D2149 Station Operator's Journal

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Station's 12-24 Hr. Forecast: Increasing clouds and warmer. Precipitation possible within 12 to 24 hours. Windy.
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Detailed NWS Forecast

Last Day of Significant Rainfall with Total:
28 Sep 2014 (0.60 in)


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 counties and into Yosemite np. While a little
difficult to discern the location of the cold front...we maybe too
far south the feel the full impact of its passage. Short range
NAM/hi-res-rap-refresh and sref models show the best chances of
precipitation over the norther border of the district through sunset this
evening. Models then show dynamics and instability lifting
northeast as the cold frontal system moves into the intermountain-
west and northern rockies. Therefore...will maintain the trend
toward drier condition and warming temperatures and a high pressure ridge
axis moves closer to the West Coast. In addition...a cold surface
high will anchor itself over the Great Basin...providing for a
good offshore flow pattern to develop along with adiabatic warming
of the surface under the easterly flow pattern. Again...no need to
update at this time.

Previous discussion... /issued 446 am PDT Wednesday Oct 24 2012/

the tail end of a weak upper level disturbance will move across
central California this morning. It could bring a few showers from Fresno Colorado
north before noontime. In the southern Sierra rain and snow showers are
possible north of Kings Canyon today diminishing and ending this
evening as a drier northwest flow develops this afternoon. No significant
amts of rain or snow are expected...maybe an inch or two of snow
above 5k around ynp. Tonite...lingering clouds will continue along the
east side of the sjv and Sierra foothills...and valley facing
slopes of the Tehachapi Mountains...otherwise clearing. Cool
tonite...with most areas seeing the coolest night of the season.
Depending lingering clouds in the sjv...coolest clear and wind
free areas could see some upper 30s.


Thursday...a prevailing northwest flow at the surface and aloft will bring
mostly clear skies except for the typical upslope Post-trough clouds in and
near the Sierra foothills into the north slopes of the tehachapis.
Temperatures Thursday will begin a slow upward climb as as flat ridging
begins to build in from the west. A low amplitude ridge will
strengthen during the weekend across California...with mainly clear skies.
Temperatures will climb to a few degrees above normal by sun...and linger
into the first part of next week.


The Fly in the ointment next Tuesday and/or Wednesday is medium range models
are trying to bring a wet shortwave into the northern half of California...with
GFS the most robust. However...a massive Rex block develops the
next 2 days in the central Pacific...east of the dateline along 170w.
Models not to stellar when it comes to breaking block patterns...so
thinking at this time is to continue with near or slightly above normal
temperatures and staying dry through day 8 /Wed/. Confidence factor is
about 70 percent models are trying to break the central Pacific block
too fast.

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

The outlook for the next 7 days looks to be dry and warmer based on the latest model runs, so at this point we are not sure when we will see another shot at a new pacific storm system. Hopefully we won't have to wait too long for the next one since our fire danger is now sitting at a safe and LOW risk. We would like to see it stay that way until the fire season officially ends early next month.

[end of update]


22-Oct-2012 11:18 PM

Most Impressive Upslope Precipitation Event Ever!

The station logged a whopping 1.35 inches of rainfall today in what has been the most impressive example of upslope generated precipitation we have ever seen here at the station! While the lower elevations got very little rainfall, up here in the Sierra it was a very different story! Areas similar in topography to Bass Lake which also tend to favor upslope precipitation recorded comparable numbers, but so far, our station's daily rainfall total is the highest within a 15 mile radius.

The rainfall was steady and very heavy at times, with a high rain rate earlier today of 1.01 in/h which far from a record, was still quite impressive given the fact that this storm system was not expected to produce this kind of precipitation.

We can't fault the forecasters at Hanford however, because models are not very good at predicting orographic lift which leads to the kind of conditions we saw here today. In the end, we are just happy that the area received so much of what has been sorely needed for these many months! Lets hope that this is a hint at things to come this winter! With all the disappointing climate prediction news lately, an event like this gives us hope that we may still yet see a decent rainy season this year!

The Latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
904 PM PDT Monday Oct 22 2012


Synopsis...
a chance of rain and mountain snow showers remains until
Wednesday...mainly from Fresno County and northward...as a series of
weak systems pass by to the north. Clearing with a warming trend is
expected to begin Thursday and into the weekend.

Discussion...
radar shows showers continuing to develop and move
to the northeast as the deep trough remains over the region. With
radar trends showing diminishing echoes the Winter Storm Warning
has been cancelled. Over the Kern count desert, the wind has
diminished and advisories have expired. For the remainder of the
night the shower activity will continue to slowly wane, however it
won't completely end. Forecast models slowly move the trough axis
to the east over the next couple of days and by Wednesday the
threat will come to an end even over the Sierra.


Ridging is prognosticated to edge in over central California for late in
the week and weekend for dry and warming weather.

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

We will keep our eye on the radar and will update the journal again should we see a repeat of today's impressive precipitation!

[end of update]


22-Oct-2012 1:29 PM

The NWS Increasing Snow Accumulation Values Upward for High Sierra - Rain Continuing Through Tuesday Morning

The Orographic Lift contained in this first real winter storm of the season is making for a respectable precipitation event in spite of the weakness of the storm as a whole and the lack of significant rainfall at lower elevations.

This is great news for the Bass Lake area and even better news for the High Sierra where snowfall amounts are now expected to reach close to 1 foot between now and Tuesday morning!

Here at the station we have racked up 0.50 inches of rain so far which is 400% more rainfall than the revised estimates Hanford issued 24 hours ago. As we stated in our previous morning update, THANK YOU UPSLOPE! If it were not for our area's ability to squeeze moisture out of less than generous weather systems, we wouldn't be seeing this much precipitation from what is basically a relatively weak storm!

As the next cold front mentioned in Hanford's latest update below hits the region later today, snow levels will drop to as low as 5500 feet in some areas. That is a bit too high for snow here at the lake, but there is always the possibility that the level could drop further, so some snowfall is possible in Bass Lake although there will likely be little to no accumulation because of the current ground temperatures.

The latest update from Hanford on this current situation...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
925 am PDT Monday Oct 22 2012


Synopsis...
a cold front will swing through central California this morning. It
will bring some light rain to San Joaquin Valley and foothills
mainly from Fresno north. In the southern Sierra...snow is likely
above 5500 feet today from Yosemite Park South to Huntington Lake
but will taper off rapidly south of Kings Canyon. There will be a
chance of showers...mainly Fresno north into Wednesday as a series
of weak systems pass by to the north. Clearing with a warming trend
beginning Thursday.

Update...
no significant changes in the weather pattern from this morning
forecast package. Therefore...no major changes to the forecast
expected. Winter weather has begun over the central California
interior with light to moderate rain and snow this morning.
Wind/temperature profiler data along with surface observations and dual-
pol radar has the snow level near 7000 feet this morning and
expected to drop behind the cold front. Surface weather analysis
along with infrared satellite imagery has the cold front...and
associated jet maximum dynamics...pushing into the sfo Bay area this
morning and continuing eastward during the day. Current forecasts have
the cold frontal/jet maximum passage through central California early
this evening with precipitation tapering off over the San Joaquin
Valley late tonight. However...orographic lift from strong
southwesterly winds will allow for a continuation of precipitation over
the Sierra Nevada throughout the night...allowing for significant
snow fall. Current projections have around 9 inches of new snow
before Tuesday morning. Based on short range ensembles...certainty
is high on receiving just under a foot of new snow within the next
24 hours. Therefore...will allow the Winter Storm Warning for the
first storm of the season to remain in effect. Again...will make
no updates as forecast on track with current thinking.

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

Here is the latest IR SAT image with an arrow pointing to the next major band of moisture mentioned in the NWS update above. This is the portion of the storm that will bring on the heavy precipitation and snow to the Sierra after 5 p.m. tonight. As with all storms in the northern hemisphere, the system is rotating in a counter-clockwise direction...

Weather Image

CLICK HERE to see the system in motion via the "NOAA Satellite and Information Service" web site. (Flash Required)

You can view this animation and other SAT images on our SAT Images - Watches - Warnings page on our web site. This link is always located at the top of this journal.

New station hardware performing like a champ!

In other station related news... This is the first significant rainfall event since we installed the new VP2 ISS back in July, and we are pleased to report that the rain gauge system is working beautifully and handling the often high rain rates we have seen so far this morning with ease!

Stay tuned to our web site for the latest storm totals and current rainfall activity via our automated banner system!

[end of update]



22-Oct-2012 8:32 AM

Upslope Saves the Day! - Respectable Rainfall Amounts Despite Weak System

As we mentioned in our report yesterday, the conditions were right for a reasonable upslope situation to develop over the Bass Lake area this morning which would result in some decent precipitation for the area. We are pleased to report that this has indeed happened and since about 3:30 a.m. this morning, the station has logged a current rainfall total of 0.23 in.

