D2149 Station Operator's Journal

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Station's 12-24 Hr. Forecast: Increasing clouds with little temperature change. Precipitation possible within 24 to 48 hours.
Watches Warnings and Severe Weather LinksNWS D2149 Forecast Link

Detailed NWS Forecast

Last Day of Significant Rainfall with Total:
23 Mar 2015 (0.03 in)


27-Mar-2015 5:15 PM

New Record High Temperature for March Set Today!

The station recorded the hottest daytime temperature for the month of March we have ever seen with a 80.3 degrees F. In addition to a high temperature more typical of early June, the station also recorded one of the lowest relative humidity percentages we have seen for this time of year of 24% RH.

The new record high for the month surpassed the previous 78.7 F set back in March of 2013. A typical monthly high temperature for Bass Lake at the end of March is 71 degrees Fahrenheit with relative humidity lows in the 50-60% range. This of course does not bode well for the wildfire risk/danger heading into what is likely to be the hottest and driest summer Bass Lake has ever seen.

The current fire danger is at the top of the "VERY HIGH" range and will likely move into the "EXTREME DANGER" within the next 24-48 hours. Extreme Danger is the highest level of wildfire danger/risk there is, and as recently as 2009 through 2011 we did not even approach that level of fire risk until the end of August, and then only for a few days at a time if we reached that level of risk at all.

In fact, during a normal year, the fire season wouldn't even begin until the middle of May! For the last three years in a row, the fire season has continued through the entire calendar year due to weather conditions like we are seeing today.
[end of update]


25-Mar-2015 1:21 PM

Maintenance Update: Rain Bucket Heater Removed 4 weeks early!

For the first time in the station's six year history, we have replaced the heated rain bucket with the standard non-heated bucket before the second week of April! Long range forecasts indicate virtually zero chance of any snow events for the remainder of the season.

Due to the horrendous drought conditions plaguing the Southern Sierra resulting in a complete lack of snow, we only activated the heated bucket ONE TIME this entire wet season. Down from an average of 10 activations per season of years past.

A pretty depressing fact indeed.

[end of maintenance update]


06-Feb-2015 12:09 PM

FINALLY! Some Long Awaited RAIN arrives for February!

The latest NWS forecast for Bass Lake is looking VERY promising today! Its been ages since we have seen 100% rain chances in our forecast, leave alone for multiple days in a row!

The precipitation forecast is still suggesting some truly impressive rainfall totals for us! While this wouldn't make up for the terrible January we just endured, this will at least put us on track for a possibly normal February. Provided of course that these systems are not the only two we are going to see this month.

We will update the journal with some storm totals over the following 36-48 hours.

[end of update]


13-Dec-2014 8:04 AM

Rainfall Totals as of 12/13/14

Storm Total: 2.49"
Yesterday: 2.44"
Today: 0.05"

For the month: 4.40"
For the Season: 7.98"
For the year: 22.69"
For Last Year: 10.91"
For Typical Year: 56.97" (2010 Shown)

[end of update]


05-Dec-2014 5:13 PM

More Rain On the Way! then... Even More Rain!

Believe it or not, we have yet another storm system heading our way with light to moderate precipitation expected through tonight and into the early morning hours Saturday.

For those who are going to be out and about on this Friday night, you can expect the rain to start falling in our area anytime after about 8PM. Shower activity is expected to be light to moderate in strength, but there is still the possibility of isolated thunder storms capable of producing heavy rain, so be advised of this possibility if you are traveling on our local roads after dark.

This system moves out by Saturday night, but as we mentioned in the headline, a larger more impressive storm system is currently forecast to arrive over our area on Thursday of next week and is expected to bring us several days of wet weather.

Unfortunately, all of the storms seen so far have originated in the mid latitudes of the Pacific Ocean and as a result, they are not bringing with them the cold air required for lower snow levels. So while the rain is great news, we are still waiting for the winter pattern change which will start bringing the cold storms down from the Gulf of Alaska and points north. Until then, we are not going to see any significant change to our Sierra Snow Pack below 8000 feet.

In fact, there isn't a snow pack below 8000 feet so far. This is something we hope changes soon since a healthy Sierra snow pack at all the traditional elevations is crucial if we ever hope to break this drought that has plagued us for going on three years now!

We will close this update with a reminder that you can always track this and future storms from your own computer by visiting and bookmarking our popular "Wide Angle Precipitation Map" who's link is available from the gray nave bar of our home page "during" rain events.

Latest NWS Forecast Discussion:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
348 PM PST Friday Dec 5 2014


Synopsis...
another weak system will bring some light showers into the area
mainly north of Kern County tonight. Dry conditions are expected by
Saturday night with nighttime and morning valley fog as high
pressure briefly returns. Another weak system is expected to skirt
across the northern portion of the state on Monday...with light rain
possible north of Fresno County.

Discussion...
it has been a relatively mild day across central
California today under cloudy skies ahead of the next approaching
weak frontal system. Radar shows associated showers impacting
coastal areas to our west. High resolution models forecast these
scattered showers to push east through our area this evening
lingering into early Saturday morning...though the best precipitation
stays to our north with the main energy. Valley quantitative precipitation forecast ranges from
around 1/10 of an inch north to just a hundredth or so toward
Kern County. Higher elevation amounts similarly taper from around
a quarter inch near Yosemite to nothing in Kern County.

Brief shortwave ridging behind the system yields dry and continued
mild conditions Saturday and Sunday. Another weak ripple tracks by
to the north by Monday...bringing just a slight chance for precipitation
north of Fresno County. Otherwise...dry and mild continues into
midweek.

A more significant system...remnants of a super typhoon...is
prognosticated to slam into the West Coast by Thursday. Models of course
have differences in timing and strength of this system...but
ensembles suggest there is a good chance that our area will be
affected with rain and mountain snow as well as typical gusty
winds over mountain ridges and through and below passes. This will
be a somewhat warm storm with relatively high snow levels. As the
event approaches we will be able to refine timing and amounts.

==================


[end of update]


25-Nov-2014 8:04 PM

Promise of our FIRST REAL Winter Storm Sunday!

Models are starting to come into agreement about the potential for a significant winter storm to arrive over the area beginning late Saturday night and lasting through Monday. Rainfall amounts could total over 3 inches or more by the end of the event.

We will update the journal with more details as we get closer to the event.

Enjoy your holiday!

[end of update]


13-Nov-2014 7:31 AM

Some Welcome Rainfall for Bass Lake Today!

A weak and fast moving cold front is passing through the area this morning. Radar indicates scattered showers moving in from the coast. While the bulk of the event has already past, we are watching a rather large cell of precipitation just now moving past the coastal range and headed for our location.

Upslope activity has been good so far, so we anticipate some additional upslope generated precipitation through the remainder of the day.

So far our storm total stands at 0.18" under moderate rainfall at the time of this report.

[end of update]


11-Nov-2014 11:44 AM

FARS Fan Replaced - Station Back in Service!

Turns out there was a fault in the multi-pin connector where the fan plugs into the circuit board. The problem is repairable, but we decided to replace the circulation fan from our backup parts stock. The new fan is working perfectly and hopefully, we will get the usual 2-3 years out of this one!

The station was down for 1 hour 17 minutes.

[end of maintenance update]


11-Nov-2014 10:25 AM

Station Down for Maintenance

We are replacing the FARS fan and will have the station down for about 2 hours or less. We will update the journal after the process has been completed and the station is put back into service.

[end of maintenance update]


09-Nov-2014 5:23 PM

Station Maintenance Announcement

We will be taking the station offline for a few hours on Tuesday 11/11/14 in order to replace the failing FARS air circulation fan on the outdoor sensor array.

What is a FARS system? - "The following is a short primer on the technology for the hardware geeks in the audience."

FARS is an acronym for Fan Aspirated Radiation Shield. It basically circulates fresh air through our sensor array 24 hours a day to provide the most accurate temp and humidity readings as possible. Without such a system, heat from the sun can overheat the interior of the sensor bay and result in the over reporting of temperature and to a lesser degree, humidity and dewpoint. This is especially true during the hot summer months.

The primary reason many backyard weather stations are so inaccurate compared to professional systems is due in large part to the absence of such a component. The reason you don't see too many private stations running with a FARS is that a quality system like ours is expensive and can add several hundred dollars to the total cost of a system.

But... Fans are fans! And unfortunately, they don't last forever...

If you are keeping score, this will be our FIFTH fan replacement since the station went live way back in January of 2009. Because this fan runs 24/7 using a combination of solar power during the day and NiCad battery power at night, and is subjected to the extreme temperature and humidity swings of our mountain location, the bearings in the circulation fan eventually wear out and the fan stops spinning in low power situations. [At night and on cloudy days when the fan is being powered by the batteries and not the solar panel]

Because the sun angle and length of daylight are so much lower this time of year, a fan nearing its end of service is more likely to give up the ghost between late October and early December. As a rule, we need to replace the circulation fan every 12-18 months, but for some reason, this particular unit only lasted 11 months, which is unfortunate considering the amount of hassle involved in replacing it! :o(

The ISS sensor array needs to be removed from the mast and disassembled in order to remove the broken fan and install a new one. The whole process takes upwards of two hours, so the station will be taken offline completely while we perform the replacement.

We are not sure exactly what time on Tuesday we will be taking the station offline, but it will be obvious to anyone checking our weather data when it is.

We will update this journal just before the station is shut down, and again after the maintenance procedure has been completed and the station is returned to service.

[end of maintenance announcement]


03-Nov-2014, 12:00

FINAL STORM TOTAL AND EXTENDED FORECAST

Friday 10/31/14: 0.66"
Saturday 11/01/14: 0.88"

Final Storm Total: 1.54"

Total for Season (Since July 1st): 2.34"
Annual Total Since 01/01/14: 17.24"
Annual Total for 2013: 10.91"

Current forecast models are indicating that we are in for another long wait before another storm arrives into Central California. High pressure is building into the area yet again and will block the otherwise active storm track, pushing it well north of our area for the next 7-10 days at least. Temperatures will also be pushed 8-10 degrees above normal for this time of year by mid-week.

While we are still in an extreme drought condition, you can see by comparing the 2013 annual precipitation total to our current 2014 total, that we have already exceeded the entire annual precipitation total for 2013 with two months left to go. One tidbit of positive news amidst an otherwise gloomy current outlook, and a reminder of just how dry 2013 actually was.

Extended forecast through the middle of November looks bleak in terms of precipitation. It is looking very likely that we will experience yet another warm and dry winter through the 2014/2015 wet season.

If we see any changes to the current dry and warm conditions, we will update this page at that time.

[end of update]


28-Oct-2014, 12:00

Heated Rain Bucket Installation

Heated rain bucket was installed ahead of the first winter storm of the season. In retrospect, it could have been postponed indefinitely due to the lack of snow during the event, followed by an extended period of warm and dry weather. Related to persistent high pressure ridge blocking winter storm track. In depressing repeat of the last two dry winters.

[end of update]


30-Sep-2014 12:41 PM

Weekend Storm Activity Recap

Here are some rainfall stats for you as of 09/29/14

Storm total: 0.67"
For the month: 0.78"
Total for Season: 0.80"

The system that moved through on Sunday brought us the Lion's share of the above totals with 0.60" from Sunday alone. While not a huge amount in normal years, the storm total is impressive considering we had only a 20% chance of light showers in the actual forecast!

A warming trend will now commence with temps once again rising up to and then as much as 10 degrees above seasonal norms by the weekend. Currently we see no additional storm systems out through the 10 day forecast, although this time of year the forecasts can turn on a dime.

We will update the journal again if current trends change.

[end of update]


28-Sep-2014 3:24 AM

We're Back from Summer Break! - First Winter-like Storm of the Season for the Southern Sierra!

We're back from our annual summer break with a brief weather update regarding the first taste of a winter-like storm system this season!

The station recorded a total of 0.06" of light to moderate rain on Saturday afternoon, and at the time of this update we are seeing some light to moderate rainfall from a sizable but narrow band of precipitation moving down the edge of the Sierra from the north.

Our current precipitation total this morning stands at 0.04" with a rain rate of 0.12 in/hr.

Storm total stands at: 0.11"
Total this month: 0.22"
Total for the season (Since July 1st): 0.24"

We will now be updating this journal on storm by storm basis, so check back often during winter weather events for the latest information and up to the minute forecasts!

[end of update]


06-May-2014 11:02 PM

Lowest Seasonal Precipitation Total Since Station Began Operations in 2009

The station recorded 0.40" of rain today in a welcome late season winter storm that moved through the Southern Sierra last night and well into the early evening hours today. While this total was nearly double of what had been forecast for our area from this system, it did nothing to improve what is shaping up to be the lowest seasonal precipitation total we have recorded since the station was put into service back in January of 2009.

The final 2013/2014 seasonal total could be revised upwards between now and the end of the season on June 30th if we are fortunate enough to see another storm system or two, but mid-May through all of June are traditionally very dry periods for us.

Here is how our seasonal precipitation totals stack up over the last 5 years of 24/7 weather data collection.

Seasonal Precipitation Totals for D2149 Bass Lake Ca.
(July 1st through June 30th)


2013/2014: 19.04" (As of 05/06/14)
2012/2013: 24.18"
2011/2012: 22.41"
2010/2011: 55.92"
2009/2010: 49.61"


It is clear from these totals when our current extreme drought began to manifest itself, and based on this latest seasonal total, our precipitation amounts year over year are getting worse, not better.

There is some encouraging signs that a moderate to strong El Nino event could be building in the eastern pacific ocean which has the potential to deliver above normal rainfall to the entire state this winter, but it is still too early to say for sure if this event will actually occur, and how strong the anomaly will actually be.

We will know more as we get closer to the end of summer. If this El Nino event does take hold, it will begin to have an impact on our local weather as early as this fall.

We are closely monitoring this situation and will be posting new information on the latest El Nino data as soon as it is made available by NOAA and the NWS Climate Prediction Center.

Stay tuned!

[end of update]


26-Apr-2014 6:18 AM

Impressive Storm Total of 1.85 inches!

A nice way to end the wet season for sure! While it barely puts a dent into our drought conditions, it does help ease us into the fire season.

[end of update]


24-Apr-2014 5:50 PM

Rain Bucket Heater Re-Installed in Advance of Late Season Winter Storm

Since there is a good chance for the snow level to drop below 4500 feet during the passage of the approaching cold front, we decided to re-install the heater equipped rain bucket on the station ISS just in case.

We will post an update with final storm totals on Sunday.

In the meantime, stay tuned to our home page and other relevant pages during the storm for the latest information and storm activity!

[end of update]


09-Apr-2014 2:16 PM

Rain Bucket Swap Completed

Based on the extended forecast which includes highs far above normal, we have removed the heated rain bucket from the station ISS sensor array and replaced it with the unheated version.

The unheated rain bucket will remain installed until the next chance of snow, which is not expected until this fall at the earliest.

Statistically, the heater was only needed a total of FOUR times this past winter. The average number of heater activations during a normal wet season is over TEN.

[end of update]


29-Mar-2014 9:28 PM
Storm #1 Moves In!

Radar is indicating the frontal boundary and precipitation less than an hour away from the station at the time of this report. Check our home page radars and the wide angle precipitation map for the latest returns!

We will be posting storm totals sometime on Sunday.

Enjoy the storm!

[end of update]


27-Mar-2014 8:33 AM

Over 1 Inch of Rain from Latest Storm!

1.13" was the final daily precipitation total for the system that moved through the area on Wednesday. This brings our March total to 1.54" and 13.70" for the season. The annual total now stands at 9.13" which is less than two inches away from the entire 2013 annual total. A small victory during this mega drought and indicates that we are not going to be seeing a drier year than 2013 going forward. How much more rain we receive this year as opposed to last year remains to be seen.

The NWS is forecasting another system to affect the area of Saturday and yet another system is expected for early next week. We will be keeping a close eye on both systems as we get closer to the events.

[end of update]


24-Mar-2014 12:39 PM

Forecast Still On Track for Rain Tuesday Night Through Thursday Morning

We will be tracking the eagerly awaited next storm system, still on track to arrive on Tuesday night. Currently, the NWS is estimating between 1/2 and 1 inch of precipitation for us from the this next system which ends on Thursday.

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest real-time rain related activity and precipitation totals.

We will update this page as well once we see something substantial coming in on our various radar sources.

There is also another potential for rain a week from today, but still too early to say for sure if that prediction will hold.

[end of update]


11-Mar-2014 8:25 PM

Mono Wind Event for Tonight - Confirmed by Observations!

High winds out of the north east are beginning to move in to the station location as of this special report. Speeds are still moderate (14 mph max gust so far) but the sound of higher gusts through the forest to our north east is a sure sign that stronger winds are on their way!

Stay tuned to our station home page for the latest wind speed information or better yet... Check the wind speeds in real time using our Rapid Fire Instant weather page!

We haven't had a chance to report on our final precipitation report for February but we will get to that soon.

[end of update]


27-Feb-2014 8:23 AM

Storm #1 Precipitation Total Currently Stands at 1.35"

Unless we pick up some residual upslope generated showers or a Thunderstorm, this looks to be our final total for Storm #1.

The station recorded a high rain rate of 4.17 inches per hour briefly as the cold front passed through the area just after midnight. One of the highest rain rates on record for the station.

[end of update]


21-Feb-2014 10:51 PM

Maintenance Update:
Checked rain gauge and all related systems for highly anticipated wet weather event next week!


All hardware systems were inspected, cleaned and then tested. Gauge and tipping bucket mechanism in full working order. We are ready for next week's desperately needed storm systems!

Station Operator's forecast commentary...

NWS extended forecast is looking more and more favorable for a wet pattern change beginning Wednesday 02/26/14. Current model runs are hinting at the potential for well over 1 inch of rain from two separate systems spaced about 24 hours apart. Second system forecasted to be the wetter and more powerful of the two. Snow level begins at 7000 feet, then lowering to 6000 feet as first system moves in. Initial snow accumulation estimates are for 1 - 2 FEET of new snow for the Sierra.

If these systems do indeed materialize and track the course currently predicted, this will be a significant precipitation event. In no way enough to mitigate the extreme drought conditions, but provided temperatures do not once again rise to the current 15-20 degrees above normal over the next few weeks, these two storms could really bolster the Sierra snowpack. "As of the last USGS snow survey, the Southern Sierra snowpack was for for all intents and purposes, nonexistent."

Will update with storm totals next week as station storm data becomes available.

[end of update]


13-Feb-2014 1:37 PM

Journal Updates Will No Longer Include Weather Forecast Discussions

Effective immediately:

We have discontinued posting weather forecast discussions in the Station Operator's Journal. This decision was made for several reasons, but primarily because of the lack of weather activity over extended periods of time due to the negative impacts of climate change.

We have added a link above the storm total precipitation stats data that will connect you directly to the National Weather Service in Hanford's detailed forecast discussion page, hosted by Weather Underground.

This is the same discussion data we have used for the last five years to formulate our forecast discussions here on this section of our website. You can now get the latest detailed forecast discussion direct from the official source.

Journal returned to its original purpose...

This journal will still be available to our visitors, but has been returned to its original purpose which was to log and document maintenance updates to the station hardware as well as logging storm totals and other notable weather related events after the fact.

We urge our readers to bookmark the Detailed NWS Forecast link above and refer to it when any weather activity in the area is expected.

Breaking news such as severe storms, high winds, wildfires and other unusual events will still be discussed in detail on this section, but only on an "as-needed" basis.

[end of update]


12-Feb-2014 5:15 PM

Last Forecast Related Journal Update

Due to a lack of active weather during our last several wet seasons, culminating with the nightmarish 2014 season we continue to suffer through, this will be the last full weather forecast related journal update posted in this space. A link to the NWS Hanford's detailed forecast page has been added to the top portion of this section which will allow you to read the same reports we have used the last five years to prepare our journal forecast updates.

Breaking weather news will still be posted here on an as-needed basis.

And now on to our last forecast update ever!

Feels more like mid-April...

High pressure continues to block several desperately needed storm systems from reaching the area, while northern California has managed to receive portions of these latest systems. Temps today have been a good 20 degrees above normal with the high at the station today reaching 67.4 F. Tomorrow's high is expected to be even warmer. Our FireWeather warning system has already begun to inch back up into the warning range, with the system changing over from LOW danger to MODERATE danger a few hours ago. As we mentioned a few updates back, this is the first year in history that the wildfire season for the Sierra Nevada has not ended in November as normal, and instead has been extended indefinitely. At this point, it is more than likely that the extended 2013 wildfire season will simply roll into the 2014 season which normally begins in May.

Models hint at modest rainfall that will likely not happen...

As you will read in the latest NWS forecast, there are a few chances for us to see some additional wet weather, but chances are low, and even if it does happen, the systems that will provide this moisture are the very weak and moisture starved variety. Seems the only time we see a robust healthy winter storm system is when we watch them get blocked and pushed over the state by a high pressure ridge.

This continual pattern is most certainly going to be the death of the state as we know it if things don?t start changing soon!

If the weak storm systems do manage to reach our area, we will update the journal with storm totals after the systems have passed.

The latest from Hanford, which can now be accessed directly from the source by clicking the new link above labeled... (Detailed NWS Forecast)

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
131 PM PST Wednesday Feb 12 2014


Synopsis...
an upper-level ridge of high pressure will build into
the district today and remain in control through Friday with dry
weather and above normal afternoon temperatures. The next storm
will move through the northern part of the region over the weekend
with precipitation as far south as northern Fresno County.

Discussion...
central California remains under the influence of an
upper ridge which is keeping a moist baroclinic band from an
atmospheric river well to the north of our County warning forecast area. Another area of
dense fog formed early this morning...but was further south than
the fog we had on Tuesday morning. The impulses moving across
northwestern California and Oregon along with some middle/high level moisture
tonight may provide for enough mixing and middle/high clouds to
inhibit fog from forming in the central San Joaquin Valley
tonight...although there will at least some patches of dense fog.
Expect the fog to be a bit more prevalent in the South Valley
which will be less impacted by mixing and middle/high clouds. When
and where the fog forms tonight remains in question so will defer
the issuance of any fog highlights to the swing shift.

Meanwhile...
mostly sunny skies are prevalent today with some high
clouds from the atmospheric river to our north spilling over the
ridge into our County warning forecast area. Temperatures have been running 3 to 6 degree f
above yesterday at most locations as a warm and dry airmass prevails
over our area. 12z WRF is indicating that the ridge will slowly
builds inland on Thursday and Friday with continued middle level
warming noted on the 850 mb forecasts...but will remain dirty due to the
moisture fetch to our north. Temperatures will remain well above
normal through the end of the week and no precipitation is expected.
The biggest problem for this period is how extensive the fog will
be in the San Joaquin Valley the next two nights and mornings.

The ridge is then prognosticated to break down on Saturday as a sharp
negatively tilted upper trough pushes into the Pacific northwest. A cold
front associated with this system will push through the area by
early Sunday and relative humidity forecasts are indicating some deeper moisture from
this system pushing across the northern portion of our County warning forecast area late
Saturday night and Sunday. Have mentioned a slight chance to low
chance of precipitation for late Saturday night and Sunday...but
expect the main impact form this system will be more seasonable
temperatures across our area by the end of the weekend.

The GFS and European model (ecmwf) are in fairly good agreement with a dry
shortwave ridge over our area for the early portion of next week
which will provide US with mild and dry conditions until a deep
and potentially very moist upper trough pushes into the Pacific northwest and
norcal by Wednesday. Although some timing differences exist with
the medium range models in terms of how much moisture this system
will provide US and when it will arrive...we have lowered
temperatures slightly and increased probability of precipitation and sky cover for
Tuesday night Onward as there is general agreement toward a cooler
and wetter pattern over for our area for next Wednesday and
Thursday.

==============================

[end of update]


10-Feb-2014 5:17 PM

Big Storm Disappoints - Core of Storm Stays Well North of the Area

In what seems to be the same old tired story for Central California and the Southern Sierra, the latest highly anticipated winter storm failed to deliver what we had hoped for. When all was said and done, the station only recorded 1.50 inches of light rain for the entire three day event. A far cry from the 3-4 inches of heavy rain we had been expecting based on forecasts and weather model runs. This brings our seasonal total to only 7.95 inches since July 1st, which isn't going to put the slightest dent in our extreme drought. A normal year would see 20 inches or more for this seasonal total by the 10th of February.

As yet another high pressure ridge builds into the area for the next 7 days or longer, the question now returns to HOW LONG do we have to wait this time? Will we see a return of the wet pattern before we run out of wet season, or are we looking at yet another multi-week span of above normal temps and dry weather? While we are hoping for a return of the jet stream and with it the storm track, we are expecting the new high to become a semi-permanent fixture off the coast, pushing all the storm systems up and over the area.

As soon as we get additional information on which way the remainder of February is going to go, we will pass it along to our readers. In the meantime, we can expect clear and dry conditions through Sunday, with occasional upslope clouds but no new precipitation.

[end of update]


07-Feb-2014 1:47 PM

Now This is a STORM!

We are already starting to see some light rain move into the area as the first truly significant winter storm takes aim at the entire state of California!

Have a look at these impressive SAT and Radar images taken a few minutes ago!

Weather Image

Weather Image

The latest full state NextRad radar return

Weather Image

Impressive yes? We could see as much as three inches from this system before it finally leaves the area on Monday. Based on several variables, it is really hard to say for sure if we will be able to get that much out of this one, but we have a much better chance than other recent storm systems.

For the first time in over 14 months, the jet stream is in the right place and at the same time, we have a significant low pressure system available to move in at the same time. What was once a common occurrence is now incredibly rare, so rejoice in our good fortune and ENJOY it while it lasts!

We will post an actual weather data update later this evening or Saturday morning. Meanwhile, as always, stay tuned to our home page for the latest real-time radar and precipitation activity reports!

[end of update]


06-Feb-2014 11:10 PM

0.44 inches of Precipitation from Thursday's System - Much More on the Way!

The track of the system today was not ideal for the best upslope conditions, and as a result, the Bass Lake area did not receive as much precipitation as we had hoped. However, Fresno and surrounding areas of the SJV received more than double their original forecast precipitation with some areas reporting well over an inch of rain.

Here at the station, the precipitation fell primarily as moderate snowfall for most of the morning into early afternoon with about 1 inch of snow accumulation on ground cover and vehicles. Temps hovered above the freezing point which prevented any significant accumulation and roads stayed free of ice and snow today.

This latest system brings our seasonal precipitation total to 6.89 inches, which is still only 30% of normal for this point in the wet season, so much, much more is still needed to get anywhere close to lessening the effects of this historic statewide drought.

Our sites now turn to a much larger system that is currently spinning off the California coast and is expected to make landfall mid-day tomorrow for northern California, extending into central California by Friday night.

The moisture fetch with this larger system is primarily sub-tropical in nature so day and evening temps will be higher than with the previous two storm systems. Snow levels are expected to remain above 7000 feet, but above that elevation snow accumulation is expected to be impressive with between two and three feet of new snow possible from 8000 feet to the top of the Sierra Crest.

Current forecasts suggest that the system will remain over the state through the bulk of the weekend with the heaviest weather event being on Saturday. We will update the journal as conditions warrant and invite you to stay tuned to our station's home page for the latest real-time radar and precipitation activity reports.

The approaching system looks to be the largest and most dynamic winter storm the region has seen in well over a year. Lets keep our fingers crossed that it delivers the 1-3 inches of rain and 24-36 inches of new snow the current model runs are suggesting!

Finally...

We will post the final precipitation prediction forecast from the NWS in Hanford ahead of the system's arrival on Friday night.

[end of update]


05-Feb-2014 4:38 PM

More RAIN/SNOW on the Way Tonight Through Friday Morning!

We are finally going to be visited by a respectable storm system beginning late tonight through all of Thursday and possibly into Friday morning. The storm's trajectory is perfect for maximum upslope for the Bass Lake area and because of the low temps, we are very likely to see some snow from this system as well. Preliminary rainfall estimates are suggesting over one inch of liquid for our area and possibly more.

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest real-time precipitation alerts and rain totals. We will update the journal as actual precipitation and snow data comes in.

Stay tuned and enjoy!

[end of update]


02-Feb-2014 12:36 PM

Rain/Snow Possible Later this Afternoon into This Evening!
What was originally thought to be a coastal hugger is bucking the models and moving inland as of this report. Chances are good that the Bass Lake area will see another round of light to moderate rain and snow later today and into this evening. Current forecasts are not expecting much accumulation, but you never know when a system moves in at night on a cold day.

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest radar returns and real-time precipitation alerts!

[end of update]


31-Jan-2014 9:55 AM

Storm Total 1.81 inches, Including some Snow!

The system provided much more measurable precipitation than had been forecast, which is great news! 1.38 inches came in on Thursday, with an additional 0.43 inches after midnight on Friday morning. This included about a half inch of snow as temps fell into the mid thirties in the early hours of the morning.

The system is now exiting the area, with unstable air continuing to move through the area. Additional light precipitation is still not out of the question today.

Unfortunately, the weather trends back to a dry pattern for the first part of next week, and as of this update, we do not see any other systems on the horizon. Lets hope that changes soon!

