Forecasting Kitsap

Aspiring weatherman Matthew Leach talks about the complex and intricate weather patterns over Kitsap.
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Archive for July, 2009

Heatwave 2009 and Global Warming: Any Connection?…Not Really

Friday, July 31st, 2009

global_warming

**POLL: Do You Believe Global Warming is a Big Concern? Vote on the right hand sidebar**

Doesn’t it feel great outside today? I woke up to my house at 73 degrees…about 20 degrees cooler than it was yesterday evening. And don’t worry…we aren’t pegged to reach anywhere near the temperatures we’ve experinced this past week anytime soon.

I saw just a few comments on local stories across the area that covered the heatwave look something like this: “is there any connection between this heatwave and global warming?” Interesting thought, though I don’t think we could flat out blame this heatwave on global warming. It is interesting to note, however, that no other year since records were kept at Sea-Tac (which started in 1897, by the way) did temperatures exceed 100 degrees (of course, when Sea-Tac hit 100 degrees in the summers of 1994, 1977 and 1941, other areas across the western part of our state did exeed 100).

Here’s one thing to consider: Sea-Tac hit 100 degrees 3 times before July 29th, 2009, two of which happened during a period of no alarming global warming trend, and even a scare of global cooling (my parents definitley remember the global cooling scare of the 70s).

Another thing to think about is this: we’ve been under a global warming alert for quite sometime now. Since 1998-2008, 6 out of the 10 summers we’ve had here have been either cooler than normal or much cooler than normal, with the other 4 warmer than normal. In 10 years we haven’t had a “normal” summer, though some of the warmer than normal years were at least close to normal. 

The heatwave we just experienced was the result of a mammoth dome of high pressure that narrowly extended from the west coast up through B.C. and into Alaska (Barrow, AK even reported temperatures in the 70s! Typically they’re in the 40s and 50s) Oddly enough, this dome of high pressure didn’t affect the Eastern portions of the West Coast much at all. It was almost as if this heatwave was deliberately directed at us so as to break some long time records, ignoring areas that are commonly this hot all the time like Eastern WA and OR.

If the west coast were the center of the universe we could easily say this is a sign of further warming of this globe…but remember…we have neighbors in the midwest and east coast who have been experiencing a much cooler and wetter than normal summer. Look at this July temperature map (through the 24th):

july1-24

The red/orange colors are warmer than normal, white is normal and the blueish colors are cooler than normal temperatures. Now, this map doesn’t illustrate our heatwave because it is only up to the 24th right now, but you can clearly see the western third of the country has been above normal while the eastern 2/3 of  the country have been below to much below normal. Try selling the “global warming is accelerating!” phrase to them!

But this brings up another point: I don’t think this is solely one thing—global warming or cooling, which is why I prefer the term “climate change” over the alternative(s). As many of you have noticed, the past 3 or 4 years have brought very extreme/historic/anomalous weather to not only the Pacific Northwest but also to many areas around the world from droughts to flooding to snowstorms to heatwaves to biting cold to hurricanes. It is undeniable that natural disasters have certainly been on the upswing.

Obviously something meteorologically and astronomically unstable is going on within our Earth, but one thing is for certain: more extremes are likely to continue to occur throughout the world until something is ironed out. What that something is I don’t think anyone knows quite yet.

This actually brings up an interesting discussion about thoughts concerning the upcoming fall/winter for the Pacific Northwest. Let’s just say I’m not alone in the belief that we could be in for another extreme season.

What are your thoughts? I’m sure there are those of you out there who know a lot more about the climate than I do. It’d be interesting to get your perspective.

Have a great day and enjoy the much cooler weather!

Matthew Leach

Forecasting Kitsap

forecastingkitsap@live.com

7 DAY FORECAST

63


MUCH Cooler Weather Coming Our Way!

Thursday, July 30th, 2009

Yay! Models have pretty much flopped 180 since I looked at them this morning before work. It’s now looking like low to mid 80s tomorrow versus low 90s. That’s good news for all of you cooler weather fans!