The latest radar images show additional bands of precipitation moving towards our area from the pacific coast, which will likely be intensified in strength as they hit the Sierra range (upslope). This will result in steady rainfall from each of these waves of moisture as they move east and over the mountain range.

Even Fresno is getting some benefit from the unstable nature of this moisture which is great news!

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
646 am PDT Monday Oct 22 2012


Synopsis...
a cold front will swing through central California this morning. It
will bring some light rain to San Joaquin Valley and foothills
mainly from Fresno north. In the southern Sierra...snow is likely
above 5500 feet today from Yosemite Park South to Huntington Lake
but will taper off rapidly south of Kings Canyon. There will be a
chance of showers...mainly Fresno north into Wednesday as a series
of weak systems pass by to the north. Clearing with a warming trend
beginning Thursday.

Discussion...
update issued to raise probability of precipitation this am as trough in the eastpac taking on a negative tilt. Jet streak moving onshore helping to enhance precipitation advancing from from Fresno north...and showers getting into Kings and Tulare co/S. Second jet streak in base of trough farther south than one currently moving onshore. This second jet should interact with front as it crosses the central coast later this morning and spread more light rain across the Valley North of Kern Colorado.

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

Stay tuned to our web site for the latest real-time rainfall activity reports as well as to monitor the moisture cells on our real-time NextRad Radar maps located at the bottom of our home page!

[end of update]


21-Oct-2012 3:48 PM

Approaching System Continues to Weaken - Precipitation Estimates Lowered Further - Cool Down Underway

_______________________________________________________________

"This update replaces a previous journal entry that was posted this morning. This version includes the most recent forecast data from the NWS in Hanford which was issued at 2:51 p.m. today and contains more detailed specifics on the approaching weather system as well as information regarding additional weather systems arriving later in the week."

________________________________________________________________

It seems that the Central California interior simply can't catch a break these days when it comes to rainfall. As we mentioned yesterday, the NWS had backed off considerably from their previous precipitation estimates, and as we near the arrival of this next pacific storm system, the IR Sat images don't lie, and it becomes obvious that those recent model runs were right on the money!

Here are the latest IR Sat images of the approaching system:

IR SAT Eastern Pacific "WIDE View"

Weather Image

IR SAT "West Coast View"

Weather Image

The latest forecast now calls for an even further reduction in the measurable precipitation estimates for all regions of the "County Warning Area" which unfortunately includes Bass Lake. While we are still likely to see some amount of showers and possibly actual steady rainfall, our previous high hopes for a significant rain event for the area have been dashed, and dashed hard!

Areas north of Bass Lake, including Yosemite NP will likely see a much better chance of moderate precipitation, although our area does enjoy a decent amount of upslope precipitation generation under these conditions, so we still might be surprised when this thing is over, but wet weather fans are advised to keep their expectations low for this storm.

Another system is now expected to affect the area later in the week but precipitation from this second system is still uncertain, and based on recent history, it would be more prudent to expect a dry pattern over a wet one.

Regardless of the amount of precipitation, the one guarantee from these latest low pressure systems is that our daytime and overnight temperatures will be considerably colder than they have been over the last week. We might even see temps fall to below normal levels for this time of the year.

The latest weather discussion text from the NWS in Hanford Ca....

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
251 PM PDT sun Oct 21 2012



Synopsis...
a Pacific storm system is currently approaching central California
and will move over the area tonight...bringing a chance of rain and
higher elevation snow. This system will continue impacting the area
through at least Tuesday...temperatures are expected to be cooler
for the remainder of this week as onshore flow continues.


Discussion...
the much advertised cooldown is quite evident this
afternoon as 24-hour temperature trends are averaging 4 to 12 degrees
lower throughout the County Warning Area. This makes today the coolest day since
October 13th. Cold frontal passages during the next few days will
Herald some of the coolest weather we've seen so far this season
in the days to come.


One of these cold fronts swept through the County Warning Area last night. In its
wake...a northwesterly flow has piled up some low clouds along
the west facing slopes of the Sierra...especially in Tulare County
where they have been stubborn to break this afternoon. Meanwhile...
high clouds are moving in from the north this afternoon. These
high clouds are in advance of another cold front that will move
southward through our County Warning Area Monday.


Precipitation associated with the next cold front will be mostly
confined to the southern Sierra...especially north of Kings Canyon. The
heaviest precipitation will be near Yosemite np where jet dynamics and
orographic lift are more pronounced. Model quantitative precipitation forecast and rfc quantitative precipitation forecast support
a Winter Storm Warning...at least for the first storm of the
season...in Yosemite from late tonight through Monday. Although
the remainder of the southern Sierra receives significantly less
snow from this system...the region will still be impacted by
strong winds along the Sierra crest and much colder temperatures
during the next 24 to 36 hours.


In the sj valley...precipitation late tonight and Monday will be nominal
at best...ranging from only a trace to a few hundredths from
Fresno County southward to as much as a tenth of an inch in Merced
County by Monday night.


The models bring another cold front into the County Warning Area on Tuesday.
This particular front appears as though it will be greatly
limited on moisture so would expect mostly a rejuvenation of
orographically induced showers in the upslope regions of our County Warning Area
by Tuesday afternoon with at most an isolated shower or some
sprinkles in the sj valley from Fresno County north.


In the Kern County desert...dry weather will prevail through
Tuesday. However...as the upper level jet settles southward...
westerly winds will ramp up to advisory levels by Monday afternoon
and evening. Despite a brief lull Monday night...winds will
remain very blustery through Tuesday evening...if not longer. A
Wind Advisory will be issued later today in this region for Monday
aftn/eve. Future shifts may need to extend this Wind Advisory
through Tuesday.


The models forecast yet another cold front to move through the County Warning Area
Wednesday afternoon and evening but there is some uncertainty as
to how far south its moisture and dynamics get. At this time...it
looks as though the best chance of showers with this front will be
north of Fresno County...but none of the models seem to agree on
where the southern extent of measurable precipitation will be. Nonetheless...
this system will support good orographic lift with additional precipitation
over the Sierra mainly north of Kings Canyon Wednesday into Wednesday
night. There is much higher confidence that maximum temperatures will run
cooler than normal and skies will remain mostly cloudy throughout
much of the County Warning Area Monday through Wednesday.


The models forecast a northwesterly flow aloft to continue over
central California Thursday through Saturday. During this time...temperatures will
be slow to moderate but should recover to seasonable levels by
Saturday. Upper level disturbances embedded in the northwesterly
flow could brush the northernmost portion of the County Warning Area with some
light precipitation Thursday and perhaps again Saturday (gfs solution only).
Afterward...the models build an epac ridge eastward into California with
dry and warmer weather next Sunday.

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

For what its worth, we will continue to monitor the storm situation and will update the journal accordingly should we see any significant changes to the current forecast, or once the storm actually arrives, the actual precipitation amounts we see at the station are high enough to warrant a mention in the journal.

Our automated weather update system will be posting real-time rainfall intensity banners at the top of our home page during the storm, so you will always get the latest rainfall activity reports from the station whenever you check or refresh our home page.

Additionally, you can monitor the precipitation's advance on your browser using our Wide Angle Precipitation Map

[end of update]


20-Oct-2012 12:58 PM

The NWS Backing Off Precipitation Estimates AGAIN! - Gusty Winds in the Valley and High Sierra

As we approach the arrival of the first real winter storm of the season, the forecast models are once again backing off their previous estimates for overall precipitation for Central California. Seems that the storm track is now prognosticated to remain well north of our area which means that the total rainfall amounts over the entire region are going to be lower than we had been hoping for.

However... The atmosphere will remain unstable enough that the western slopes of Southern Sierra which includes the Bass Lake area will still see some measurable rainfall due to upsloping. They are still predicting up to 1/2 an inch of rain for our area and up to 6 inches of snow in the high country by Tuesday night which is much lower than originally predicted, but still enough to help push our fire danger levels back down to the lower ranges.

Perhaps a 10th on an inch may fall in Merced county and the Sierra foothill areas such as Coarsegold between Sunday night and Tuesday morning. From Kings Canyon southward, only light rain is expected and there will be little more than a trace in SJV locations and the Tulare county mountains. But as mentioned in our headline, strong gusty winds well above 30 mph are expected on the western side of the SJV with blowing dust and sand beginning Sunday afternoon. The higher elevations of the Sierra which includes the Sierra Crest may see gusts up to 80 mph at times during the entire event!

Not sure how much wind we will see here in the Bass Lake area, but we should probably expect at least some gusty winds on Sunday night into early Monday morning as the southern edge of the low pressure system begins to brush past the region.