[end of update]


30-Jan-2014 8:54 AM

0.58 Inches so far this morning - Another few hours of moderate rain to go!

So far the rain totals have been impressive considering that the first bucket tip occurred at 3:49 a.m. this morning. Rain rates have been as high as 1.07 inches per hour, though the average is more in the 0.25 in/h range.

The current rain band is slowly moving through our area with currently nothing showing up behind it. So this band may be the last one of the system.

Here is the current forecast discussion from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
510 am PST Thursday Jan 30 2014


Synopsis...
a storm system will bring rain and higher elevation snow to the
Sierra through Friday morning. Strong gusty winds will affect the
Kern County desert and mountains through Thursday night. Dry and
cool conditions are expected to return by the weekend.

Discussion...
a storm system will affect the central California interior through
Friday morning. Weather radar shows light to moderate rain along a
cold front stretching from Merced to Yosemite. The front will
push southeast reaching the tehachapis by the end of the day. Satellite
images show cooling tops along the front as well as high precipitable
water amounts. Models forecast a period of heavy precipitation this
morning in the north sectors of the valley and Yosemite as a
vorticity center catch up to the subtropical moisture. SW winds
30-40kt will result in optimal orographic lift over the Sierra
this morning. Models indicate over an inch of quantitative precipitation forecast over the
Sierra north of Kings Canyon. 700mb temperatures lower to -4c
behind the front. Thus snowfall potential may remain above 6500
feet during the period of heavy precipitation this morning over the
Sierra. A second disturbance will quickly follow tonight bringing
another round of showers tonight. Colder air will move in tonight
lowering snow levels towards 5kft. However best potential for
precipitation may be today along the axis of subtropical moisture.
Snow level may remain above the major passes of the Kern County
mountains. Will maintain the Winter Weather Advisory for the
Sierra Nevada from Yosemite to Kings Canyon above 7000 feet.
Current estimates have 6 to 12 inches of new snow falling across
the Sierra Nevada. By Friday...lingering showers may continue...
mainly over the mountains as a final vorticity lobe moves through the
region. A short wave ridge will provide drier conditions Saturday.
Models continue to show a low moving southeast along the coast. However
if the storm remains offshore the district will not see much if
any precipitation. A cool northwest flow will prevail for much of
next keeping temperatures towards seasonal levels.

=============================

We will update the journal with our final rain totals sometime tomorrow.

In the meantime, stay tuned to our homepage for the latest real time rainfall activity as the data comes into the station.

[end of update]


29-Jan-2014 10:46 AM

FINALLY!

The stubborn high pressure ridge is finally starting to break down which will allow a low pressure system to move into our area from the pacific later tonight and through early Friday. Still too early to say if this will open the door to a continued wet pattern into February. We can hope!

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
500 am PST Wednesday Jan 29 2014


Synopsis...
a high pressure ridge over the region will begin to break
down today...bringing an end to the above normal high temperatures
and dry conditions by Thursday. Valley rain and mountain snow will
be on tap for Thursday and Friday with more seasonably cool
conditions continuing into next week.

Discussion...
the ridge over the West Coast is beginning to weaken and flatten
as a developing frontal system begins to slide south toward the
region. High cloudiness spilling over the ridge continues to drift
overhead...while some low level moisture is pushing some strato
cumulus into northern portions of our area. Models forecast the lower
clouds to persist through much of the day over the northern part
of the valley...holding temperatures a little lower today. Otherwise
expect one more day of the recent well above normal afternoon
highs.

A moderate moisture tap associated with the sagging frontal system
will bring precipitation to the mountains near Yosemite as early
as this evening then spreading southward across our area through
Thursday. This will be a more orographically driven precipitation
event in the westerly flow...with some valley rain shadowing. As
additional shortwave energy drops southward into the region later
Thursday and Thursday night...valley areas including the west side
and south end will get in on the precipitation event. Storm total
precipitation amounts in the valley are expected to range from a
few hundredths to as much as a couple of tenths of an inch...not
a drought-buster but definitely a significant change from the
prolonged dry and warm conditions. Snow levels will start above
8000 feet and lower to below 7000 feet Thursday and to 4000-5000
feet by Friday. Total accumulations at the higher elevations could
be up to one foot north of Kings Canyon. A Winter Weather Advisory
is in effect there from tonight through early Friday morning.

By Friday in the cooler airmass behind the exiting system...afternoon
highs will be just a degree or so above climatology. These cooler...more
seasonable conditions will continue into early next week as incoming
shortwave impulses maintain a troughy pattern over the region. A
weak low dropping south Sunday is expected to track off the
coast...keeping associated precipitation chances west of our area.

=======================

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest real-time rainfall totals as they come in!

[end of update]


14-Jan-2014 12:13 PM

RED FLAG WARNING ISSUED FOR SOUTHERN SIERRA! - EXTREME FIRE DANGER at Peak of Wet Season?

Our automated fire weather warning system ticked up to EXTREME * just before Noon today. Right in line with the unprecedented Red Flag warnings issued by the NWS in Hanford Ca. this morning. This, the first ever such fire risk warning issued in the middle of winter was expanded to include the entire Southern Sierra region this afternoon, and will remain in effect until 10:00 p.m. PST Wednesday night. One can go back over the expansive weather records for the region which span over 120 years and not find a single occurrence of extreme wildfire risk in January before today. (Something to mention to the factually clueless climate change deniers who have been crowing lately because of the extreme cold back east. Both events are in fact connected and are right in line with predictions made by leading climate scientists regarding early warning signs of rapid, worst case scenario climate change!)

We will close with another unfortunate weather history factoid...

With no rain forecast for the remainder of the month, January 2014 is going to enter the record books as the driest January in history! As we mentioned above, weather records go back well over 120 years! The current risk of a serious wildfire on the scale of last summer's "Rim Fire" begs the question... Are you prepared for a wildfire disaster? Do you have an evacuation plan for your family? Might be a good time to review and update if you haven't already done so.

Based on all current trends, the likely hood of a significant wildfire event impacting the Bass Lake area this summer is far more likely to occur than to not occur. Some local officials have put the chances at well above 75% in favor of a 100 year event on the scale of the Rim Fire.

The latest model runs from the Climate Prediction Center calls for continued dry and warm conditions as far out as the computer models reach. Every day that ticks by without measurable precipitation brings us that much closer to a life changing, historic wildfire related disaster unlike anything anyone has ever seen before. Such a mega fire could spell the end of the entire region as we know it.

Scared yet? You should be!

* Our normal fire season ends in late November/early December based on current weather conditions and extended forecasts. For the first time in recorded history, the 2013/2014 fire season never officially ended and remains active. Conditions have been HIGH to VERY HIGH this entire winter, with our automated system raising the current fire risk/danger to EXTREME earlier today.

[end of update]


08-Jan-2014 3:42 PM

Station Maintenance Update - Failing ISS FARS Fan Replaced

Replaced failing FARS fan and both NiCd batteries in ISS with new components. Station was offline for 15 minutes during the procedure. Rechecked all sensors and power systems after maintenance was completed and all system are nominal. Station put back online at 3:37 p.m. PST

[end up maintenance update]


03-Jan-2014 11:50 AM

Continued Dry and Unseasonably Warm Through Weekend

Seems we just can't catch a break in terms of weather these days. The extreme drought that has plagued us for the last year is intensifying into the new year, with 0.00 rainfall since December 19th, 2013.

Models continue to report a very dismal and depressing extended forecast for the entire state, with little relief in sight. There is a slight chance of light precipitation early next week, but based on past experience, we will be surprised if anything comes of it.

Fire danger is fluctuating between Very High and Extreme. For the first time in recorded history, very high wildfire danger continues through what should be our wet season. Does not bode well at all for this coming summer.

We will update with any changes as they become available.

[end of update]


28-Dec-2013 2:29 PM

Small Indications of Possible Pattern Change!!

While it isn't much, and still too far out to predict with any certainty, the NWS has mentioned the following in their latest forecast update...

"By Friday night...the situations is reversed with the European model (ecmwf)
bringing a fairly strong upper-level trough into the central
California interior...while the GFS has a much weaker system. Again
confidence is low due to differing model solutions. However...the
trend is somewhat encouraging that a pattern change may finally be
on tap for the first part of January and hopefully some much-needed
precipitation. "

-----------------------------------

We will just have to wait and see if the semi-permanent high pressure ridge which so far this winter has denied us our desperately needed winter rain and snow, is finally shoved out of the way and the storm track is allowed to move into our area.

Stay tuned for more updates as we get them from Hanford!

[end of update]


25-Dec-2013 9:21 AM

MERRY CHRISTMAS and HAPPY HOLIDAYS!
2013 Officially the Driest Year on Record for Southern Sierra


Looks like 2013 will easily be the driest year on record for Bass Lake and the entire Southern Sierra range. This is notable considering that weather records for this area go back well over 100 years.

Our normal annual precipitation total at this station averages around 36 inches from Jan. 1 through Dec. 31. Our annual total for 2013 is currently 10.91 inches. With no additional precipitation expected this month, this will be our pitiful annual total for this year. You can do the math to see just how disastrous conditions have been and unfortunately, look likely to continue well into the new year. The current snowpack is nonexistent which is also a very dire reality with no rain or snow expected for Central California for the foreseeable future.

Wish we had more cheerful news to report, but these are the facts.

As soon as we see any hope of a pattern change and the possibility of wet weather even in our extended forecast, we will update this journal. As of today, the extended forecast calls for continued dry conditions through at least the first week of January 2014.

Not a very hopeful way to start the new year weather wise.

[end of update]




07-Dec-2013 12:36 AM

Snow Flurries Observed at 12:30 a.m. 12/7/13

The first precipitation band took its sweet time getting here, but it looks like light snow is actually reaching the ground and sticking on surfaces.

Our current temperature is 31.7 F, so any precipitation we receive during these early morning hours will fall as snow and not rain. Radar returns so far look very light, but there is a region of heavy showers currently over the San Jose area that might make its way down this way before first light.

We will update the journal with current totals etc. before noon Saturday.

[end of update]


06-Dec-2013 5:25 PM

Snow on the Way!

Looks like we are finally going to see a weather system resembling winter tonight and Saturday! Snow levels are going to be some of the lowest we have seen in decades with snow even possible for areas near sea level including the SJV and all of the foothill communities.

Snow is expected to start falling over the Bass Lake area after 10 p.m. this evening and continue through Saturday morning and early afternoon. Snow showers could linger into tomorrow night depending on the amount of upslope we see from this system.

Accumulations are forecast to be between 2-5 inches tonight with an additional 1-2 inches on Saturday. The actual amount will vary based on available moisture and temperature of course.

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest precipitation totals and temperature data.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
305 PM PST Friday Dec 6 2013


Synopsis...
a very cold winter storm will arrive tonight. There is the
possibility of lower elevation snowfall with this storm...including
over the lower southern Sierra foothills and parts of the San
Joaquin Valley late Friday night and on Saturday morning. The cold
air will be reinforced over the region on Sunday and Monday behind
this storm.

Discussion...
a cold and dry air mass provided another hard freeze this morning
over much of the central California interior. There will be short
reprieve to freezing temperatures tonight due to increasing cloud
cover and winds from an approaching storm. Radar shows some precipitation
already over north California while the low still located along the the
Oregon coast. Some cloud cover is increasing this afternoon over
the north jv and Yosemite area. Models indicate a vigorous system
moving into central California tonight. Impressive Omega and a
strong upper jet will provide a period moderate to heavy
precipitation overnight. Although strong upper level winds will
accompany the system...a west-northwest wind direction will not be optimum
for orographic enhancement. A major concern is the low snow levels
due to the dry air mass in place across the valley. Wet bulb zero
values near the valley floor could lower the snow levels to
several hundred feet with snow showers not ruled out in parts of
the valley early Saturday morning. Models in good agreement on the
timing of the precipitation. The onset into Merced County by
midnight with a southward spread overnight and during the morning
into Kern County. The period of most widespread precipitating
looks to be from 4 am to 10 am for areas north of Kern County and
around noon to early afternoon for Kern County. Model forecast
sounding at Fresno suggest snow levels will be as low as 500 feet.
This will bring accumulating snow to the lowest foothills with
rain and snow mix over much of the San Joaquin Valley. Locations
above 500 feet will likely see a ground whitening from heavier
showers that turn to all snow. Accumulations in the 500-1000 foot
elevation range may be a bit tricky with an inch or two possible
by Saturday morning.For the Kern County mountains and desert areas
the precipitation will arrive by middle morning and the Grapevine...Tehachapi
Pass and all other passes out of the San Joaquin Valley will see
accumulating snow for at least a short period of time. Travel will
be very limited in this scenario. Winds will also kick up over the
Kern County mountains and desert Saturday morning where the
combination of light snow and wind will make for hazardous driving
across desert floor. By Saturday afternoon the snow will linger
mainly along the Tehachapi and San Emigdio Mountains of Kern
County and the Grapevine area. Upslope flow will help wring out
any available moisture Saturday afternoon and early evening in
this area.The emphasis then turns back to freezing conditions as
clearing skies and reinforced cold air bring the San Joaquin
Valley back into the hard freeze situation. Sunday through Tuesday
mornings will be very cold and freezes are likely each night. By
middle week the coldest air is projected to move east as high
pressure ridging builds over the area. The next weather system is
projected by the latest operational European model (ecmwf) model to move through
central California Friday. The operational GFS brings a weaker
system through.

================================

We will update the journal during this winter storm as events unfold. Stay tuned!

[end of update]


03-Dec-2013 5:31 PM

First Serious Winter Storm Looking More Likely for the Weekend!

The system that moved through the area today is apparently just a teaser of what may be heading our way towards the end of this first week of December.

Weather models are trending more and more towards a substantial winter storm event by the weekend with the potential for several "feet" of snow at the higher elevations with snow levels falling as low as 1,000 feet before the system exits the area!

We will cut to the Hanford forecast update for the details as they stand right now. Keep in mind, there is always the chance that everything predicted could fall apart and leave us with nothing. Those who have been following the weather patterns this year know that drill all too well, so don't get too excited just yet.

If the following model results continue to trend wet, then we could be looking at the first serious winter storm system to hit our area in over 11 months! Lets keep our fingers crossed that this one delivers for once!

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
437 PM PST Tuesday Dec 3 2013


Synopsis...
a cold front will bring breezy to windy conditions to much of the
region with a chance for rain and mountain snow today through
Wednesday. A much colder weather pattern will set up by Wednesday
morning as a stronger cold front arrives from the north.
Sub-freezing low temperatures will be likely for most of the
forecast area through Friday before another storm reaches the area.

Discussion...
the cold frontal system is moving through our area now...bringing
an end to the recent string of dry and mild days. The system has
brought as much as a few hundredths of an inch of rain in the
Central Valley...with as much as a half an inch reported in the
foothills. Snow levels are running around 5-6 kfeet with a few to
several inches of snow likely accumulated at the highest
elevations.

As the system continues to push south through the area expect some
precipitation to remain piled up over the east side and south end
of the district this evening. With snow levels lowering below 3000
feet tonight and tomorrow morning...some snow can be expected on
the Kern County passes...though any accumulations at that level
should be minimal. Cold air advection behind the front is prognosticated
to bring some freezing temperatures into the valley by morning and
a freeze warning remains in effect for early Wednesday morning.

Frigid air will continue to spill in behind the front leading to
hard freeze conditions by Thursday morning and again Friday morning.
Another shortwave system dropping through the trough will approach
the area by Friday morning. Models are trending more potent with
this system and projected quantitative precipitation forecast amounts are pointing to as much as a couple of feet of snow at the higher Sierra elevations. A Winter
Storm Watch is in effect for this system from Friday into
Saturday. This cold storm will lower snow levels at least down to
around 1000 feet so the Winter Storm Watch is in effect for the
foothills as well.

================================

We will be keeping a close eye on this developing event and will update this journal as more information becomes available.

[end of update]


26-Nov-2013 8:30 AM

Only a Slight Chance of Rain for Thursday and Friday

As is so often the case these days, our chances for much needed rain have been greatly diminished.

Next chance of measurable rain could be the first week of December.

Stay tuned.

[end of update]


22-Nov-2013 5:09 PM

Another Much Needed Winter Storm For Thanksgiving Eve and Day?

Stay tuned to our journal in the next few days for more details as we approach the holiday weekend!

[end of update]


21-Nov-2013 6:58 AM

Upslope Generated Rainfall This Morning! - Storm Total 1.03 Inches and Rising!

Low pressure is currently rotating directly over our location generating upslope rainfall which has been very heavy at times.

This condition could persist for a few hours this morning.


[end of update]


07-Nov-2013 5:29 PM

Pattern Change Hopes Dashed as Model Runs Pull Back - The New Normal?

It doesn't get any more alarming than this! With the latest model runs now pulling back from the previously optimistic wet pattern change, they are now predicting continued dry conditions will persist through the end of the month. The region is now on track for the driest winter on record. And as we enter into the third consecutive winter in a row with far below normal precipitation and above normal temperatures, we are left with the burning question... Are we witnessing the death of the weather as we know it? Is what we have been experiencing for the last three years in a row the new normal for the region? It is sure starting to look that way. No doubt the local TV weathermen will be all smiles as they announce another 5 weeks or more of sunny and dry weather, but for those of us who know what is going on, there is nothing to be smiling about here.

This is a disaster of epic proportions unfolding in slow motion. One warm and dry day at a time.

In response to the complete lack of active weather for the foreseeable future, we are suspending our journal updates until further notice.

We will leave you with today's depressing forecast revision from Hanford. Enjoy the summer redux. Hopefully you are not expecting to go skiing this season. We seriously doubt there will be enough snow in the Sierra this winter to make a Snowman.

Area forecast discussion...updated
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
449 PM PST Thursday Nov 7 2013


Synopsis...
upper-level middle and high clouds due to weak
troughing continues to move out of the region...as high pressure
and warming temperatures build in through Veterans Day.


Discussion...
a weak upper level ridge of high pressure will keep
the weather dry and tranquil over the central California interior through
Monday with balmy afternoons and seasonably chilly nights. High
clouds over the County Warning Area this afternoon are associated with a short
wave trough that is currently trekking eastward through the Pacific
northwest. We can expect a decrease in these clouds this evening as this
system progresses eastward through Idaho and into Montana.

The models forecast a much deeper upper level trough to develop
over the eastern Pacific this weekend which will ultimately lead to
compensating amplification of an upper level ridge over the Great
Basin early next week. This is discouraging news for rain starved
central California. As recently as a few days ago...it appeared that a
moisture rich atmospheric river on the eastern flank of the epac
trough would take aim for at least the northern half of our County Warning Area
after this weekend. But consecutive runs of the ensembles have
backed off on this idea. It now looks as though the epac trough will
dig too far west to bring significantly deep moisture into the County Warning Area
early next week. In fact...it looks pretty abysmal that measurable
precipitation will occur anywhere in the central California interior early
next week. A frontal boundary to the east of the offshore trough
will likely weaken as it approaches the central California coast late
Monday. The remnants of this front will move into an area of
subsidence and upper level ridging over the central California interior
Tuesday. So all we may get out of this feature is some middle level
clouds and at most some sprinkles Tuesday afternoon and evening.
Consequently...probability of precipitation were gutted for the Monday night through Tuesday
night periods.

Afterward...the GFS and ecm are in fairly good agreement and forecast
the upper level ridge to build more strongly over the central California
interior Wednesday. The models keep this ridge in control through
at least next Thursday with...you guessed it...dry weather and milder
than normal afternoon temperatures.

[end of update]



05-Nov-2013 2:14 PM


Major and Lasting Pattern Change May Be Coming Next Week!

The latest detailed extended forecast discussion posted by the NWS in Hanford today is indicating positive changes regarding the storm track and future precipitation coming our way beginning early next week, and likely continuing through the remainder of November!

If this change does indeed come to pass, it could mean the end of the insufferable ridging pattern off the coast of California that so far has prevented us from receiving the much needed benefits from any of the storms forming in the pacific.

While the weather has been pleasant for the last 5 weeks, this kind of clear and dry pattern is terrible for the long term health of the forest, the snow pack and our water reserves. It needs to go, and go soon!

Here is a copy of that report:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
134 PM PST Tuesday Nov 5 2013


Synopsis...
high temperatures will be near normal today...and then will
gradually warm to above normal through Thursday the weekend with
upper level high pressure moving into the region. A weak cold front
on Friday will slightly cool temperatures back to normal levels
through the weekend. There will be an increase in precipitation
chances for the area at the start of next week with the approach of
a low pressure system.

Discussion...
quiet weather continues across the Hanford forecast area this
afternoon. Trough from yesterday continues to zip away from our
area and is now providing precipitation to the northern plains. A
broad but low amplitude anti-cyclone is building just off the West
Coast and this feature will bring US clear/dry and a continuation
of above normal temperatures through Thursday. Thursday will be
the peak of this brief warm spell with maximum temperatures 4 to 11f above
normal.

A fast moving short wave will clip northern California late
Thursday/early Friday. GFS has trended a bit deeper with the
system but has shown no movement to a more southerly track. Sref
data suggest a slight chance for precipitation in Yosemite np but NAM
forcing parameters Don/T give much to get excited about as the
antecedent air mass will be quite dry...moisture advection will be
weak and waning...and greatest positive vorticity advection will be removed well to the
north. Afternoon temperature from Thursday to Friday will drop
about five degrees.

Saturday into next week we continue to see strong indications that
the long wave pattern will adjust across the North Pacific and
overall become more favorable for precipitation across the West
Coast. GFS...CMC...and ec ensemble data all support an extremely
strong ridge to develop centered near the western end of the
Aleutian Islands. This is a pattern closely aligned with the
positive phase of the Arctic oscillation which has moderate
correlation with above average precipitation for central
California and the Pacific northwest. The current signal in the
ensemble data in fact is so strong that forecast 500 mb heights are
predicted to be at extreme positive levels over the North Pacific
for the month of November. And this is based on the ensemble
means...not any individual member. It is not just the ensemble
data that support this either...a time-lagged ensemble of the
deterministic GFS also reveals that it is forecasting the strong
North Pacific ridge.

Our human pattern recognition knows that a substantial ridge in
the North Pacific will mean a broad and deep downstream trough.
Ensemble means also clearly have the trough in place.
However...given that the low end of atmospheric variables is often
more difficult to predict /think about how small and potent a
short wave can be versus a big anti-cyclone/ the details are still
up in the air in just where and how much precipitation falls next
week. There is enough signal in the model data to support the
first ejecting short wave from the broad trough will come around
the Tuesday time frame. Of course with the broad setup northern
California and Oregon will be the most likely target but our
northern County Warning Area could just as easily feel the impacts. The latest
esrl analog reforecast data support probability of precipitation of near 50 percent for
Yosemite np and into the 30s for the northern sjv on Monday.
Current official forecast is generally in-line with
this...depicting values 10 to 20 percent above climatological
precipitation chances.

The wet pattern will likely remain for much of next week as the
ensemble data point to the northern Pacific Ridge holding through
the current 10 to 15 day forecast period. Looking at data from the
climate forecast system...the ridge could hold through much of
November...setting the stage for a prolonged period supportive of
storm systems crossing our area. This is by no means a prediction
for significant precipitation...rather the days of high-and-dry or
death-by-ridge look to be over.

======================

As you can see from this report, this is the light at the end of the tunnel we have been hoping for since the current high pressure ridging setup off the coast in early October and produced one of the driest Octobers we have seen in the Sierra in well over a decade.

Lets hope that the indicators remain in place and we do indeed see the much needed winter storm track finally move into the area like it normally should by now.

We will resume our journal updates as soon as we see positive signs that the pattern change is indeed underway.

[end of update]


27-Oct-2013 10:39 AM

Forecast Update for Monday and Tuesday

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
344 am PDT sun Oct 27 2013


Synopsis...
a winter storm will move through the area Monday...decreasing
temperatures by 20 degrees or more. A few inches of snow will be
possible in the Sierra above 5000 feet and light rainfall in the
lower elevations. Otherwise clear and mild conditions prevail as
high pressure dominates.

Discussion...
today will be the last warmer than normal day before the major
change in the weather begins on Monday. The ridge will continue to
weaken and shift eastward today...then a winter-like storm system
is in store with much cooler temperatures for Monday. Breezy to
windy conditions are expected ahead of this system by as early as
this evening...including over the west side of the San Joaquin
Valley. Winds passing over the Sierra crest are expected to be
quite strong.

This closed upper low will move over the region and bring best
chances for precipitation during Monday and into Tuesday...including
light rain in the lower elevations and snowfall in the
mountains...mainly around 5000 feet and above. The bulk of the
precipitation is expected through the day Monday and lasting into Monday
evening. Latest rainfall amounts show up to a tenth of an inch in
most locations...including the San Joaquin Valley and around a
quarter inch in the Sierra foothills. This system will bring the
first snowfall since early this month...snow amounts are generally
expected to be around 2-4 inches...mainly above 7000 feet...with a
dusting to around an inch around 5000 feet...these accumulations
remain below advisory level. Monday morning is expected to be
fairly mild temperature wise as cloud cover increases. However...high
temperatures will be much cooler...by as much as around 20 degree
from forecast highs for today.

On Tuesday...precipitation will begin to taper...although low upslope
clouds will remain banked up in the mountains and foothills
allowing light precipitation to linger in these areas. Temperatures will
remain well below normal...and many locations may struggle to
reach above the lower 60s in the San Joaquin Valley and Kern
County desert. The upper low is expected to track eastward over
the Great Basin by Tuesday evening.

By middle-week high pressure will briefly return to the region...bringing
temperatures back to above normal...although likely not quite as
warm as this weekend. However...by next weekend temperatures are
expected to moderate as another low pressure system is prognosticated to
move in from the Pacific northwest. Kept forecast dry beyond Wednesday as models
show next trough weakening as it moves onshore over northern California
and the Pacific northwest.

[end of update]


26-Oct-2013 11:28 AM

Much Colder Temps and Chance of Rain/Snow for Monday and Tuesday

Our current forecast calls for a 20% chance of rain/snow on Monday and Tuesday. This could change to a higher probability by the time the system arrives, so be prepared for possible winter weather driving conditions around the Bass Lake area.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
255 am PDT Sat Oct 26 2013


Synopsis...
high pressure near the coast will continue to bring above normal
temperatures and dry conditions through Sunday. During early next
week...a passing low pressure system will bring lower temperatures
to below normal with a chance for light rain and mountain snow.

Discussion...
ridging will remain in place through the remainder of this weekend
while above normal daytime temperatures continue...along with
mostly clear skies. The ridge is expected to weaken and open the
door for a fairly cold low pressure system to move southward from
the Pacific northwest. Short-term concerns are mainly temperatures...however
the primary weather concerns are focused on early next week due to
the transition to a much cooler weather pattern.

Expect increasing clouds and chances of precipitation by Monday as a
fairly strong trough tracks over California. The position of the closed
upper low is somewhat uncertain...so have kept precipitation
amounts relatively light for now. However...have increased probability of precipitation
due to better confidence of at least a much cooler and more
unsettled pattern during Monday and Tuesday. This system will be the
coldest one so far this fall...so have lowered temperatures to
well below normal for Monday and Tuesday. Also have trended min temperatures
upward a little for Monday due to increased cloud cover. This
system is prognosticated to move eastward over the Great Basin by
Tuesday...which is faster than prior model runs. The GFS and Euro
models are in better line with each other in terms of timing and
position of the closed upper low per the latest run...although the
Euro remains wetter.

For the latter half next week...ridging is forecast to gradually
rebuild with temperatures recovering...although not expected to be
quite as warm as during recent days. Nighttime lows will remain
fairly cool as drier air returns.

[end of update]


26-Oct-2013 11:17 AM

Station Maintenance Update

Rain Bucket Swap

The heated rain bucket has been installed for the winter season. There is a slight chance of snow on Monday night into Tuesday from a passing low pressure system with expected below normal temperatures and a 20% chance of light precipitation.

[end of update]


08-Oct-2013 5:59 PM

Strong Chance of Winter Weather with Rain on Wednesday!

We are tracking what could be our first taste of winter weather, due to arrive Wednesday morning and continue throughout the day.

Stay tuned to the home page for the latest real time weather reports as they happen! Any significant weather events will be reported in this journal.

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
155 PM PDT Tuesday Oct 8 2013


Synopsis...
a low pressure system will drop southward across central California
Wednesday. This system will bring colder temperatures along with
snow in the High Sierra and a chance of showers and thunderstorms in
the lower elevations. Dry weather will return by Thursday evening.

Discussion...
..abrupt change to cold weather beginning late tonight...

Satellite loops show the upper-level trough moving into northern
California this afternoon. The trough will move into central
California late tonight and Wednesday...bringing much colder weather
to the region and the first chance for significant precipitation.

Ahead of the trough...mostly clear skies prevail over the central
California interior with a few bands of cirrus. Temperatures across
the central and southern San Joaquin Valley at 19z /noon PDT/ were
in the 70s...and on track for highs today mainly in the lower to middle
80s.

Clouds will move into the region overnight...and the Yosemite park
area could see precipitation by daybreak. Precipitation will spread
down the Hanford warning/forecast area Wednesday morning with the
heaviest precipitation accompanying the upper-level low as it drops
south over the San Joaquin Valley.