Speaking of fans, you may still need them over the weekend with highs bouncing a smidgen in the mid to upper 80s.

And then WHAM-O, KAMBLAM-O temperatures in the 70s for highs return! Stay tuned on this one, but it’s looking more and more likely.

Again, very brief post today. I worked all day today and my sister is coming home from her church mission this evening, so I want to be sure to get out of my scrubs and greet her!

But as I promised…an explanation on why we got so hot this week and if this has anything to do with global warming (hint…not really) sometime this weekend. I’ve been quite busy lately!

By the way…we hit 96 today. A few degrees cooler than I expected, but we at least tied the 1971 record of 96. We’ve broken all but one record this week, and the one record we didn’t break we tied! Quite impressive!

Matthew Leach

Forecasting Kitsap

forecastingkitsap@live.com

7 DAY FORECAST

62


**WEATHER ALERT: Bremerton Hits 104 and More Extreme Heat to Come

Wednesday, July 29th, 2009

heatwave1

 

WOW!!!

We did it! I mean, in this heat we might as well. Bremerton made it to the highest temperature ever recorded: 104 degrees, and right at the last minute. At 5:15 PM the temperature spiked from 102 to 104!!! I still wish it got to 103 so I could say my forecast was spot on! But I will say, my forecast was by far the riskiest for the Kitsap area. The National Weather Service was quite hesitant to put triple digits for our area but the models were screaming anything from 100 to 103. It’s moments like these where I’m glad I went with my gut. Seattle got to 103, also the hottest day ever recorded for that location by 3 degrees.

Tomorrow will be similarly hot with highs in the upper 90s to low 100s, so while slightly cooler, it will be another very hot day. Lows will be near 70.

Friday we cool in a more dramatic fashion—if highs between 88-92 is dramatic. We’ll also see more high clouds.

Temperatures rise back into the 90s for the weekend before cooler, yet still above normal weather continues through mid week next week (meaning highs largely in the 80s).

There are (finally!) signs of change in the long range with more of a dramatic marine push possible by next Thursday. I don’t know for sure about that yet, but it looks possible as several model runs have been advertising it.

Sorry I’m not able to write a whole lot this evening, but tomorrow I’ll go into more detail about why this heatwave is so impressive and why it will go in the record books as the hottest ever. Weather geeks across the area (including me!) are so proud today!

Have a great evening!

Matthew Leach

Forecasting Kitsap

forecastingkitsap@live.com

7 DAY FORECAST

60


100 Degree Watch: Can We Do It???

Wednesday, July 29th, 2009

**UPDATED 11:32 AM**

Alright, Kitsap! Don’t be shy. History’s in the making and I’d love it if you reported on your current temperatures at your locations as the day progresses. Let’s see who can get to 100 first! :)

Here are some current observations (as of 11:32 AM):

Poulsbo—95.9 (I decided to switch Poulsbo stations. The one I used for the 9:30 AM update was a good 10 degrees warmer than everyone else and I don’t think it’s accurate…)

Silverdale—91.8

Bainbridge Island—94.5

Port Orchard—98.5 (almost there!)

Manchester—94.8

Bremerton (Airport)—93.2

According to KOMO Weather Producer Scott Sistek, Seattle was in the 90s by 10 am. There is a strong east wind blowing this morning which is pouring in the hot air from Eastern Washington and flooding the lowlands with record heat. Think of it as someone leaving the oven door open.

Anyway, I’ll make more updates to this post throughout the morning/afternoon, though I’m going to Kitsap Lake at 1:00 (I can’t stand it in my 88 degree house!!!) so keep the observations going!

P.S. This evening I’ll do a post  more about the technical aspect of things: why this is happening and what we can expect in the long range.

