So if you live near Puget Sound, sun is about an hour's drive away.
To illustrate the contrast, lets look at the temperatures during the last two weeks at Seattle-Tacoma Airport compared to the normal highs and lows. NOT ONE DAY HAS REACHED THE NORMAL HIGHS! Many days are 5-10 F cooler than normal.
Returning to Seattle the wall of clouds was awaiting just east of North Bend. We were ready to turn around.
Picture taken by Roberta Spiro east of North Bend.
The amazing/depressing thing is that the models are forecasting the high pressure to hold in place for the rest of the week. So the stratus and low clouds are not going anywhere soon.
Here are the upper level (500 hPa heights) from the European Center mdoel for today at 5 AM, Wednesday, and Friday. The ridge remains.
Forecast of percent of low clouds at 2 PM for run starting at 5 AM. Not perfect, but useful