The weather is forecast to turn much colder abruptly with the GFS
and European model (ecmwf) in agreement dropping 850-mb temperatures over Fresno
around 10 c in 18 hours...from 00z Wednesday /1700 PDT today/ to 18z
/1100 PDT/ Wednesday. Snow levels will fall from 8000-9000 feet over
the southern Sierra Nevada tonight to 6000-6500 feet Wednesday and
Wednesday night. Anyone planning travel into the mountains should be
prepared for a rapid change to much colder weather tonight...and
for accumulating snow.

The NAM-12 forecasts the upper-level low to have a more westerly
track than earlier model runs. The low is forecast to deepen to 5470
meters by 00z Thursday /1700 PDT Wednesday/ and be centered near
Lost Hills in northwestern Kern County. A 500-mb -23 c cold pool is
forecast to be over Hanford at that time. The deep low and cold
temperatures aloft are conducive to thunderstorm development over
the central and southern San Joaquin Valley...the Sierra Nevada
foothills and the valley-facing slopes of the Kern County mountains.
The best chance for thunderstorms will be over the southern San
Joaquin Valley and adjacent areas Wednesday afternoon and early
evening as the low tracks southward. Bakersfield likely will see its
first measurable rain since may 6th...and small hail will be possible
across the area.

High temperatures in the central and southern San Joaquin Valley are
forecast to be only in the middle 60s to around 70 Wednesday. The
forecast high for Bakersfield of 67 degrees would tie the record low
maximum temperature for October 9th...set in 1930/.

Surface-computed convective available potential energy are forecast to peak at 560+ joules/kg over
the high country of the southern Sierra Nevada at 21z /1400 PDT/
Wednesday...with surface computed lifted indices around -4. 850-mb
Theta-E is forecast to peak around 320 k. These parameters suggest
moderate snow showers are possible with total accumulations of 2-5
inches.

The forecasted snow amounts meet our criteria for the first Winter
Weather Advisory of the season...2-4 inches of snow in 12 hours
above 3000 feet or 4-6 inches of snow in 24 hours above 3000 feet.
Due to the expected abrupt change in conditions...have issued a
Winter Weather Advisory for the southern Sierra Nevada from 12z
/0500 PDT/ Wednesday to 12z Thursday.

Another concern with this storm is the threat of gusty winds. West
winds ahead of the low will align with the passes and canyons of the
temblors Wednesday morning. The funneling of the winds through these
passes and canyon could generate gusts as high as 45 miles per hour along the
western edges of Kern and Kings counties. Therefore have issued a
Wind Advisory for the southwestern San Joaquin Valley for 10-18z
/0300-1100 PDT/ Wednesday.

Later in the morning...gusty southwest winds are forecast to develop
over the Kern County deserts...with gusts up to 55 miles per hour. Have issued
a Wind Advisory for the Kern County deserts from 13z /0600 PDT/
Wednesday to 03z Thursday /2000 PDT Wednesday/.

The upper-level low is forecast to move across far southern Nevada
and into northwestern Arizona Thursday morning...and over The Four-
Corners by 00z Friday. Expect only light snow showers near the crest
Thursday from lingering upslope showers on the eastern slopes with
little new accumulations.

500-mb heights are forecast to rise over California behind the
trough...but a short-wave moving through the Pacific northwest and
dropping into the Great Basin as an inside slider will keep the east-
Pacific Ridge offshore and temperatures near or slightly below
normal for the extended forecast period.

==================================================

[end of update]


24-Sep-2013 11:39 AM

Welcome to D2149's Fall 2013 weather coverage!

We will now be resuming our weather journal coverage for the coming wet season starting with the arrival of a low pressure system into the area beginning this evening. The forecast calls for increasing winds with gusts as high as 25+ mph at times through Wednesday. There is a chance of some light precipitation as well.

September 2013 has turned out to be the wettest September since this station began operations in January of 2009 with a current rainfall total for the month of 0.93 inches. All this precipitation came from the unusual weather conditions on Saturday the 21st. The station recorded hourly rain rates exceeding 3.00 inches per hour at times under very heavy rainfall.

Our typical rainfall total for this month is usually 0.00 to 0.02 inches, so we are keeping our fingers crossed that this is an indication of things to come for the coming wet season. We have seen less than 50% of our normal rainfall for the last two years, so it would be great news if this fall and winter produced normal or above normal precipitation for the Bass Lake area.

We will be updating this journal as weather conditions warrant with an increasing amount of entries as we head into the most active weather period of the year and into 2014.

Stay tuned!

The Latest from Hanford:

National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
305 am PDT Tuesday Sep 24 2013


Synopsis...
dry and warmer today due to high pressure over the region. Another
low pressure system will bring cooler temperatures and gusty winds
again Tuesday night through Wednesday night...with some showers
possible over the Sierra Nevada north of Kings Canyon. The latter
half of the week will then be dry under rebuilding high pressure...
with temperatures warming to near normal for early autumn.

Discussion...
satellite loops show high clouds moving into northern California
this morning. These clouds are associated with the leading edge of
an approaching upper-level trough that will reach the central
California this afternoon. Although this looks to be a relatively
dry system...the main impact will be strong winds. The NAM-12
forecasts the San Francisco-Las Vegas surface pressure gradient to
increase from 3.6 mb at 18z /1100 PDT/ today to 7.2 mb at 21z /1400
PDT/...and continue to strengthen overnight and Wednesday before
peaking at 13.9 mb at 00z Thursday /1700 PDT Wednesday/.

Have upgraded the high wind watch for the southern Sierra Nevada
above 8000 feet to a High Wind Warning effective 21z this afternoon.
Winds over the high country are now expected to remain strong
through the day Wednesday and into the evening before diminishing.
Therefore...have extended the duration of the warning to 06z Thursday
/2300 PDT Wednesday/.

Winds are forecast to be borderline advisory over the Kern County
mountains and deserts tonight through Wednesday night. The NAM-12
forecasts a 35+ knots low-level jet maximum to move over the Kern County
deserts Wednesday afternoon and evening...reinforcing the winds
funneling through the passes and canyons. Have issued a Wind
Advisory for areas through and below the passes and canyons of the
Kern County mountains from 06z Wednesday to 12z Thursday.

One concern is that the models continue to be in agreement with
850-mb temperatures plunging 8-9 c from 00z Wednesday to 18z
Wednesday...bottoming out at 7.5-8.5 c. The snow level is forecast
to fall to around 7500 feet near Yosemite Wednesday and down to
6500-7000 feet Wednesday night. People traveling to Yosemite
National Park today through Wednesday night should be prepared for
a sharp change in temperatures tonight...and cold and windy
conditions Wednesday.

The NAM-12 has pushed back the precipitation for Yosemite by 24
hours...from 12z Wednesday to 12z Thursday. The GFS keeps
precipitation north of Yosemite...but the European model (ecmwf) has come into line
with the NAM-12 on both timing and southern extent of the
precipitation. Although quantitative precipitation forecast is forecast to be light and limited to
the crest north of Kings Canyon...and a bit more widespread in the
Yosemite park...light snow could locally fall as low as 7000 feet in
the park with accumulations from a dusting to a quarter inch.

At the lower elevations...expect winds to increase over the west
side of the San Joaquin Valley tonight as marine air begins to spill
through the passes and canyons of the temblors and Diablo Range. The
00z NAM picked up on this and the met guidance for north.A.S. Lemoore
had 20-knots sustained winds for 18-21z Wednesday and 19 kts sustained
at 00z Thursday. As Saturday/S storm demonstrated...the dry soils on
the San Joaquin Valley floor can produce areas of blowing dust even
in sub-advisory winds...so have added a mention of blowing dust to
the west side of the San Joaquin Valley beginning tonight and
continuing into Wednesday.

A surface high is forecast to build into the Pacific northwest and
the northern Great Basin Thursday afternoon into Thursday night.
This high will turn the lower-elevation winds over the southern
Sierra Nevada offshore...bringing a warming trend for the latter
part of the week.

==================================================

[end of update]


19-Aug-2013 6:33 PM

THUNDER STORM WARNING!

A large cell of unstable air is moving into the Bass Lake area accompanied by strong west winds.

Precipitation could be arriving within the next 30-45 minutes along with thunder and lightning.

Due to the excessive heat and dry conditions, residents are urged to remain vigilant and report any nearby lightning strikes or smoke to the local authorities immediately!

You can view the latest radar activity HERE

We will update the journal as conditions warrant.

[end of update]



10-Jun-2013 12:45 PM

GONE FISHING! - Summertime Forecast Mode Now in Place

With the weather now turning to the more stable and predictable summer pattern, we have suspended our station operator based forecasting until the Fall.

In the meantime, you can get the latest weather discussion/forecast information for Bass Lake directly from Hanford using THIS LINK.

Hope everyone has a great summer and we will be back with our regular forecast posts as we head into the active weather patterns of fall and winter.

The station will continue to operate normally on automation 24/7 with all computer based forecasting and warning system automation fully operational.

Thank you for your continuing support of station D2149!

[end of update]


05-May-2013 1:00 AM

Low Pressure System Arrives with 50% Chance of Thunderstorms by Monday Afternoon

On Saturday night, the station recorded its lowest barometric pressure of 2013 with a reading of 29.59 inHg. Proof that a low pressure system off the eastern pacific has indeed arrived over Central California. THe temps have not yet begun to lower though since we also set another new record high for 2013 on Saturday with a 81.5 F. This advancing low pressure trough will bring a noticeable change to the weather pattern beginning Sunday with much cooler temps and an increasing chance of Thunderstorms through Wednesday. Currently the NWS is giving our area a 50% chance for storm activity on Monday afternoon through early evening.

While there may be some brief heavy rainfall associated with these cells with the potential for local flooding, a far more serious concern will be the threat of dry lightning and gusty winds. Residents are asked to remain vigilant and to report any unexplained smoke to the local authorities immediately! Our fire danger is currently hovering in the high to very high level, and it would not take much to set our local forests ablaze.

The raging fires down in Southern California should be all the evidence anyone needs for the current threat, which is not only a full month earlier than normal, our pathetic winter rain/snow totals is only adding to the danger. An ever present danger that we will be facing every day for the next 6 long and likely to be record breakingly HOT, DRY months.

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion...updated
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
823 PM PDT Sat may 4 2013


Update...
Sunflower Valley continues to gust around 40-45 miles per hour as onshore flow increases over the next few hours.


Synopsis...
an area of low pressure will continue to move over northern
California through the remainder of the weekend bringing a small
threat of afternoon and evening thunderstorms to the Sierra. On
Monday and Tuesday...this low will remain over the region for an
increased threat of showers and thunderstorms spreading to much of
central California.

Discussion...
issued wind advection for the west side of the sjv near Sunflower pass
along Highway 41 in Kern Colorado. Winds are advertised by the locally
run high res model for the next few hours. Will monitor the
situation as this is mainly a localized event through the
Cottonwood Pass.

Previous disc... /issued 715 PM PDT Sat may 4 2013/

Discussion...
most of the convection this afternoon has been confined to the
east side of the Sierra. A few showers has developed and quickly
moved over the crest. Upper low is quickly taking shape over northern
California at this time and afternoon convection near the center is quickly dying out.


Models are progging the low center to remain stationary off the
cencal coast on Sunday. We have already seen a significant jump in
winds along the west side of the sjv this evening as the onshore
flow is increase across the area. Winds have also increase a bit over the
Kern County desert and remain below advection criteria this evening. The
west side will be marginal advection criteria this evening and we will
monitor the situation.


Have cleared out the sky grids for the valley and lowered the probability of precipitation
for tonight.

===========================================

Stay tuned to our home page's radar grids for the latest real time NextRad radar returns which include lightning strike graphics indicated by small black squares with white borders. These boxes appear in real time and their size is indicative of intensity.

[end of update]


02-May-2013 11:28 PM

Fire Weather Page Activated Early Due to Very High Fire Danger

Due to the unusually hot and dry conditions recently, we have decided to activate our fire weather warning page ahead of the official start of the 2013 fire season.

As those who have been following our web site this winter are already aware, January, February and March 2013 have been the driest and warmest on record and as a result, our fire danger heading into the summer is off the charts. Several Red Flag warnings have already been issued by the National Weather Service for several parts of the state which is also historic for so early in the season.

We are already seeing a record number of brushfires down in Southern California so far this year, and this should serve as a stern warning to everyone living in the Southern Sierra! We too are likely going to see the worst and most destructive fire season in history this summer.

Our fire weather warning page will help provide local residents with real-time fire danger warnings and news updates and links should a wildfire break out in our area.

You can access our Fire Weather page HERE

[end of update]


16-Apr-2013 1:28 PM

Thunderstorm Brewing Up Over Area Now!

Radar is indicating a moderate thunderstorm brewing up just north of Bass Lake, currently centered over the Fish Camp area.

Weather Image

Stay tuned to the home page for the latest real time weather activity reports!

[end of update]


14-Apr-2013 8:11 AM

Slight Chance of Rain on Monday - Snow Level Could Drop to 4000 Feet!

A late season storm system is expected to graze the area Monday bringing a 30% chance of precipitation during the day and into the evening. Any chance of light snow will come during the evening hours. Precipitation is expected to be light and any snow that happens to fall will likely not stick or amount to more than a trace in most areas.

Beginning on Tuesday the system should be on its way out of the area to be replaced with yet another blocking ridge pattern. The ridge should be well established by Wednesday night thus raising our temperatures back to slightly above normal for this time of the year.

The Latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
247 am PDT sun Apr 14 2013


Synopsis...
an upper level low has began moving southward over the region and
will bring cooler temperatures and breezy to windy conditions
especially below Kern County passes and canyons through Tuesday.
Late Wednesday high pressure will begin moving into the area
bringing more stable conditions and a gradual warming trend
through next weekend.

Discussion...
winds have already be rather strong through the Kern
County mountains. Gusts to over 60 miles per hour have been observed at
several locations including Cache creek chp weigh station where
gusts have not dropped below 50 miles per hour for several hours. Indian
Wells Canyon RAWS is gusting to 70 miles per hour. Interestingly enough the
current winds are occurring in an environment where winds aloft
and surface gradients are not excessively strong. Water vapor
imagery shows a long fetch of stronger winds aloft stretching back
to the Aleutians and the next vorticity feature taking shape near
47n 137w. Over the next 48 hours forecast models increase surface
pressure gradients both this afternoon and especially Monday
afternoon. In addition on Monday the winds aloft are projected to
increase considerably thus the coverage of High Wind Warning winds
(greater than 58 mph) will be much greater. It should be noted
that today strong winds may be more localized but still present in
the gaps and canyons.


As the above mentioned vorticity center develops and moves
southeast into central California the Sierra will undoubtedly
wring out some light precipitation. Of seemingly more importance,
the strong upslope flow into the Kern County mountains will
combine with cold air advection Monday night to bring the threat
of some light snow over the Grapevine and Tehachapi passes by
Tuesday morning. Winds will remain locally strong even on Tuesday
as the deep and cold Pacific system only slowly moves east.


By Wednesday ridging will begin to build in over the Pacific
northwest with warming conditions and much lighter winds for the
forecast area.

=======================================

As the winter weather/wet season comes to close we will be moving our journal into summer update mode. This simply means that journal updates will be few and far between unless there is some form of weather related breaking news that we feel warrants your attention. This would include fire weather related stories, summer thunder storms and timely news updates in the event of a local wildfire outbreak.

With now two dismal wet seasons in a row for our area, the potential for a significant wildfire outbreak in the Southern Sierra including Bass Lake will be higher this summer than any previous fire season in the last 10 years. Our Fire Weather Information Page is currently up and running, but the 2013 Wild Fire season does not official begin until the first week of May.

Any news related to active wild fires or high danger levels will be posted at the top of this page.

We hope you enjoy the summer, but be sure to check our home page often for the latest UV levels before going out on the lake or hiking in the back country. Our UV index is traditionally in the HIGH range (6.0 or higher) from about 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on any clear day from April through late October. Our station alert automation system will post these high UV warnings in real-time, so you will know what to expect during any outdoor activities.

[end of update]


04-Apr-2013 5:31 PM

Station Maintenance Update: Rain Bucket Swap

Based on the extended forecasts for the next several weeks, it appears that we have seen the last of the snow for the 2013 wet season. In response, we have removed the heated rain bucket from the station's rain gauge and replaced it with the standard non-heated rain bucket used for the summer dry season.

Weather factoid: This season had the lowest number of snowfall events on record as well as the earliest bucket swap date in the station's history. We usually wait until the first week of May before swapping buckets due to the normal continuing threat of snow, but with record high temperatures expected later this month, we didn't want to subject the heater element to excessive high solar generated temperatures, which it is not designed for.

[end of maintenance update]


04-Apr-2013 9:21 AM

Light to Moderate Showers Today from Weak Low Pressure System

A weak low pressure storm system will be moving through the Bass Lake area today. Next Rad radar is indicating a large band of light to moderate precipitation moving into the area from the south west. Based on the speed and track of this band, we can expect the bulk of our measurable rain to occur within the next 2-3 hours.

While there is always the possibility of additional upslope generated precipitation behind this main band, there is not currently any additional precipitation behind this initial wave.

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest real time precipitation activity reports as well as the latest Nextrad radar returns via our two radar screens.

The system is expected to exit the area this evening with another amplified ridge forming behind the system bringing a return to dry and unseasonably warm weather Friday through at least the weekend.

If this forecast changes we will update this journal accordingly.

[end of update]


31-Mar-2013 9:12 PM

Thunderstorm Update:

The storm cells have not weakened or diminished since nightfall and the largest of these cells is currently on a collision course with our station location as seen in this latest short range NextRad image:

Weather Image

Based on this latest tracking data, we estimate the arrival of the center of this cell within the next 45-60 minutes. If lightning is observed during this evening's event, observers are strongly advised to stay indoors and do not stand outside in an open area or near any tall trees.

[end of update]


31-Mar-2013 7:27 PM

Thunderstorms Forming West of Station - Expect High Probability of Additional Precipitation

NextRad radar is indicating a long band of thunderstorms just not beginning to form up due west of the Sierra foothills and moving east at about 25 mph. The NWS has increased our precipitation probability tonight to 100% in response to these blooming storms.

ETA can not be determined accurately based on several factors, but they will be arriving sometime this evening. We can expect moderate to heavy rain, periods of hail and gusty winds to accompany these cells. Lightning and thunder is also likely during this event.

Stay tuned to our home page and specifically our NextRad radar displays for the latest storm track information.

We will update this journal again this evening if conditions warrant.

[end of update]


31-Mar-2013 2:57 AM

Moderate to Heavy Showers Early Easter Sunday and Possibly Again This Afternoon

A weak low pressure trough will be moving inland from the eastern pacific this morning and spinning over the Central California region as it slowly moves east. This circulation will bring the chance for moderate to occasionally heavy shower activity to the Bass Lake area throughout the day today.

The station has already logged 0.36 inches of rain in the last 90 minutes with rain rates exceeding 0.50 in/h at times as the first rain band slid along the Sierra range as it travelled in a due north direction. Only this one side of the storm's circulation appears to contain any measurable precipitation, so showers will end abruptly as soon as this lopsided storm spins the rain band counter clockwise and back out to sea. There is a good chance we will see the return of this same precipitation band later today as the rotation moves further east while also bringing the rain showers back around and through the Bass Lake area for a second time.

Upslope generated Thunderstorm activity ahead of and behind this band of precipitation is also possible today. Several lighting strikes were already spotted on radar around 2 a.m. this morning during the band's first pass along the Sierra range.

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest real time precipitation activity reports.

We will update this journal again later in the day if conditions warrant.

[end of update]


21-Mar-2013 10:52 AM

Drought Conditions Return Until At Least Wednesday of Next Week

[end of update]


19-Mar-2013 7:57 PM

Light Rain Moving Into Area Later Tonight Through Most of Wednesday

Radar is now indicating light showers moving in from the coast and should begin impacting the Bass Lake area just around midnight tonight. Precipitation totals are not expected to be very impressive from this weak system, but we may pull in as much as half an inch from the storm if we are lucky and the upslope conditions don't let us down.

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest real time radar returns and precipitation activity reports.

[end of update]


17-Mar-2013 12:30 PM

A Brief Return to Wet Weather Tuesday Afternoon Through Wednesday Night

The drought conditions will continue through Monday night before a weak disturbance grazes the Southern Sierra beginning Tuesday morning. Rain will develop over the Bass Lake area by afternoon with showers continuing through the day on Wednesday and Wednesday night.

Current forecasts are not expecting this system to bring us more than perhaps a half an inch of light to moderate rain when all is said and done. The relief will only last for a few short days before yet another blocking ridge builds in behind this low pressure system bringing a return to the drought conditions that have persisted through the bulk of the 2013 wet season.

Can't say at this point if this will bring us enough additional precipitation to meet or exceed last season's dismal rainfall total, but it will at least bring us a bit closer. This is not saying much though, since last year's seasonal total was less than 50% of normal for the region. We are currently looking at a 2013 seasonal total that is less than 40% of normal for Bass Lake.

We will update the journal again as we get closer to the event. Most likely sometime Tuesday when we start seeing some positive radar returns.

UPDATE to include latest forecast:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
245 PM PDT sun Mar 17 2013


Synopsis...
mostly clear skies with slightly above average temperatures expected
through Tuesday. A fast moving storm will reach the region Tuesday
afternoon into Wednesday night...bringing some rain and higher
elevation snow.

Discussion...
other then a few high clouds today...a ridge of high pressure
remains as the dominating feature over the west. While this ridge
has flatten due to a weak short wave trough pushing through the
Pacific northwest/inter-mountain west...temperatures over the area
were affected. A stronger onshore flow pattern allowed
temperatures to cool during the last 24 hours as main valley
locations remain in the upper 60s to lower 70s. Short range forecasts
show a weak short wave ridge moving over the West Coast on
Monday...ahead of a late season storm prognosticated for mid-week. Models
have been handling this late season storm very well and timing it
more late Tuesday night/early Wednesday morning. However...
forecast models are now indicating a high degree of certainty that
a split flow pattern will develop. Ensembles were showing
amplitude issues during previous runs...which would correspond
with a split flow event. Therefore...while precipitation may become an
issue on the amounts...probability of precipitation is still certain with high
percentages expected. Will keep forecast as is with change
levels...but expect minimal water quantities. Model precipitation-water
charts forecast high moisture entering the district late Tuesday night
..which would support at least some precipitation falling over the
district on Wednesday. In addition to the unsettled weather
pattern...winds may become an issue by middle-week with the passing
storm. Model surface pressure gradients from sfo to las are
prognosticated to reach 15mb by Wednesday evening. Presently...may have
to consider at least a Wind Advisory statement as certainty with
the storm track increases.


Being a progressive system...the storm is expected to exit the
region on Thursday with a ridge of high pressure building back
onto the West Coast. However...after the middle-week storm...
certainty drops off as to the ridge development.
ECMWF/UKMET/Canadian...and to some extent the NOGAPS attempt to
produce a ridge pattern by next weekend. GFS/GFS-ensemble have a
much weaker ridge/developing trough pattern during the period. Will
go against the GFS and trend the forecast toward the ridge
solution as valley temperatures return into the 80s by next Sunday. Even
with the trough pattern solution of the GFS...the GFS moves the trough
through the Pacific northwest/southwest Canada by the end of next
weekend. Therefore...after Wednesday event...will keep the
remainer of the forecast periods dry.

[end of update]


11-Mar-2013 7:05 PM

Extended Dry/Warm Period Expected - Last Journal Update Until Further Notice

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion...updated
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
235 PM PDT Monday Mar 11 2013


Synopsis...
high pressure continues to build in over the area producing dry
conditions and a gradually warming trend through the week.

Discussion...
satellite loops show a few high clouds over the Hanford warning/
forecast area...otherwise clear skies prevail across the central
California interior.

A band of fog developed over eastern Kings and southern Fresno
counties this morning...and was locally dense in the Hanford area
south of Highway 198. With little change in the airmass and an
inversion aloft...fog likely will redevelop overnight. Have added
patchy fog to the weather grid from 10-16z /0300-0900 PDT/ Tuesday.

At 20z /1300 PDT/...temperatures in the central and southern San
Joaquin Valley were in the middle 60s...and were mostly running a few
degrees ahead of 20z Sunday. These temperatures also were only 2-3
degrees below Sunday/S highs...and the central and South Valley
highs are on track to reach the lower to middle 70s.

The upper-level ridge is forecast to continue building into
California through at least Thursday...with temperatures warming
well above normal for the latter half of the week. The 12z GFS and
European model (ecmwf) forecast 850-mb temperatures over Fresno to peak at 16 c on
Thursday...with the 12z NAM-12 a degree warmer. Based on past
experience...these 850-mb temperatures would correspond to high
temperatures in the lower 80s. The record high temperature for
Fresno for Thursday /March 14th/ is 83 degrees...set in 2007. The
forecast high for Fresno on the 14th is 84 degrees...which would
break the record. The forecast high for Bakersfield also is 84
degrees...which would tie for the 4th warmest March 14th on record.
The record for March 14th at Bakersfield is 88 degrees...set in 1916.
/Second place is 85 degrees...in 1934 and 2004...followed by 84
degrees in 1994 and 2007./

An upper-level trough rotating around a low over southwestern Alaska
is forecast to flatten the ridge and push it inland Friday. The GFS
begins cooling 850-mb temperatures Friday...while the European model (ecmwf) has
persistence. Both models have cooling over the weekend into the first
part of next week as a stronger through moves through the Pacific
northwest and drops is the Great Basin...but temperatures are
expected to remain above normal through at least next Monday.

The forecast will be dry through the period.

=====================================================

Due to the forecasted lack of any weather events for the foreseeable future, this will be our last journal update until the blocking ridge breaks down and/or we see any indications of another storm system reaching the Bass Lake area. Based on current forecasts, this could very well be our last update for the winter wet season.

In the meantime, we invite you to visit the NWS forecast page for Bass Lake Ca. for the latest local weather information 24/7. The forecasts on the page linked below are prepared using the weather data supplied by this station.

Official National Weather Service Bass Lake Forecast

[end of update]


08-Mar-2013 9:55 PM

Storm Update - Extended Outlook for March 2013

Another round of moderate to heavy showers arrived over the station this evening just before 8 p.m. bringing some additional precipitation to the area. Our total for today now stands at 0.36 inches with a storm total of 1.27 inches. Our total for the season now stands at 21.47 inches with still leaves us an inch shy of our pathetic 2012 seasonal total.

The NWS forecast has the shower activity diminishing after midnight with a 20% chance of additional rain/snow showers Saturday morning.

The system will then exit the area Saturday night as yet another amplified ridge of high pressure begins building over Central California for Sunday and then persisting through all of next week and next weekend. Like all of these huge blocking ridges seen this winter, this next ridge is expected to remain stationary over the middle of the state for at least 10 days and sadly, will block the few remaining winter storm systems from reaching the Central California interior.

It is not clear at this point whether or not there will be any additional storm systems remaining out in the eastern pacific by the time this blocking ridge breaks down or moves east. If 2013 continues to follow the same dry patterns seen in 2012, the storm we have just experienced will be the last one of the season. This means that our current 21.47 of rainfall may very well be close to, if not the final seasonal rainfall total. This of course is terrible news as we head into what is expected to be the hottest summer on record for the Southern Sierra Nevada. The current 2013 seasonal rainfall total is less than 50% of normal for the Bass Lake area. The Sierra snowpack is equally dismal compared to a normal year.

Due to the expected lack of any weather events for the foreseeable future, this will be our last journal update until the blocking ridge breaks down and/or we see any indications of another storm system reaching the Bass Lake area. Based on current forecasts, this could very well be our last update for the season.

In the meantime, we invite you to visit the NWS forecast page for Bass Lake Ca. for the latest local weather information 24/7. The forecasts on the page linked below are prepared using the weather data supplied by this station.

Official National Weather Service Bass Lake Forecast

[end of update]


08-Mar-2013 2:50 PM

Heavy Rainfall at the Station!

After a day of nothing but cloudy skies, the upslope has kicked in and we are in the middle of a very heavy rainfall event! The station recorded 0.03 inches in less than 5 minutes, with a high rain rate recorded of 0.47 in/H.

Radar is showing very little precipitation in the area, so we are not sure at this point if we will continue to see additional cells of precipitation after this cell moves through.

Radar image taken at 3:15 p.m.

Weather Image

Stay tuned to the station's home page for the latest real time precipitation activity reports.

[end of update]


07-Mar-2013 10:09 AM

On and Off Rain Showers Today - Possible Snow Showers Tonight

Scattered showers will be moving through the area today as a weak low pressure system spins over the area. Upslope conditions have been favorable during this event and has resulted in more precipitation than surrounding areas. Another system is expected to arrive by early Friday morning for another round of light precipitation and possible light snow accumulations for the Bass Lake area.

Another blocking ridge will build into the area for the weekend and into next week with temperatures rising above seasonal norms. Not sure at this point if we will see a return to wet weather after that or not. We will have to wait and see what develops out beyond the 10 day forecast period.

Storm total so far since the 6th stands at 0.73 inches. Seasonal rainfall total now stands at 20.93. This is about 20 inches below what would be considered a normal total for this point in the season.