~Matt


“Thunderheads” and Possibly 103 Degrees Tomorrow

Tuesday, July 28th, 2009

thunderheads

**NOTE: The above photo is not my photo nor was it taken today.  However, this is the same exact phenomena going on to our east right now!**

UPDATED 9:07 AM Wednesday, July 29th: Temperatures across the area at 9:00 are in the low to mid 80s with one station, specifically Sherman Hill Road in Poulsbo, reporting 91.2 degrees. This is several degrees warmer than where we were at this time yesterday, which was *only* in the upper 70s. The Bremerton Airport is reporting 84 degrees right now, so I think we’re still on track for triple digits today.

Also, air quality has diminished as expected with moderate concerns and it looks to be the same tomorrow. Click here for more info.

*******************************************************************************************************************

Written Tuesday, July 28th, 2009 @ 6:25 PM:

Ok…I am officially done with this heatwave ;) The mercury spiked to 99 today, a two degrees off the 97 I predicted for the day.  Today’s Bremerton high of 99 breaks the old record of 96 set in 1998. And I promise you…tomorrow’s record of 97 set in 1998 will crumble like a two week old cookie.

In other news, currently IN my house it is 89 degrees. Heaven help us all…without  A/C. Overnight lows will get into the upper 60s and lower 70s so if you think relief will come tonight, think again. Why not lay out in the lawn and watch the meteor showers? View my last post for more info regarding this month’s meteor shower shows.

Now before I get to the 7 day, a few readers commented on the “thunderheads” popping up to our east in the cascades. Take a look outside if you can and snap a shot! You’d swear we were in Missouri or something, those pink thunderheads look pretty cool. Those have formed thanks to residual moisture from the Upper Level Low that affected us this weekend which is keeping us quite humid through Thursday.

Tomorrow will be a VERY hot day. Forget 100, I’m going for 103. Folks, this is history. We have never hit temperatures this warm before. Ever. July 29th, 2009 may be a day to remember (or forget!) On August 10th, 1981 Bremerton recorded a high of 101, but I’m really pushing for 103 (remember, it’s all about statistics for weather geeks no matter how uncomfortable it may be!) Today’s high temperatures overachieved by a couple degrees in areas today and I believe tomorrow will be impressively hot, hot, hot. Thursday we’ll *cool* to 101 (Never thought I’d say that! And to be honest I don’t think we’ll dip much farther than 98 degrees Thursday…)  

Low 90s is the story on Friday before we cool to the mid 80s through the weekend and into next week. In fact,  some models have been advertising a rebound to the 90s again mid week next week for another episode of “Heatwave 2009!” Goody…

Seriously folks…I’m trying to get cooler weather in here. I just wish I had that much control!

Have a safe and cool evening,

Matthew Leach

Forecasting Kitsap

forecastingkitsap@live.com

7 DAY FORECAST

591


Triple Digits and Catching the July Meteor Showers!

Monday, July 27th, 2009

070810_meteor_shower1

Whewwwweeee! It was a darn tootin’ hot day today, folks. You don’t need a weather junkie to tell you that! In fact, we broke a record today (gasp! All you who voted that we wouldn’t see record heat out of this thing in the poll to the right, change your answers quick! I’m not looking :) ) We reached 93 degrees at the Bremerton Airport, breaking the old record of 92 in 1998. The records for Tuesday and Wednesday are 96 and 97 respectively, both set in 1998 as well, and I think we’ll break those records easily.

Before we talk more about the heat, let’s talk about some astronomical fun. Tomorrow through the 30th be on the look out of some cool meteor showers occuring between 2-4 am. People tend to think watching the sky at 10 or 11 PM will give them the best show, but in reality right before dawn is the best time to see it, and with overnight temperatures only “dipping” into the mid to upper 60s overnight, you may want to lay outside and watch the sky (put on that bug spray, though!)

Here are some links for more info on these meteor showers: http://www.meteorblog.com/ , http://www.theskyscrapers.org/meteors/

Note that July’s meteor showers will be most prevalent in the southern hemisphere. August’s meteor showers will be much more active here!

Let’s get on to the forecast for tonight as it will be very similar to the next couple of nights: lows will be in the mid to upper 60s with some areas not escaping the 70s. Tomorrow we’ll be propelled into the mid to upper 90s, so get prepared for a day several degrees warmer than today.

