Daily Archives: January 7, 2009

Urban Areas and Small Streams in Kitsap Now Under a “Flood Warning”

Well isn’t this just dandy!

First we get the “once in every 30 year” snowstorm in December (actually, I rather enjoyed that, but for the sake of where this post is going, let’s pretend I didn’t…:)) and now we have to deal with flooding. This a messy and frustrating situation for many and the current radar is rather…pessimistic… (I’ve been trying to download the latest radar image but it’s not working for me, so go to this link:

http://radar.weather.gov/radar.php?rid=atx&product=N0R&overlay=11101111&loop=no

Here is what the FLOOD WARNING has to say:

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN SEATTLE HAS ISSUED A

* FLOOD WARNING FOR URBAN AREAS AND SMALL STREAMS IN THE FOLLOWING
  WESTERN WASHINGTON COUNTIES...
  KITSAP COUNTY...
  WESTERN KING COUNTY...
  SOUTHWESTERN SNOHOMISH COUNTY...

* UNTIL 830 AM PST THURSDAY.

* AT 834 PM PST RADAR AND OBSERVATIONS SHOW PRECIPITATION FALLING AT
NEARLY ONE HALF INCH PER HOUR. HEAVY RAIN WILL CONTINUE THROUGH
ABOUT 4 AM EARLY THURSDAY BEFORE DECREASING TO SHOWERS.

FLOODING IS EXPECTED IN NORMALLY LOW AND FLOOD PRONE AREAS...POORLY
DRAINED UNDERPASSES...AND ALONG SMALL STREAMS.

A FLOOD WARNING MEANS THAT FLOODING IS IMMINENT OR HAS BEEN REPORTED.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

EXCESSIVE RUNOFF FROM HEAVY RAINFALL WILL CAUSE ELEVATED LEVELS ON
SMALL CREEKS AND STREAMS...AND PONDING OF WATER IN URBAN AREAS...
HIGHWAYS...STREETS AND UNDERPASSES AS WELL AS OTHER POOR DRAINAGE
AREAS AND LOW LYING SPOTS.

This is certainly not looking like a widespread devastating event…in fact, this will be more of a nuisance. Nonetheless, stay safe out there!

Matthew Leach

Kitsap Weather

Pineapple Express and a Rain Shadow

 

 

Wednesday, December 17th–Kitsap missed out on the snow

So how many were expecting to make it through the day perfectly dry? I suppose it’s never a slam dunk in Washington, but the reason why we stayed relatively dry for the first part of today was because of the “Olympic Rain Shadow”. This shadow occurs when weather systems come in from the ocean in westerly flow, bringing the bulk of the precipitation right into the Olympic Mountains and from there spreading to the north and south. The mountains then act as a barrier and squeeze out most of the moisture before it hits us, thus leaving the main Kitsap/Seattle metro area relatively dry. You’ve probably noticed this phenomenon on the radar once or twice this winter.

 

 

OK! Now on to the real action for tonight. Because the wind flow has switched to southwesterly, expect periods of heavy rain; heaviest over south Kitsap (2-2.5”), though the rest of Kitsap County could see anywhere from 1-2 additional inches of rain. In fact, the Kitsap area is under a FLOOD WATCH until early tomorrow morning.

I think we ought to be grateful, though, that the heavy rain started so late here. If it had started as soon as surrounding areas, we could be talking about major floods!

So, expect heavy rain through the night. The heaviest precipitation should be overwith by 2-3 AM, so the morning commute will be wet–like Washington wet…nothing too unusual. For the rest of your Thursday, look for mostly cloudy skies with light rain showers. Highs will be in the mid to upper 40s.

Friday has looked and STILL looks quite pleasant…well, at least compared to the past few days. Skies will be partly to mostly cloudy, but it doesn’t look like a rainy day so if there are any outdoor plans for Friday you should be A-OK. Highs will be more seasonable in the low to mid 40s.

The rain returns Saturday afternoon and lasts through the weekend, though at this time precipitation looks relatively light and harmless. Highs will be, again, in the low to mid 40s.

And then Mother Nature FINALLY discovers our white surrender flags we’ve been waving since mid December. A large ridge of high pressure builds out over the area leading the way to partly to mostly sunny skies and comfortable temperatures in the mid and upper 40s. **DISCLAIMER** I’m sure you knew there was a catch…with all the rain we’ve been receiving lately, moist roadways under partially clear nights will almost certainly lead to areas of morning fog–perhaps extended fog well into the afternoon hours. If that ends up being the case, it could really skew the high temperature forecast. For now, stay tuned!

INFO ON THE MOUNTAINS

Uggghhh…I’ve never been skiing, but I’m not sure I’d want to go on my first bunny course with the weather the way it is right now… What really pushes my buttons about these subtropical “Pineapple Express” systems (the term “Pineapple Express” basically means the weather pattern originates from Hawaii and it tends to carry a lot of warm, moist air with it. See picture)Our current "Pineapple Express" pattern 

 is that they usually cause the snow level to skyrocket, leaving the mountains with a warm, killer rain. They are forecasted to receieve 8-15” of rain by the time this whole event is over, and the Cascades are under a AVALANCHE WARNING so it is advised to not travel or backpack during this time (why you would want to backpack in this weather is a mystery to me, but just thought I’d mention it!) Ski resorts are still open at this time, but check back within the next couple days as the mudslide/avalanche danger could ruin the fun for skiers and snowboarders.

Stay tuned to this blog for any updated weather changes and stay safe!

Matthew Leach                                                                                                                           Kitsap Weather

7 DAY FORECAST

Hello Kitsap County! Welcome to the Forecasting Kitsap blog

My name is Matthew Leach and I am the weatherman for the Central Kitsap High School weekly broadcast and often send my forecasts to Ridgetop Junior High. Weather is a huge passion of mine, and even though wrong forecasts make me want to take a sick day or wear some sort of disguise to school, I continue to study and learn more about the various micro-climates within this beautiful state, more particularly in Kitsap County.

Weather forecasters here in Washington State usually focus on predicting the weather for the main Seattle area, and there isn’t enough attention paid to the little micro-climates around the state. That is where I come in…

You’ve probably heard the Kitsap Peninsula and/or Hood Canal mentioned quite frequently in the winter seasons on the local radio, internet sites, or news programs. That is simply because Kitsap loves to create its own type of weather, often blind-sighting meteorologists across the region.

I have decided to take on the challenge of forecasting Kitsap’s unique and sometimes pain in the neck weather and I hope you enjoy the ride as much as I will!