[end of update]


04-Mar-2013 4:35 PM

The Latest from Hanford on the Tuesday Night/Wednesday Storm System

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
225 PM PST Monday Mar 4 2013


Synopsis...
high pressure will prevail over the region before another Pacific
storm system moves into the central California interior Tuesday
night and Wednesday. Colder air along with a chance of rain and
mountain snow will accompany this system. Chances for showers will
continue on Thursday and Friday as an upper-level trough of low
pressure will remain over the area.

Discussion...
Another nice day in the central California interior and we have one more
day tomorrow before a Pacific storm system moves in late Tuesday night
and continues through Wednesday.

GFS is a bit slow and weaker with the system. Have made some minor
changes to the forecast to represent a slower timing and less quantitative precipitation forecast
across the valley. The ensemble mean is indicating slightly less
of a deep trough. The system appears to be very progressive and
will exit the region quickly as the front moves through. The
system will open the door for a series of weak systems to move
through.

The models are indicating that the strongest jet will remain
offshore and we are not anticipating any thunderstorms in the sjv
on Thursday. We are keeping in showers in the Sierra...as
favorable upslope conditions are expected in the Post frontal
onshore flow. Mixing and possible scattered clouds will keep temperatures up
Wednesday and Thursday nights...so we are not expecting any frosty conditions
behind the front. The ridge will return by late Saturday and into
Sunday. Warmer and drier conditions are expected across the
central California interior for the weekend and into Monday.

The potential for strong gusty winds will increase late Tuesday
afternoon ahead of the approaching low. Forecasts show a north-S 20mb
pressure gradient across the state by 06z Tuesday. GFS indicates
35kt onshore SW flow at 5kft along the central coast. Strong local
wind gust 25-35 miles per hour could result in blowing dust below the coastal
mountains passes along the west of the valley late Tuesday
afternoon and evening.

Winter Weather Advisory for Tuesday Night and Wednesday

==================================================

We will have another update tomorrow evening as the storm system begins to move in, so stay tuned!

[end of update]



03-Mar-2013 12:26 PM

Light Showers Thanks to Upslope Effect

The station has recorded a total of 0.09 inches of rain since midnight as the area is brushed by a passing low pressure system to our north. Based on the latest radar maps, Bass Lake is the only area in the Sierra currently seeing any significant rainfall activity due to upsloping which is nice. We can expect on and off showers throughout the day today with a gradual change over to just cloudy skies.

A more organized system is still expected to impact the area beginning Tuesday night through Wednesday with another round of light to moderate shower activity. Snow levels from this next system could fall low enough that we may see some snow here in the Bass Lake area.

We will have more information on this next system as we get closer to the actual event.

[end of update]


02-Mar-2013 10:28 AM

Chance of Rain Sunday - Higher Chances Tuesday Night/Wednesday

A moderate storm system passing to our north will brush the forecast area tomorrow bringing us a 40% chance of rain showers tomorrow with mostly cloudy skies. We can expect skies to slowly cloud up over the course of the day today (Saturday) ahead of the system's passing.

Tuesday night into Wednesday a more direct storm track will bring a higher chance of rain/snow to the Bass Lake area. At this time, we do not expect any of these systems to provide us with more than a few 10ths of an inch of precipitation. The overriding pattern remains dry with precipitation activity remaining significantly below normal levels for this time of the year.

We will update the journal again as conditions warrant. In the meantime, stay tuned to the NWS forecast page based on D2149 data HERE.

[end of update]


28-Feb-2013 12:38 PM

Much Needed Pattern Change Back to Wet Weather Coming Next Week!

It is still too early to say for sure if this change will be significant or another of the typical short lived and weak weather systems we have come to expect so far this winter.

Stay tuned to our Facebook page and to this journal for additional information on the coming weather changes as we get closer to the event. First chances of rain/snow are expected late Tuesday night, with snow levels lowering to foothill altitudes on Wednesday.

Precipitation probabilities will not be available until Sunday or Monday.

[end of update]


24-Feb-2013 11:31 AM

Continued Clear and Dry Through 10 Day Forecast Period

In what has become the normal trend this winter, high pressure has one again built into the area and will be blocking the storm track for the extended forecast period.

We can expect clear and dry conditions with temperatures rising to above normal highs by mid-week. No sign of any additional storm activity for the foreseeable future even beyond the 10 day forecast period.

Current seasonal rainfall total stands at 19.98 inches which is less than 50% of normal for this point in the wet season. The Sierra snow pack has been reduced significantly by the high temperatures and low precipitation this season, so it will be interesting to see how Bass Lake's water level progresses with so little snow melt expected this spring.

This will be our last journal update until we see a sign of a much needed pattern change back to a wet pattern. Based on the extended model runs, this could well be into the middle of March and possibly longer.

[end of update]


20-Feb-2013 10:45 AM

Storm Update: 6 inches of Snow on the Ground - Storm Total Stands at 0.56 inches of Liquid Equivalent

The Tuesday system brought us some moderate to heavy snowfall yesterday afternoon and into the evening with 6 inches of snow on the ground and a liquid equivalent of 0.52 inches. The storm total through today is 0.56 inches with 0.04 recorded since midnight. The monthly total for February 2013 now stands at 0.93 inches with is way below normal for 20th of the month. Average rainfall for a normal February is between 8 and 13 inches.

Our seasonal total to date stands at 19.98 inches. An average seasonal total as of Feb. 20th is about 35 inches.

The system has exited the area now leaving the cold front in its wake. We can expect unsettled weather today with a very slight chance of some snow showers. Gradual clearing later and into Thursday before a series of weak systems are expected to brush the state.

Still too early to say for certain if these additional weak weather systems will provide us with any additional precipitation, but it is possible. We will update this journal again as we get closer to the weekend when we have more definitive information on these additional low pressure systems.

[end of update]



19-Feb-2013 4:58 PM

Storm Update: Here it comes!

The moisture band is just now arriving over the station. Based on the radar return below, it looks like this will bring us moderate to heavy snowfall for at least a couple of hours.

Enjoy it while it lasts! There isn't much additional moisture behind this main band.

Weather Image

[end of update]


19-Feb-2013 1:57 PM

Storm Update: Some Improvement to Precipitation Potential/Forecast

We are pleased to report that the upslope conditions have improved and a significant moisture band is now advancing towards the Bass Lake area. Based on current radar returns, this looks like it will provide us with some moderate to heavy snow showers when it arrives in the next 1-2 hours.

We will update the journal again with snow conditions as soon as we begin to see the results of this moisture band's arrival over the station.

Latest NextRad and IR SAT Images

Weather Image

Weather Image

[end of update]


19-Feb-2013 11:02 AM

Storm Update: Very Disappointing

So far this much anticipated storm has been very unimpressive. Radar shows very light precipitation moving into the area from the north west. The station has recorded 0.06 inches of precipitation in the form of very light drizzle and recently a rain/snow mix. The current temperature is 34.6 degrees F and slowly falling.

As seems to be the theme for this very disappointing wet season, the NWS has once again scaled back the overall precipitation forecast as this system has not developed into anything of much consequence and as a result, we can expect considerably lower precipitation totals than even the previous scaled back forecast released just 12 hours ago.

While there is still the potential for some additional upslope activity which could help increase the totals for the Bass Lake area, this system is not going to produce even half of what we had originally expected.

With our last hope for some much needed additional precipitation for this dismal month fading fast, February 2013 is certain to secure the dubious distinction of being the warmest and driest February since records began in the 1800s. Climate change deniers will have a hard time explaining this one away as a normal cycle since there has never been a drier February before this one. With 2012 and now 2013 being the warmest and driest winters on record, the science points to a very disturbing trend and what may become the new normal for the southern sierra.

The 2013 fire season will be one to watch very closely.

Latest NextRad and IR SAT Images

Weather Image

Weather Image

The latest revised forecast from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion...updated
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1000 am PST Tuesday Feb 19 2013


Update...
issued a Wind Advisory for the Kern County deserts.

Synopsis...
a strong disturbance and its associated cold front will push across
central California beginning late tonight bringing a good chance of
rain and mountain snow Tuesday through early Wednesday. Cooler
temperatures and a slight chance of showers will remain for the rest
of the week.

Discussion...
winds in the Kern County deserts have increased with each successive
observation this morning as the Pacific storm slowly approaches the
central California interior. Expect winds to reach advisory criteria
this afternoon and continue gusty overnight in the Post-frontal
environment. Have therefore issued a Wind Advisory for the Kern
County deserts from 20z /noon PST/ today through 18z /1000 am PST/
Wednesday/.

The upper-level low is over the northern California coast this
morning. The associated trough is along the coast...but is becoming
moisture starved as a low south of the Aleutians is shearing middle-
and upper-level moisture that had been riding over an east Pacific
Ridge into the trough. In addition...the trough has yet to pick up
moisture from the southern jet. As a result...it will be mostly dry
this morning and have scaled back probability of precipitation through 18z.

================================================

If we see any significant changes to the predicted outcome, we will of course update the journal accordingly.

[end of update]


18-Feb-2013 11:07 AM

Storm Arrival Update

The latest sat and radar returns are indicating that the system will be arriving a bit later than previously forecast. Clouds will begin moving in later today with mostly cloudy conditions by 9 p.m. We are now expecting the start of the precipitation to begin around 4 a.m. Tuesday morning with moderate to heavy snowfall continuing through the day and well into Tuesday evening.

Precipitation will begin to decrease late Tuesday night into Wednesday morning with continued unsettled and showery weather through Wednesday with breezy and cold conditions the remainder of the week. Several additional weak systems will then move through our area into the weekend with periods of rain/snow showers.

Temperatures are expected to plummet off of our highs today, falling by as much as 20 degrees from the highs today. We can expect a hard freeze of any snow accumulation which will make driving conditions very dangerous on all of the local roads in the early morning and late evening hours.

Snow accumulations for the Bass Lake area are now expected to be between 6 and 12 inches depending on the amount of upslope activity we see during these weather events.

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest real-time precipitation activity alerts as they are happening.

We will be updating the journal multiple times during the next few days as conditions warrant.

[end of update]


17-Feb-2013 12:29 PM

Rain and Snow Now Looking Very Likely - Unimpressive Totals Currently Expected

At this point in what has become a very disappointing wet season, we will take anything we can get, but the weak storm system expected to begin arriving Monday night can hardly be considered anything to write home about. Temps are expected to fall considerably from our current highs and lows, and as a result, snow accumulations of 1-2 inches are forecast for the Bass Lake area from Tuesday through Wednesday morning.

Unstable weather will fortunately remain in place through the coming weekend and we could pick up some additional precipitation in the form of rain/snow showers through the period. If the system manages to move in from the right direction, we could see some additional upslope generated precipitation above the predicted quantities.

At this point it is looking pretty likely that February 2013 will go down in the record books as the driest February on record for the Southern Sierra.

As always, we will update this journal as conditions warrant. Stay tuned to our home page for the latest real-time precipitation event alerts and our NextRad Radar to track the approaching storm system yourself!

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
340 am PST sun Feb 17 2013


Synopsis...
the high pressure that has been in control the last several days
will begin to weaken today as a Pacific disturbance moves across
the Pacific northwest. A stronger disturbance and its associated
cold front will push across central California beginning late
Monday bringing a good chance of rain and mountain snow early
Tuesday through early Wednesday. Temperatures will return to below
normal on Tuesday.

Discussion...
upper trough moving through at this time is breaking down the ridge that
has been in place for several days. Cooler temperatures today with breezy
conditions are expected. Weak upper ridge will build in behind
this trough in advance of an approaching upper low center currently
in the Gulf of Alaska.

The models continue to handle the low center fairly well as it is
advertised to move across the central California interior Tuesday night.
Dynamics are impressive with the feature as it moves by...however
it is lacking a deep moisture feed. We are expecting the low
center to provide measurable precipitation across the entire cen
cal interior Tuesday and Tuesday night. It looks like it will be
windy across the region on Wednesday as the front moves through and the
cold air settles in.

The low will move east of the forecast area late Wednesday as another weak system
in the Gulf of Alaska drops south through the region providing
continued unsettled weather Thursday. Not much moisture with this
feature and it doesnt look real impressive. However it may be
enough to kick off a shower or two...especially into the mountains.

A third system will remain east of the Sierra and be a wind maker
for US with another shot of cooler air to the region next Sat and
sun. The models have been consistent with this feature and looks
to remain dry...however we may see a shower or two in the
Sierra...especially in some of the favored upslope areas.

Winter Storm Watch Issued for the Sierra Tuesday Morning Through Tuesday Night Above 4500 Feet

Winter Storm Watch

[end of update]

===============================================

[end of update]


15-Feb-2013 12:37 AM

Much Needed Pattern Change Looking Likely for Tuesday of Next Week!

A dramatic but short lived pattern change will be coming to the area beginning on Tuesday. Snow levels are expected to fall well below our elevation, so snow with accumulation is very likely through Wednesday. This looks like it might have the potential to bring us some significant precipitation, which we desperately need during what is shaping up to be the driest winter on record.

The latest from Hanford on this change in the weather...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1002 PM PST Thursday Feb 14 2013


Synopsis...
high pressure will continue to bring mainly clear skies and a slow
warming trend through Saturday. The high pressure will weaken Sunday
as a Pacific disturbance moves across the Pacific northwest. A
stronger disturbance and its associated cold front will push across
central California Tuesday and Tuesday night bringing a good chance
of rain and mountain snow. Much cooler by Tuesday.

Discussion...

Slight adjustments were made on min temperatures for tonight based on
trends of the past few hours. Maximum temperatures were increased a few degrees
in the valley based on expected warming of 3-5f in the boundary
layer per GFS/NAM/sref data. Pulled back the warming just a bit in
the southern foothills in Kern County were winds aren/T forecast to
be as strong but did bring a little more warming to the eastern
foothills around the Kern/Tulare County line where there will be a
little more wind.

15.00z GFS still painting a nice push of precipitation into our County Warning Area Tuesday as a band of moderate moisture advection and good upper level divergence crosses the region with the incoming low. All the models
are on this low and have been for a few days even at this point.

Increased probability of precipitation and sky cover just a bit but expect them to go even higher in the near future.

=========================================

We will have more information about this change to the current dry weather pattern on Sunday, so stay tuned.

[end of update]


10-Feb-2013 11:54 AM

High Pressure Rebuilds Into the Area - No Rain in Foreseeable Future

We are once again entering a period of dry weather with above normal temperatures thanks to yet another amplified high pressure ridge that appears to be setting up shop for a very long stay. This large and very strong ridge will be blocking the storm track and thus preventing any weather systems from reaching the state.

Extended forecast models show no storms through at least the third week of February which is very bad news for our seasonal rainfall numbers. It is looking likely that the winter of 2013 will end up being even drier and warmer than the winter of 2012 which we didn't think possible, but the numbers don't lie. A very pathetic winter in terms of precipitation so far, and likely another record setting drought period for the Sierra.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
426 am PST sun Feb 10 2013


Synopsis...
high pressure will be building over California the next several
days. This will bring mainly clear skies and a slow warming trend.
Freezing nighttime temperatures will occur in the San Joaquin
Valley through Tuesday morning, then moderating the remainder of
the week.

Discussion...
a baggy trough lingers across the desert SW this morning. This is
bringing a north-NE flow aloft over central California...and keeping temperatures
below normal. Skies are clear this morning except for a few clouds
along the Sierra foothills. These should erode later today as the
airmass continues to dry out.


A high amplitude ridge in the east Pacific will bring a blocking
pattern to California and the West Coast. A slow warming trend is forecast
through the end of the week...with temperatures several degrees above climatology Wednesday into the weekend.

=======================================

This will be our last journal update until we see signs of a pattern change and a return to more seasonal conditions and precipitation.

[end of update]


08-Feb-2013 11:34 AM

Over 5 Inches of Snow in Less Than 90 Minutes Last Night!

We saw one of the heaviest snowfalls we have seen in a very long time here at the station last night. The moisture in the frontal boundary turned out to be much more concentrated than originally forecast and this resulted in a rapid accumulation starting just before 10:30 pm. last night and continuing to just after midnight.

We haven't seen much since that initial event as the center of the circulation is now directly overhead and radar indicates that there isn't any moisture contained in this section of the storm.

Our liquid equivalent storm total so far from this system stands at 0.37 inches. 0.07 of that total came down after midnight. So far, we are not seeing the level of precipitation originally forecast for our area today, and we are not sure at this point if we are going to see any additional accumulation of measurable precipitation from this system.

Stay tuned to our website for the latest NextRad radar returns and automated precipitation activity reports.

[end of update]


07-Feb-2013 11:09 PM

Storm Update: 11:10 p.m.

Snow began falling at the station just about 40 minutes ago and has been very heavy so far. Accumulation began almost immediately with over 3 inches of light powder on the ground as of this report. Current liquid equivalent is 0.14 inches.

We are seeing a moderate upslope condition at the moment, so the current precipitation band could continue to rebuild ahead of our location, but it is still too early to say for sure of this will be the case.

This is definitely the best snowfall we have seen in a very long time!

Latest NextRad Radar Images

Weather Image

Weather Image

Stay tuned to our website for the latest precipitation activity reports! We will post our next storm update Friday morning.

[end of storm update]


07-Feb-2013 9:52 AM

Cold Front Continues Moving In Today - Rain/Snow After 4PM

Precipitation chances have been increased to 80% for the Bass Lake area later today, with a transition to snow by 10 p.m.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion...corrected
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
354 am PST Thursday Feb 7 2013


Synopsis...
a cold upper level trough of low pressure will move into the
region later today and linger through Friday. Scattered to
numerous showers will be possible later today in Merced County
spreading south tonight. Showers will continue Friday...with a
slight chance of afternoon thunderstorms in the San Joaquin Valley
and adjacent Sierra foothills. Clearing Friday night and
Saturday with frost possible in the Valley. High pressure will
return over the weekend but temperatures will be below normal
through much of next week.

Discussion...
an approaching upper level trough and associated weak cold front
will move into central California later today. The front will continue southeast out
of the area tonite...but the cold upper low will linger across the
area Friday. Precipitation with this system will be mainly in the form of
showers...most numerous in the mountains cold middle-level temperatures Friday afternoon will
bring enough instability (h5 temperatures near -32c) for isolated thunderstorms in the sjv
and adjacent Sierra foothills. Wetbulb-zero will be very close to
the surface. Lack of much vertical shear will limit storm impacts to
small hail (psbly accumulating if storms are deep enough or slow
mvg)...and brief gusty winds.


Snow levels lowering quickly tonite to 2... as low as 1.5k
Friday in convection. Quantitative precipitation forecast will be scattered enough over 24 or more hours to
limit snowfall to adzy levels...but could present probs across the
socal passes in Kern County to cause some tvl probs over the
Grapevine and Tehachapi passes.


High press will rebuild over the eastpac during the weekend. With
central California remaining on the east side of the mean ridge axis...the
region will remain in the cooler nearly flow much of the week. This
will keep temperatures a few degrees below normal...as weak S/waves drop south
across the intermtn west/Great Basin...with reenforcing shots of
cool air out of western Canada. It should remain dry from Sat through the
end of next week however.


In the sjv this weekend...nighttime temperatures could drop to 28 degrees or
below...especially Sat night and Sun night. Frost/freeze products are
possible.

============================

[end of update]


04-Feb-2013 11:38 PM

Pattern Change Expected Beginning Thursday, But Storm System Will Be Unimpressive and Shortlived

The current high pressure ridge is expected to begin breaking down on Wednesday night which will clear the way for the winter storm track to once again reach the Central California interior. There is a system forming out in the eastern pacific that is expected to move into our area beginning Thursday afternoon.

The timing and intensity of this much needed winter storm remains uncertain at the time of this report, but it is looking likely that the Bass Lake area will see at least some light precipitation in the form of snow from late Thursday afternoon through Friday night. Temperatures are expected to fall to well below seasonal averages during this event with snow levels falling to 2500 feet by Friday night. We could also see some gusty winds and potential thunderstorms accompanying this system. Based on the forecasted low temperatures, winter weather driving conditions will likely exist during this event with the potential for a hard freeze both Thursday and Friday nights.

We will update the journal again on Wednesday with the latest NWS forecast for our area and by then we should have a more confident assessment of what we can expect from this next storm system. The weather will remain clear and unseasonably warm on Tuesday and through most of Wednesday. The system is expected to exit the area by Saturday. It appears that immediately following the exit of this system, the winter storm window will be slammed shut on us once again as another amplified ridge of high pressure builds back into the area immediately following this brief weather event.

Based on current estimates, this weather system is not going to provide any significant precipitation, so our rainfall deficit will not be noticeably impacted for the better.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
339 PM PST Monday Feb 4 2013


Synopsis...
there is little change expected for the local area with dry
conditions...patchy late night through morning fog and near normal
temperatures continuing through Thursday afternoon. An approaching
system later this week will bring increased chances for
precipitation to the area.

Discussion...
fog burned off in the valley this morning...leaving another
generally sunny and mild afternoon across the central California
interior. A weak shortwave ridge is building inland behind an
exiting weak shortwave trough...with just some thin high cirrus
spilling over the ridge. With little change in the airmass and
just some thin high cloudiness...expect another round of valley
fog overnight and a dense fog advisory has been issued for
Tuesday morning. Another weak trough is prognosticated to pass through
the area Wednesday with little effect...lowering temperatures just
slightly to around climatology.


A more significant low pressure system is forecast to drop out of
the northeast Pacific and begin impacting our area Thursday. Model
consistency with this feature is leading to increased certainty in
the timing...strength and track of the storm system. Look for this
system to move through our area Thursday night and Friday. Colder
air with this system will lower snow levels as low as around 2500
feet by Friday and Friday night. This would bring some snow into the
foothills and to pass level in the Kern Mountains...including the
Grapevine. Models show a lack of moisture associated with this
system so snow amounts will be limited...but any snow on the
passes will cause travel impacts. With very cold air aloft...unstable
conditions Friday as the low passes overhead may lead to some
thunderstorms in the valley and lower foothills. A Special Weather
Statement has been issued highlighting the effects expected from
this incoming storm system. Mild conditions will begin to return
to our area early next week as the system departs.

===============================

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest real-time weather condition alerts and to the NWS Bass Lake area forecast page linked at the top of this page for updated long range weather forecasts based on D2149's data.

[end of update]


01-Feb-2013 5:39 AM

Driest January in Decades - Overall Extended Forecast for February Looks Equally Bleak Regarding Normal Amounts of Rain/Snow

The station recorded a dismal 1.21 inches of precipitation for the entire month of January 2013 which makes it one of the driest on record. On the 28th of last month yet another high pressure ridge began building over California and once again started blocking the winter storm track from reaching the Central California interior. What little gains we made earlier in the season have been completely erased by this extended drought, and the NWS sees little hope that this current high pressure pattern will be easing any time soon. The latest snow pack measurements conducted a few days ago by the water resources board found the Southern Sierra snow pack just shy of 85% of normal. More alarming however is the fact that we currently have only 53% of what is considered to be a normal snow pack level for the end of the wet season in mid-April. That is a huge amount to make up with less than 90 days of wet season left. Especially considering the lackluster precipitation amounts observed and recorded so far this year. We personally see little chance of reaching those levels before the Spring melt begins.

The most recent NWS extended forecast models share our pessimism. The latest climatology estimates for February paint an equally grim picture for precipitation this month as well. Our current seasonal total since July 1st is only 19.05 inches. Still several inches below last year's historically low seasonal total of 22.50 inches.

If we continue to see a lack of significant winter storm systems with continued dry weather through this month, we are likely going to end up with one of the driest winters on record for the Sierra Nevada and all of Central California. This season could possibly be even drier than the 2011/2012 season which would give it the dubious distinction of being the driest and warmest winter on record for the whole of the Southern Sierra Nevada.

Too little too late?...

Hanford is currently tracking a low pressure trough forming in the eastern pacific which has the potential for some significant precipitation events towards the end of next week. However, based on the previous recorded results from similar events earlier this winter, we fully expect this system to weaken and ultimately disappoint. We would love to be proven wrong, but the trends so far this season give us little cause for optimism. As depressing as it may sound, we are very likely looking at the "New Normal" for Sierra precipitation numbers during the winter months, which means heightened risks for uncontrolled wild fires, and more frequent extreme heat and wind events during the summer with little to no precipitation during the summer monsoon.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
210 am PST Friday Feb 1 2013


Synopsis...
little change is expected as high pressure will continue to
dominate the local weather into the first part of next week. Patchy
night and morning fog in the San Joaquin Valley is possible through
the weekend.

Discussion...
at 09z /0100 PST/ this morning...satellite loops indicated that the
central California interior remained under the influence of an
upper-level east-Pacific Ridge. Temperatures Thursday were a bit
warmer than forecast...and central and southern San Joaquin Valley
temperatures at 09z were as much as 6 degrees warmer than at 09z
Thursday...and dewpoints were up as much as 4 degrees. As a
result...expect high temperatures today to be at least a couple of
degrees warmer than Thursday.


The models forecast an upper-level low to develop Saturday west of
Baja California California as an east-Pacific trough splits. This low is
forecast to spin some upper-level moisture into the central
California interior from the south...so have increased sky cover
over the weekend because of the influx of cirrus.


The northern component of the trough is forecast to move through the
Pacific northwest over the weekend as an upper-level short-wave. This
short-wave will flatten the ridge...resulting in minor cooling Sunday
before the ridge rebounds Monday.


Another upper-level trough will move through northern California
Tuesday night and Wednesday. This trough will weaken the ridge and
bring a slight chance of snow to the higher elevations of the
southern Sierra Nevada. This will be a precursor system to a
stronger trough that will reach California next Thursday.


Although the latest model runs have delayed the arrival of the main
trough a bit...they still forecast this to be a cold storm with
850-mb temperatures over Fresno falling as much as 12 c from 18z
/1000 PST/ Thursday to 18z Friday. The GFS and European model (ecmwf) do differ a bit
on timing and the European model (ecmwf) digs the precipitation further south...across
the entire Hanford warning/forecast area...than the GFS /which keeps
precipitation north of Kern County/. However...the consensus is
developing that this could be a significant precipitation event with
rainfall amounts between 0.25 and 0.50 inch on parts of the San
Joaquin Valley floor..and possibly dropping snow on the passes
through the Kern County mountains Friday.


Note...although Saturday...February 2nd...is groundhog day...winter
will not end until 0402 PDT /1102z/ on March 20th.

==================================================================

Lastly... We apologize for the lack of updates over the last two weeks, but personal medical issues have prevented us from maintaining this journal with the same level of attention we have shown in the past. The issues continue, so until further notice we will not be able to maintain our previous update schedule. Instead, we will only be updating this journal for major weather events or pattern change announcements. We invite you to monitor the official NWS forecast page for Bass Lake which is linked at the top of this page and also on the top right of the home page, in the gray navigation box.

Thank you for your continued support and patronage.

[end of update]


22-Jan-2013 8:48 AM

Big Pattern Change Begins Today!

The huge high pressure ridge that has blocked all storm activity since the 12th of the month will begin breaking down today, with mostly cloudy skies expected by Wednesday. Currently a 50% of rain for the Bass Lake area by Friday through Sunday night. Possible drizzle and light showers as early as Wednesday afternoon.

Latest IR and Water Vapor SAT Images

Weather Image

Weather Image

Official National Weather Service Bass Lake Forecast

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
256 am PST Tuesday Jan 22 2013


Synopsis...
persistent high pressure will weaken today and Wednesday allowing
a weather system to move across northern California Wednesday
night. Another low pressure system will move into the region late
in the week and over the weekend bringing the threat of
precipitation to the central California interior.

Discussion...
no fog formation as of yet based on surface observation.
Satellite imagery shows some cirrus clouds spreading over the
ridge tonight but other than obscuring any surface based fog or
stratus that's about it. The ridge continues to dominate the
pattern over the west however the east Pacific is getting more
active. Forecast models bring a weakening frontal system across
northern California Wednesday and Wednesday night however it looks
at this time that it will only affect areas of northern
California. Forecast models then bring into Southern California on
Friday the low now centered out near 22n/130w as an open wave and
bring some precipitation threat. Timing and amount of available
moisture are questionable. Current forecast has chance probability of precipitation
extending into Saturday and this seems reasonable at this time.
For Sunday, forecast models are actually in good agreement in
bringing southward, a rather cold system from Alaska and tracking
this feature into central California. Given this scenario snow
levels should fall rather quickly on Sunday.

For Monday and Tuesday of next week, the low is projected to move
southeast of central California for an end to the precipitation
threat. All in all a big change in the pattern for a very warm and
persistent ridge to a more normal wet scenario.

===========================================

We will of course keep you updated on any precipitation/heavy weather activity via this journal. We invite you to check our home page often over the weekend for the latest NextRad Radar returns as well as precipitation activity reports via our own home page.

[end of update]


21-Jan-2013 9:08 AM

Long Awaited Pattern Change On the Way!

Models are starting to indicate a very good chance that this stubborn high pressure will finally be exiting our area and opening the door to the long awaited storm track that has been blocked from our state since the 13th of the month.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
421 am PST Monday Jan 21 2013


Synopsis...
high pressure will continue over central California into early
Wednesday. Mainly clear skies and above normal temperatures during
the daytime hours. Areas of late night and morning fog in the San
Joaquin Valley.