And then Wednesday…ooooh Wednesday. That’s the “golden child” day of this whole week. For weather fanatics who love stats, this could be an historic day with temperatures potentially breaking 100 degrees. I am forecasting 100 for the general Kitsap area, though I expect areas closer to the Hood Canal and to the southwest to get a few degrees beyond 100. Please be safe and aware during this heat. I really don’t want to hear of a weather related tragedy!

We *cool* to the upper 90s Thursday, low to mid 90s Friday and 80s through next weekend, but no big relief is in sight. I know, guys! I’m doing the rain dance too!

Now here are some weather links I suggest you all take a look at:

An AIR STAGNATION ADVISORY is still in effect until 6 PM Thursday. The air quality is still projected to be healthy tomorrow but I expect it to deteriorate throughout the week. Please click here for air quality information.

Also, a EXCESSIVE HEAT WARNING is in effect until 6 PM Thursday. Click here for more details concerning that warning.

The Poulsbo Fire Department will also be providing a cooling shelter and you can read more info about that here.

Hopefully you all have plans to keep yourselves cool throughout this hot period! When I see a trend for a cooler weather pattern, don’t doubt I’ll mention it!

Matthew Leach

Forecasting Kitsap

forecastingkitsap@live.com

7 DAY FORECAST

581


**HEAT ADVISORY IN EFFECT: Nearing 100 Degrees Midweek

Sunday, July 26th, 2009

100degrees

**A HEAT ADVISORY has been issued by the National Weather Service from noon Monday to 1 AM Thursday. Scroll down for details**

Say whaaa??

I like the National Weather Service…I really do. Sometimes they can be a little too conservative for me (remember, this is weather not politics ;) ) and I get frustrated with them, but overall I think they do a great job. But reading their forecast discussion this afternoon almost made me faint. Here’s an excerpt of their discussion:

“BOTH THE NAM12 AND MM5 SOLUTIONS SHOW SURFACE TEMPERATURES NEARING
100 DEG OVER THE INTERIOR OF W WA FROM SEATTLE SOUTHWARD BY WED
AFTERNOON.
THE
MESO MODELS HAVE BEEN OVER PREDICTING TEMPERATURES BY
A FEW DEGREES IN THESE SITUATIONS THIS YEAR…SO
FORECASTS FOR A 98
AT KSEA
(Sea-Tac Airport) AND 100 AT KOLM (Olympia) LOOK REASONABLE AT THIS TIME.”

Forecasts of 98 and 100 look “reasonable”? Oh no it doesn’t! But in all reality, according to the models we get some real pumpin’ heat in here Wednesday and would not be surprised if we scraped 100 degrees somewhere on the peninsula. On average, we end up two degrees warmer than Downtown Seattle on a given day in the summer, two degrees cooler in the winter (elevation and proximity to the Olympic Mountains plays a big role). If the NWS feels 98  degrees is “reasonable” for Sea-Tac on Wednesday, we could be looking at some serious heat over on this side of the water, my friends.

Anyway, you’ve heard enough from me. Tomorrow I’ll do the post about upcoming meteor showers like I promised. I’m already sick of reporting on this heatwave and I’m sure plenty of you are sick of hearing about it! Here’s the HEAT ADVISORY and AIR STAGNATION ADVISORY put out by the NWS moments ago:

URGENT – WEATHER MESSAGE
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SEATTLE WA
341 PM PDT SUN JUL 26 2009

…HOT WEATHER EXPECTED ACROSS WESTERN WASHINGTON THIS WEEK…

.HOT WEATHER WILL DEVELOP OVER THE INTERIOR OF WESTERN WASHINGTON
MONDAY AND TUESDAY AND WILL BE ACCOMPANIED BY HUMID AND STAGNANT
CONDITIONS. EVEN HOTTER TEMPERATURES ARE EXPECTED WEDNESDAY AND
POSSIBLY THURSDAY AS LOW LEVEL OFFSHORE FLOW DEVELOPS ACROSS THE
AREA.