Seems that this kind of situation has become the "new normal" for the fall season storm pattern as far as Central California is concerned. But, this kind of disappointing forecast falls right in line with the latest Climate Prediction Center Report on the coming winter precipitation estimates for the region.

Here are the latest IR Sat images of the approaching system:

IR SAT Eastern Pacific "WIDE View"

Weather Image

IR SAT "West Coast View"

Weather Image

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1003 am PDT Sat Oct 20 2012



Synopsis...
a cooling trend will continue for the remainder of the weekend as a
Pacific storm system approaches the area. This system will bring a
chance of rain and higher elevation snow early next week.

..Max temperatures amended for today based on 24-hour trends...


Discussion...
it has been long overdue...but weather more typical
of autumn has finally returned to the central California interior thanks
largely to an onshore flow. Temperatures are a few to several
degrees cooler as a result in the northern sj valley this morning
compared to 24 hours ago while the remainder of the valley...mainly
from Fresno County south has shown little change. The mountains
are generally a few degrees cooler this morning than yesterday
while the desert are slightly warmer. Otherwise...today will be a
sunny and pleasant day throughout our County Warning Area with a typically breezy
afternoon in the Kern County desert.


In the larger scale of things...a storm system centered over the
Gulf of Alaska will become an increasingly important player in
our weather pattern in the days to come...although it may not
live up to the hype that was portrayed yesterday with regard to
precipitation in the lower elevations...particularly the sj valley
and much of Kern County. As the Gulf of Alaska storm slowly
approaches from the northwest...it will bring an increase in high
clouds to much of the central California interior Sunday along with an
increase in onshore flow. As a result...temperatures Sunday afternoon
will be a bit cooler than today and winds will be a little stronger
in the Kern County desert but probably just below advisory levels.


The models are now forecasting the deepest moisture and strongest
dynamics to remain north of our County Warning Area early this week. Even though
the upper level jet does settle southward...most of the precipitation
generated from this system will be orographically induced and
confined to the west slopes of the Sierra. Precipitation in the sj valley
will be nominal at best and might not even be enough to settle
the dust Monday...especially south of Fresno County. The latest
ensemble quantitative precipitation forecast suggests that Winter Weather Advisory snow amts are possible north of Kings Canyon np from late Sunday night into Monday
evening with lesser amts in the Tulare County mountains.

Still...this is a major change in the weather that central californians have
not experienced for many months. In all honesty...it looks as
though the storm will remain pretty far north and sweep a cold front
through the County Warning Area Monday. A secondary cold front is prognosticated to move through the County Warning Area Tuesday. The first front will be the wetter one
with sprinkles or isolated showers in the sj valley and more numerous
showers in the foothills and higher elevations of the Sierra.
The secondary cold front may bring little more than isolated showers
or flurries to the southern Sierra Nevada Tuesday. Will consider
toning down probability of precipitation and quantitative precipitation forecast in the sj valley...especially Tuesday and Tuesday night.
Otherwise...it appears skies will be rather cloudy through Wednesday.


Dry weather will prevail across the central California interior from
Wednesday through day 7 as the main storm track remains north of our
County Warning Area. Nonetheless...a northwest flow aloft coupled with a respectable
onshore flow in the low levels should keep temperatures cooler than normal
through Thursday with a moderation to near normal on days 6 and 7.


Previous discussion... /issued 445 am PDT Sat Oct 20 2012/


Discussion...
after a significant cool down yesterday of nearly 10 degrees
across the central California interior...we will see more gradual cooling
today with another sharp cool down on Sunday. A broad cyclonic
flow across the Pacific northwest will slowly drift south. Several weak
embedded shortwaves will move through the cyclonic flow as the
upper low drops south into early next week.


Moisture from the central Pacific will become entrained into the
cyclonic flow and provide a chance of measurable precipitation
across parts of the central California interior. Current model output is
only painting light amounts over the region and some isolated
heavier amounts in the Sierra. Snow levels will start out around
7500 feet and lower to around 6000 feet by Tuesday. The bulk of
the moisture will move through as a cold front passes by early
Monday morning and appears to be mainly confined to the areas of
Fresno County and northward. At this time...the central and
southern sjv will only see trace amounts. The NAM is the
driest...then the European model (ecmwf) and followed the GFS being the wettest.
The GFS is also confining the precipitation to the northern sjv as well. The
European model (ecmwf) is more broad brush with the quantitative precipitation forecast...but this may be due to
resolution issues.


As far as snow GOES...the bulk of the snow will be confined
north of Kings Canyon and elevations will start off around 7500
feet. Quantitative precipitation forecast amounts are around 1/2 inch of liquid near Yosemite which may give the higher elevations around 4 inches. Once again
the models are not in agreement and confidence is not very high
this far out.


Winds will also be an issue as the prefrontal winds will be gusty
along the west side on Sunday night. Winds will also be gusty along
the crest as the front moves through. SW winds 20 to 30 miles per hour are
possible with higher gusts through the Pacheco and Cottonwood
passes.


Cool and dry northwest flow will continue through the entire week behind
the system with temperatures remaining below normal through Friday.

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

We will continue to monitor the situation and plan to issue our next journal update on this approaching system Sunday evening. By then, the models should have a pretty good handle on how this system is going to shake out, and all estimates made in that next round of model runs should be pretty close to what will actually happen when the system arrives late Sunday night.

[end of update]


18-Oct-2012 9:55 PM

Latest NOAA Climate Prediction Center Report Issued Today - Latest Storm News

About every third week of each month, NOAA's Climate Prediction Center releases their latest report for future climate estimates over the lower 48 of the United States as well as Alaska. The latest report is not good if you live on the west coast!

Based on the latest report, it is looking more and more likely that we will see yet another mild winter with above normal temperatures and below normal precipitation. While Bass Lake lies on the very edge of the area that is predicted to be above normal in temperature and below normal in precipitation, the maps presented this month look eerily similar to the October 2011 forecast maps for last winter. We all know how well that winter's rainfall totals turned out! Less than half of our normal rainfall and above normal temperatures through what became the hottest summer on record!

We truly hate to be the bearer of grim news, but this latest report paints a very depressing picture for the coming rainy season at a time when we desperately need at least a normal winter in terms of precipitation!

You can check out the Seasonal Outlook Maps Page HERE

and the Text Based Full Climate Report HERE

There are some signs of a weak El Nino forming this season, but at this point it appears that it will be too weak to have any significant impact on the direction the climate is heading for the winter of 2012/2013.

You can read all about the details and view the graphical maps yourselves by following the links above.

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

The latest from Hanford regarding the approaching pattern change...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
900 PM PDT Thursday Oct 18 2012



Synopsis...
high pressure continues to prevail over the region...keeping skies
mostly clear and temperatures well above normal. A cooling trend
will begin this weekend as a Pacific storm system approaches the
area...with a chance of rain and higher elevation snow early next
week.

Update...
upper level ridge pattern still in control of the west as warm
conditions prevailed today. While short range models show the
start of changing weather pattern...the lingering effects of the
ridge pattern will allow for another day of warm temperatures and
clear skies on Friday. Model 850mb temperature analysis does show
some cooling Friday afternoon...yet with minimal amounts will see
values over the San Joaquin Valley remain in the middle to upper 80s.
However...by this weekend temperatures will return to seasonal
norms before continuing to fall into early next week. Longer range
models still progging precipitation over the district around the periods
of late Monday into Tuesday. Current thinking on track with
forecast...therefore...will make no significant changes to the
forecast package this evening.


Previous discussion... /issued 250 PM PDT Thursday Oct 18 2012/

a much cooler airmass is on its way but its arrival is not
expected until this weekend. Until then...temperatures will
continue to run a good 7 to 12 degrees above normal. Although the
upper level ridge of high pressure weakens during the next 24
hours and winds become weakly onshore...tomorrow is still going to
be another exceptionally warm day throughout the central California
interior. That means afternoon temperatures might still reach 90 degrees
in a few valley locations...especially in the South Valley. Any middle and
high level moisture associated with the remnants of what was once
Tropical Storm Paul will remain too far south now to be of any
concern. Instead...central californians will have to look to the
northwest for the upcoming changes in the weather during the next
few days.


A storm system currently centered in the Gulf of Alaska will
become an increasingly important player in the pattern beginning
this weekend. The models are in very good agreement and deepen
this storm off the Pacific northwest coast during the next 72 hours. As a
result...we can expect a gradual increase in onshore flow across
central California this weekend. Modified ocean cooled air will flow into
the sj valley Saturday. A deepening of the marine layer along the
central California coast will bring further cooling into the sj valley
Saturday night and Sunday. Over the higher terrain...a gradual
settling southward of the upper level jet will ensure several
degrees of synoptic cooling this weekend. In fact...temperatures
should finally return to near normal most everywhere by Sunday.


