Saturday, March 30, 2013

Gloomy Start To Easter Weekend

Middle and high clouds streaming into the Southwest are making for a dreary start to the Easter weekend. Above is 7 am MST view of the Catalinas from campus. Below is 8 am MST water vapor image showing larger, upper-tropospheric low spinning well west of central California, with a long fetch of moisture into the Southwest from low latitudes.

The blended PW product from CIMSS at Univ. of Wisconsin (above for 5 am MST) indicates higher PW values of over an inch approaching Baja and southern California. However, the forecast models do little with the moisture increase, except well to the north, as the system comes in across the Great Basin from the Pacific. Below is today's early morning forecast from the Atmo WRF-GFS model on the 5.4 km domain. The forecast is of total precipitation through midnight on April 1st. The model keeps most of Arizona dry through this period. The morning soundings do indicate that some slight bits of middle-level CAPE may be coming by today, so the month may bow out with some more virga aloft.

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