WAZ504-505-507>509-511-271045-
/O.UPG.KSEW.EH.A.0001.090727T1900Z-090731T0100Z/
/O.NEW.KSEW.HT.Y.0002.090727T1900Z-090730T0800Z/
/O.NEW.KSEW.AS.Y.0002.090727T1900Z-090730T1900Z/
SOUTHWEST INTERIOR-EAST PUGET SOUND LOWLANDS-EVERETT AND VICINITY-
SEATTLE/BREMERTON AREA-TACOMA AREA-HOOD CANAL AREA-
341 PM PDT SUN JUL 26 2009

…AIR STAGNATION ADVISORY IN EFFECT FROM NOON MONDAY TO NOON PDT
THURSDAY…
…HEAT ADVISORY IN EFFECT FROM NOON MONDAY TO 1 AM PDT
THURSDAY…

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN SEATTLE HAS ISSUED AN AIR
STAGNATION ADVISORY…WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM NOON MONDAY TO NOON
PDT THURSDAY. A HEAT ADVISORY HAS ALSO BEEN ISSUED. THIS HEAT
ADVISORY IS IN EFFECT FROM NOON MONDAY TO 1 AM PDT THURSDAY. THE
EXCESSIVE HEAT WATCH IS NO LONGER IN EFFECT.

HOT AND HUMID CONDITIONS ARE EXPECTED MONDAY AND TUESDAY. HIGH
TEMPERATURES FROM THE UPPER 80S TO MID 90S EARLY IN THE WEEK WILL
BE ACCOMPANIED BY RATHER HUMID CONDITIONS AND ONLY LIGHT BREEZES.
TEMPERATURES AT NIGHT WILL REMAIN QUITE WARM…FALLING ONLY INTO
THE 60S FOR A COUPLE HOURS LATE AT NIGHT IN MOST PLACES. EVEN
HOTTER CONDITIONS ARE EXPECTED WEDNESDAY AND POSSIBLY THURSDAY AS
TEMPERATURES RISE WELL INTO THE 90S. A FEW LOCATIONS IN THE
INTERIOR SOUTH OF SEATTLE MAY REACH 100 DEGREES WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON.

THE STABLE AIR MASS ALOFT WILL LIMIT THE DISPERSION OF POLLUTANTS
OF POLLUTANTS ACROSS THE AREA AND MAY LEAD TO DETERIORATING AIR QUALITY.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS…

TO AVOID HEAT STRESS…STAY HYDRATED AND AVOID STRENUOUS ACTIVITY
DURING THE HEAT OF THE DAY.

CHECK UP ON ELDERLY OR DISABLED NEIGHBORS AND RELATIVES.

IF YOU ARE CONCERNED ABOUT THE BUILDUP OF POLLUTANTS…CHECK WITH
YOUR LOCAL AIR QUALITY AGENCY FOR FURTHER INFORMATION.

Be safe!!

Matthew Leach

Forecasting Kitsap

forecastingkitsap@live.com

7 DAY FORECAST

57


**EXCESSIVE HEAT WATCH ISSUED: The Heat (and Humidity) Has Arrived, Folks

Sunday, July 26th, 2009

heatwave

**An EXCESSIVE HEAT WATCH has been issued by the National Weather Service from Monday afternoon through Thursday afternoon. Scroll down to read the full report**

Yeah, I was pretty disappointed to find no lightning flashing outside my window last night, but I’ll cut the NWS some slack. Technically, it DID get very stormy across portions of the lowlands, it just didn’t make it to everyone and the heavy stuff was too far north to affect Kitsap. Oh well.

One thing that is for certain, and has been certain for over a week now, is the heat coming our way. The NWS has issued an EXCESSIVE HEAT WATCH for several lowland locations, Kitsap being one of them. What is very strange about this upcoming hot spell is of course the heat itself, but also the high humidity. Maybe we didn’t get the thunderstorms last night, but the Kansas City weather is going to be with us. Expect high temperatures in the low 90s early this week climbing into the mid and upper 90s mid week with a modest cool down later this week into the upper 80s and lower 90s. And throughout this period expect dewpoints temperatures to be in the upper 50s and low 60s at night, so it’ll feel downright muggy.