Discussion...
high press at the surface and aloft will dominate central California through
early Wednesday. This will bring mainly clear skies...light winds and
above normal daytime temperatures. Nighttime mins in the sjv continue to
gradually improve...though some outliers seem to be stuck in the
upper 20s. Increasing clouds Tuesday night should put an end to the
valley frost. Dense fog will be problematic the next 2 nites...but
should be confined mainly to the center of the valley.


A longwave upper trough roughly along 135w...will approach the West
Coast Wednesday. Models continue to split the system Wednesday. GFS tries to bring
some precipitation to central California Wednesday night as the split passes by to the north and the cutoff low forms well to the SW of California. The Euro
continues on the dry side...as energy with the northern portion of the
split diminishes as it moves through the mean ridge position. Believe
in the dry side as splits generally dont bring precipitation this far
south. However just enough uncertainty Wednesday afternoon and evening for a
slight chance of sprinkles or light showers from Merced County into
Yosemite.


Models beginning to diverge on timing and strength as the closed
cutoff lift NE as an open wave...bringing some precipitation to central
California...possibly as early as Friday. On Sat...a new system drops southeast out of the glfak. The Euro drops the main low southward along the West Coast
with a farly strong closed upper low sun near the norcal coast. It
also shows a subtrop connection developing ahead of the upper low.
GFS keep a more progressive pattern with an open wave moving quickly
through central California. Prefer the similar Gem and Euro solutions with
a deep wet pattern setting up...and lasting through at least Monday...as
this is more of a typical trajectory than a fast moving shortwave trough.

===========================================

Look to the change beginning as early as Friday with increasing chances of precipitation through the weekend.

[end of update]


19-Jan-2013 8:21 AM

Dry Pattern to Continue Through Friday, Possibly Into Next Weekend

The HUGE and stubborn high pressure ridge that has prevented the storm track from reaching California since the 12th continues unabated until at least Friday of next week. We are now seriously below normal with our rainfall numbers for January.

The Latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
347 am PST Sat Jan 19 2013


Synopsis...
high pressure will continue to dominate central California weather
the next several days. The high pressure area will weaken a little
Tuesday as a very weak disturbance moves across th region. No
precipitation is expected. Nighttime temperatures in the San
Joaquin Valley will slowly modify...and should mostly be above
freezing by Tuesday.

Discussion...
a large blocking pattern in the eastpac and western US is forecast to
continue at least into early next week. This will continue to bring well
above normal temperatures to central California. The exception being the sjv
where a dry airmass is causing large diurnal temperature swings. While
nighttime mins will slowly modify...frost and subfreezing temperatures
will continue in rural areas through Monday morning. Most of the valley should
be above freezing Tuesday morning.

The weak system moving through Tuesday split...with the northern half of the
shortwave moving through the pacnw...and the southern portion cutting off into a
closed low well SW of California Thursday. This cutoff is not forecast to move
much until next Sat. Temperatures will lower several degrees middle-week as
heights gradually weaken...mainly mtns/deserts. The exception
being valley mins...which will continue to slowly modify.

================================

We will be keeping an eye on this possible pattern change at the end of next week with the hopes that we finally start seeing normal precipitation activity return to the area.

[end of update]



10-Jan-2013 6:41 PM

Dry and Cold Through Mid-Week - Possible Mono Wind Event Monday Night

The storm system has exited the area leaving in its wake extremely cold surface temperatures which should remain in place through the weekend. Our storm total from the last system was only 0.16 inches. Temperatures are expected to drop well into the low 20s over the next several nights, possibly dipping down into the teens before the cold front moves east early next week.

A very slight possibility for some snow flurries at the higher elevations on Sunday, but not likely to effect the Bass Lake area. There is also the possibility of a moderate Mono Wind event for the Southern Sierra on Monday evening, but this event is not at all certain at this time either. We will update the journal should the need arise regarding this possible high wind event.

The primary weather pattern through at least Wednesday will be cold and dry conditions with no chance of any precipitation for our area. Hanford is not currently forecasting any additional storm systems through the 7 day extended forecast.

We will of course notify you should there be any changes to the currently predicted dry pattern.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
259 PM PST Thursday Jan 10 2013


Synopsis...
a chance of snow can be expected through tonight in the Sierra
Nevada foothills and Kern County mountains. Much colder over the
central California interior with temperatures remaining well below
normal through the weekend.

Discussion...
an Arctic cold front barreled its way southward
through the central California interior last night and is now well east
of California. In its wake...temperatures this afternoon are running
several degrees lower than yesterday afternoon. Temperature trends are
quite impressive over the higher terrain and generally running 25
to 35 degrees colder than 24 hours ago. Although precipitation has been
rather light since the frontal passage...the invasion of Arctic
air has brought snow to elevations as low as 1500 feet today.
As of this writing...weather spotters have reported little more
than a dusting of snow yet there was enough snow to create travel
delays over the mountain passes of Kern County and force the
shutdown...albeit briefly...of I-5 through the Grapevine during
the morning commute.


A lagging and rather deep upper level trough that was along the
California coast this morning has since moved inland and is producing
showers over the higher terrain this afternoon including the
west side of the sj Valley West of I-5. Due to the low freezing
level...a mixture of snow and sleet is most likely occurring in
some of the heavier showers this afternoon. The good news is
that most of this shower activity will diminish early this
evening as the atmosphere stabilizes. The bad news is that a
northerly flow will continue to bring colder air into the County Warning Area
during the next 12 hours as the upper level trough drifts eastward
into the Great Basin. This could be trouble for clear...wind
sheltered locations in the sj valley late tonight where temperatures
could easily bottom out at 28 degrees or slightly lower.
Upslope clouds and light precipitation will linger over the Kern
County mountains through Friday. Cumulus will develop over much
of the sj valley Friday afternoon while instability snow showers
rejuvenate over the Sierra Nevada and adjacent foothills.


The models stall the upper level trough over the Great Basin
through the weekend and forecast a northerly flow of cold air
to persist over California. Clear skies and light wind will set the stage
for a freeze in the sj valley Friday night...Saturday night and
Sunday night. Minimum temperatures each of these nights will generally
be in the 20s but may be as low as the middle to upper teens in
the normally coldest locations. For details...please refer to
the latest sfonpwhnx (wwus76 khnx)


The models forecast a weak upper level disturbance to ripple
southward in the northerly flow on Sunday. While it does not
look as though it will be carrying much moisture with it...this
feature could bring some flurries to the higher elevations of
the Sierra from late Saturday night into Sunday night. Any
middle or high clouds associated with this disturbance could lessen
the threat of below freezing temperatures in the sj valley later this
weekend but at this point it is doubtful. In its wake...a
reinforcing northerly flow of cold air will likely recur Sunday
night.


The models forecast the upper level trough to become positively
tilted early next week as an upper level ridge of high pressure
builds strongly into the Pacific northwest and western Canada. This pattern
could set up for a brief Mono wind event Monday night in the
southern Sierra north of Kings Canyon. Otherwise...a dry offshore
flow will prevail through Wednesday. Temperatures will finally
recover to seasonable levels by days 6 and 7 as the upper level
ridge over the Pacific northwest settles southward into California.

===========================

This will likely be our last journal update until at least Wednesday of next week based on current forecast estimates. So far January 2013 is proving to be a relatively benign month for winter weather as compared to previous January rainfall totals. The total so far for this January is only 0.47 inches which is well below average for what is normally a very active month of winter storms and precipitation. Lets hope that the second half of the month proves to be more active than the first half has been!

[end of update]


09-Jan-2013 11:19 PM

STORM UPDATE: Rain/Ice Pellet Mix and Strong Gusty Winds at the Station!

We're getting ice pellets mixed with rain at the time of this report. First bucket tip was at 10:52 p.m. and we are now getting a steady mix with a rate of 0.06 in/h and 0.03 inches of precipitation so far this evening. Also getting some pretty high wind gusts for our location. The highest one so far was 15 mph at 11:12 p.m. The current rain band is moving in from the north west. Current temp is 34.2 F and falling rapidly. Wind chill values will plummet tonight with the potential for wind chill values in the single digits by morning.

We are expecting an extremely hard freeze by Thursday morning, so be prepared for slick and icy road conditions on our local roads through tonight and through the day on Thursday.

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest precipitation activity reports!

===========================

[end of storm update]


09-Jan-2013 12:10 PM

Extremely COLD Winter Storm Arriving Tonight and Persisting Through Friday - Gusty Winds Also Possible During This Event

The next winter storm system is on track to arrive over our area tonight bringing the possibility of snow to Bass Lake with "extremely Cold" temperatures through Friday. The forecast high for Yosemite Park on Thursday for example is only expected to reach 31 degrees F! Since we tend to mirror the temps in Yosemite Valley, we can expect similarly cold temps during this event.

In addition to the potential snowfall and frigid temperatures, we may see some gusty winds in our area as this front passes over the Sierra range on its way east.

A hard freeze with temps into the low 20s is highly likely Thursday night with the potential for 1-3 inches of snow here at the station. This system is not expected to be a very big rain maker, but due to the system's very low temperatures, what snow does manage to reach us is going to freeze hard to roads making driving conditions very dangerous. If you don't have to travel during this winter weather event, we advise our readers to stay home and off the local roads, especially Thursday night and into early Friday morning.

The current precipitation forecast for our area is 50% tonight, 70% Thursday through Thursday night and 50% Friday morning.

Latest IR SAT an Water Vapor Images

Weather Image

Weather Image

Weather Image

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest real-time precipitation condition reports and the latest NextRad radar returns.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
906 am PST Wednesday Jan 9 2013


Update...maximum temperatures raised today based on 24-hour trends.

Synopsis...
expect increasing clouds this afternoon. A cold front will move
through the area this evening bringing a chance of light rain and
mountain snow tonight into Thursday. Much colder Thursday...with
temperatures remaining well below normal through the weekend.

Discussion...
a relatively mild day is on tap across the County Warning Area today.
In fact...thermometer readings might top the 70 degree mark in the
warmest spots of the southern sj valley this afternoon but that will
only make the upcoming change to colder weather all the more
shocking on Thursday. Yes...central californians will be in for a
rude awakening within 24 hours as an Arctic cold front blasts through
the region tonight.


The cold front is defined pretty well on the latest satellite
imagery...extending from Spokane southwestward to Brookings, Oregon.
Moisture is severely limited with this front...so its passage
southward through the County Warning Area this evening will bring little more than
some showers...mainly over the higher terrain. Nonetheless...the
front will be accompanied and followed by blustery winds which
will continue through the day Thursday. Additional light precipitation
is likely as the upper level trough axis moves through the central
California interior during the midday hours Thursday. The models forecast
a pretty healthy zone of upward motion with this trough...so a
small accumulation of snow could occur in the Post frontal
environment thusrday morning in the foothills and higher elevations
of the Sierra. The north facing slopes of the Tehachapi Mountains
could end up with a more significant accumulation of snow Thursday
midday into Thursday evening...possibly a few inches or more...
in places like Frazier Park...Bear Valley Springs...and Cuddy Valley.
And there might be enough snow to impact travel over the Grapevine.


Otherwise...strong cold advection will not allow much if any rise
in temperatures behind the front Thursday. In fact...afternoon temperatures
in the sj valley will probably not be any higher than the 40s.
Additionally...brisk winds will impact travel through and below the
mountain passes of Kern County by Thursday afternoon and this is
covered adequately in the current forecast package.

==========================================================

[end of update]


07-Jan-2013 7:37 PM

Snow Likely Wednesday Night through Thursday

Hanford has upped our precipitation chances to 70% Thursday! That is a significant increase in precipitation potential and the latest temp readings of this approaching system show it to be extremely COLD! This means that snow levels will fall to as low as 1500 feet by late Thursday night into early Friday morning.

This current forecast makes the potential for snow at our elevation pretty much a sure thing at this point. While the system is going to be very cold, the amount of moisture contained in this storm is not expected to be very high, so we may not see a huge amount of snowfall in Bass Lake, but whatever amount we get is definitely going to stick.

Be prepared for winter travel conditions during this next event with possible road closures and chain requirements.

We will update you on this approaching system between tomorrow and Wednesday afternoon. In the meantime, you can always check our local NWS forecast page for the latest forecast information which is based on D2149's actual reported weather data.

Official National Weather Service Bass Lake Forecast


=======================================

[end of update]


07-Jan-2013 11:04 AM

Dry Weather Returns at Least Through Wednesday

The storm system that brought us 0.30 inches of precipitation over the weekend has exited the area leaving us with cold and dry conditions through Wednesday. Our seasonal precipitation total now stands at 18.15 inches since July 1st, 2012. That is only a few inches below our entire seasonal total for 2012 of 22.41 inches which is encouraging news regarding this season's snow pack and overall precipitation numbers!

The next potential storm system will move into the area on Wednesday night through Thursday. Models are not agreeing with a solution on precipitation potential for this next system yet, so we will have to wait until we get closer to the end of the week before we will know what to expect.

For the moment, Hanford is giving us only a 20% chance of rain/snow by Thursday morning. We will of course update this journal again once we begin to see a more detailed storm/precipitation prediction for our area.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
859 am PST Monday Jan 7 2013


Update...removed pops, snow chances and reduced sky cover this
morning over the Kern County area.

Synopsis...
storm from yesterday has exited the region and will be followed
by some high clouds today. Dry conditions are expected through
Wednesday. Fog in the San Joaquin Valley will be possible each
night and morning through Wednesday. Another storm system is
expected to reach the region by Thursday and again increase
the chances for precipitation.

Discussion...
radar, satellite and webcams show the precipitation
has ended over the Grapevine area. Also low stratus remains over
the sjv with some dry air moving southward down the west side of
the San Joaquin Valley. Expect some eddy effect to continue in the
sjv in the northwest flow. Have updated grids for these phenomena.
With forecast models bringing ridging into the central California
area today through Wednesday, fog will become a big concern in the
San Joaquin Valley however clear skies will prevail elsewhere.

=======================================

[end of update]



06-Jan-2013 9:18 AM

STORM UPDATE: A Dusting of Snow Overnight - Snow Showers Continuing

The station has recorded 0.25 inches of liquid precipitation since midnight with about 75% of that coming down as snow. We have about 1/2 of an inch on the ground at the time of this report.

A recent image from our webcam...

Weather Image

The center of the low is currently spinning just south of Bass Lake and rotating the rain bands in a south to north direction as the system also slowly moves east across the state. This somewhat odd angle of attack is reducing our normal upslope potential which is why we have not seen more precipitation than the 0.25 inches currently in the rain bucket.

Weather Image

There are some additional cells of precipitation south of the station that will likely rotate into the Bass Lake area over the next few hours. The system is expected to exit the area by early Monday morning with mostly sunny skies expected by noon tomorrow.

Our next shot at rain/snow will be late Wednesday night into Thursday, but currently only a 20% chance of anything measurable.

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest real-time precipitation activity reports.

[end of update]



06-Jan-2013 12:15 AM

STORM UPDATE: Temps have risen as system approaches, meaning that snow is unlikely until late morning Sunday

We have seen our temperature rise rapidly as the front approaches. As a result, it now appears that we will not be seeing snow at the start of the precipitation. Instead, we will be seeing moderate rain through the early morning hours with a transition over to snow shortly before noon on Sunday as the center of the storm moves over our area.

This scenario has been confirmed with Hanford in a facebook conversation we had with them a few minutes ago. According to the nightshift crew at Hanford, the reported rain rates under this precipitation band currently over the SJV is 0.10 to 0.20 inches per hour which equates to a moderate rainfall event currently. Due to the angle of rotation, our usual upslope advantage may be somewhat compromised until the system moves further inland and the angle of attack changes to a more advantageous angle to allow for upslope to increase our precipitation potential.

Hanford estimates that if the rain band holds together when it butts up against the Sierra range, we could end up with "at least" 1 inch of precipitation from this system when all is said and done. The storm is expected to rapidly exit the area by late Sunday night with mostly sunny skies returning for Monday.

The latest NextRad Radar returns showing the approaching rain band:

Weather Image

Weather Image

Stay tuned for our next update before 10Am Sunday morning.

[end of storm update]


05-Jan-2013 4:41 PM

Winter Storm Set to Arrive Late Tonight With Precipitation Continuing Into Sunday Afternoon - Snow Still Possible

The NWS has pushed the snow levels back up a bit from where they had been in our last update with the lowest elevation now projected to be around 3900 feet. Based on previous winter storm systems, that still gives us a reasonable chance of seeing snow here at Bass Lake early Sunday morning into early Sunday afternoon.

Regardless of snow and snow accumulation, we are looking at a 70% chance of precipitation late tonight and into Sunday morning, with a 70% chance of precipitation continuing through the afternoon on Sunday.

Latest IR SAT and Water Vapor Images

Weather Image

Weather Image

Weather Image

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
200 PM PST Sat Jan 5 2013


Synopsis...
a weak fast moving system is approaching from the west
this afternoon bringing increasing clouds. The system will also
bring an increase in chances for precipitation for the San Joaquin
Valley...Kern County mountains and the southern Sierra Nevada for
Sunday. Drier conditions will return Monday along with slowly
moderating temperatures through the end of the week.

Discussion...
a low pressure system currently situated off the
central California coast near 37n/128w is spreading middle/high clouds into
our area this afternoon. Temperatures are running several degree f
above yesterday across most of our County warning forecast area as a result of warm air advection ahead of the
incoming low. There was also much less fog in the San Joaquin
Valley this morning than over the past few days as the incoming
low provided some mixing over our area.


Relative humidity forecasts from the 12z WRF and GFS indicate deeper moisture
rapidly pushing into central California this evening while our area will
be under the favored lfq of a 100kt 250mb jet maximum. As a
result...rain will push into the northwestern portion of our County warning forecast area
then spread rapidly southeast this evening. Have subsequently
raised probability of precipitation to likely to categorical for the majority of our County warning forecast area
for tonight and Sunday. Rfc quantitative precipitation forecast forecasts are indicating two to four
tenths of an inch of rainfall across most of the San Joaquin
Valley with twice those amounts over the foothills and mountains.
Snow levels are prognosticated to plunge from 5500 to 6000 feet at the
onset of the precipitation downward to around 4000 feet as a
chilly airmass pushes into our area with the cold low pressure
center tracking inland late tonight and Sunday. As a result...have
issued a Winter Weather Advisory for the southern Sierra Nevada
and the Kern County mountains from 10 PM this evening to 4 PM
Sunday where 4 to 8 inches of new snowfall are expected above 5000
feet and 2 to 4 inches of new snowfall are possible over the major
passes in Kern County. In addition...brisk westerly winds of 25 to
35 miles per hour are likely over the ridges with local gusts up to around
60 miles per hour as the low moves southeast through our area on Sunday. The
precipitation will turn to showers behind the cold front by Sunday
afternoon and taper off by Monday morning as the low drops into
Sonora and a high pressure ridge amplifies over the eastern
Pacific. This will result in a cold northerly upper flow over our
area on Monday and Tuesday. Some upslope clouds will likely
persist over the South Valley and the valley facing slopes of
southern Sierra Nevada and Tehachapi Mountains and temperatures
will be below normal across our area.


The medium range models are indicating the ridge will shift inland
on Wednesday. As a result the airmass will moderate.
However..inversion conditions over the San Joaquin Valley may
allow for a foggy morning over the San Joaquin Valley on
Wednesday. The models have timing differences with regards to the
next trough which is prognosticated to push in to norcal Wednesday night
or Thursday then take an inside slider trajectory into the Great
Basin by Thursday night. This system may provide the mountains
with a brief period of light precipitation and have therefore
raised probability of precipitation to slight chance to low chance for the mountains. The
ridge is prognosticated to re-amplify over the eastern Pacific next
Friday and Saturday resulting in another period of dry weather and
below normal temperatures over our area.

===================================

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest real-time weather condition reports as well as the latest Nextrad radar returns!

We will post our next update Sunday morning to recap where things stand with snow accumulation, precipitation totals etc.

[end of update]


04-Jan-2013 9:22 PM

Latest News from Hanford Indicating Snow Levels Down to 3500 Feet Late Saturday Night Into Sunday for Southern Sierra!

The storm system we touched on in our last update looks like it might actually produce some measurable precipitation for the Bass Lake region and the surrounding areas of the Southern Sierra Nevada by late Saturday night! Based on current forecasts, it appears that the snow level will be down to 3500 feet and that the system may produce as much as 1/2 to 3/4 of an inch of liquid precipitation. That would mean the possibility of between 1-2 inches of snow at the station's location. Accumulation ultimately depends on temperature during the event.

Stay tuned to our journal and home page for the latest information as the storm moves in late tonight and into Sunday.

New Video Briefings from the NWS Hanford Ca. on YOUTUBE!

Check out the most recent weather briefing HERE!

You can view and subscribe to Hanford's YOUTube channel video feed HERE!

We will have more on the approaching storm later in the day tomorrow 01/05/13.

[end of update]


04-Jan-2013 12:04 AM

Slight Chance of Rain Saturday Night Through Sunday Night

Our clear, dry and cold pattern may be interrupted for a time this weekend as a low pressure system grazes the Sierra beginning Saturday night with the chance of precipitation increasing slightly through the day on Sunday. Hanford is calling for a 30% chance of rain during the day Sunday with a 20% chance on either side. We can expect mostly cloudy conditions to exist through both days.

There is also a possibility of another system entering our forecast area on Wednesday, but models are not agreeing on a solution at this time, so we will have to take a wait and see on this one for now.

We also wanted to let our readers know that The National Weather Service office in Hanford Ca. has recently launched their own page of Facebook! You can check out the page by clicking HERE.

We also wanted to thank the crew at Hanford for including this station's Facebook page in their list of LIKES! :o)

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
206 PM PST Thursday Jan 3 2013


Synopsis...
areas of late night through middle morning fog will be
possible for the next few days in the San Joaquin Valley. Clear to
partly cloudy skies will continue as high pressure prevails
through Saturday. A weak system will bring some clouds and a very
slight chance of precipitation over the weekend.

Discussion...
a dry upper ridge is providing our area with another
sunny afternoon after the last of the morning fog and stratus
in the San Joaquin Valley burned off as noted by visible imagery.
12z WRF/GFS indicate the ridge will remain in place through
Friday. In the meantime another clear night is expected across our
area...although with the models indicating some warming at 850 mb
and 925 mb and with dew points trending 2-3 degree f higher than
yesterday...do not anticipate a widespread freeze in the valley tonight
although areas of frost are likely. Dense fog was localized this
morning to a thin strip aligned from western Madera County to
southward to eastern Kings County. With dew points higher at most
locations...expected saturation to be reached earlier...and as a
result fog to be more prevalent in the central and southern valley
tonight and Friday morning.


The 12z models are having difficulty with an upper trough that is
prognosticated to affect central California this weekend. The GFS has taken a
dramatic turn from past model runs and breaks down the ridge very
rapidly on Saturday then indicates a very vigorous negatively
tilted trough pushes through our area on Saturday night followed
by an upper shortwave late Sunday. The WRF on the other hand had
been splitting the system...leaving our area in between the main
dynamics to the north and the more significant moisture to the
south. The 18z run however does hold the trough together and
brings it through central California late Sunday and Sunday night. With
uncertainties in timing and lack of run to run model consistency
have decided to bump up probability of precipitation and sky cover for Saturday night
through Sunday night and am not confident at all on the timing and
the evolution of this system as it will be running into a strong
ridge. Am therefore indicating a low confidence forecast for
Saturday night and Sunday.


The medium range models indicate an upper ridge over California Monday
through Tuesday night for another dry period across our area with
near seasonal temperatures. Fog may be possible in the San Joaquin
Valley depending on inversion strength and how stagnant the lower
atmosphere is. The European model (ecmwf) is indicating a fairly moist upper trough
crossing central California next Wednesday night and Thursday while the
GFS keeps this system north of our area. There is still a lot of
uncertainty with the track of this system 6 to 7 days out and
there is uncertainty dealing with how much moisture it will pick up
from a tropical system currently situated off the East Coast of
Vietnam. As a result confidence in the long term is also very low
and have therefore decided not to make changes to the long term at
this time.

========================================

We will be keeping a close eye on both of these potential systems, and will update the journal accordingly should the need arise.

Stay tuned to our home page and to Hanford's new Facebook page for the latest news on these weather changes!

[end of update]


30-Dec-2012 2:01 PM

Dry and Cold for the Coming Week

The forecast for the first week of 2013 looks like it is going to be dry and VERY cold! Although we are currently seeing some ice pellet showers here at the station at the time of this report, precipitation is expected to remain far north of our forecast area all the way through next weekend. Overnight lows are expected to dip into the mid 20s and possibly lower during this period with freeze warnings being issued for many sections of the SJV for Monday and Tuesday.

The latest NWS extended forecast for the Southern Sierra makes no mention of any storm systems or precipitation for Central California through Saturday.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
333 am PST sun Dec 30 2012


Synopsis...
a weak disturbance will move through the region today bringing
partly to mostly cloudy skies. There is a chance of rain and snow
showers in the southern Sierra and Tehachapi Mountains through
this evening. Gradually clearing late tonight and Monday. New
years evening and New Years Day will be mostly clear and rather cool.

Discussion...
weak upper level disturbance will move across central California today.
This will bring partly cloudy-mostly cloudy skies to the region with a chance of
mainly mountain showers. Snow levels will be low...generally 3000-3500
feet. However little if any accumulation is expected.


Monday will see gradual clearing...but some Post-trough clouds will
linger in the Sierra foothills and Tehachapi Mountains model guidance
is showing some pretty cool temperatures early Tuesday in the sjv. This do
to a surface high building south out of western Canada. Some of the
Canadian air could spill over to the west side of the Sierra.
While it is not a dangerous Arctic airmass for local growers...it
will be possible for temperatures Tuesday morning to drop into the middle 20s for
several hours.


For the rest of the week into next weekend...a split flow into the
western US will bring several shortwave trough inland. Much of the
energy with these systems remains north of central California for a
generally dry forecast. Maybe a few sprinkles as far south kmce Friday.
A slow warming trend will occur beginning Tuesday...but only by a
degree or two each day through weeks end.

[end of update]


29-Dec-2012 10:33 AM

Storm System's Precipitation Remaining Offshore and South

We are actually seeing partly cloudy skies at the station this morning with even some sun breaks. The system is unfortunately not very strong, and what moisture is being produced is staying well south of our area so far this morning. Looks like So Cal is picking up some much needed rain this morning as the bulk of the precipitation bands move through that area of the state.

There is still a chance that we may see some periods of rain/snow showers over the course of the day today, but it is looking unlikely at this point that we are going to pick up any significant amounts of precipitation from this system.

The NWS is now suggesting that we may see some upslope generated precipitation on Sunday as the system moves east and through our area, but that remains to be seen for now.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
348 am PST Sat Dec 29 2012


Synopsis...
an upper level low pressure system moving south along the coast will
bring an increase in cloudiness with a slight chance of showers to
the valley tonight and through the weekend. Much cooler temperatures
will prevail over the weekend and into early next week.

Discussion...
upper low off the coast is trying to wrap moisture into the west
side of the valley. The main band of precipitation is still off the
coast. We have issued a Winter Weather Advisory for the Kern
County mountains. Strong southerly flow indicated on the
Vandenberg sounding around 850 mb will translate to gusty winds
in a possible downsloping event through the Grapevine and have
included this in the statement as well.


Our biggest concern at this time will be travel through the
Grapevine today and tonight. Gusty winds in advance of the front
will quickly change over to snow as the front arrives later
today. The NAM seems to have really bumped up its quantitative precipitation forecast and it looks
realistic with a strong low level jet and good moisture tap.
Upslope and orographics will only increase the possibility for
significant snow.


The upper level feature will move along the coast today and into
socal on Sunday. A secondary feature dropping out of Idaho will
act as a trigger for possible snow showers in the Sierra on Sunday
as it moves through the region by Sunday night.


A weak ridge will build in on Monday with a dry northwest flow over the
region. A weak upper level trough/low depending on which model you
believe will quickly move through on Monday night bringing an
increase of clouds. This might keep temperatures up overnight and limit
fog/frost development Monday night.


Upper ridge returns on Tuesday and continues through Thursday.
Another fast moving feature is prognosticated to move through Thursday PM
with little or no effect on the regions weather. Zonal flow will
return on Friday and continue through Saturday with near normal
temperatures and possible diurnal fog in the valley.

===================================================

[end of update]



27-Dec-2012 9:24 AM

Break in the Action Today Through Friday - Next Storm Arrives on Saturday

We picked up 0.96 inches of precipitation from the last system with about half of that coming down in the form of snow. The station recorded a chilly low this morning of 27.7 F. The road is iced over and the remaining snow has become hard packed and solid as a result of this hard freeze overnight.

Our monthly precipitation total is now an impressive 9.47 inches. The next system's impact on our area remains uncertain at the time of this report, but if it does manage to move further enough inland instead of hugging the coast, we may break through the 10 inch mark for December 2012! This will be our last shot at reaching the 10 inch mark so lets all keep our fingers crossed!

