Friday, June 14, 2019

100+ Heat Continues

There was bit of color at sunrise today - first time in quite a while. This pales in comparison with today's sunrise in Loveland, Colorado (bottom). Taken by son Jason looking east from Mariana Buttes golf course, which is west of the city.

String of 100+ F days continues here (began last Sunday) and forecast for today from NWS is 102 F. 

Yesterday and Wednesday the high at airport reached 107 F. The extended range forecasts, however, develop a weak trough over the West and things cool off some.

Tuesday, June 11, 2019

Some Rain In Early June

Back edge of line of showers and thunderstorms at about 6:30 pm MST yesterday evening.

Light showers, with some thunderstorms embedded, moved across parts of the metro area late in afternoon. View above at about 6:20 pm shows small shower that was moving eastward along the Foothills. This activity produced a low rumble of thunder and rainfall of 0.04" here at house. The airport and DM both reported thunder with a Trace of rain.

Plot below of detected CG flashes (for 24-hours ending at 5:00 am this morning - from Atmo and Vaisala) indicates a narrow band of thunderstorms across Santa Cruz County and east-central Pima County. Only 5 stations in the ALERT network recorded 0.04" or more - max 0.16" at two sites.

Unusual event for early June and now we've got some heat to deal with.

Monday, June 10, 2019

Miscellany For 10 June

This was the warmest morning at sunrise since sometime last summer. Here at house, temperature was 76 F at 6:30 am MST. The low at the airport reached only 80 F. Warm temperatures due to the heavy clouds during the night, as per view from campus above.

Yesterday was first day of 100 F highs, with the airport reaching 101 F. Plot above (from MesoWest) shows highs yesterday from all their networks (this means there are a number of home weather stations shown). There are a few obvious problems - as per 89 F just north of airport and a 113 F hiding up in the Oro Valley area (a station out near Ajo reported 272 F).

South view from Kitt Peak at bit after 7:00 am (below) shows clear west and clouds east.

A weak, 500 mb short wave, moving through the larger=scale ridge, brushed southern Arizona and northwestern Mexico during the night. This produced southerly winds up the GoC and brought a push of higher PW air (values up to almost an inch and a half) as far north as southeastern Arizona (the MIMIC TPW analysis above is for 6:00 am).

The higher PW brought some CAPE to northwestern Mexico, with thunderstorms as far north as Hermosilla area - an interesting and somewhat surprising development for June 9th. Plot below of detected CG flashes, from Atmo and Vaisala, is for 12-hours ending 3:00 am. Perhaps a flash even in Cochise County.

Saturday, June 08, 2019

First Day Of 100 + Temperature Near

View of Catalinas at 7:26 am this morning - mostly clear skies with some middle cloud drifting over the highest part of the mountains.

The airport has not yet recorded a high temperature of 100 F or higher this year. However, the current morning forecast from NWS for the airport (below) indicates 100 F tomorrow (as well as higher temperatures rest of week). This happens as 500 mb heights slowly increase over the Southwest. 

Regardless of exact date, this will be the latest for first 100 F day since at least 1982.

On the Eastern Pacific scale, the CG flash activity has inched northward - above is 12- hour CG flashes for period ending at 12 UTC this morning. Thunderstorms west of the Continental Divide occurred almost north to Cabo Corrientes.

The 500 mb forecast below is valid at 06 UTC on Tuesday the 11th - note that mid-level easterlies are also inching northward toward the southern end of the GoC.

At bottom is reference map - Cabo Corrientes is shaded light green at the lower right of the map. 

Saturday, June 01, 2019

Start Of Meteorological Summer

Today is the first day of meteorological summer and the start of June.

Summary for May here at house: There were two precipitation events: 0.23" on the 12/13th and 0.05" on the 20th - total for month only 0.28".

Even this low total amounted to the third wettest May here in last 20 years.

May precipitation from ALERT is shown above - fewer than 10 sites had more than half an inch. At least two sites recorded precipitation less than 0.04".

However, rainfall at the airport was the outlier amount with 1.22" - second wettest day in May during period of records (amount was about 600 % of normal) occurred when a localized thunderstorm produced most of this and also wind gusts over 50 mph.

Here at house there were seven days with morning low in the 40s.

Rainfall in June here is highly variable - five months with 0.00" but also two months coming in at over 2.00".

Thursday, May 30, 2019

More Re CG Lightning Flashes

Above shows detected CG flashes for 12-hours ending at 06 UTZ last night 9 (from and Vaisala). I noticed that there were a couple of flashes in northern Baja. Couldn't help wondering if the strikes occurred at the large wind farm near Tecate, Mexico (below).

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

Lightning Flash Density Past Week

May is going to come to a quiet end - although unusual cool has continued. Since the 21st six mornings brought low temperatures here at house down in the 40s. However, it looks like temperatures will be warming up as we begin June - NWS forecast indicates temperatures flirting with 100 F early next week here in Tucson.

The never-ending severe weather from the Plains to the East Coast has been the main story on national news for days now. I took a look at the CG flash density (from and Vaisala) for the past week ending at 7:00 am MST this morning. Plot above speaks for itself and is quite amazing.