Now here’s the report from the National Weather Service:

URGENT – WEATHER MESSAGE
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SEATTLE WA
337 AM PDT SUN JUL 26 2009

…HOT WEATHER EXPECTED ACROSS WESTERN WASHINGTON THIS WEEK…

.THE WARMEST WEATHER OF THE SEASON IS EXPECTED THIS WEEK AS A
STRONG UPPER LEVEL RIDGE BUILDS OVER THE REGION. TEMPERATURES WILL
REMAIN WELL ABOVE OUR SEASONAL NORMALS WITH NEAR RECORD
TEMPERATURES THROUGH MUCH OF THE WEEK.

WAZ504-505-507>509-511-512-270000-
/O.NEW.KSEW.EH.A.0001.090727T1900Z-090731T0100Z/
SOUTHWEST INTERIOR-EAST PUGET SOUND LOWLANDS-EVERETT AND VICINITY-
SEATTLE/BREMERTON AREA-TACOMA AREA-HOOD CANAL AREA-
LOWER CHEHALIS VALLEY AREA-
337 AM PDT SUN JUL 26 2009

…EXCESSIVE HEAT WATCH IN EFFECT FROM MONDAY AFTERNOON THROUGH
THURSDAY AFTERNOON…

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN SEATTLE HAS ISSUED AN EXCESSIVE
HEAT WATCH…WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM MONDAY AFTERNOON THROUGH
THURSDAY AFTERNOON.

VERY HOT CONDITIONS ARE EXPECTED ACROSS WESTERN WASHINGTON THIS
WEEK WITH HIGH TEMPERATURES IN THE 90S…ESPECIALLY ACROSS THE
INTERIOR. NIGHTTIME TEMPERATURES WILL ALSO BE QUITE WARM…IN THE
UPPER 50S TO MID 60S…BRINGING NO RELIEF FROM THE HEAT. THE AIR
MASS WILL FEEL MUGGY AND UNCOMFORTABLE WITH DEW POINT TEMPERATURES
ALSO IN THE MID 50S TO LOWER 60S. THIS HEAT WAVE MAY PERSIST
THROUGH THURSDAY WITH ONLY A MODEST COOL DOWN ON FRIDAY WITH HIGHS
BACK INTO THE 80S. IT IS RARE FOR SEVERAL HOT DAYS IN A ROW FOR
WESTERN WASHINGTON AS IS THE CASE HERE. IN ADDITION…THIS WEATHER
PATTERN MAY ALSO LEAD TO DETERIORATING AIR QUALITY ACROSS THE
REGION.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS…

AN EXCESSIVE HEAT WATCH MEANS THAT A PROLONGED PERIOD OF HOT
TEMPERATURES IS EXPECTED. THE COMBINATION OF HOT TEMPERATURES AND
HIGH HUMIDITY WILL COMBINE TO CREATE A DANGEROUS SITUATION IN
WHICH HEAT ILLNESSES ARE POSSIBLE. DRINK PLENTY OF FLUIDS…STAY
IN AN AIR-CONDITIONED ROOM…STAY OUT OF THE SUN…AND CHECK UP
ON RELATIVES AND NEIGHBORS.

Matthew Leach

Forecasting Kitsap

forecastingkitsap@live.com

7 DAY FORECAST

56


Update on Thunderstorm Show Tonight

Saturday, July 25th, 2009

**Stay tuned to this blog post for updates throughout the evening**

UPDATED 9:25 PM–The NWS expects the worst of the thunderstorm activity to be confined to Whatcom and Skagit counties where some severe storms have been pegging that area all evening. The main Seattle metro area can expect continued rain showers with lightning strikes and thunder through the night, but the really big stuff is farther north. If you experience any lightning/thunder please feel free to comment!