Confidence is now higher that this storm system will bring wet weather
to much of the County Warning Area during the early to middle part of next week. A
cold front associated with the upper level trough will approach from
the northwest Monday night then move southward across the County Warning Area Tuesday with at least a few hours of rain in most areas except in the downslope
areas such as the south end of the sj valley and the Kern County desert.
The upper level trough will move slowly inland behind the cold front
Tuesday night and Wednesday and bring additional showers in the cool
and unstable Post frontal environment. Probability of precipitation were raised accordingly in the Tuesday through Wednesday periods...especially over the mountains.

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

[end of update]




17-Oct-2012 11:02 AM

Rain Currently Back in the Forecast Beginning Monday Night with a 40% Chance!

The unpredictable nature of our local weather continues unabated as we head into the weekend. The latest NWS model runs are now suggesting a strong likelihood for precipitation as early as Monday evening and continuing through Wednesday. A trough will be moving in late Sunday which will bring about a notable cool down from the above normal temps we have seen all this week as well as mostly cloudy skies once the system moves in.

No word yet on how much rain we could see from this next small system, but they are referring to the precipitation as "showers" which tends to indicate a light rain with low rainfall totals. Currently they are giving the southern Sierra Nevada a 40% chance of showers beginning Monday night, and lasting through most of Wednesday.

Stay tuned to this journal for further updates as we get closer to Monday. As you have likely been discovering over the last 18 months, the weather has become far more unpredictable than it has been in the past, so things can change dramatically in as little as 48 hours! Models are becoming less and less reliable for predicting weather events any further out than a couple of days. This has made it much more difficult to call an approaching storm system, let alone trying to predict precipitation chances or precipitation amounts!

The Latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1012 am PDT Wednesday Oct 17 2012


Synopsis...
high pressure continues to prevail over the region...keeping skies
mostly clear and temperatures well above normal. A cooling trend
will begin this weekend as a Pacific storm system approaches the
area...with a chance of rain early next week.

Discussion...
a ridge of high pressure over the eastern Pacific is in control
of the weather pattern today while a weak closed low is off the
coast of Baja California. This will allow for clear skies and warming
temperatures today. The remnants of Tropical Storm Paul...now a
tropical depression...off of Baja California California will get caught up
into the closed low. The moisture associated with it will be
sheared west and east and will have no impact on central
California.

The ridge will shift eastward Thursday putting the ridge axis over
California for a further rise in temperatures Thursday. Thursday
is expected to be the warmest day with temperatures about 10
degrees above normal for middle October. The ridge will begin to
break down Friday as a trough of low pressure drops out of the
Gulf of Alaska. This will bring increasing onshore flow through
the weekend with temperatures cooling to near normal by Sunday.
This trough also kick the closed low off the Baja California coast eastward
and into Arizona by Sunday night.

The main energy with the trough will remain to our north through
the weekend. Then the low will deepen further as the closed low
off Baja California is ejected eastward. European model (ecmwf)/GFS and ensemble models showing increasing certainty on possible precipitation over
central California as early as Monday afternoon and continuing
through Tuesday and Wednesday. There are timing and strength
differences with this system between the GFS and European model (ecmwf)...so timing
of the best chance of precipitation is uncertain. But both models
indicate a wet and unsettled period for the first half of next
week.

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

[end of update]


15-Oct-2012 10:04 PM

Above Normal Temps to Continue Through the Week - Extended Forecasts Remain Dry

Unfortunately, we don't see anything in the extended forecast that would indicate any chances for rain all the way out to 10 days from today. There is a good chance for a cool down as we hit the weekend, but in terms of precipitation, the storm track will remain well to our north resulting in a totally dry long range forecast for now.

Our fire danger had lowered considerably after the recent precipitation, but with this warming trend, the dynamics are once again pushing the fire danger risk back up the scale. The system just ticked our risk to HIGH tonight after remaining at MODERATE the last few days.

The Latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
922 PM PDT Monday Oct 15 2012


Synopsis...
high pressure will prevail throughout the region and bring mostly
clear skies and gradually warming temperatures through the remainder
of the week.

..minimum temperatures amended for tonight based on 24-hour trends...

Discussion...
high temperatures were solidly in the 80s today in the sj
valley...lower fthls and the Kern County desert. A repeat performance
is likely Tuesday with additional warming Wednesday and Thursday
as an epac ridge builds more strongly into central California. A storm
system currently trekking eastward through the Pacific northwest will bring
little more than some cirrus clouds to the County Warning Area tonight. A surface
high that settles in behind it to our north will bring a northerly
flow of drier air into the County Warning Area Tuesday with lower humidities over
the higher terrain. Additionally...a northwesterly breeze will
develop over Merced County and on the west side of the sj valley by
Tuesday afternoon then die off rather quickly by sunset as surface
pressure gradients decouple and the flow aloft becomes easterly.

On Friday...central California might get caught in a squeeze play between
some high level moisture getting spun northward by the remnants of
Tropical Storm Paul off the coast of Baja California and another short wave
trough moving through the Pacific northwest. The models bust down the upper
level ridge over central California by then and turn the winds aloft to a
more westerly direction. This will Herald the beginning of a day
to day cooling trend across central California which will become more
noticeable by Sunday and Monday as the upper level trough settles
southward along the West Coast. While the deepest moisture and
dynamics associated with this trough remain well to our north
early next week...the GFS model does suggest that there might be
just enough moisture and lift to produce a few showers across the
northernmost portion of our County Warning Area by next Monday afternoon. The
ecm...on the other hand...moves this trough into the Great Basin
and forecasts a cool but dry northwesterly flow pattern across California
next Monday. Whatever the case...temperatures will certainly be more
typical of middle to late October by then. Through at least Friday...
however...afternoon temperatures across the central California interior
will be unseasonably warm.

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

[end of update]


12-Oct-2012 4:53 PM

Storm Total of 0.26 inches As System Exits the Area

As the first storm and precipitation of the season moves east, the station has recorded a storm total of 0.26 in which is a lot better than the 0.10 in we had expected based on initial precipitation estimates.

Unfortunately, this more seasonal pattern was short lived because beginning this weekend we will begin to see yet another high pressure ridge pattern move in, which is expected to dry things out and raise our temperatures above seasonal norms through at least the middle of next week. In fact, the station has already recorded a rapid rise in barometric pressure with 30.13 at the time of this update and still rising.

The latest from Hanford..

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
258 PM PDT Friday Oct 12 2012


Synopsis...
the low pressure center that has brought the rainfall the last two
days has exited the region and is currently centered over southern
Nevada. Except for a few isolated light showers this evening the
precipitation has subsided and dry conditions and gradual warming
will prevail through the middle of next week.

Discussion...
the upper low centered over southern Nevada is
slowly moving east. The wrap around showers that were moving south
over the district this morning have ended just about everywhere in
the County warning forecast area. Plenty of lower level clouds remain over the area. The clouds will decrease overnight...except low clouds will likely remain banked up along the east side and south end of the San Joaquin Valley and adjacent foothills through Saturday morning.

Forecast models push the low well east into The Rockies by
Saturday morning with heights building rapidly over California.
By Sunday models are in good agreement in bringing a ridge over
California and then building 500mb heights to near 5900 meters by
the middle of next week. This will allow temperatures to warm to
well above normal next week with lower elevation locations
reaching the upper 80s to around 90 degrees Wednesday through
Friday.

========================================================
[end of update]


12-Oct-2012 1:58 AM

FINALLY!

As of this update, our storm total stands at 0.11 inches of precipitation from this first measurable rainfall event since May 26th! The storm which began bringing desperately needed rainfall to the area Thursday afternoon continues to spread light precipitation over the Bass Lake area with a rainfall total of 0.07 inches on Thursday and 0.04 inches so far early Friday morning. Earlier Thursday afternoon we also got a brief thunderstorm come through the area that brought some thunder and lightning to the party for about 30 minutes.

Our fire danger risk has also finally dropped back from the EXTREME danger level we had been seeing for weeks and is now riding on the low end of MODERATE danger. Most likely this danger will fall to LOW if the precipitation continues through the day today.

Unfortunately, this first storm system of the season is moving out of the area and will replaced by the end of the weekend with a building high pressure ridge. This will once again dry things out while raising our daytime temperatures to above normal levels for a good portion of next week.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
830 PM PDT Thursday Oct 11 2012



Synopsis...
the low pressure center has moved inland over
California and will continue to slowly move eastward. Scattered
light showers will taper off tonight. Drier conditions will
develop through the weekend.