Most of the Sierra based stations are reporting rainfall totals of 150% or higher above normal which is great news! Our data indicates that we are also above average in precipitation for this point in time at about 125% of normal. A far cry from the 0.00 inches we saw for December 2011!

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
237 am PST Thursday Dec 27 2012


Synopsis...
generally dry and cooler conditions will return today and continue
through Friday evening. Another system will begin to move into the
region this weekend...along with increased chances for
precipitation.

Discussion...
broad upper trough that brought welcomed precipitation to the
central California interior is slowly moving east. Weak embedded
upper vorts are dropping into the backside of the trough as it
continues to dig south into The Four Corners area by this
afternoon.


Light instability showers are weakening as they move into the South
Valley and the Kern County mountains. The Winter Weather Advisory
has been cancelled as coverage and intensity of the shower
activity continues to decrease.


It will be cool and breezy today with some gusty winds along the
west side of the valley. It will a marginal situation for a wind
advection...so will hold off due to lack of duration and widespread
intensity. Winds will decouple later this evening and it will be
quite frosty in the valley tonight. We are not expecting temperatures to
get down to the critical 28 degrees needed for a freeze
warning...however it may reach that value in the normally
sheltered and cold areas near Hanford and Visalia. Upper ridge
will be overhead and mostly clear skies on tap for Friday morning
with gradual increase in cloud cover through the day as the next
system approaches.


An upper level low center is expected to hug the coast as it
quickly slides south Friday evening into Saturday morning. We have
bumped up probability of precipitation along the west side of the valley and also in the Sierra...especially over favorable upslope regions. The bulk of the
precipitation will remain to the west of the forecast area...near and along
the center of the low track. The low center is forecast to be down
into socal by Saturday night and into The Four Corners area by
Sunday night. Strong northerly flow over the region will usher in
some cool air behind the system on Sunday with breezy conditions
once again along the west side of the valley on Sunday afternoon
and evening.


An upper ridge will build on over the area on Monday and we are
expecting patchy fog developing Monday night into Tuesday and
possibly again on Tuesday night. The timing of the next system
still remains a bit uncertain and appears to be bringing precipitation in
to the forecast area by late Wednesday night and continue into Thursday. This is a
fast moving system and will be into Utah by late Thursday with
another upper ridge building in over the area for Thursday night.

============================================

We plan to update the journal on Friday night in order to provide the latest news on our next winter storm and the last system for 2012.

[end of update]


25-Dec-2012 9:29 PM

Storm Update: SNOW!

The precipitation transitioned over to snow just after 9:15 p.m. this evening at a temperature of 34.4 degrees F. This is one degree higher than the transition point of the last system, and the outside air temperature is currently dropping a few 10ths of a degree about every 10 minutes. Radar is showing one medium sized band of precipitation moving through the area at the time of this report, with a few spotty areas of precipitation behind this more substantial band, all coming in from the west northwest.

The snow is currently sticking to cars, fences, trees and plants but has not begun to build up on roads at this time.

Our current precipitation/storm total at the time of this report is 0.21 inches with an hourly rain rate of 0.15 in/h.

The current pressure is 29.99 inHg and falling.

[end of update]


25-Dec-2012 3:45 PM

Storm Arrival Update @ 3:45 p.m.

The precipitation has arrived over the area but is washing out as it hits the Sierra range. Not sure how much we will actually pick up from this first wave. May not even be enough to tip the bucket. We will have to wait and see at this point.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
302 PM PST Tuesday Dec 25 2012


Synopsis...
increasing clouds today as the next storm reaches the central
California interior. This storm will bring another round of rain and
higher elevation snow...mainly tonight and Wednesday.

Discussion...

Fog and stratus late to clear today due to increasing middle level
clouds. This has kept temperatures in the upper 40s in the valley
and Kern desert. A disturbance along an upper jet has brought an
initial band of precipitation to the central San Joaquin Valley
early this afternoon. Onset of precipitation is bit early than
models indicated. Cold air right behind initial precipitation band
as radar melting layer estimate trending towards 4500 feet. Best
dynamics and main front will move into the district this evening
bringing heavy precipitation over the Sierra overnight.
Precipitation should diminish Wednesday morning but convective
showers will threaten much of the area much of the day. Strong
wind jet will align up with west-east pressure gradient bringing the
potential for strong wind across the Kern County mountains and
desert by miday Wednesday. Snow showers may continue into
Wednesday night over the tehachapis and Tulare foothills due a
strong upslope northwest flow. Snow levels could lower to pass level
Wednesday afternoon. North flow will bring a cold airmass into
central California Thursday. This will bring a threat of freezing
temperatures Thursday night into Friday morning. Models have come
into better consensus with the next storm system affecting central
California during the weekend. GFS trending towards the ec
solution and maintain the system moving south off the California
coast. Thus the best threat of precipitation may remain towards
the central coast.

Previous update at 2:30 p.m.

NextRad radar is showing the first bands of precipitation are now nearing our forecast area from the west northwest. Looks like maybe another 60 to 90 minutes before we see the first precipitation begin to fall at the station, and probably another 30 minutes after that before we see our first bucket tip from this new system. Based on current temps, it looks like this first wave will be rain only.

Latest NextRad Images

Weather Image

Weather Image

Stay tuned to the station home page for the latest radar returns and real-time precipitation activity reports!

We will update the journal again if we see any changes to the current forecast regarding the rain to snow transition estimates or tomorrow when we have some storm total numbers.

======================================================

[end of update]


24-Dec-2012 7:18 AM

Annual Rainfall Total Has Surpassed 2011! - Next Storm Wednesday

The 0.21 inches of rain we received since midnight today has pushed our annual rainfall total over last year's annual total (January 1st through December 31st) to 35.52 from last year's annual total of 35.50. Considering the dismal rainfall year we had last season, this isn't anything too terribly impressive, but at least we have managed to surpass 2011's infamous annual total. With 7 days left to go to add to this annual total, and more systems expected, we are hopeful that we will end up with an annual total closer to an average year.

Our seasonal rainfall total now stands at 16.87 inches as we head towards the middle of the rainy season in the Sierra. The last storm brought us an impressive 3.33 inches since the 22nd. The next system is expected to begin arriving over the area Christmas night with the bulk of the precipitation arriving on Wednesday. This next system is expected to be similar to the Sunday/Monday system in terms of total precipitation, but snow levels may be much lower, possibly down to 3700 feet by Wednesday night.

At this point, it is unclear as to what we can expect over the weekend. We may see a closed low come through early next week, but it may be one of those coastal huggers and may remain primarily off the coast with little eastern movement resulting in little to no precipitation for us. We will update you as soon as we have better model consensus for the weekend and into next week.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
547 am PST Monday Dec 24 2012


Synopsis...
rain and higher elevation snow will come to an end across the area
by this afternoon as a frontal system pushes out of the region. Drier
conditions for Christmas expected...just ahead of the next system
expected to affect central California by Wednesday.

Discussion...
the passing frontal system brought significant amounts of rain and
higher elevation snow to our area yesterday and overnight. The
Winter Storm Warning for the Sierra zones was allowed to expire
this morning as most precipitation has ended...though showers
still linger over Kern County and the higher elevations of southern
Tulare County in a healthy northwest flow. Snow levels remain
above 6000 feet there and the passes of Kern County are not
threatened by frozen precipitation this morning. This activity is
expected to wind down this morning as the system pushes eastward
and shortwave ridging sets in overhead. Already there are some patches
of dense fog forming in parts of the San Joaquin Valley where the
precipitation has cleared out. This will break up by later this morning
but expect a foggy Christmas evening and Christmas morning as more fog
develops overnight tonight under the building ridge.


The next storm system is set to begin encroaching on our area by
tomorrow night bringing cooler conditions...with precipitation
spreading over most locations by Wednesday. Models handle this
midweek system pretty similarly and point to another round of
significant precipitation amounts...possibly requiring winter weather
highlights. Another break for the end of the week under shortwave
ridging. The first part of next week will then see another low
pressure system dropping south from the northeast Pacific. Models
have had differing solutions on the evolution of this system...now
looking a bit more similar in keeping the closed low offshore as
it drops south...making precipitation chances early next week less
certain.

=========================================================

[end of update]


23-Dec-2012 3:37 PM

Rain/Snow to Continue Through Tonight Into Monday Morning

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
255 PM PST sun Dec 23 2012


Synopsis...
rain and higher elevation snow to conitinue tonight and tomorrow
morning as the front continues to push through the area. Dryer
conditions for Christmas expected...just ahead of the next system expected
to affect central California on Wednesday.

Discussion...
light to moderate precipitation continues across the central
California interior this afternoon. Surface analysis has the
district under the warm sector with the cold front still over
northern California. Dual-pol radar analysis currently has the
snow level close to 6000 feet. As the cold front appoaches...will
see surface winds increase and heavier precipitation over much of the
valley. Therefore...will allow the Wind Advisory to remain in
effect over the wind favored areas of the west side of the valley.
While the lower elevations will see significant rain fall today...
orographic lift and a strong frontal system along with a +100kt
jet will provide for heavy precipitation across the Sierra Nevada.
While upper air analysis from vbg and Oak show less than one inch
precip-water...blended total precipitation-water imagery shows a good
plume of moisture streaming into central California and provide
for warning criteria snow fall. Dual-pol storm total accumulation
currently shows 1 to 2 inches of liquid precipitation with a few spots
showing near 3 inches...and mainly over the higher terrain.


While ridging will take hold of the region on Monday...lingering
showers may continue over the district during the morning. Will
see a brief break in the weather through Christmas morning before
the onset of another storm enters the area Tuesday night. During
the passage of the brief ridge on Monday night/Tuesday morning...
will see some fog develop over the San Joaquin Valley around
daybreak Christmas morning. Latest model suite still showing a
little more uncertainty on the midweek storm which could be
centered closer to Wednesday. Will keep the bulk of the higher
probability of precipitation in place on Wednesday/Wednesday night before taper
precipitation off on Thursday. While models show a active weather
pattern for most of the week...another ridge will be observed on
Friday. By next weekend...models attempt to forecast a cutoff low
pattern off the east-Pacific coast. Latest GFS coming more inline with
the European model (ecmwf) and placing the bulk of the energy offshore as the upper
low drop toward Southern California next weekend. However... will
keep a slight chance of precipitation during the weekend until better
model consensus is observed in the longer term.

=========================================================

[end of update]


22-Dec-2012 12:10 PM

Storm Update - 12:10 p.m. - Saturday - 12/22/12

Temps have risen into the high 30s and the precipitation has transitioned over to rain. We are currently seeing moderate rainfall at the station with 0.59 inches recorded so far from this storm. More precipitation is heading our way from the coast, with upslope generated rain/snow mix contributing greatly to our totals so far today.

We are watching two large bands of moisture still moving in from the pacific. One is coming down from Alaska and the other is moving in from the mid pacific. They will likely merge and be pulled into the storm's rotation later this afternoon into this evening. The current trajectory looks good for a direct hit over the Bass Lake area which will likely produce a significant amount of precipitation, likely in the form of snow by mid-evening.

Stay tuned to our radars and Sat Image Links for the latest storm track information.

[end of update]


22-Dec-2012 7:55 AM


Moderate Snowfall with Occasional Mixing to Rain

We are currently seeing moderate snow here at the station with little to no accumulation. Temperatures are hovering just above the freezing mark, so the snow will likely turn to a mix by noon and then return to snow later this afternoon. We could see some respectable accumulation by dusk if the precipitation bands continue to move through the area.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
536 am PST Sat Dec 22 2012


Synopsis...
a winter storm will move through the region this weekend.
Periods of rain and higher elevation snow will be the norm through
Monday.

Discussion...
an incoming frontal system has generated a couple of bands of
precipitation in the south/southwest flow out in front of the
system. The initial precipitation area with mainly light rain has
sagged south through Fresno County...while a second band with
some heavier precipitation and occasional lightning is sliding
slowly southward toward Merced and Mariposa counties.


Most of our area will receive some precipitation with the
incoming frontal system today and tonight. As colder temperatures
aloft and weak impulses rotate into the region we should see
increased instability and some thunder and small hail is possible
in the valley and foothills generally from Fresno County northward
this afternoon. The increasing south/southwest flow ahead of thee
approaching system will create gusty winds along the west side of
the valley today and a Wind Advisory remains in effect through
this evening.


Additional incoming energy will keep the periods of precipitation
in our forecast through Monday. The expected heavy snowfall in the
Sierra north of Kings Canyon has prompted a Winter Storm Warning
there...while an advisory exists south to the Kern County line
where accumulations will be a bit less.


Models are in decent agreement with the evolving pattern for next
week. By later Monday a shortwave ridge will move over the area
ahead of the next approaching system and drier conditions will
briefly set in. Precipitation chances then spread across the
district again by later Tuesday through Wednesday with the next
system...followed by another brief break under another ridge
Thursday before another low pressure system next weekend returns
unsettled weather to our area.


Temperatures will mostly run around climatology through the period...except
a little extra warming in the extreme South Valley as southerly winds
downslope from the Kern County mountains.

=======================================

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest real-time conditions and radar.

[end of update]


20-Dec-2012 11:05 AM

Significant Winter Storm System Arriving Friday!

Weather models are now in good agreement that the Bass Lake area will indeed see some significant measurable rain/snow over the weekend. The system will begin moving into the area late Thursday night and through the day on Friday with precipitation beginning by late Friday night and continuing through Saturday night. Another system will follow on Sunday through Monday.

Snow levels are expected to fluctuate between 4000 feet and 5000 feet which means that we may see snow here at our elevation with the potential for significant accumulation.

The NWS has issued a Winter Storm Warning for our area beginning at 4 p.m. Friday for heavy precipitation and gusty winds. Travel in the Southern Sierra will be difficult to impossible during portions of this impressive storm system. If you have plans to be driving in the area during this storm, you may want to reconsider those travel plans! Chains will likely be required on HWY 41 North of Oakhurst by Saturday.

The latest IR SAT images showing the approaching system...

Weather Image

Weather Image

At this point, it appears that Christmas day will be clear and COLD.

The Latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
927 am PST Thursday Dec 20 2012


Update...the freeze warning for the central and southern San
Joaquin Valley was allowed to expire.

Synopsis... a strong winter storm will impact central California
beginning Friday afternoon and continuing through the weekend.
Heavy snow in the southern Sierra will cause travel difficulties.
Periods of valley rain are also expected. The forecast for
Christmas day is dry and cool across the region.

Discussion...
cold and dry conditions again this morning in the San
Joaquin Valley under clear skies. The freeze warning verified and
has since been allowed to expire. Downsloping winds at the south
end of the San Joaquin Valley and over the Grapevine area prompted
the issuance of a Wind Advisory earlier this morning. Mesowest is
indicating winds are decreasing at this time after peaking above
60 miles per hour earlier this morning. 12z WRF is indicting weakening
p-grads today so will keep the advisory in place until noon today.
The next feature of concern is a strong winter storm that is
expected to impact the area over the weekend. Heavy snow is likely
from Saturday morning through Saturday evening and again on Sunday
night over the southern Sierra Nevada above 5000 feet from Kings
Canyon northward. A Winter Storm Warning has already been issued
to highlight this.

===================================================

Stay tuned to our website and this journal for the latest updates on this approaching system. We will update again once we start seeing some storm data coming in.

[end of update]


18-Dec-2012 12:04 PM

Rain/Snow Showers Possible Today - Next System Poised for Arrival Thursday Night

Stay tuned to this journal for more info as it becomes available later this week.

[end of update]


16-Dec-2012 8:29 PM

Rain on the Way! Snow Likely Monday Night into Tuesday Morning - Accumulations Unknown At This Time

The first in a series of pacific storm systems will be arriving over the Bass Lake area later tonight bringing rain to the area by dawn. The rain is expected to be light to moderate with possible periods of heavy rain and a rain/snow mix on Monday afternoon. There is a possibility that the precipitation will change over to snow by dusk and continue as snow trough Tuesday morning. The amount of total accumulation (if any) will all depend on local temperatures at the time of these precipitation events.

This system will be warmer than the last storm we saw come through, and as such, the snow level will be closer to 5000 feet. This puts our area right on the cusp of the transition point. We will just have to wait and see what actually develops over the station and the surrounding areas.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
818 PM PST sun Dec 16 2012


..lowered probability of precipitation overnite...

Update...
frontal band approaching norcal coast is pretty weak with little upper
support at this time. Updated pop overnite as any precipitation will be slow to
arrive...and most likely after daybreak Monday. Potent shortwave trough
is forecast to catch up the the front Monday near 18z...which should
energize the front. This combined with increasing orographics
across the Sierra should bring some significant snow above 5k feet.
The snow level will fall to 3500 feet or so Monday night in ynp so some
measurable snow is likely by Tuesday morning on the valley floor.
Elsewhere including the sjv...heavier precipitation Monday-early Tuesday will
be mainly Fresno County north...possibly up to a half inch around
kmce tapering off to a few hundredths in Kern County.

Synopsis...
a frontal system will move into the forecast area Monday increasing
the chances for precipitation Monday night into Tuesday. The San
Joaquin Valley will see light rainfall amounts while the higher
elevations will receive moderate to heavy snowfall. Patchy morning
fog is expected for the San Joaquin Valley during the early morning
hours on Wednesday.

=========================================

We will update this journal at some point on Monday as we start seeing some strong evidence of actual precipitation band arrivals over the area, based on current radar and IR SAT images.

[end of update]


15-Dec-2012 2:58 PM
Winter Storm Watch

URGENT - WINTER WEATHER MESSAGE
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE HANFORD CA
156 PM PST SAT DEC 15 2012


CAZ096-160500-
/O.NEW.KHNX.WS.A.0009.121217T2100Z-121218T2100Z/
SIERRA NEVADA FROM YOSEMITE TO KINGS CANYON-
156 PM PST SAT DEC 15 2012

...WINTER STORM WATCH IN EFFECT FROM MONDAY AFTERNOON THROUGH
TUESDAY AFTERNOON...

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN HANFORD HAS ISSUED A WINTER STORM
WATCH FOR HEAVY SNOW AND STRONG WINDS...WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM
MONDAY AFTERNOON THROUGH TUESDAY AFTERNOON FOR THE SOUTHERN SIERRA
NEVADA FROM YOSEMITE TO KINGS CANYON.

* SNOW ACCUMULATIONS: 12 TO 18 INCHES FROM 4000 TO 7000 FEET AND
UP TO 2 FEET ABOVE 7000 FEET.

* TIMING: MONDAY AFTERNOON THROUGH TUESDAY AFTERNOON.

* LOCATIONS INCLUDE: SHAVER LAKE...YOSEMITE VALLEY.

* WINDS: SOUTHWEST WINDS 25 TO 35 MPH WITH GUSTS TO 60 MPH.

* IMPACTS: SNOW COVERED ROADS...TREACHEROUS DRIVING CONDITIONS.
POSSIBLE ROAD CLOSURES.


PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

A WINTER STORM WATCH MEANS THERE IS A POTENTIAL FOR SIGNIFICANT
SNOW AND STRONG WINDS THAT MAY IMPACT TRAVEL. CONTINUE TO MONITOR
THE LATEST FORECASTS.

&&

$$

MOLINA

WEATHER.GOV/HANFORD

====================================

[end of update]


13-Dec-2012 9:40 AM

0.71 inches of Precipitation on Wednesday!

The storm turned out to not be as intense as originally predicted so we only picked up a few inches of snow accumulation on and off furring the day Wednesday. We did have some periods of heavy snow, but temps were never cold enough for any significant accumulation.

The next shot at some wet weather will come this weekend. More as it develops.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
259 am PST Thursday Dec 13 2012


Synopsis...
rain and snow are expected through Thursday due to a winter storm
moving over the area...snow levels are expected to drop
well into the Sierra Nevada foothills and impact the Mountain Pass
levels in Kern County. Cooler than average temperatures are expected
for the rest of the week.

Discussion...
radar show the slow moving band of precipitation now
falling from Taft northeast to Kings Canyon park and extending
across the Kern County desert. The orientation of the front
extending essentially south to north is ideal for precipitation
across the Kern County area and I expect the rain and snow (above
4000 feet to continue) through the early morning hours. Satellite
imagery shows the deep trough and embedded vorticity centers
continuing to sag southward down the coast as the first
disturbance pushes eastward from Point Conception. Lots of
unstable air is noted on images thus I have in coordination with
National Weather Service Oxnard have added the threat of some afternoon thunder over
the Kern County desert. For tonight it looks like the
precipitation will trend downward as the trough swings east
leaving a shortwave ridge over the area Friday morning. By Friday
night forecast models bring the next system to a position just
west of the Bay area and then drop the vorticity center either
down the coast or just offshore. In this "coastal hugger" scenario
the main precipitation threat is limited to the coastal mountains
and the Kern County area as the low tracks to the southwest of the
interior of central California. The forecast is rather tricky for
Sunday as models project another weather disturbance heading for
central California as a warm frontal boundary. Some quantitative precipitation forecast is projected by nearly all models however typically precipitation is
limited to the mountains.


On Tuesday both the European model (ecmwf) and GFS models bring another shortwave
trough into California in northwest flow. The 06z run of the GFS
shows a potent and wet system while the European model (ecmwf) brings a weak
shortwave with little quantitative precipitation forecast. Will have to take a close look at this
for later forecasts.

==============================================

[end of update]


11-Dec-2012 7:56 PM

Snow of the Way!

Snow levels are expected to fall to 2000 feet by mid-day on Wednesday. Snow accumulations of 1-2 inches are expected for the Sierra Nevada Foothills including Oakhurst and Mariposa.

4-6 inches of snow accumulation will be possible for the Bass Lake area beginning at the same time and will intensify through Wednesday evening. CLICK HERE for more details.

[end of update]


08-Dec-2012 7:02 PM

Chance of Rain/Snow Moved Back a Day to Wednesday

Models are indicating another trough to move through our area on Wednesday now instead of Thursday as was predicted earlier in the week. At the moment, Hanford is giving us a 40-50% chance of rain on Wednesday day with that rain turning over to snow on Wednesday night and temperatures fall quickly after sunset.

Regardless of the amount of precipitation we see, temps are going to be COLD! We are moving into the middle of December after all, so this is to be expected this time of year. We will have another update if things change early again as they did today.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
300 PM PST Sat Dec 8 2012


Synopsis...
patchy fog is possible throughout the San Joaquin Valley during the
late night through middle morning hours for the next few days. Locally
breezy conditions are possible through and below the mountain passes
in Kern County...mainly on Sunday afternoon and evening.

Discussion...
low stratus and fog in the valley finally clearing out in the
afternoon. Otherwise mostly sunny elsewhere in the area. The low
clouds is again redeveloping along the Sierra foothills and South
Valley. Moderate north gradients may bank the cloud cover towards
the tehachapis and Tulare foothills tonight. NAM model indicates
the lower level moisture lasting until Sunday morning. Think some
fog will redevelop in the sjv overnight but should be much less
widespread than this morning due to increase low level wind mixing.
A drier more north to northeast flow is prognosticated through the first
part of next week between an amplifying east Pacific Ridge and a
trough digging through the east Great Basin. Overnight lows in a
few of the coldest valley locations could get low enough to produce
a bit of patchy frost during the next few mornings...while some
desert locations will drop a few degrees below freezing. Jet
energy traversing the trough will bring gusty winds through and
below Kern County mountain passes Sunday and Santa Ana wind
conditions to scal. Models are in decent agreement with another
developing shortwave trough moving across California by the middle
of next week...bringing with it another chance for precipitation
over most of the central California interior. The low will be a
colder system bringing lower snow levels across the Sierra Nevada.
Threat of precipitation should extend to the Kern County mountains
and desert as the low digs well south into scal. Cooler conditions
will also be in store...with temperatures dropping to a bit below
climatology for the latter part of the week.

===============================================

[end of update]


06-Dec-2012 7:27 PM

Dry Conditions to Continue Through Thursday of Next Week

The next 7 days will see partly cloudy conditions over the Southern Sierra with periods of low clouds and fog in the morning and evening hours. The next possible chance for rain will come on Thursday the 13th. However, at this time confidence in a return to a wet pattern remains low.

Our next update will be posted on the 13th unless condition change from the current predictions.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
245 PM PST Thursday Dec 6 2012


Synopsis...
low clouds and patchy fog in the San Joaquin Valley and adjacent
foothills will linger through tonight...and possibly through the day
Friday. Drier air will try to work south late Friday as a neutral to
weak offshore flow begins to develop....although patchy valley fog
remains possible during the weekend...mainly for the late night and
morning hours.

Discussion...
low stratus dominated the San Joaquin Valley and lower foothills
today. Measurable precipitation fell this morning as the fog
lifted into today/S stratus layer. The precipitation band as the fog
lifted was from north to south with the Grapevine...Tehachapi
range...still under light rain this afternoon. At this point...
will expect the stratus deck to remain over the valley for at
least 24 hours as a ridge pattern develops over the eastern
Pacific. Short range model progging little change in 500mb heights
during the next 24 to 36 hours with surface pressure gradients
relaxing during the same time period. Therefore...will expect no
change in the weather as we start a period of gray skies over the
Central Valley.


By Friday...the flow aloft becomes more northwesterly as the ridge
of high pressure continues building over the eastern Pacific.
While the flow may not be totally dry...precipitation will come to an end
with the potential fog fog remaining over the valley floor. Will
keep a mention of some fog for Friday morning as a very minimal
potential still exist. While the stratus may inhibit fog
development...some shallow fog may still develop in the more
favored locations. By this weekend...a dry environment will exist
over the region. Lower range model then show the ridge axis
shifting east during the weekend...allowing for a more northerly
flow pattern to exist over the West Coast. Yet...while not a true
meridional flow pattern...the district will see a cool down during
the weekend. However...values will remain near normal even during
the cool down. More significantly...models show a more drier
environment developing this weekend...which may help support
colder overnight lows. Next week...a stationary high will remain
over the West Coast with little change at least through middle week.
Models continue to forecast a trough dropping down from the Gulf of Alaska
toward Wednesday. At this point...will mention only slight chance
of precipitation for later Wednesday and Thursday as model consensus
remains very low.

============================================

[end of update]


05-Dec-2012 8:40 AM

Rain is Coming in Next 1-2 Hours!

Check your NextRad radar on our home page! NICE! :o)

[end of update]


02-Dec-2012 10:00 AM

VERY HEAVY RAIN and Gusty Winds Today! - Stay tuned to Website and Radar

Latest NextRad Radar image:

That huge rain band is moving in a South by Southeast direction. In other words, it is heading directly towards our area!!

Weather Image

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
817 am PST sun Dec 2 2012


Synopsis...
scattered showers early this morning will evolve in to a steady
rain before noon from Fresno north. The rain will spread south
during the afternoon. Periods of heavy rain are possible from
Fresno north including the Sierra north of Kings Canyon. The rain
will diminish in the north this evening...and gradually ending in
Kern County near daybreak Monday.

Discussion...
radar shows the big area of heavy rain now just
moving into Yosemite and Merced County. Rainfall rates will really
ramp up over the next several hours as the system moves to the
southeast. Snow level remains high...at or above 9500 feet based
on Oakland sounding and Buck Rock aprs (elevation 8500 feet
temperature 37 degrees). Flood Watch and wind advisories remain in
effect. Forecast grids have been tweaked for latest quantitative precipitation forecast. Let it rain.

Previous discussion... /issued 421 am PST sun Dec 2 2012/

baroclinic Leaf rapidly developing early this morning from norcal SW
in into the Pacific around 35n. Triple point coming ashore near
cape mendo. Scattered showers in central California over night will be replaced
shortly with more steady rain near kmce around daybreak spreading
south to kfat before noon...and finally into Kern County middle-late
afternoon. Heavy rain is possible at times...especially kfat north...with
lesser amounts in Kings/Tulare counties. Model quantitative precipitation forecast ranges from 1-2
inches on the valley floor from kfat north...3 inches around ynp
dropping off to around 1 inch in Kings Canyon. As the system weakens
as it slides farther south...1-2 tenths are about all that is left
for kbfl-ktsp...and a couple of hundredths for the desert. No
changes to the Flood Watch central sjv-Sierra at this time. In coordinate with
ksto...will watch progress through the SAC valley before determining
whether an advisory or warning is warranted. Snow levels currently
between 9-10k will remain near there through the bulk of the precipitation
today. Cooler air will work in behind the front with snow level
lowering to near 6-7k feet. But by then much of the precipitation will be
over.


After frontal passage...precipitation will sharply diminish in the north from kmce
and kfat this evening...with the last precipitation out of Kern County before
daybreak Monday. A somewhat moist westerly upper flow will continue Monday
into mid-week. This will bring occasional cloudiness to central California
through at least Wednesday. A shortwave trough in the flow will spread reach
the Pacific northwest Tuesday. The trough will have minimal impact on central California.

A few showers could reach as far south as kfat later tues-Wed.
Otherwise partly cloudy and dry. By the end of the week...high press will
build in the east Pacific putting California in a dry...somewhat cooler...northwest
flow aloft. Fog development in the sjv should remain none...or very
limited with clouds and continued mixing through at least Wednesday. But as
heights build 2nd part of the week...a more stable airmass and
clearing skies could cause a significant uptick in foggy night and
morning hours.