UPDATED 8:22 PM–The NWS says a thunderstorm just west of Shorline will pass Bainbridge Island by 8:25 PM and reach Port Orchard by 8:35 PM. Any reports of thunder/lightning yet? I’m getting just some light raindrops here in Silverdale…

6:30 PM–Hope you all had a great day today! It certainly felt muggy/humid outside, and you can thank the ULL spinning our way for keeping the atmosphere just moist enough to make it feel like Kansas City today. But by the end of the week, we may find ourselves more similar to Kansas City than we would like.

First up: thunderstorms. Is the potential still there? Absolutely. The northern interior has reported heavy rain, hail, gusty winds and lightning earlier this evening and according to the radar they aren’t done with the action quite yet. These storms will continue to sink southward, giving the Seattle area a lightning show late this evening into early tomorrow morning (and although this is the expected timeframe, these storms are pretty random and could occur anytime between now and tomorrow morning). The mountain passes, however, will get the brunt of this rare storm. For you night owls/early risers, get your cameras ready! It will also be a very mild night with lows “dipping” into the upper 50s and low 60s which will propel the high temperatures tomorrow.

Earlier this morning I was thinking the ULL would stunt temperatures tomorrow, but now it’s looking like it won’t play much of a factor at all, so you can expect high temperatures to rise a few more degrees compared to today which means final temps at or near 90 degrees. The risk of morning thunder/lightning remains.

Monday through Thursday are on track for highs in the mid to upper 90s with blazing sun. Models are in general agreement that a cool down arrives by next weekend (!), but along with this cool down comes the strong potential for some more thunderstorms so stay tuned!

Have a fun and SAFE evening and stay here for updates!

Matthew Leach

Forecasting Kitsap

forecastingkitsap@live.com

7 DAY FORECAST

55-pm1


**RED FLAG WARNING ISSUED: Unusual, ‘Prolific’ Lightning Storm Possible

Saturday, July 25th, 2009

**A RED FLAG WARNING is in effect from 2 PM this afternoon to 5 AM Sunday. A potentially strong lightning storm accompanied by very dry conditions across the area could result in “one of the most critical fire weather set-up in years for Western Washington”. Scroll down to read the message issued by the National Weather Service**

sat_close1

*I would’ve hosted the NWS satellite, but it wasn’t provided in animation, so I “stole” (heh heh, I’m a rebel!) KOMO’s so you can see the rotation of the ULL I’ve been talking about*

Yes! (and Oh No!)

I would trade boiling heat with lightning storms anyday! But then again, this time around we’re likely going to get both, and it will come at a price. You know that ULL (Upper Level Low) I talked about yesterday that has been spinning up moisture in Eastern Washington? Well, it’s going to do something very unusual today: move southwesterly into the north interior today (see above satellite pic) and move south throughout most, if not all, of the Central Puget Sound lowlands by later this afternoon into this evening.

This feature is also likely to tamper with tomorrow’s weather, meaning potentially much cooler temperatures than originally thought. I’ll scale the temps down on Sunday for now, but if current trends continue, this ULL could throw a wrench in starting the heatwave tomorrow which would lead to more thunderstorms…possibly continuing into Monday afternoon…

Before I hand this story off to the National Weather Service, let me just say: keep your cameras ready! If everything turns out as expected, we may experience a midwest-type lightning storm so catching a few strikes is very possible. If you do, send the pictures to me at: forecastingkitsap@live.com !

But of course, there is a lot of danger regarding this storm potential, so I’ll now copy and paste the alert issued by the Weather Service in Seattle:

URGENT – FIRE WEATHER MESSAGE
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SEATTLE WA
834 AM PDT SAT JUL 25 2009

…ONE OF THE MOST CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER SETUPS IN YEARS FOR
WESTERN WASHINGTON…

.AN UPPER LEVEL LOW PRESSURE CENTER CONTINUES TO SPIN OVER EASTERN
WASHINGTON THIS MORNING.