Discussion...
upper level low currently centered in the low
Angeles vicinity is continuing to move slowly east. Some wrap
around moisture is continuing to push west over the southern
Sierra crest and provide the southern Sierra Nevada with scattered
showers. Isolated light showers are also continuing to impact the
southern Sierra foothills and the south San Joaquin Valley.
Thunderstorms did impact the San Joaquin Valley and Tehachapi
Mountains earlier in the day with some localized flooding. Light
snowfall was reported earlier in the near Tioga Pass in Yosemite
park and near Pine Mountain Club in Kern County. Temperatures were
well below normal across much of our County warning forecast area for the first time in
over two months with some locations in the San Joaquin Valley
remaining below 70 degree f. With the low expected to move very
slowly eat tonight...enough wrap around moisture will continue to
spread into our County warning forecast area to keep mention of isolated to scattered
showers. Coverage is currently not as prevalent as what had been
mentioned earlier so am planning ot update this evening to lower
probability of precipitation for the remainder of tonight and Friday.


Meanwhile...the 00z WRF indicates our area will remain under a
cool and unsettled cyclonic flow aloft on Friday which will keep
skies mostly cloudy and daytime temperatures unseasonably cool for
middle October. However...as the low moves into the Desert Southwest
by Friday night...a dry upper ridge will push into central California
behind the departing low and bring a warming and drying trend to
our area which will bring mainly clear skies to our area for the
weekend and temperatures will rise to above seasonal normals by
Sunday.


The medium range models are is good agreement indicating the ridge
will be the predominant feature over our area for most of next
week. As a result...skies will be mostly clear and temperatures
will be much above seasonal normals.

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

[end of update]


10-Oct-2012 8:52 PM

Rain Back in the Forecast for Thursday & Friday!

Welcome to our first rain related weather update of the 2012/2013 rainy season!

The models have been all over the place in trying to predict what had been looking like the season's first storm system for the Bass Lake area. Well... The latest runs have put some precipitation back into our local forecast for later in the week. Based on the latest from the team down in Hanford, it is looking like we might see some light rain here at the station as early as tonight (Wednesday), but there is a lot more confidence in the prospects heading into Thursday night and through Friday.

This system is not expected to be any kind of block buster storm system. Just the opposite in fact, but at least we are seeing a lot higher percentages for rain in our area than we were seeing just 24 hours ago. The latest from Hanford is giving us a 40% chance of light to moderate rainfall Thursday night, and in some areas as high as a 60% chance. Any time we get near or above 50% chance this time of year, there is definitely cause to start getting excited!

The snow level will be way up at 8000 feet but will lower to around 7500 after the system moves in and temps drop. Right now they are talking about 1-2 inches of accumulation at those higher elevations. Not a lot, but considering that Yosemite Falls has been bone dry since mid-August, anything that comes down in the high Sierra will be a most welcome change from over 4 months of 0.00 precipitation!

Check out the latest IR Satellite images of the Eastern Pacific

You can see the system we are monitoring heading east towards the California coast...

Weather Image

Weather Image

While it is still uncertain as to how much if any precipitation we will see from this first significant low pressure disturbance of the season, it is nice to at least have a shot at seeing some much needed rain/snow around here!

The latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
256 PM PDT Wednesday Oct 10 2012


Synopsis...
an area of low pressure located off the California coast is
producing variable cloudiness over the area. Rain showers,
thunderstorms and higher elevation snow is possible starting
Wednesday evening as the low moves onshore south of Kern County.


Discussion...

Water vapor satellite imagery shows the upper low
still about 100 miles west of Point Conception this afternoon as
it slowly wobbles south. Convection has been limited with coastal
areas seeing a few showers and isolated thunderstorms since this
morning...mainly near Monterey Bay at this time. There has also
been some isolated thunderstorms over southern Nevada and the eastern
San Bernardino County desert this afternoon...under a region of
upper diffluence. There is a nearly 100 knots upper jet which will
move in over socal this afternoon/evening and put our area under the left
exit region...especially Kern County. This along with embedded
vorticity lobes within the low circulation could help initiate a few
showers and/or thunderstorms. The low is expected to move a little more
southeasterly overnight and then begin to shift east towards the
socal coast tomorrow...crossing over Los Angeles around 00z Friday
(5 PM thurs).

Model consensus is it will pass over socal Thursday
night and then accelerate eastward on Friday. The proximity of the
low center will maintain a threat of convection for the district
with the best chances Thursday aftn/eve. Some wrap around precipitation
could still affect the southern Sierra on Friday before it comes
to and end by Friday night.

Precipitation amounts are generally
expected to be light with rainfall from a tenth to a quarter of an
inch over the mountains and foothills. The San Joaquin Valley and
Kern County desert will mainly see less than a tenth of an inch.
But due to the convective nature of the precipitation...isolated higher
amounts are possible with thunderstorms along with the potential
for small hail and gusty winds. Snow levels are expected to lower
to around 7500 feet on Thursday with mainly 1 to 2 inches of
snowfall over the higher elevations of the southern Sierra Nevada.
Those planning travel into the high country roads should be prepared
for possible winter weather driving conditions.

Dry weather will return for the weekend and into next week as epac ridging gradually
builds in. Temperatures will continue to be below normal through
Friday due to the upper low...then rebound several degrees Saturday
and return to near normal by Sunday. Further warming will push temperatures
to at least a few degrees above normal next week.

__________________________________________________

Did you catch that last bit about another ridge building in after this system? Sheesh! Another high pressure ridge and another period of above normal temperatures! Lets hope that we do indeed see some rain from this system before we return to dry and above normal temps!

As always, we will update this journal based on current weather conditions, and if we see any specific weather threats to the area, we will alert you to them here immediately!

Stay tuned and monitor the storm yourself using our Wide Angle Precipitation Map


[end of update]


08-Oct-2012 12:20 AM

Another Disappointing "Non-Event" For Our Local Forecast This Week!

We had been holding off posting any info on the previously forecast storm system this coming week, and it was a good thing we waited!

The latest model runs from Hanford have done a complete 180 on any significant precipitation for our area, with the latest forecast now trending towards a pretty much DRY week ahead. (Unless you consider a 20% chance of "showers" a WET forecast) Very unfortunate news to be sure! We were hoping that some measurable rain would "finally" lower our current EXTREME fire danger down to something a little less worrying. We haven't had any measurable rain here at the station since May 26th, and the surrounding forest is definitely showing signs of that unfortunate fact!

Oh well... Lets hope that this isn't the start of yet another disappointing rainy season! We definitely can't afford another year of less than 50% of normal precipitation!

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
929 PM PDT sun Oct 7 2012



Synopsis...
near average temperatures and variable clouds will continue as a
nearly stationary low pressure system is expected to remain off the
coast. However...showers are possible by mid-week...along with
isolated to scattered mountain thunderstorms and higher elevation
snow Thursday...as the low moves closer to the coast.


Discussion...
latest model runs following previous 12z run in track
of offshore cutoff low. Rex bloct to slowly break down over the
next 48hrs. The cutoff will begin to move toward the central coast
Tuesday morning and be centered about 200 miles west of Monterey Bay.
Then the European model (ecmwf) and GFS dig the low south off the coast...before
turning it inland over far socal and northern Baja California Thursday night and early
Friday. Past several days of forecasts were predicated on models pushing
the low inland over central California mid-week. With this change in model
trajectory...it is looking less and lees likekly for any precipitation in
the hnx forecast area...more typical with coastal huggers. Only fly in the
ointment will be formation...if any...of a deformation on the northwest
side of the low with some wrap-around moisture.


Update issued this evening to lower or remove probability of precipitation over much of the forecast area until later Tuesday and/or Wednesday...especially the sjv.

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

[end of update]


06-Oct-2012 4:12 PM

Station Maintenance Update: Heated Rain Bucket Installed

With the temps beginning to drop towards seasonal norms and the possibility of precipitation towards the end of the month, we have decided to swap in our heated rain bucket onto the weather station's ISS today. The heated version of our rain gauge collection bucket allows us to melt any snow accumulation falling into the gauge and continue to measure precipitation even during the heaviest snow/hail/ and gropple events this winter.

[end of maintenance update]


05-Oct-2012 9:53 AM

Maintenance Update: System Back Online

Our DSL modem has been replaced with a new unit and D2149 is now back on the internet. All weather update activity will now resume as normal with all stored data being uploaded to our web site, the NWS, Weather Underground etc. as we speak.

[end of maintenance update]


04-Oct-2012 11:23 PM

Station Will Be Offline for Network Maintenance Friday Morning - 10/05/12

We need to replace our DSL modem tomorrow morning, so our home network will be down for a few hours Friday morning.

We expect the process to take about 3 hours total to complete, starting at around 8:30 a.m.. The home page will be updated with the "Down for Maintenance" announcement when we shut down our network.

Pattern Change Coming Soon!

Based on the latest reports and model runs from Hanford, it is looking more and more likely that we will see a weather system move through the area early next week. Once we have a little more confidence in the models, we will update this journal with more specifics on what to expect from what will likely be the first storm system of the season!