==========================================

More local details will be posted laster today. We have our hands full with the storm at the moment! Just stay tuned to the home page and radar and you will be fine!

[end of update]



30-Nov-2012 1:20 PM

Possible Incoming Thunderstorm Cell Storm Spotted @ 1:19 p.m. PST

NextRad radar is picking up what appears to be a brewing thunderstorm which is heading directly for the Bass Lake area. It is currently at the southern border of Madera County and is expected to travel the 50 miles to our area in the next 45-90 minutes.

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest LIVE NextRad radar returns. (Thunderstorms are indicated IN RED on the color coded precipitation displays)

[end of update]


29-Nov-2012 9:48 PM

Heavy Weather On the Way! - Flood Advisories Already Issued for all of Madera County including Bass Lake!

A series of moisture rich southern pacific storm are now making their way through the state, dumping huge amounts of rain in Northern California and parts of Southern Oregon.

These first few storms have trended north of our area, but the last and largest of the series will be taking a more southerly track, and will likely run straight through the center of the state beginning Saturday evening and through most of Sunday.

Rain rates could exceed 3-4 inches per hour at times and local flooding of previously dry streams and creeks is highly likely during this event. Anyone living near one of these small creeks and streams is advised to closely monitor the water levels throughout the evening late Saturday and into Sunday.

Stay tuned to our Watches and advisory link as well as the NWS/D2149 based local Bass Lake forecast, also linked at the top of this page.

Latest IR SAT Images

Weather Image

Weather Image

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
303 PM PST Thursday Nov 29 2012


Synopsis...
the next system to move in from the Pacific will arrive
Friday...with rain spreading south during the day. A brief respite
from the rain will occur Friday night and Saturday. The third...and
strongest system will arrive Saturday night and Sunday. This system
has the potential to bring heavy rain at times to the San Joaquin
Valley and adjacent foothills...especially north of Kern County.

Discussion...the second storm in a succession of three of them
is heading this way. Radar and satellite imagery currently show
this system moving into northern California. Until it arrives in the
northernmost portion of our County Warning Area early Friday morning...much of
the central California interior will remain cloudy tonight with nothing
more than some sprinkles in the sj valley and isolated light showers
in the mountains.

Of noteworthy importance on satellite imagery is a plume of moisture
associated with this storm that extends southwestward to the Hawaiian
islands. Meteorologists often refer to this subtropical moisture
plume as an atmospheric river and the models forecast this
atmospheric river to settle over the northern half of our County Warning Area by
Friday afternoon. Coupled with the support of an upper level jet...
orographically enhanced rain is likely along the western slopes
of the Sierra primarily north of Tulare County. In addition to
significant rain...brisk southerly winds can be expected on the sj
valley floor from Fresno County northward Friday. Rainfall amts from
this storm will be substantially lower in the southern sj valley...
especially in Kern County where southerly winds will downslope and
cause a rain shadowing effect. In fact...at the south end of the
sj valley...temperatures could easily rise into the 70s Friday afternoon as
a result of downsloping wind.


By the time this band of rain reaches Kern County Friday evening...
it likely fall apart. In fact...the Kern County desert and
possibly the south end of the sj valley may remain dry while the
Tehachapi Mountains receive generally a tenth of an inch or less
of rain. The models portray the final storm in the series as a
much wetter storm...but again north of Kern County from late
Saturday night into Sunday evening. Like its predecessors...this
caboose storm will also have a subtropical moisture tap. Although
water in the reservoirs are low...the additional rain from this
storm will bring a threat of Urban and Small Stream flooding
by the second half of the weekend from Fresno County northward.
(For details...please see the sfoffahnx and sfospshnx products.)
Additionally...a recurrence of gusty winds may accompany the
weekend storm in the northern sj valley and on the west side.

Little fluctuation is expected in the snow levels through Sunday
as a result of a strong zonal flow aloft. Nonetheless...by the
time precipitation diminishes Sunday night...elevations above
9000 feet could end up with up to 4 feet of new snow.

The central California interior will get a break from stormy...wet
weather early next week thanks to weak ridging aloft. During
this time...skies will be mostly clear...winds will be relatively
light...and areas of night and morning fog can be expected in
the sj valley. The longer range models forecast a short wave trough
to clip the northern part of the County Warning Area with some precipitation Wednesday into Wednesday evening. Chance probability of precipitation were added accordingly from Fresno County north. Otherwise...maximum temperatures will
generally run slightly above normal through day 7. The next few
nights will be exceptionally mild then trend seasonably cooler
after the weekend.

===================================

Due to a personal family emergency over the last several weeks we have been unable to post regularly to this journal, but the event has now been concluded, so we are back full time at the station as of today.

Enjoy the rain and stay tuned to our website for the latest real-time weather activity reports as they happen!

[end of update]



24-Nov-2012 9:33 AM

Possible Pattern Change Coming Mid-Week!

Still a bit too early to say for sure, but the latest model runs are looking positive for a shift of the jet stream south, and with that change, a movement of the pacific storm track down into our region. Could prove to be a very wet pattern if current models hold.

We will have more on this developing change in the weather patterns later this coming week so stay tuned!

[end of update]


22-Nov-2012 7:37 AM

HAPPY THANKSGIVING EVERYONE!

No winter weather forecast for at least the next 7-10 days. Even though we are slightly above last year's dismal totals, we are still 50% below normal for November in terms of normal rainfall for the Bass Lake area.

The extended outlook doesn't look very promising either. More on that in our next update next month!

[end of update]


18-Nov-2012 8:17 PM

Impressive Storm Totals Even As Second System Washes Out Sunday

Unfortunately, the second system got sideswiped and sheared by upper level winds and left us with nothing much in terms of additional precipitation today. However, the system Saturday night was one of the most impressive rain makers we have seen in a very long time up here at the station. We also recorded the highest hourly rain rate of the year so far Saturday evening with 3.58 inches per hour at 6:52 p.m. This is one of the highest rain rates the station has ever recorded during a major storm, with only the 5.94 inches per hour back on October 5th of 2011 coming in higher.

Here are the precipitation numbers...

Storm Total: 1.80 inches (11/16 through 11/18)
Total Friday: 0.11 inches
Total Saturday: 1.66 inches
Total Sunday: 0.03 inches
Current Total for This Month: 2.40 inches
Current Total for the Season: 4.02 inches


This latest storm total now puts us slightly ahead of last year's rainfall total for this date in 2011 of 3.76 inches. An addition of 0.26 inches from this same time last year. While this isn't that big a number, it is somewhat encouraging based on our lower than 2011 numbers for October.

Unfortunately, it appears that we will not be seeing any significant chances of additional major winter storms for at least the next 7-10 days. There is a major system heading into the Pacific Northwest beginning Monday night but based on the current jet stream trajectory, this disturbance is only expected to brush the area on Tuesday and Wednesday with perhaps a few hundredths worth of measurable precipitation up here in the Sierra and basically nothing down in the SJV.

The Latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
359 PM PST sun Nov 18 2012


Synopsis...
a few widely scattered showers for the area through early evening
tonight then drier conditions return. There is a slight chance of
showers in the highest elevations on Tuesday night into Wednesday.
Monday through Sunday there will be a chance for patchy early
morning fog in the San Joaquin Valley.

Discussion...
precipitation diminished quickly this morning as the surface front washed out
as middle-upper level dynamics quickly sheared out to the east. Any
remaining light showers will end later this evening. The next storm will
move across the pacnw tonite. Zonal flow under the low will push
considerable clouds into the region overnite into Monday...but no
precipitation is expected this far south.

Another strong storm is forecast to move into the pacnw Tuesday...with
the associated front pushing southeast into central California. However this
front is forecast to wash out over California...and little if any precipitation is
expected most areas. Best chance of showers will be north of
Fresno County.

After the Wednesday system moves out...models similar in building a strong
ridge over California Thursday and Friday. This will bring a warming trend for
the end of the week...with temperatures above climatology Friday through sun. The
possible exception will be the sjv...where a strengthening low
level inversion could bring increasing fog. However the Euro
brings some low level drying...and is suggesting minimal fog...or
at least early dissipation. GFS is about 6-8 degrees cooler in the
valley than the Euro. For now...trended valley temperatures toward GFS as
we are getting into fog season. But confidence either way is poor
at this time.

================================

This will likely be our last update this week unless the system on Tuesday/Wednesday turns out to be more than they are currently predicting for our area.

Stay tuned to our web site and Facebook for the latest weather data 24/7!

[end of update]


17-Nov-2012 6:19 PM

Impressive Storm Total So Far! More On the Way!

This has definitely turned out to be the first significant rainfall event we have seen up here this season! The station has recorded a storm total of 1.02 inches so far with 0.91 inches of that coming in just today!

There is more rain on the way as the second system sets its sites for the Central California region. This one looks pretty impressive on the IR SAT images and based on the speed of the eastern trajectory, we expect the heavy rain to arrive towards the tail end of the evening and into the early morning hours of Sunday. There could be some gusty winds accompanying the arrival of the second front, so be prepared for that possibility later tonight. The rain should continue through a good portion of Sunday before the system moves east and out of the area.

Latest NextRad and IR SAT Images

Weather Image

Weather Image

Weather Image

The Latest from Hanford

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
207 PM PST Sat Nov 17 2012



Synopsis...
a series of weather disturbances will continue to bring rain to
most of the region and higher elevation snowfall over the southern
Sierra Nevada through Sunday. Drier conditions will return by Monday
along with increased chances for morning fog in the San Joaquin
Valley. Slight chances for precipitation will return for Fresno
County north Tuesday night into Wednesday...primarily for the
higher elevations.

Discussion...
another upper disturbance and associated band of moisture will
push through central California this afternoon. The heavier
precipitation is moving over the Sierra Forest in Fresno County.
However radar rainfall estimates during the last 24 hours shows
the heaviest amounts falling over the Mariposa County perhaps a
large area averaging 1-1.25 inches. There may be a brief lull in
shower activity this evening as central California will be in
between fronts. Moderate pressure gradients over the north San
Joaquin Valley resulting in breezy gusty winds in the Central
Valley due to a surface trough towards the coast. Expect strong
wind potential to decrease during the early evening with models
indicating diminishing grads as surface trough moves inland.
Vandenberg sounding indicates a strong low level south flow
25-30kts. This is resulting in clearing and mild temperatures in
the South Valley with temperatures rising into the middle 70s due a
dry warming downsloping flow off the Tehachapi Mountains. Snow
level is relatively high with a freezing level near 9kft. Snow
level should fall tonight with the arrival of a colder storm
originating from the Gulf of Alaska. Temperatures at 10kft will
lower as low as -5c degrees which should lower snow levels to near
6kft at Yosemite by Sunday morning. Heavy snow accumulations will
be probable at 6-7kft with higher amounts above 8kft. Precipitation
will be on the decrease late Sunday afternoon with the upper level
support racing east of the Sierra. Little threat of additional
precipitation with the stalled front weakening over central
California. A zonal flow aloft will set up over California
Monday...buckling into a short-wave ridge Monday night as the
next trough drops out of the Gulf of Alaska. With moisture from
this weekend/S rains and a stable pattern aloft...could see patchy
late night and morning fog in the central and southern San Joaquin
Valley Monday and Tuesday. The middle-week trough is forecast to take
a more northerly track. Expect any precipitation will stay from
Fresno County northward and quantitative precipitation forecast will be low. Upper-level ridging
is forecast to return to California beginning Thanksgiving
day...with an increase threat of night and morning fog in the
central and southern San Joaquin Valley.

==================================

[end of update]


17-Nov-2012 6:42 AM

Moderate to Heavy Rain This Morning - Local Forecast Link Added - New Hanford Facebook Page! - Wundermap Problems

A substantially large band of moderate to heavy precipitation moved in over the Bass Lake area just before 3 a.m. this morning and continues to bring sustained moderate to heavy rainfall to the area.

Radar returns are not currently showing any additional precipitation bands behind this wave, but local upsloping could bring additional periods of moderate to heavy rainfall throughout the day on Saturday. Another system is poised to arrive over the area tonight and into Sunday, bringing yet another chance of moderate to heavy rainfall to the area. Snow levels remain high at the 7000 foot level and are expected to remain high through this entire event.

Clear skies are expected to return to the area by Tuesday night.

Latest NextRad Images

Weather Image

Weather Image

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
255 am PST Sat Nov 17 2012



Synopsis...
a series of weather disturbances will continue to bring rain to
most of the region and higher elevation snowfall over the southern
Sierra Nevada. Afterward...dry conditions will return...although the
next chance for precipitation is expected Tuesday night and
Wednesday...mainly from Fresno County northward.

Discussion...
satellite and radar loops show the frontal rain band moving into the
Hanford warning/forecast area at this time. This band will bring
moderate rain to the region...as well as snow above 7000 feet in the
southern Sierra Nevada.


Satellite loops show that the first upper-level low has become
entrained in the flow around the trough off the California coast...
and has lifted northeast to over the San Francisco Bay area. The
next low...located near 47n/135w...will bring the heaviest
precipitation to the region tonight and Sunday morning as the main
cold front moves through the region. The Friday 21z rfc quantitative precipitation forecast guidance
for Yosemite Valley forecasts a storm total of over two inches
through 00z Monday /1600 PST Sunday/...and over 1.5 inch at
Huntington Lake. As a result...the Winter Weather Advisory for the
Sierra Nevada between Yosemite and Kings Canyon was upgraded to a
Winter Storm Warning through 00z Monday.


The 00z/06z model runs forecast 850-mb temperatures over the region
to be about 0.5-1.0 c warmer than previous runs. If this is
correct...snow levels might not be as low as previously thought...
although they will be at least 7000 feet and could drop to 6000 feet
in heavier convective snow showers.


Clouds blanketing the region are keeping overnight temperatures warm.
At 10z /0200 PST/...Bakersfield and Fresno were still around 60
degrees. Fresno tied its record high minimum temperature for November
16th of 58 degrees. As the cold air behind the front moves into the
region later today...temperatures will fall and low temperatures for
today might not occur until this evening.


Precipitation will taper off from the south Sunday evening as the
upper-level trough moves east of the region. A zonal flow aloft will
set up over California Monday...buckling into a short-wave ridge
Monday night as the next trough drops out of the Gulf of Alaska.
With moisture from this weekend/S rains and a stable pattern aloft...
could see patchy late night and morning fog in the central and
southern San Joaquin Valley Monday and Tuesday.


The middle-week trough is forecast to take a more northerly track...
with the 5700-meter 500-mb height line dropping only into the
northern part of the central California interior. Expect that any
precipitation will stay from Fresno County northward...and quantitative precipitation forecast will
be low.


Upper-level ridging is forecast to return to California beginning
Thanksgiving day...with more night and morning fog possible in the
central and southern San Joaquin Valley.

======================================

We also wanted to mention that the NWS in Hanford is now on Facebook! You can check out their official FB page HERE

We have also added a direct link to the NWS Bass Lake Forecast page to the top of this journal. This local forecast provided by The National Weather Service uses the weather data supplied by this station to make specific local forecast predictions for the Bass Lake area. Just click the button at the top of the page!

NOTE: The Weather Underground Wide Angle Precipitation map is currently malfunctioning. We have reported the problem to their tech support staff and they are looking into the problem.

More updates to follow depending on conditions. Stay tuned to our home page for the latest real-time automated weather condition updates!


[end of update]


16-Nov-2012 7:26 AM

Rain Has Arrived at the Station!

The station recorded the first 0.01 inches of light rainfall at 6:49 a.m. this morning with steady light rain continuing as of this report with a current daily total of 0.04 inches. The NWS is forecasting this precipitation to continue as showery activity through today with gradual increase in intensity by this afternoon. Moderate to heavy precipitation is expected later today through Saturday.

Latest NextRad and IR SAT Images

Weather Image

Weather Image

The latest from Hanford

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
250 am PST Friday Nov 16 2012



Synopsis...
a series of weather disturbances will continue to impact the
central California interior through the weekend...bringing rain to
most of the region and higher elevation snowfall over the southern
Sierra Nevada. Chances for precipitation will continue into at least
early next week.

Discussion...
the fetch of subtropical moisture entrained by the upper-level low
off the California coast proved deeper than expected...and brought
light rain to Kern County Thursday and to Kings and Tulare counties
and the southern Sierra Nevada Thursday evening. Areas of light rain
continue over the Hanford warning/forecast area early this morning
as the subtropical moisture continues to stream into the region from
the southwest.


Satellite loops show the first in a series of upper-level lows
located west of Monterey Bay...near 36n/136w. The models continue to
forecast this low to open into a short-wave that approaches the
California coast today and moves onshore tonight. This low/wave will
bring heavier precipitation to the Hanford warning/forecast area
this afternoon and tonight...with several inches of snow falling on
the high country of the southern Sierra Nevada. Winter weather
advisories have been posted from 18z /1000 PST/ today to 00z Sunday
/1600 PST Saturday/ above 7500 feet for the southern Sierra Nevada
from Kings Canyon north...and above 8000 feet for the Tulare County
mountains.


The next upper-level low is located at approximately 50n/140w...but
the low center is not easy to locate on satellite loops. A series of
vorticities rotating around the low mark the overall circulation and
the models have an elongated double-low feature...incorporating the
low that had been south of the Aleutians...with a center northwest
of the apparent low. This low also is forecast to open into an
upper-level trough which reaches the California coast Saturday
and moves inland Saturday night. The NAM...WRF and GFS forecast the
highest precipitation from this system as it comes onshore...with
the GFS forecasting over 2 inches of rain for Fresno from this
storm. Suspect this may be overdone...but the 00z/06z model trend
suggests that the rfc total quantitative precipitation forecast for Fresno of 0.12 inch may be on
the low side and this morning/S 15z quantitative precipitation forecast may be higher.


A third low is forecast to form in the Gulf of Alaska Saturday night
and slowly drop southeast...reaching Vancouver Island Wednesday
morning. The main impact of this low on the central California
interior will be to keep upper-level troughiness over the region for
much of next week. With a more northerly track...precipitation will
stay mainly north of the Hanford warning/forecast area next week...
although Merced...Mariposa and western Fresno counties could see a
slight chance of showers.


With the first two lows tapping into a subtropical moisture feed...
the airmass over the region will be relatively warm. The models are
in agreement with 850-mb temperatures over Fresno only dropping to
4.0-4.5 c Sunday and Sunday night as the main trough moves through.
At 10z /0200 PST/...meso-west observations placed the snow level in
the southern Sierra Nevada at 7000-7500 feet...and little change is
expected as the warm moisture continues to move in. The snow level
will fall Sunday with the arrival of the trough...but should remain
above 6000 feet.

============================================

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest real-time weather condition updates and live Nextrad radar returns!

[end of update]



15-Nov-2012 2:34 PM

A Weekend Full of Much Needed Rainfall Begins Tonight!

Two pacific storm systems are currently heading for California. The first system has already begun to move in giving us overcast skies at the time of this update. The first measurable rain is expected to begin late tonight and continue through tomorrow and into tomorrow evening.

The second system will then move in later in the weekend bringing us another shot at some measurable rainfall. At the moment, Hanford is predicting between 0.50 and 0.75 inches as a storm total for our elevation of the Southern Sierra. However... based on previous systems and our areas gift of "upslope" I am going to consider that 0.75 inch storm total to be on the LOW side of the final precipitation total.

We shall see soon!

Latest IR SAT Images

Weather Image

Weather Image

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1014 am PST Thursday Nov 15 2012


Synopsis...
the high pressure ridge will move eastward and give way to a low
pressure pattern through the weekend. A series of weather
disturbances will move into central California...the first will
arrive by tonight. Chances for precipitation will remain Friday and
through the weekend as additional disturbances impact the region.

Discussion...
high clouds continuing to stream up from the
southwest this morning ahead of the upper low that is currently
near 33n/132w. This low is forecast to move toward the coast today
and tonight...then inland as an open wave Friday afternoon and
into early Saturday. This system will begin to spread
precipitation into the region tonight and continue Friday. The
best chances of precipitation tonight and Friday will be in the
Sierra Nevada. In the San Joaquin Valley...the only very light
amounts are expected...as this first wave tries to moisten up the
lower levels of the atmosphere.


Precipitation will continue Saturday as the first system begins to
move out and a second storm drops out of the Gulf of Alaska and
into the Pacific northwest and northern California Saturday
afternoon. As the trough associated with this second low digs
south...precipitation will continue over the region Sunday and
into early Monday.


The heaviest quantitative precipitation forecast from these storms will be over the northern half
of the County warning forecast area...although light rain will fall as far south as the
Tehachapi Mountains. These systems are forecast to be relatively
warm systems...with 850-mb temperatures over Fresno remaining
above 4 c through the period. This will keep snow levels around
7500 feet.


The models forecast a zonal flow to set up across the Pacific with
the moisture aimed more at northern California and the Pacific
northwest for the early part of next week. Another low is currently
over the tip of the Aleutian Islands...and this low is forecast
cross the Gulf of Alaska and approach the Pacific northwest by
12z Wednesday. There are differences between the GFS and European model (ecmwf)
as to how far south the system will extend. Precipitation will be
likely be just to our north over northern California...possibly
just brushing the northern fringes of the County warning forecast area over Merced and
Mariposa counties.

===============================================

You can always check out the latest local forecast by using our Official NWS * Bass Lake Forecast Web Page generated from the weather data uploaded to the NWS by D2149! It doesn't get any more local than that!

We will be back with additional condition updates over the next 48 hours, so stay tuned!

[end of update]


14-Nov-2012 12:43 PM

New Series of Pacific Storms on the Horizon!

Confidence is increasing for the arrival of some moderate pacific storm systems over the region beginning on Thursday night and last all the way through Tuesday. If these systems do indeed continue their current track and move in to the Central California region, this will be the first multi-day string of unsettled weather we have seen so far this season.

Timing is still uncertain at the time of this report, so we will update the journal again on Thursday with IR SAT and radar images. At this point, these systems are expected to be warmer than the last system, so snow levels are expected to remain well above the Bass Lake area.

Here is the latest eastern pacific IR SAT image

Weather Image

The Latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1013 am PST Wednesday Nov 14 2012


Synopsis...
partly cloudy skies and a slight warming trend through Thursday as
the result of a weak high pressure ridge moving into the area.
Another limited moisture weather disturbance will move into central
California late Thursday into Friday with a chance of rain and high
elevation snow. This system will be a bit warmer than the last.

Discussion...
ridge of high pressure remains over California today
while a low pressure system is taking shape out near 30n/138w.
Some sub-tropical moisture is being drawn northward ahead of the
low and is moving across the southern portion of the County warning forecast area in the
form of high clouds. There is another bit of moisture moving
across the northern half of the County warning forecast area as middle clouds. The upper low
will move toward California Thursday and bring a chance of
precipitation Thursday night and Friday. The sub-tropical moisture
looks like it will be pushed south and east as the upper trough
approaches...but will need to be monitored. Otherwise this system
does not look to be a big rain producer for the San Joaquin
Valley. Greatest precipitation amounts in the Sierra will be north
of Kings Canyon and snow levels will remain above 7500 feet.


By later Friday this first wave is prognosticated to lift northeast away
from California but the moist southwest flow will continue well
into Saturday. A second trough is then projected to sweep into
California from the northwest on Sunday for a continued threat of
wet weather lasting into early Monday. For next week the rain
threat now appears to be aimed to the north of central California
with all medium range models projecting a very wet period over the
Pacific northwest and far northern California.

=========================================

As always, we will be all over this approaching set of new storm systems! As soon as we have some new data on what we may see here at Bass Lake, we will update this journal immediately!

Stay tuned!

[end of update]


11-Nov-2012 11:13 AM

Coldest Low of the Season! - Clear Weather through Wednesday

The station recorded a low this morning of 23.9 degrees F at 6:22 a.m. This is the coldest temp the station has recorded since January. We have also recorded one of the highest barometric pressures since the station was activated back in 2009.

We can expect fair weather to continue through Wednesday when the next low pressure system moves into the area. Still too early to call the quantitative precipitation for this next system.

Stay tuned for more on the next storm system later this week.

The Latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
927 am PST sun Nov 11 2012


Synopsis...
a weak area of high pressure will move into California today.
Temperatures will begin a slow warmup today and should be near
normal by middle week with clear to partly cloudy skies. The next
chance of rain will be by the end of the week.

Discussion...
frost/freeze products verified well this morning. Pockets of the
Fresno and Bakersfield metropolitan areas observed min temperatures below
freezing but most areas remained in the middle to upper 30s. The Kern
County desert areas fell solidly into the middle 20s. Temperatures are
already on the rebound and afternoon highs will be about 2-5f
warmer than yesterday across the sjv and Kern deserts and up to
15f in the mountains.


Potential for more frost tonight though there are some thicker
cirrus coming in ahead of a low amplitude trough. Will take a
close look at the data for tonight and determine potential for
another frost advisory in the sjv. Will also be assessing incoming
11.12z data for precipitation chances Thursday into next weekend. Appears
we/ll have one opening wave arrive Thursday/Friday with perhaps a
lifting/negative tilt trough next weekend.

Previous discussion... /issued 418 am PST sun Nov 11 2012/

Discussion...
a shortwave moving toward the pacnw today will bring a few mainly
high clouds to central California. If clouds thicken enough overnite
tonite it could mitigate the frost potential in the sjv. Otherwise
another cold night is expected with patchy frost.


Temperatures will continue to modify into middle week with more normal readings
by Wednesday. Problem the next few forecasts will be arrival of a southern stream
shortwave later Thursday and/or Friday. The 00z GFS almost scrapped the
system...but its back on the 06z run. The Euro is slightly slower
than previous runs and centered on Thursday night. The 00z Canadian Gem
favored the 00z GFS...so there are several solutions for the last
part of the week. Other than some small timing issues the Euro has
been most stable with this system so moderately confident of some
precipitation Thursday nite-Fri. Being a southern stream system...it wont be nearly
as cold as the one that just moved through...and possibly wetter as
well.


While still well outside of the current forecast...the Euro and GFS
show a potentially strong storm early next week.

====================================

Stay tuned to our web site for the latest in Bass Lake Ca. weather news as it happens!

[end of update]


10-Nov-2012 7:36 AM

Impressive Additional Snowfall Early This Morning!

Weather Image

The station recorded an additional 0.18 inches of liquid precipitation starting at about 4:30 a.m. this morning until just after 6:30 a.m. This resulted in an additional snow accumulation of 2.5 inches on the ground, which brings our total snow accumulation here at the station to 5.5 inches for this storm.

Nextrad radar returns at the time of this report are showing very spotty areas of continued precipitation as this cold low rotates over California and slowly moves east. We may see additional periods of light to moderate snowfall through about 10 a.m. this morning, giving way to partly cloudy skies, but with temps remaining well down into the 30s. Our low this morning was 29.1 degrees F.

We are expecting a gradual clearing through today with a return to clear and sunny weather by tomorrow afternoon. Temps are expected to return to seasonal norms by Tuesday with our next chance at measurable precipitation returning on Thursday as the next pacific storm system moves into the area from the west.

The Latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
507 am PST Sat Nov 10 2012


Synopsis...
the low pressure area that brought scattered mainly light rain and
mountain snow will move slowly east today and tonight. This will
bring partial clearing this afternoon with diminishing showers. With
clearing skies tonight...there will be areas of frost in the San
Joaquin Valley after midnight in coldest cloud-free areas. In the
high deserts the seasons first hard freeze is possible late tonight
and Sunday morning.

Discussion...
the upper level longwave trough will gradually move east today. The
current west-northwest flow at the surface and aloft will become more northerly
by this afternoon. This will bring decreasing showers and gradual
clearing...though clouds could linger into the night in the mountains
and south and east parts of the sjv and adjacent foothills. Frost
is possible in the sjv overnite...but could be mitigated if clouds
linger long enough. The seasons first hard freeze could occur in
the Kern County desert if winds die off. Right now...not confident
enough to issue an adzy for the sjv...nor upgrade the watch in the
desert.


Behind the trough...flat high pressure will prevail across the southern
half of California as shortwave troughs move across the pacnw. This will
bring a gradual warming trend with temperatures back to more normal
readings Monday or Tuesday. The next threat of precipitation returns Thursday as a
southern stream shortwave targets California. This system will not be nearly as
cold as the current one.

==================================

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest real-time weather activity reports as well as providing you with real-time Nextrad radar reports!

[end of update]



09-Nov-2012 8:02 AM

First Snow of the Season!

Moderate to heavy snowfall blanketed the Bass Lake area last night as a relatively strong cell of moisture moved into the area. We ended up with just over 1 inch of snow on the ground by midnight, with the activity tapering off and stopping by 2AM.

There are still some waves of moisture moving towards the area, so we may yet pick up some additional snowfall today. The current temperature is 32.9 degrees F and climbing.

The station recorded 0.27 inches of liquid precipitation on Thursday with another 0.02 inches recorded today. It remains to be seen if we will get any further measurable precipitation today.

The latest IR SAT image

Weather Image

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest radar returns and real-time weather activity reports!

