June 23, 2016

West Coast Contrasts: Cool North/Hot South

The recent weather has been starkly different between the north and southern portions of the West Coast.

Over the Northwest we have experienced weeks of typical June weather:  cool with light moisture. And eastern WA has been cooler than normal with no fires. In contrast, southern CA is burning with temperatures reaching above 100F away from the coast; some unlucky folks are experiencing 115-125F.

Here is the departure from average of the daily temperatures during the past two weeks.   Cooler than normal in the Northwest, particular near and immediately downstream of the Cascade crest.   Warm in southern CA and VERY warm east of the Rockies.

Precipitation?  A bit wetter than normal over much of our region during this period.

One huge difference from last year is the mild conditions over eastern WA.  For example, take a look at Pasco, WA during the past month.   After the warm spell in early June, the cooling hit hard, with many days dropping far below normal...some even near 40F.
Wednesday night brought another cool, wet system to our region, as illustrated by the regional radar imagery at 10:30 AM.   No need to water tomorrow.

In fact, the 72hr precipitation total forecast by the WRF model is impressive (see below_, with some portions of the Cascades and Olympics getting 1-2 inches.  Good for water supplies and good for reducing the fire risk further.


  1. Cliff, it looks like this may be the last storm of the season, per the norm. Do you agree?

  2. Possible fodder for a future post:

    I thought Le Blob was declared dead. Now it's apparently going to moderate another PNW winter?

  3. The cool June weather certainly has done wonders for the soil moisture in the Cascades. In areas that I like to hike in, I've seen springs and small creeks that had completely dried up in May revived with flowing water. Major rivers and creeks are enjoying increased flow, also.

  4. I think this normal June is G-R-R-R-R-E-A-T, to quote Tony the Tiger. It certainly is helpful for a variety of reasons since July and August are almost always so dry here. It was nice to see the Cascades get hammered the last few days.

  5. Question for a future post:

    For all the planets on which we can observe the weather, the patterns appear to be much larger than those on Earth... Continent-sized or even planet-spanning. (Neptune is the most recent example). Even hurricanes don't make the grade. Why is Earth's weather so puny?

  6. Robert,

    The difference is out makeup of water and land masses which impact storms.

    Those other planets tend to be mostly land masses with frozen ice/gasses.

  7. Nothing "average" about the June rainfall at the Admiralty inlet..!

    1.25 inches is average for June. In the past 24 hours we had over 2 inches and over 2 inches just a few days back. It is very NOT average. We are at least 400% above average.

    Too much rain rots berries. It is not "normal" to get 4 plus inches of rain at the end of June. This hurts small family businesses.

  8. If one cannot accept the occasional "crop failure", one should not be a farmer.

    I know I couldn't be a farmer, because I would go absolutely nuts when the weather didn't meet my desires...

  9. June "Gloom", 2nd round. / Later variety. ?


Please make sure your comments are civil. Name calling and personal attacks are not appropriate.

First Lowland Snow over Western Washington

It is snowing right now in some favored locations in western Washington....yes, snow falling to sea level. Take a look at a video provided b...