September 10, 2021

The First Major Rain Event of the Season. The Story of the Jet Stream. All in My Latest Podcast

Summer in the Northwest is about to end in a dramatic way.

High temperatures around 60F and a drenching rain are coming.  80+ temperatures will be history.

The latest 6-10 day forecast from the NOAA/National Weather Service Climate Prediction Center is shown below for both temperature and precipitation and should give you pause.

 MUCH cooler and wetter than normal over much of the Northwest.

The forecast precipitation through 5 PM Sunday is a wet wake-up call, with several inches in the mountains and roughly a half-inch in the lowlands.  The watering season may be over.

I give more details of the forecast in my podcast and I also talk about the key weather feature of our region:  the jet stream. 

This current of powerful winds, centered between 20,000 and 35,000 ft above the surface, is now strengthening and will be headed towards the Northwest later this week (see the forecast for 5 AM Friday below).  The red and brown colors are the strongest winds.

In my podcast, I will tell you why and where the jet stream winds exist and why they are important. 

And I will tell you some fascinating stories about how the jet stream influenced World War II.  You can listen to the podcast below or through your favorite podcast server.

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  1. Cliff For one of your special topics for a future blog you should talk about what geographic features west of the Cascade Crest effect weather forecasting for western Washington. An example of this is how the Olympics effect weather systems that come in.

  2. Genuinely/honestly curious here, but you are showing half inch of rain for the lowlands on Sunday, but places like Komonews makes statements like this:

    "Right now finding any real rain around here is going to be very hard for the next 7 days.

    Why such a huge discrepancy in forecasts?

    1. Models have been over doing rain amounts for months the Euro model is probably being too generous I wouldn't be surprised if this storm ends up being nothing more then a few showers.

    2. If you look at the valid date of the chart Cliff showed, he's talking about next Sunday the 19th.

  3. Looks like seattle will be in a some what of a rain shadow.

  4. I hope Cliff's forecast is correct, since the locals here in Portland say nothing except dry skies for quite awhile.

  5. Going out on your own here? None of the major forecast models show anything significant Sunday in the lowlands. Hope you are right, though.

  6. Sorry, but still makes me wonder what else can be sent in the jet stream to the US West Coast.

  7. none of the forecasts suggest rain; why the panic?

  8. Just a couple of tiny sprinkles in S. Everett at 1:00am Sunday. Hope there is about a half-inch more.

  9. Dr. Cliff mentions lots of rain by 5PM Sunday, but below that shows a chart of the rainfall from the European Weather Centre: it is valid through September 20th. My take is that Dr Cliff means lots of rain by next weekend.

  10. I think if you look at the model he posted it is showing the rain totals are cumulative through Sunday, Sep 19 PDT.

  11. I am south of Seattle near Rainier. No rain at all here. Some overcast earlier but it's sunny off and on now. It's one of the few times I've seen you wrong.

  12. Boy was Cliff right about us up in Whatcom County, rained all night!!

  13. Swing and a miss!

    Hardly any precip in the Puget Sound Region. All went North.

  14. Yesterday, it did rain in Tacoma for a few hours but dried up by noon time at the latest. Was not so obvious at 6AM, but by 7AM, it was very obvious. Not heavy, but enough to get things a good, soaking nonetheless. The rest of the day was dry and the sun eventually came out. So it sounds like it depends on where you live whether you got some rain, or not. We'll see how the rest of the week pans out. It was nice while it lasted, the rain yesterday.


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