[end of update]




08-Nov-2012 10:17 PM

Rain Has Arrived! - Temps Falling Into High 30s Now

The station recorded its first bucket tip at 9:40 p.m. this evening with steady rainfall continuing at the time of this storm update. So far the station has logged a total of 0.07 inches with a current temperature of 37.3 F. We expect the temps to continue to fall through the remainder of this evening, and by Friday morning, we should be in the temp range for this precipitation to change over to snow.

The question at this point is... Will there be any moisture over the area when this final drop occurs? That will determine whether or not Bass Lake wakes up to snow or just frozen roads and sidewalks.

Here is snapshot of the current rain band now hovering over the station and slowly moving to our northeast.

Weather Image

We will continue to monitor the situation, but plan to wait until tomorrow morning before posting our next storm update.

Stay warm, and if you have to drive tonight...

BE CAREFUL!

Roads will be icing up sooner than anything else does, especially the bridges on road 274.

[end of update]


08-Nov-2012 3:48 PM

Playing the Waiting Game!

The cold front is now moving over the Bass Lake area, but we are still awaiting the arrival of the first band of moist unstable air and the potential upslope precipitation that will come with it.

This latest NextRad radar image shows the inbound moisture now moving into the Central California coastal areas. Nothing very impressive so far, but these bands could build in strength as they butt up against the Sierra foothills.

Weather Image

We expect this first band of moisture to arrive over the Sierra at dusk this evening. Temps are expected to drop down into the 30s by dark, and any precipitation will likely fall as either a rain/snow mix, or pure snow.

Here are the latest IR SAT images showing the system. It is slowly moving south with a slight eastward trajectory.

Weather Image

Weather Image

The Latest from Hanford

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
325 PM PST Thursday Nov 8 2012


Synopsis...
a low pressure system will move through the area producing light
rain and higher elevation snow to central California. Much colder
air behind the system raises concerns about frost conditions later
in the weekend.

Discussion...
the first cold front is moving out of the central California
interior this afternoon. The cold airmass behind the front is in
place over the San Joaquin Valley...and at 22z /1400 PST/...the
temperature at Fresno had been mostly unchanged since 18z /1000
PST/. Winds have diminished over the east side of the valley floor
although a few gusts to 20 miles per hour continue over the west side of the
San Joaquin Valley. These winds have raised some blowing dust.
Although there have been no reports so far of visibility problems
the San Joaquin Valley air district has issued an air quality alert
through this evening due to the dust.


Subtropical moisture advected into Southern California this morning
and as the first cold front dropped south a few showers developed
along the convergence boundary. Although a few sprinkles reached the
ground...no measurable rain was reported.


The second cold front is moving into the Sacramento area this
afternoon. Showers are accompanying this front...and lightning was
reported distantly northwest of Red Bluff. This front will bring
precipitation to the northern part of the Hanford warning/forecast
area by midnight...with precipitation spreading south toward
daybreak. As the cold air moves into region...snow levels will fall
and snow could accumulate on the floor of Yosemite Valley by Friday
afternoon...and a light snow could fall on the Grapevine and
Tehachapi Pass Friday night. Traffic between the San Joaquin Valley
and the Southland could be impacted by slick Road conditions.


The trough will move out of the region Saturday with only a few
lingering snow showers over the high country of the southern Sierra
Nevada. With clearing skies and light winds...likely will see some
radiational cooling Saturday night with the coldest spots in the
central and southern San Joaquin Valley falling below freezing. The
coldest spots in the Kern County deserts could see a freeze with
lows below 28 degrees. As the upper-level ridge builds into
California...the stable conditions could result in a more widespread
frost on the San Joaquin Valley and a continued freeze in the
deserts.


The Pacific satellite mosaic shows a series of storms across the
Pacific and into east Asia. The upper-level low associated with the
current storm was located just west of the California-Oregon border.
The next low was located south of the Aleutian Islands near 44n/173w.
This low is forecast to reach California by the middle of next week
for the next chance of precipitation.


Further upstream...an upper-level low was east of Japan near 40n/
150w...while yet another low was over mongolia. All of these lows
are traveling eastward and will keep cooler and periodically
unsettled weather well into the rest of the month.
====================================

We will update this journal again as soon as we precipitation moving into the area.

Stay tuned!

[end of update]



07-Nov-2012 10:31 PM

Cold Front Moving In Tonight - Light Rain/Snow Late Thursday Into Friday

The first half of this cold front is slowly moving towards our location now. The system will arrive in two separate waves. This first portion is relatively moisture starved so we are not anticipating a great deal of precipitation from it, but we may still see some upslope generated rain or snow showers by Thursday night.

The second and wetter portion will move in Friday and could bring us some measurable precipitation in the form of snow at the station. Still too soon to know for sure exactly how much precipitation we will end up seeing from this event. The system has weakened considerably over the last 36 hours.

Temps are already starting to fall rapidly over the last hour. Currently we are sitting at 45.5 F and falling. Barometric pressure is also down to 29.93 from an earlier high this morning of 30.09 inches of mercury.

The Latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion...updated
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
844 PM PST Wednesday Nov 7 2012


Synopsis...
changes are in store for the region starting Thursday as a cold low
pressure system brings the next chance for rain and mountain snow.
In addition...temperatures will fall significantly Thursday and
Friday and remain much cooler than average through the weekend.

Update...
near record high temperatures across the region today will quickly
go by the Wayside as a strong cold front will push through the
area tomorrow. The front is moisture starved since is originating
from the goa and will be traveling over land for some time before
it gets here. However very cold temperatures...some of the coldest
we have seen this fall...will be the rule over the next several
days. Blustery conditions are expected through the weekend with
some light precipitation possible on Friday as the cold core moves
through. Storm Prediction Center has the coastal region in a /see text/ segment. Will be interesting on Friday if we get some surface heating...it wouldnt
take much to kick off some showers...or even a low top thunderstorm.

Strong winds in association with a strong low level jet with the
upper trough will kick up dust across the sjv and into the desert.
The winds will be below advisory level in the sjv but enough to
kick up dust from area fallow fields. Winds will be storng but
short lived as the front moves through.

Tonight remains clear and temperatures are in line with the
current forecast. Regional 24 hour changes indicates some significant
cooling along the coast as the flow is more onshore now ahead of
the front. No changes to current forecast.

Previous discussion... /issued 248 PM PST Wednesday Nov 7 2012/

Discussion...
this afternoon will most likely be the last time
until perhaps next Spring that thermometer readings top the 80
degree mark in the San Joaquin Valley...lower foothills and the
Kern County desert. The models have not wavered in their forecast
of a big change in the pattern within 24 hours...one that will
send warm weather lovers into hibernation by this weekend.


The cold front that will Herald this change looks rather anemic
on current satellite imagery and is depicted by a narrow band of
clouds that extends from Pocatello to Ukiah. Of additional
noteworthiness is a small area of convection centered a few hundred
miles off the coast of northern Baja California this afternoon. This moisture
is associated with a weak upper level low...some of which will get
drawn northeastward by our southward approaching cold front later
tonight. As it looks now...the bulk of this moisture should remain
south of our County Warning Area Thursday...but we will watch it with interest.


Otherwise...the aforementioned cold front will likely be dry as
it passes southward through the central California interior Thursday
morning. The only exception will be near Yosemite where jet dynamics
and orographic lift produce a few showers. Additionally...gusty
winds behind the cold front will kick up some dust in the sj valley
Thursday afternoon into Thursday evening...especially on the west
side...and also gust just under advisory levels through and below
the mountain passes of Kern County. Otherwise...the most noticeable
difference will be temperatures Thursday afternoon which will be
a good 10 to 20 degrees cooler compared to today.


A secondary cold front will move southward across the County Warning Area Thursday
night. This particular front will carry a little more moisture with
it and bring a chance of some light precipitation north of Kern County
Thursday night with more numerous showers in the Sierra...especially
north of Kings Canyon. Showers will become more widespread on Friday
as the upper level trough deepens over California. Unseasonably cold air
associated with this system will settle southward during this time
with snow levels lowering to about 2500 feet in the north to 3500 feet
across Kern County by Friday evening. Although precipitation will be light...
a dusting of snow is possible over the Grapevine by Friday evening.
Folks living in the foothills above 2500 feet could be blanketed with
a small accumulation of snow by Friday evening as well. Otherwise...
afternoon temperatures Friday will be no higher than the 40s in the
foothills and no warmer than the 50s in the sj valley. In fact...records
for low maximum temperatures are possible in the sj valley Friday wherever skies
remain overcast. Meanwhile...winds will likely remain rather brisk
in the Kern County desert...possibly gusting to 45 miles per hour right below
the passes as the core of the upper level jet moves over this region.


Showers will diminish by late Friday night and Saturday as the upper
level trough slowly exits into the Great Basin. Any residual showers
during this period will be confined to the mountains. Otherwise...a
somewhat drier northerly flow of cold air will pour into the County Warning Area this
weekend behind the trough. Clouds will likely linger in the upslope
areas through Saturday throughout much of the southern sj valley as well
as the foothills and higher elevations of the Sierra. Although the
atmosphere will remain well mixed this weekend...areas of the sj valley
that clear out face the risk of a light frost Sunday morning. Frost
could be more widespread in the sj valley late Sunday night into the
Post dawn hours Monday under clear skies...nearly calm wind and
strong radiational cooling. Meanwhile...below freezing temperatures are
most certain to occur in the Kern County desert Saturday night and
again Sunday night.


The models forecast an upper level ridge to build over California Monday
but divulge in their solutions on days 6 and 7. The ecm digs an
upper level trough over the intermountain west during the Tuesday-
Wednesday period while the GFS develops an upper level trough off
the West Coast with continued ridging over California through at least
Tuesday night. Either way...it looks as through temperatures will
recover to normal after this weekend. NCEP is favoring the ecm
solution to the GFS in the extended periods which would favor a trend
to slightly cooler and possibly unsettled weather by the middle
of next week.

====================================

We will update this journal again as soon as we have some more substantial real-time data based on local radar and sat images.

Stay tuned!

[end of update]


05-Nov-2012 6:49 PM

Winter Storm System Still On Track - Arrives Thursday Night - SNOW Likely!

There has been some debate on the exact amount of precipitation from this system in some of the lower lying areas, but it still appears very likely that the Bass Lake area and surrounding areas of the Southern Sierra will see some light to moderate snowfall beginning Thursday night and lasting through the day on Friday.

So far, the quantitative snow accumulation totals being projected are in the 5-6 inches range, but we could see less, and we could also see more. One aspect of this system to keep an eye on is any potential gusty winds during the event coupled with any level of snow accumulation. Most of the trees in the area still have the majority of their leaves intact, so if the snowfall is moderate and the winds kick up, we could see the strong potential for downed trees and the likely power outages that come with them.

If you have a standby or emergency generator, now would be a good time to test run it, and make sure you have your fuel reserves at the ready. We are not saying with 100% certainty that the Bass Lake area will suffer power outages, but the conditions are ripe for them to occur should the storm prove to be more powerful than current early estimates.

Latest Enhanced IR SAT and Water Vapor Images

Weather Image

Weather Image

Weather Image

Meanwhile, we are currently under yet another high pressure ridge which has pushed local high temps well above normal today with a Monday high of 79.2 F. This is about 15 degrees above normal for this time of year, and Tuesday is expected to be even warmer!

The ridge is expected to break down late Wednesday which opens the door for the arrival of this cold low pressure system we discussed at the top of this update.

The Latest from Hanford

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
312 PM PST Monday Nov 5 2012


Synopsis...
continued high pressure conditions across the area will bring
mostly clear conditions and gradual warming temperatures through
midweek.Some patchy early morning fog in the valley areas will also
be possible the next few mornings. Big changes are in store for the
region later this week.

Discussion...
a 588 dm upper ridge will remain over the area at least through Tuesday
afternoon with a weak to neutral offshore flow. Maximum temperatures Tuesday could
reach the record at kfat...but doubtful at kbfl. By Wednesday...the
upper ridge will begin to flatten and transition ewrd. However
even with lowering heights Wednesday the onshore gradient is still very
weak...and dont expect temperatures to lower much in the sjv and
deserts.

The upper ridge will move east and be over the center of the
country Thursday. This is in response to a deep low that develops in
the eastern glfak Wednesday afternoon...and digs sharply south into central California by
Thursday night. Much cooler/colder weather will arrive Thursday night and Friday
with temperatures Friday 25-35 degrees lower than Wednesday temperatures.

The main problem with this system will be precipitation...or lack of. A
weak flow of subtrop moisture currently ahead of the developing
system is forecast to be cut off as the main system digs south. This
combined with a rather rapid moving cold front will tend to keep
quantitative precipitation forecast values fairly low low. In addn...a strong SW flow along and
ahead of the cold front will will wring much of the precipitation out
over the coastal mountain. GFS and the Euro both show the rain shadow
especially from Fresno south. With this in mind...continue to keep highest
probability of precipitation Thursday night Merced Colorado into ynp...and in the Sierra ynp-Kings
Friday. At this point in time...it appears Kern Colorado will not see much
if any...maybe some very light upslope north and west facing
slopes Thursday night...and a few instability showers Friday. Snow levels
will plunge to near 3500 feet by Friday...but with limited moisture
snowfall may not even reach advisory criteria in the mountains model
quantitative precipitation forecast is about a half inch at ynp...so 4-6 inches of snow could fall
in a few places...but that would be the exception not the rule.

This will be a progressive longwave trough...and much of the precipitation
will end late Friday. Upslope showers Sat on the east slopes of the
Sierra could spill over the crest...but little if any accumulation
is expected.


As skies begin to clear Sat and Sat night...the coldest night of the
season is likely in the sjv and high deserts. A hard freeze could
occur in the Kern deserts Sat night...if north-NE winds die off
sufficiently. Also...depending on residual clouds in the
sjv...patchy frost may be possible Sat night.


High press at the surface and aloft will build over California Sat night and
sun with a gradual warming trend into the new week.

=========================================

As mentioned in the above NWS forecast discussion, there is still some uncertainty as to the amount of precipitation we will ultimately receive from this system. However, you may recall a similar conservatism from Hanford about that late October storm in which we received 1.35 inches of rainfall! Bass Lake always has the "UPSLOPE" card in its back pocket which gets played often during these winter storm events. Upslope can generate local rain and snow when nothing is shown approaching on radar. This is precisely what happened back in late October.

So... We are remaining optimistic that we will indeed see at least a half inch of liquid precipitation likely in the form of 5-6 inches of snow.

Stay tuned to this journal and to our website for more information as it develops. We are planning to post our next update on Wednesday night, ahead of the system's arrival to our area.

[end of update]


03-Nov-2012 5:16 PM

NWS Models Showing Substantial Increase in Storm Probability and Intensity By End of Coming Week!

The latest update from Hanford is offering up some very encouraging latest model solutions for that storm we mentioned in our last update. The system is now forming in the Gulf of Alaska and early data regarding the storm's core is impressive, with very low pressures, temperatures and basically a lot of early energy.

Hanford is upping their precipitation probability for this system as well as quantitative precipitation amounts for the Southern Sierra. This extremely cold system is also going to lower snow levels down to 3000 feet in our area which surely means snow and later a hard freeze depending on cloud cover at the end of the event.

Latest Enhanced IR SAT and Water Vapor Images

Weather Image

Weather Image


The latest from Hanford with more details on this approaching system:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
246 PM PDT Sat Nov 3 2012


Synopsis...
scattered high clouds today as weak high pressure prevails over the
area. Patchy early morning for can be expected throughout the valley areas for the next few mornings.

Discussion...
by most standards a relatively pleasant day across central
California with valley temperatures in the 70s and nearby
foothills in the 60s with sunny sky. This pattern will continue
the next several days...with temperatures gradually climbing...as
a fairly robust anti-cyclone develops over the NE Pacific and rolls
across our area. 500 mb heights top out near 592dm as the system rolls onshore Monday with a decrease thereafter. Peak in temperatures should come around Tuesday when low level warming is at it/S maximum and some wind helps with mixing. Some morning fog is still possible each day...though probability...coverage...and intensity will decrease each day.

Focus shifts to the storm system taking shape for later in the
week. Global deterministic and ensemble data are beginning to
cluster very well around a preferred solution. We/ve been watching
this expected pattern change for several days now so certainty is
high on it happening.


Energy in the Gulf of Alaska will coalesce into a single potent low
the next few days. In response to another upstream the goa low
will take a southward trajectory. GFS and ec certainty products
are showing above average predictability with this pattern. GFS
trend product is showing the operational model has reached a
steady solution now. Individual ensemble members show
typical/expected spread on the front and back side of the low
indicating timing issues though basically no question that the
system will exist. 500 mb heights will drop to 3 St devs or below
below normal...indicative of the potency of the storm. While I
would like to see the system have more low level moisture to work
with...the associated isentropic/orographic lift and positive vorticity advection will be
more than enough to generate shower activity. Therefore we/ve
increased probability of precipitation substantially...focusing on what is currently seen
as the best time for precipitation /Thu night into Fri/.


This will be a cold system. 500 mb temperatures in the core will be -30c with
700 mb temperatures approaching -10c. Snow levels will start around 7000 feet
as the storm rolls into...falling to 3000 feet once the cold core
settles in. Being nearly a week out rain/snow amounts are highly
suspect but this storm will likely produce enough mountain snow to
impact travel and other activities in the southern Sierra. It
remains to be seen what if any impacts will occur on the lower
elevation passes. Winds will be of concern too...especially as the
system lays into our County Warning Area on Thursday and into Friday. For
Comfort...high temperatures Friday/Saturday could remain stuck in
the 50s for most of the valley and desert.

The final concern will be the potential for near to slightly below
freezing temperatures Friday and Saturday mornings. This will be
highly dependent on wind/sky cover/low level moisture but we/ve
decreased temperatures both mornings. There is the potential for
this to be the first freeze event of the season.

=====================================================

As with any major weather event or pattern change... We will be all over this developing storm system and will keep you updated with the latest news as soon as it comes down from Hanford, so stay tuned to this journal and our web site!

[end of update]


02-Nov-2012 10:14 PM

Record High Temps Through Tuesday - Possible Rain By Thursday

You read that headline right! Due to the latest high pressure ridge moving in now and setting up shop directly over Central California by Saturday morning, our area will see some very warm temperatures through the weekend and into early next week. The NWS is talking about 10-15 degrees ABOVE NORMAL during this period, which could put us into record breaking territory for early November. Looks like Tuesday will be the hottest day with a break down of the ridge beginning on Wednesday.

When the ridge breaks down around Wednesday this will allow a new low pressure trough to move into the area bringing with it our next shot at some measurable precipitation. Current model runs suggest that this system will be cold enough to lower the snow level down to 4500 feet by Thursday night, which means that Bass Lake may be seeing the first snow of the season on November 8th or 9th!

While it is still a bit early to say for sure how much rain/snow we may see from this next system, at least there is something out there to keep an eye on! After all... We are now firmly within our rainy season, so we should already be seeing a steady stream of storm systems moving through by this time of the year, not record breaking high temperatures and clear skies! There is a time and a place for clear, warm and sunny weather and it is definitely NOT November!

Let us hope that the models have got it right and another round of respectable precipitation is less than a week away!

Latest IR SAT image of the eastern pacific

Weather Image

The Latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
930 PM PDT Friday Nov 2 2012


Synopsis...
patchy fog will be possible Saturday morning with high pressure
beginning to move into the region. The high pressure will also
bring mostly clear conditions and gradually warming temperatures
through the middle of next week.

Update...
fog/stratus satellite product imagery showing residual clouds at
the south end of the valley from Thursday/S frontal passage. At
this point...higher clouds will push into the district behind the
split flow pattern associated with yesterday/S the weak cold
front. While winds have diminished this evening...thick cloud
cover may inhibit widespread dense fog development overnight.
Yet...will keep the mention of patchy fog overnight as the locally
favored areas from Selma to Visalia and Hanford may see
visibilities to about a mile or less.

Short range models still progging a building ridge pattern through
the weekend and into early next week. Current guidance has has maximum temperature/S reaching the lower 80s by Tuesday. For early November... these values could reach record levels. Will monitor the developing weather pattern and adjust conditions as needed. At
this point...will make no updates based on latest trend.

Previous discussion... /issued 247 PM PDT Friday Nov 2 2012/

Low clouds over the east side and south end of the valley this
morning have been gradually clearing...yet some clouds remain over
Kern County this afternoon. Expect the clearing of the lower
clouds to continue as high pressure builds into the region. Some
high clouds will move over the area tonight as a weather system
rides over the top of the ridge. Concern for tonight is that there
is still enough low level moisture in the San Joaquin Valley for
patchy fog to develop. But not as much low cloud cover as last
night and this morning. Fog should be fairly shallow as well...so
it should burn off quickly in the morning.


The upper ridge will strengthen over the region through the
weekend and into early next week with dry weather and a steady
warming trend as 500 mb heights rise to over 588dm. The ridge will
be centered over central California Tuesday...which is expected to
be the warmest day of the week. Temperatures will rise into the
middle and upper 80s in the San Joaquin Valley by Tuesday. This is
15-20 degrees above normal for early November and will reach near
record levels.


Temperatures will remain quite warm Wednesday although the ridge will begin to weaken. A storm system moving into the Pacific northwest Thursday will deepen and become a significant storm system across California Friday and into next weekend. Strong cooling will take place Thursday and Friday...with temperatures cooling 20-25
degrees from Wednesday to Friday. This system will also bring a
chance of precipitation with it. There are still timing and
strength differences between the GFS and European model (ecmwf)...but the 12z model
runs were in closer agreement. Showers could start as early as
Thursday afternoon in the Sierra Nevada...and there is a slight
chance of precipitation across the northern portions of the
district Friday and Friday night as well. The low pressure system
looks like it will hang around through next weekend for additional
precipitation. With temperatures dropping rapidly...expect snow
levels to lower to 4500 feet by Friday night. Precipitation
amounts are uncertain at this time...so stay tuned as this system
evolves.

============================================

We will definitely be keeping a close eye on that next system next week. Once we start seeing some defined development in the eastern pacific, we will post some new IR SAT images.

Stay tuned to this journal and the station's website for the latest as it becomes available!

[end of update]


31-Oct-2012 9:40 AM

Rain Likely Thursday Morning - Dry Weather Returns Friday - The New Normal?

We are currently looking at a 70% chance of precipitation Thursday morning with light rain moving into the area by daybreak. Precipitation totals are expected to be light with the storm energy dissipating over the course of the day.

By Friday we will be back to dry weather as yet another high pressure ridge builds in over the region and remaining in control through at least the middle of next week. This latest ridge is expected to raise temperatures to above normal levels with clear and sunny skies throughout the period. There are currently no indications of any new weather systems heading our way after this minor precipitation event, all the way out through the 10 day extended forecast.

The latest IR SAT images showing the approaching system...

Weather Image

Weather Image


A steady drop in seasonal precipitation totals year over year. Is this the "New Normal" for the Sierra?

October has always tended to be the harbinger of precipitation totals for the rest of the season, and if the current numbers are any indication, things do not look good for the coming winter of 2012.

We will end the month of October with only 1.63 inches of precipitation, down from October 2011's monthly total of 2.00 inches. Both of these monthly totals are far below the October 2010 total of 5.50 inches and October 2009's 7.53 inches. It is clear from these previous years that we have been witnessing a steady decline in overall precipitation year over year since 2009. Not a good sign for those of us who closely follow weather trends for the southern Sierra.

Based on current extended forecasts, things look to stay primarily dry through at least the middle of November. Those who can remember back to the beginning of the rainy season last year are no doubt having a case of Deja Vu since this is more or less how last year's extremely disappointing rainy season also began, but with even lower October rainfall numbers this year than last year.

Whether the current overall dry pattern this late into the fall season foretells yet another below normal rainfall year is yet to be fully determined, but based on the local historical data available, it is looking far more likely that we are going to be looking at back to back below normal rainfall years with an even deeper predominantly dry/mild winter than last year, if that is even possible considering we received less than half our normal rainfall in the 2011/2012 cycle.

The latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
907 am PDT Wednesday Oct 31 2012


Synopsis...
a weakening area of low pressure will move across central California
late tonight and Thursday morning. There is a good chance of light
rain and high elevation snow from Fresno County north Thursday
morning...but little if any precipitation will occur south of Fresno
County. Cooler Thursday and Friday then warming again over the
weekend.

Discussion...
no changes to the forecast needed this morning. The
previous discussion summed things up well. Weak trough and frontal
system will move through early Thursday and looks like it will
only bring light precipitation mainly Fresno County northward. The
system will temporarily cool temperatures Thursday...then high
pressure rebuilds over region this weekend to once again warm
temperatures above normal.

Previous discussion... /issued 350 am PDT Wednesday Oct 31 2012/

Discussion...
the upper level ridge that has kept skies clear with mild daytime
temperatures is shifting east today. This is in response to an upper level
shortwave trough and associated surface front approaching the West Coast.
One more day of mild temperatures today in pre trough environment. However
clouds will be on the increase by afternoon...and a strengthening
onshore flow through the Delta will lower temperatures several degrees in
Merced County...elsewhere fairly close to yesterdays high temperatures.


The approaching front is gradually becoming more north-S oriented. And
as this process continues today...the associated shortwave will
begin to split...with the stronger system passing through the Pacific northwest.
The southern portion of the split will rapidly weaken as it moves into
central California. There is still a good chance of light precipitation from
Fresno County north Thursday morning...but south of Fresno chances
decrease rapidly. In Kern County there could be a few showers in the
southern Sierra...and a few upslope showers or light drizzle in the afternoon.
The southern sjv and deserts should remain dry.


This system quickly looses steam by 18z and should mostly be over by
afternoon. But kept some isolated instability showers Post-front.
Temperatures Thursday will be cooler...but only back to near normal for the
last day of Oct.


Another shortwave will approach the Pacific northwest Friday...but this too
weakens rapidly and dissipate before reaching California as an upper ridge
begins to nose in over California. This ridge will strengthen over the
weekend with 500 mb heights forecast by both GFS and the Euro to reach
or exceed 588 dm. This pattern is quite similar to what we have
had across the region the past several days...so temperatures by sun
again will be above normal...with the sjv and deserts in the low
to middle 80s for the new work week.

===============================================

So enjoy the rain tomorrow! It may be the last of it you see for the foreseeable future. Stay tuned to our website for the latest real-time weather event updates along with live Next-Rad radar returns from the arriving system.

[end of update]


26-Oct-2012 3:23 PM

Warmer Weekend - Next Shot At Rain Wednesday Through Friday of Next Week

Updated and revised forecast from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
219 PM PDT Friday Oct 26 2012


Synopsis...
high pressure will continue over the region and bring mostly clear
and above average temperatures through early next week.

Discussion...
a ridge of high pressure off the California coast
will build over the region over the weekend. This will bring
mainly clear skies and a warming and drying trend through the
early part of next week. Surface high pressure in the Great Basin
is bringing an offshore flow at the surface. The strongest winds
are occurring over Southern California...but some gusty east winds
to about 30 miles per hour are possible through tonight through favored
areas in the Kern County mountains and desert. Lighter offshore
winds will continue through the weekend.

Warming temperatures this weekend will once again bring US back to
a few degrees above normal for Sunday and Monday. Temperatures in
the San Joaquin Valley and Kern desert areas will be in the lower
to middle 80s Sunday and Monday before edging back down into the middle and upper 70s by Wednesday.

The next weather system will approach the Pacific northwest and
northern California Tuesday and Wednesday next week. Models are
good agreement in moving this system across central California
Thursday. Some light precipitation may reach the far northern part
of the County warning forecast area late Wednesday night...otherwise expect a chance of precipitation as the trough sweeps through on Thursday...mainly north of Kern County. Showers may linger in the Sierra Nevada Thursday night and Friday.

============================================

We will definitely be keeping a close eye on that approaching system the middle to end of next week. This is the first Hanford forecast where they actually sound optimistic that we may actually get some measurable precipitation out of that thing. All previous forecasts were downplaying our chances and talking about the Rex Block ridge staying put and diverting the system up and over Central California. This could still happen, but it is looking like the chances of the system making it into Central California is getting better and better as time goes on and the actual weather patterns and model runs develop it further.

Stay tuned to the web site for the latest as it becomes available!

[end of update]


24-Oct-2012 12:32 PM

Cloudy w/ Slight Chance of Showers through Wednesday Night - Then Fair and Warmer Into the Weekend

While we have been under a 50% chance of additional showers since our big rain event on Monday, we have yet to see any additional precipitation at the station. At this point, we are not expecting to see a repeat of the other day. We had been hoping to at least tie last October's 2.00 inches of rainfall, but it appears that we are going to fall short by about a quarter of an inch. Based on how dismal our total rainfall was last winter, we are hoping that this lower than 2011 stat for October isn't foretelling an even drier and milder winter than last year.

Lets hope that the storm track decides to move south and pay us a visit sooner rather than later!

The Latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
957 am PDT Wednesday Oct 24 2012


Synopsis...
a few showers are possible this morning from Fresno County north
with some rain or snow showers lingering in the southern Sierra
through this evening. High pressure and a slow warming trend will
begin Thursday with temperatures back to near normal Friday
then slightly above normal this weekend with mostly clear skies.

Update...
will make no updates to the forecast this morning. Current
forecast on track with unsettled conditions over the northern
portion of the district...mainly from Merced County through
Mariposa/Madera