WAZ653-654-656>659-661-662-252345-
/O.NEW.KSEW.FW.W.0003.090725T2100Z-090726T1200Z/
STRAIT OF JUAN DE FUCA AND NORTHWEST INTERIOR LOWLANDS-
CENTRAL AND SOUTH PUGET SOUND LOWLANDS-
WEST SLOPES OF THE NORTH CASCADES-
WEST SLOPES OF THE CENTRAL CASCADES-NORTH CASCADES-
CENTRAL CASCADES-EAST PORTION OF THE OLYMPIC MOUNTAINS-
EAST PORTION OF NORTH CASCADES NATIONAL PARK/LAKE CHELAN NATIONAL
RECREATIONAL AREA-
834 AM PDT SAT JUL 25 2009

…RED FLAG WARNING IN EFFECT FROM 2 PM THIS AFTERNOON TO 5 AM
PDT SUNDAY…

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN SEATTLE HAS ISSUED A RED FLAG
WARNING…WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM 2 PM THIS AFTERNOON TO 5 AM PDT
SUNDAY.

AN UPPER LEVEL LOW PRESSURE CENTER WILL HELP THUNDERSTORMS TO
FIRST DEVELOP OVER THE NORTH CASCADES THIS AFTERNOON. ONCE STORMS
DEVELOP…THEY WILL FIRST MOVE IN AN UNUSUAL SOUTHWESTERLY
DIRECTION TOWARD THE NORTH INTERIOR OF WASHINGTON EARLY THIS
EVENING AND THEN SOUTH THROUGH THE CENTRAL CASCADES AND THE PUGET
SOUND LOWLANDS LATER THIS EVENING. THUNDERSTORMS COULD ALSO CLIP
THE EAST SLOPES OF THE OLYMPIC MOUNTAINS.

SOME OF THESE THUNDERSTORMS ARE EXPECTED TO BE UNUSUALLY PROLIFIC
LIGHTNING PRODUCERS. GIVEN THE EXPECTED ABUNDANCE OF LIGHTNING AND
CRITICALLY DRY FUEL STATES…MULTIPLE FIRE IGNITIONS ARE EXPECTED.

ONE THING THAT MAKES THIS ROUND OF LIGHTNING SO CRITICAL IS THAT
IT WILL BE FOLLOWED UP ON SUNDAY AND MONDAY BY A BUILDING HEAT
WAVE. UNLIKE WESTERN WASHINGTON`S TYPICAL LIGHTNING PATTERN WHICH
IS FOLLOWED BY COOL MARINE AIR…THIS LIGHTNING PATTERN WILL BE
FOLLOWED BY HOT…DRY AND INCREASINGLY UNSTABLE WEATHER ON
SUNDAY…MONDAY AND TUESDAY. THIS WILL MAKE HOLDOVER AND SLEEPER
FIRES A MUCH GREATER CONCERN THAN WITH A MORE TYPICAL LIGHTNING
EPISODE FOR WESTERN WASHINGTON.

PLEASE RELAY THIS MESSAGE TO FIRE AND ENGINE CREWS IN THE FIELD.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS…

PEOPLE WHO WILL BE OUTDOORS FROM THIS AFTERNOON THROUGH TONIGHT
SHOULD BE AWARE OF THE LIGHTNING THREAT AND THE ENHANCED THREAT OF
WILDFIRES. MAKE AN EXTRA EFFORT TO FULLY EXTINGUISH CAMPFIRES AND
REPORT ANY NEW WILDFIRES WHICH YOU MIGHT SEE. FIREFIGHTING
AGENCIES SHOULD BE READY FOR SEVERAL BUSY DAYS OF INITIAL ATTACK.

A RED FLAG WARNING IS ISSUED WHEN DRY LIGHTNING OR THE COMBINATION
OF STRONG WINDS AND LOW HUMIDITIES ARE IMMINENT OR OCCURRING.

Matthew Leach

Forecasting Kitsap

forecastingkitsap@live.com

7 DAY FORECAST

55-am1


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