Stay tuned!

[end of maintenance update]


30-Sep-2012 12:30 PM

NWS 7-Day Forecast for Bass Lake Ca.

For the latest weather forecast information related to Bass Lake Ca. CLICK HERE!

This forecast data is based on reports from this official NWS reporting station, (D2149).

Station Operator's note:
We will not be posting any additional journal updates "until" we see a "major" weather or Fire Weather related event.

Until then... Use the link posted above for the latest forecast information for the Bass Lake area. Once again... The forecasts are based on historical data provided by "this" official NWS reporting station.

[end of update]


20-Sep-2012 3:15 PM

Disappointing News Regarding El Nino Strength for 2012/2013 Season

The latest report from the NOAA Climate Prediction Center is now indicating a much slower rise in equatorial ocean temperatures and well below the estimates made over the last two months prior to the report that was issued today.

In short... The chances for a strong El Nino this winter are not looking good right now. While we may see a weak El Nino pattern, the much anticipated above normal rainfall for our area of the Southern Sierra doesn't look like it is going to happen at all this winter! Not good news for our local forests which are as dry as a bone right now.

Speaking of which... We are hitting the peak of our local fire danger risk for the 2012 fire season, with our fire weather calculator now firmly pegged at EXTREME DANGER. This risk level is not expected to lower now until we see some measurable precipitation. Cooler temperatures alone will not be enough now.

The Latest from Hanford on the Current Forecast

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
210 PM PDT Thursday Sep 20 2012


Synopsis...
high pressure aloft will continue to dominate central California
weather through the weekend.

Discussion...

high pressure will continue over the region through
Saturday. The upper low off the Pacific northwest coast has been
cut off from the main flow for several days. This low is caught
between the ridge of high pressure over the western U.S. And a
stronger low pressure system dropping into the Gulf of Alaska. The
low is expected to lift slowly northward tonight and Friday in
response to the system dropping into the Gulf of Alaska...but
after that the models have been struggling with what to do with
it. There has been much run to run inconsistency with all the
models...with solutions over the past 2 days taking the low
anywhere from across Oregon and dropping into Nevada...to moving
across northern California... or dropping down the California
coast and then moving across central California. The 12z models
have come into better agreement in tracking the low across
northeast California Sunday...then moving it into the Great Basin
Monday.


Based on the 12z models...it looks like temperatures will
increase a few degrees Saturday...then cool back to near normal by
Monday. Normal for the San Joaquin Valley on Monday is 88-89
degrees. With the low being a bit farther to our north on
Saturday...have removed the chance of showers and thunderstorms
from the forecast. However...have left slight chance probability of precipitation in the
forecast for Sunday and Monday until confidence increases in the
track of the low.


Models are indicating another weak low pressure system will move
into the region Tuesday night or Wednesday...but also differ on
position and strength of this one as well. The extended models are
also hinting at the possibility of a tropical system near Baja California
that could result in some moisture being picked up in the flow late
next week. Current models would keep this moisture well to the
south of our County warning forecast area through Thursday...but may be something to watch
for next weekend.

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

[end of update]


10-Sep-2012 8:10 PM

High Pressure and Above Normal Temps to Return by Mid-Week

The monsoonal moisture flow has stayed well south of our area so far, and we are not expecting to see any weather action from this disturbance before it exits the area Tuesday night.

By Wednesday, high pressure will once again regain control and bring a return to above normal temps for the remainder of the week. We may see some cooling early next week, but as of this report, it remains unclear as to exactly how much of a change we will see here at the station.

Here is the latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
211 PM PDT Monday Sep 10 2012


Synopsis...
a surge of subtropical moisture is expected today through Tuesday
over the area...bringing a chance of showers and thunderstorms to
the mountains and desert. Drier conditions will prevail by middle week
as a southwest flow aloft sets in.

Discussion...
a weak upper low center over northern Baja California continues to bring sub-
tropical moisture to Southern California with Kern and Tulare
counties being on the northern and western edge of this moisture.
A trough of low pressure is moving into northern California and
will move through the central California interior tonight and
early Tuesday bringing a drier airmass to the region.


Isolated thunderstorms have begun to develop this afternoon in and
just south of the Kern County mountains. The storms are slow
moving and heavy rain is possible as precipitable water was over 1
inch on the Edwards sounding this morning. Additional thunderstorm
development is possible this afternoon and into this evening over
the crest of the Sierra...mainly south of Kings Canyon...as well
as the mountains and desert areas of Kern County. A Flash Flood
Watch remains in effect for those areas through this evening.


As the trough moves through the region tonight and early
Tuesday...expect northwest breezes will pick up in the San Joaquin
Valley this evening. This trough will bring drier air...pushing
the sub tropical moisture eastward. However...there may still be
enough moisture and instability for an isolated thunderstorm or
two along the Sierra crest Tuesday afternoon and possibly in the
southeastern portion of the Kern County desert as well. Have left
slight chance probability of precipitation in those areas for the afternoon.


Any cooling associated with the trough will be slight and short
lived as an upper ridge will quickly rebuild over the area by
Wednesday in response to a developing upper low center in the
eastern Pacific. The low appears it will retrograde and a very
strong upper ridge will build in over the region Thursday through
Monday...with high temperatures once again in the upper 90s to near
100 degrees in the San Joaquin Valley and Kern County desert
regions. Elsewhere temperatures will be well above normal with
dry conditions.

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

Based on the current forecasts, we do not anticipate any changes through the middle of next week, so this will be our last journal update until after the 18th of the month.

[end of update]



07-Sep-2012 8:35 PM

Another Round of Monsoonal Moisture Arriving Sunday

As we get closer to the beginning of fall, these moisture events will begin to have a greater and greater impact on the Bass Lake area. While the NWS is still only giving us a 20% chance for any precipitation here on Sunday, the odds of seeing some cells move in or even form over this portion of the Sierra grows daily, as we edge closer and closer to the start of the rainy season. (Late September/Early October)

Here is the latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
256 PM PDT Friday Sep 7 2012


Synopsis...
after a brief break from shower and thunderstorm activity
tonight...another surge of subtropical moisture is expected
Saturday and Sunday over the area...bringing a chance of showers
and thunderstorms to the mountains and desert. Drier conditions
will prevail next week due to southwest flow aloft.

Discussion...
the district remains under the influence of an upper
ridge over the southwest while an upper low spins off the norcal
coast. Afternoon heating has led to cumulus development over the
Sierra crest but no precipitation or thunderstorms. Skies are clear
elsewhere and many areas have warmed several degrees over yesterday.
The ridge will strengthen over the area on Saturday and result in
additional warming with some locations in the San Joaquin Valley
expected to reach the century mark. Southeast flow around the ridge
will transport monsoonal moisture towards the district for a slight
chance of showers and thunderstorms over the southern Sierra Nevada
on Saturday...then expanding to over the Kern County mountains and
desert on Sunday. A weak easterly wave is expected to drift over
socal Saturday night and stall on Sunday. The nam12 paints cape to
around 1200 j/kg over the so Sierra and 500 j/kg over the Kern Colorado
mtns/desert...while the GFS has about half the cape of the nam12.
The upper low off the norcal coast will open up on Saturday and be
kicked inland over the pacnw on Sunday. A dry westerly flow aloft
will develop over central California Sunday night and push moisture
east of the district by Monday...ending the thunderstorm threat.
A very dry air mass is then expected to prevail all of next week.
Temperatures will trend a little cooler Sunday and Monday as the
Pacific trough moves inland...then level off Tuesday and Wednesday
before nudging back up late in the week.

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

Keep a close eye on our Home Page's NextRad radar maps this Sunday as well as our wide angle precipitation map for real-time tracking of any local thunder storm activity.

[end of update]



07-Sep-2012 5:36 PM

Station Maintenance Update:
Fan Replacement Completed! - Station Back Online


The new FARS fan has been installed and is whisper quite compared to the original fan that came with the new ISS. We are getting about 30% more suction at the intakes as a result of the friction free bearings in this replacement fan motor.

All station operations are back online and all sensors are functioning within normal parameters.

[end of maintenance update]


06-Sep-2012 5:42 PM

Hardware Maintenance Notice - Station Downtime Tomorrow Afternoon

We will be taking the station offline at 4:00 p.m. Friday 09/07/12 in order to replace a defective air circulation fan on the station sensor array. The station should be back up and running by 6 p.m. tomorrow evening. All web updates will be suspended during the repair.

A notice will be posted on our station home page when the system is taken offline.

