Monday, February 22, 2010

Return to a Rainier Pattern

Monday, February 22, 2010
9:10 P.M.

It's completely my fault that I haven't made an update lately. The weather has just been too gosh darn boring. I believe I mentioned in an earlier post that I hate El Nino winters. Well I do have some good news for those who are with me on that. El Nino has peaked and is now declining. Models show a steady decline until it levels out in a neutral phase sometime this summer. I predict we will not see a La Nina, as the majority of the models keep the SSTs (Sea Surface Temperatures) a little above normal (but not enough to qualify as a El Nino year). We saw beautiful weather last weekend as a result of a huge ridge of high pressure over the state. The stronger sun angle we see now (the sun now is as strong as it was back in October) heated up many locations into the upper 50s and lower 60s. Clear skies and light winds allowed for excellent radiational cooling to take place, and many places saw frost. The range in temperature from day to night was over 20 degrees and even over 30 places in a few isolated places, which is very unusual for February.

The rain will be coming in Tuesday and will be widespread by the evening. It will be quite light. Heavier rain will come in Friday. Unfortunately, snow levels will likely stay above pass levels the whole period except in the post frontal showers after Tuesday's front.

The weekend coming up looks like it will be "nice." Not as "nice" as the past one but highs will be in the mid 50s with partly cloudy skies. There is some hope in the models as they have been hinting at a return to a cooler, more showery regime two weeks from now. But that is a long way out. Keep those fingers crossed, skiers and snowboarders!

More on the Misconceptions of Global Warming

Friday, February 5, 2010
10:53 P.M.

There's really not much to talk about as far as weather goes. More of the same boring stuff. There is only ONE reason I like El Nino. That reason is that it often results in good tuna fishing off of our coast because upwelling is reduced and the warmer water comes closer, resulting in less time running through ocean swells and more time on the water. By the way, tuna fishing is really really really fun. Other than that, I hate it. January was a textbook example of why I hated it. Be honest with yourself. Could the weather have been any more boring? I certainly don't think so. The main thing is that I've only been up to the mountains twice this year because snow conditions have sucked. It's been bad. I think next year will be better though. There was a huge El Nino in 1997-1998, but the following year a La Nina occurred. In 1998-1999, Mt. Baker got 1,140 inches of snow (95 feet). That is the most amount of snow ever recorded at a specific location. And although I'm sure there are high coastal mountains that have received more in a specific year (the Fairweather Range in Alaska is estimated to receive 3,000 inches of snow on average a year at higher elevations with the 450 inches of precipitation it receives fallin as rain at the lower ones), that is very impressive. The above photo is the snowbank at Mount Baker in May 1999, after about 10 feet had already melted.

The good news is that I think we might return to a bit more snowy pattern next week. More on that in my next post, but I'd expect a storm arriving sometime Thursday.

Now to the thesis of my post: misconceptions about global warming. Cliff Mass often talks about this and I have talked about it in the past. I've said this before; I don't like to take stuff from his blog; not particularly because I'm concerned with honesty/integrity (I'm not plagiarizing him/why would I want to "cheat" on this type of thing) but just because people can read his blog and don't need to read my blog saying what he's already said. But there was an article that was too good of an example of hype that was on his website that I just couldn't pass up. It can be found at You couldn't have written a better example for inflation of global warming. They show these events and say that the reason they occurred is global warming. You and I both know that that is not true. Why? Climate and weather are two different things. Show me something like "arctic ice has declined by 50% over the past 50 years." Then we can start talking. But when people blame a certain event (like Hurricane Katrina) on global warming, it just drives me crazy. Hurricane Katrina occurred because there was little wind shear in the atmosphere and a lot of warm water in the Gulf of Mexico. Global warming doesn't have anything to do with that. The problem is it seems like everybody believes otherwise, and it's not necessarily their fault since organiations like the National Wildlife Federation give this misinformation so blatantly.