[end of update]


05-Sep-2012 9:19 AM
Strong Monsoonal Moisture Stream Today and Tomorrow
Station Downtime Scheduled for Later This Week for Hardware Maintenance


The remnants of tropical storm John will be moving through our area beginning today and lasting through tomorrow night. We are looking at about a 20% chance of isolated thunder storms for the Bass Lake area during this period, with partly to mostly cloudy skies both days. This should help to moderate our high temps from where they have been over the last few days.

We will update the journal again today or tomorrow if we end up seeing any precipitation or other storm related activity during this period.

The Latest from Hanford

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
120 am PDT Wednesday Sep 5 2012


Synopsis...
moisture from the tropics will stream into the region through
Thursday producing isolated showers and thunderstorms to parts of
the area. By Friday, drier air will move in from the west,
bringing an end to the thunderstorm threat.


Discussion...
a very complicated pattern this morning to say the
least. Satellite imagery shows one of the more pronounced influxes
of tropical moisture into Southern California in quite a while. Of
note is the wind shear depicted by lower level clouds moving
northwest on southeast winds while the main cloud and moisture
layer moves northeast on southwest winds. If this isn't enough
directions to make you dizzy I don't know what will! Anyway, the
main moisture feed is coming from the remnants of tropical system
John and per the San Diego sounding the layer is rather deep,
extending from around 9000 feet at the bottom to around 16000
feet at the top. The main forecast problem is just how far north
this moisture rich band will migrate and the associated threat of
elevated convection as well as the threat of rain showers over the
entire central California interior.


In the very short term, the ruc13 matches up well with the San
Diego sounding in showing the moisture sitting just above 700 mb.
The RUC transport winds at 700 mb are pronounced southeast and if
moisture was abundant at this level the advection into central
California would be simple. Given that the deeper moisture lies
above 700 mb for today the problem is getting this deeper moisture
northward into the forecast area for any convective threat.


Water vapor imagery shows some interesting things occurring off of
the central coast. It appears a baroclinic Leaf is developing and
a backing of the flow from the west to the south is occurring.
This will help to pull the middle level moisture from south of Point
Conception northward and lift the southwest flow "moisture fetch"
(remember all southwest flow is not dry) well into central
California by tonight. For Thursday forecast models are now
bringing much more moisture into central California with the brunt
moving up the coastal range and west side of the forecast area.
Will opt to introduce the chance of thunderstorms to even the San
Joaquin Valley tonight and continue through Thursday. Given the
trend of models to hold on to the moisture into Friday.


Temperatures will be highly dependent on cloud cover so will
likely have issues pinning down maximum temperatures for the next couple of
days. Will give it my best shot and see how it GOES.


With this front loaded forecast, a quick glimpse into next week
shows a ridge that just doesn't want to give up. Maybe some
cooling by middle week but I am not that confident.

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

Operator's Maintenance Note:

The air circulation fan (FARS) on our new VP2 ISS has started showing signs of defect, so we have been shipped a replacement fan by Davis Instruments. The sensor array will need to be powered down, removed from the mast and disassembled in order to replace the circulation fan. The entire process is very time consuming, so it will take us at least a full hour just to perform the replacement. Then we will need to remount the ISS on the mast and level the Solar and UV sensors. We are estimating about 2-3 hours total for the entire operation. Waiting for the potential storm activity to pass before we take the station down in order to replace the defective fan. Because we will need to power down all station hardware, there will be some data loss associated with this procedure.

We will post an announcement on our home page and on Weather Underground when the station is taken offline. At this point, we are planning to perform the repair sometime on Friday, September 7th.

[end of update]



31-Aug-2012 9:55 AM

Cool Down on the Way! - Possible TS Later Today

Temps are expected to moderate starting today and into the middle of next week.

We are seeing a respectable amount of monsoonal moisture moving into the area from the south east. Observed a few sprinkles earlier this AM, but nothing remotely close to a rain event. The clouds continues to move through from the south to south east. Depending on conditions, and local heating, we may see a thunder storm pop up over the area, but odds are stacked against such an event at this point in time.

The Latest from Hanford

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
513 am PDT Friday Aug 31 2012



Synopsis...
isolated thunderstorms are expected over the southern Sierra and the
Kern County mountains and desert today then dry conditions are expected
through the Holiday weekend. An approaching Pacific trough will bring
a brief cooling trend through Saturday.

Discussion...
an approaching east Pacific trough is expected to bring some
briefly cooler temperatures to the central California interior as
well as drier air as it pushes through the region...which will
end the threat of mountain and desert thunderstorms. But
first...shortwave energy associated with the developing trough
will interact with the available moisture evidenced by the streak
of middle level clouds tracking northward across our area,,,keeping
isolated thunderstorms in the mountain and desert forecast for
this afternoon and evening. The incoming trough has already
lifted the marine layer above 2500 feet and weakened the ridge
overhead...thus pushing 24 hour temperature trends down several
degrees across much of our area. This along with some lingering
clouds will keep highs this afternoon a few degrees cooler than
yesterday.


Cooling continues Saturday as the trough pushes eastward...lowering
temperatures to around climatology or slightly below...while the drier
southwest flow ends the thunderstorm chances.


After Saturday the ridge rebuilds westward...warming temperatures
once again to several degrees above seasonal averages through the
end of next week. The European model (ecmwf) has been advertising a dry west to
southwesterly flow across the region throughout the extended
period...keeping tropical system ileana tracking westward through
the Pacific. The GFS on the other hand has been trying to draw up
additional moisture around the rebuilding ridge as well as pulling
remnant ileana moisture inland across California. Our forecast
continues to lean toward the drier European model (ecmwf) and thunderstorm chances
remain less than 15 percent after this evening.

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

[end of update]



29-Aug-2012 12:03 PM

Potential for Isolated Thunder Storms Thursday

Monsoonal moisture moving up from the south east may provide enough moisture to produce some isolated Thunder Storms in the Southern Sierra from Thursday afternoon through early Friday.

So far this season, the Bass Lake area has not seen any rainfall or lightning from any cells forming over the Sierra range, but as we get closer to fall, the likelihood of TS activity over our area increases.

We ask everyone to remain vigilant and report any dry lightning strikes to the local authorities immediately! Don't second guess the threat! Call 911 and let the professionals make that determination.

With our fire danger risk at Extreme, we can't take any chances now.

The Latest from Hanford

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1008 am PDT Wednesday Aug 29 2012


Synopsis...
a ridge of high pressure dominates the area weather. Thunderstorms
over the higher elevations of the Sierra and the Kern Mountains and
desert is expected Thursday through Friday with the advection of
tropical moisture from the south. Temperatures will remain near to
slightly above average through much of the week.

Discussion...
although Hurricane Isaac is the main attention
getter lately...tropical moisture...at least in the middle levels
of the atmosphere...will be makings its presence known in the
central California interior during the next 2-3 days. Some of that
moisture is showing up as some altocumulus this morning over the
southern half of our County Warning Area. But because the low levels of the
atmosphere are quite dry...there will be nothing more than
sprinkles out of these clouds today. Otherwise...24-hr temperature
trends are slightly to several degrees higher and with an
adequate supply of sunshine...maximum temperatures will probably reach the
century mark in the hottest locations of the sj valley this afternoon.


In the broader picture...an upper level ridge of high pressure
parked over The Four Corners region will dominate our weather
pattern through Friday. However...central California will remain in the
battleground between this ridge and an upper level trough over
the eastern Pacific. So...through Friday at least...a southwest
flow aloft will prevail over the County Warning Area. During the next couple
of days...tropical moisture from easterly waves moving off the
Mexican coast will get entrained in this southwesterly flow.
Both the GFS and ecm forecast an increase in middle level moisture
across central California Thursday into Thursday night as a result
thus supporting the chance of isolated thunderstorms over our mountains
and desert. As the epac trough approaches the California coast Friday...
there is a concern that additional middle level moisture will get
drawn into central California and maintain the threat of isolated thunderstorms
over the mountains and perhaps even the desert through Friday.


The models are in good agreement and bring the epac trough inland
this weekend. Saturday will most certainly be a little cooler
throughout the County Warning Area with increased onshore flow. How much cooling
occurs in the sj valley will depend on how deep the marine layer
gets along the central California coast. Theoretically...maximum temperatures in the
sj valley might not be any higher than the 80s Saturday. Whatever
the case...afternoon temperatures Saturday will be at least a few degrees
below normal.


By the early part of next week...the models agree in building The
Four Corners ridge back into California again with the return of warmer
temperatures and also possibly some middle level moisture from what will be
the remnants of Tropical Storm Ileana. Obviously...this moisture
could complicate our forecast early next week...not just with maximum
and min temperatures...but also might bring a renewed threat of thunderstorms
over the higher terrain. Will assess this in greater detail as the
newer model runs come in today and will consider introducing
slight chance probability of precipitation to the mountains for early next week.


Previous discussion... /issued 254 am PDT Wednesday Aug 29 2012/

Discussion...
radar shows some light echoes over the Kern County
desert this morning in response to a deformation zone over the
region. Satellite imagery shows a band of clouds lifting slowly
northwest around the periphery of the ridge of high pressure now
edging in from Arizona. Dual pol data from keyx radar indicates
"big drops" as the precipitation type and this would indicate
sprinkles at best. For today I have expanded the cloud area to
match up with satellite reality however I have kept the probability of precipitation
low and have not included any weather grids. This will of course
need to be watched as tropical moisture tends to sometimes develop
into showers around sunrise. Anyway, changes have been made to the
forecast for tomorrow as forecast models continue to bring quite a
bit of tropical moisture northward into the Kern County mountains
and desert as well as the Sierra. I have introduced a thunderstorm
threat in the noon to midnight period over these areas. On Friday
the flow looks to turn to the southwest as a trough of low
pressure is prognosticated to move into the Pacific northwest and
northern California. Moisture will push off to the east confining
any residual threat of thunderstorms to the Sierra crest.
Temperatures will remain above normal today and Thursday with some
cooling on Friday as the above mentioned trough brings some cooler
air into the Merced County area first, and then by Saturday and
Sunday across the remainder of the forecast area.


For next week the pattern looks to be dominated by a trough along
the West Coast and this should keep the surface flow onshore for
some marine cooling. Temperatures will remain near normal for
early September. Could see some high clouds from the blow off from
tropical system ileana as it heads westward out to sea but nothing more.

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

We will update this journal as local conditions warrant.

[end of update]


27-Aug-2012 9:34 AM

High Pressure Ridge Remains In Control - Current Pattern Continues

The Latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
152 am PDT Monday Aug 27 2012



Synopsis...
a ridge of high pressure across the Desert Southwest will remain
the dominant weather feature through the week. Skies will be
generally clear and temperatures will remain near to slightly above
average through much of the week.


Discussion...
dry and quiet weather over the central California
interior as southwest flow continues. Temperatures today will
likely warm up some over Merced and Madera counties while over the
southern San Joaquin Valley, remaining marine influenced air will
dampen warming. All in all a relatively mild day in the lower 90s
for most sjv locations. Elsewhere little change in temperatures as
synoptically not much change in heights is expected.


For the next several days the dry weather will continue however by
next week forecast models try to build another ridge of high
pressure over the west. If this does indeed happen a return to
very warm weather will occur.

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

Fire danger remains Very High to Extreme. Report any unusual smoke plumes in your local forests to the local authorities immediately!

[end of update]


25-Aug-2012 9:53 AM

Another Heat Wave Moves In!

While this one will not be as intense as the previous heat wave earlier in the month, a ridge of high pressure has once again set up shop over the area. This latest high pressure ridge will warm the region to above normal temperatures until at least the middle of next week. We can then expect temperatures to moderate to near seasonal norms.

The extended forecast remains dry through the period. (10-15 days or more of zero precipitation)

The Latest from Hanford

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
925 am PDT Sat Aug 25 2012



Synopsis...
a ridge of high pressure aloft has moved over the
central California interior and will remain in control for the
next several days. Dry weather...generally light winds and
slightly above normal temperatures can be expected over the region
until at least the middle of next week.


Discussion...
a dry upper ridge is keeping clear skies across our
area this morning. Mesowest is indicating temperatures are running
fairly close to yesterday except over the central San Joaquin Valley
which is currently running 2-4 degree f cooler as a result of a
deepening marine layer which spilled over the Pacheco Pass. Since
this marine intrusion is shallow...expect the marine cooled air to
burn off by later this morning as p-grads are weak and skies will
remain clear today under a dry airmass. Therefore expect afternoon
highs to be close to yesterday. 12z WRF is indicating the ridge will
weaken slightly on Sunday as a weak shortwave pushes through
norcal. As a result...temperatures are expected to cool slightly
on Sunday...more significantly in the San Joaquin Valley as the
impacts of an elevated marine layer area felt...but temperatures
remain above seasonal normals for late August. The ridge is
prognosticated to strengthen early next week and interact with an upper
trough approaching to Pacific northwest coast which will keep a dry southwest
flow over central California.


Medium range models are in better agreement in indicating the
trough will push through the Pacific northwest on Tuesday night and Wednesday
which will flatten the southwestern Continental U.S. Ridge. This will allow
for temperatures to cool to near seasonal normals and keep our
area mostly clear through next week as a dry southwest to west flow
prevails.

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

[end of update]


18-Aug-2012 11:41 AM

SPECIAL EXTENDED WEATHER UPDATE!

GREAT NEWS!... El Nino Conditions Likely to Begin in September!


Every month the NOAA Climate Prediction Center issues their extended weather/seasonal outlook for the continental United States, which runs though 2013. The latest report builds on last month's estimates that a moderate El Nino pattern is slowly developing in the eastern pacific ocean.

This is GREAT NEWS for us here in the Southern Sierra because an El Nino pattern usually brings us above normal precipitation beginning in November and lasting all the way through to the end our rainy season on June 30th. For the last two years we have been suffering through an extended "La Nina" which produces the exact opposite weather trends for our area.

The nation wide drought we are currently witnessing is a direct result of this current La Nina pattern. This coupled with the increased heating caused by Global Warming have made things miserable for a good chunk of the country this summer.

Our lack-luster winter of 2012, the near record heat waves and the dismal 22.41 inches of rainfall last season can all be traced back this two year long La Nina pattern.

So... Needless to say, this latest news about the arrival of an El Nino pattern for the 2012/2013 rainy season is a gift we desperately need!

We invite you to click the link above and read the report yourself. This is a somewhat technical report, but the climate prediction site also offers graphics of the predicted temperature and precipitation for the US all that way out into 2013. We have provided a link to these maps at the bottom of this update.

In the meantime, we are in what is referred to as an ENSO NEUTRAL condition which is basically the middle ground between a La Nina and El Nino state. This Enso Neutral pattern is expected to continue through the remainder of August, before the first signs of the coming El Nino begin to kick in beginning in September. During a neutral state, our area can see an equal chance of both above and below normal temps and precipitation.

Most of California will benefit from an El Nino!

El Nino's effects are even more dramatic down in Southern California and all south western regions of the country. We wanted to share this good news with our viewers and let everyone know that we can now look forward to a productive rainy season and hopefully above normal precipitation beginning in November. The only portion of the state negatively affected at the start of the pattern will be Northern California, but by December, they too will begin to benefit from above normal precipitation.

For a complete listing of all the climate prediction maps for temp and precipitation, click the link below.

NOAA Climate Prediction Center Temperature and Precipitation Prediction Maps

And don't miss our weekend forecast update posted below!

[end of special update]



18-Aug-2012 10:22 AM

Slight Cooling Trend, Cloudy Skies & Possible Thunderstorms Again Today

Substantial cloud cover over the station this morning with a few hundredths of precipitation being reported by the Oakhurst station and a few others west of us. So far we have seen nothing here at the station and the latest radar returns show a decreasing amount of precipitation south of us, so it looks like we are not going to get anything from this latest moisture flow for now. Depending on how things heat up later, we may see something in the afternoon or early evening hours. The NWS is only giving our area a 20% chance of thunder storms today, so that usually means nothing for us here at 3600 feet.

Temps have moderated nicely overnight and the NWS is now calling for a slight cool down over the next few days, which is very welcome news! This will bring our daytime highs back down to what would be considered normal for this time of the year. That means our highs should only reach the low 90s today and possibly down further into the 80s by tomorrow. After more than 2 weeks of near record high temps, anything cooler is great news for residents and for the fire risk levels!

Here is the latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
928 am PDT Sat Aug 18 2012


Synopsis...
clouds over the region today with isolated thunderstorms due to a
monsoonal surge. Slight cooling trend in store for the next several
days.

Discussion...
the main concerns for this morning are the valley showers and
isolated thunderstorms that have developed and the possibility
for afternoon convection over the Sierra crest and the Kern County
deserts.


A combination of things have allowed the development of the
scattered showers and isolated thunder over the valley. One is an
increase in middle level moisture which had transported northward
overnight into the area. Another is an area of middle level
convergence that has formed due to the squeezing between the large
trough to the northwest and the ridging to the east. The showers
will continue to move northward and will decrease in coverage as
the better dynamics moves north. Current radar and satellite
trends show this.


As far as the possibility of convection in the Kern County desert
areas this afternoon...there is ample middle level moisture and we
will have good solar insolation to allow surface heating to be
maximized today. We also will be monitoring an old outflow
boundary that has moved southwestward from a convective complex
that had occurred over Nevada yesterday. This outflow boundary may
create enough lift to develop a few thunderstorms this afternoon.
Any of the thunderstorms that do develop will have the potential
for gusty outflows due to the drier low levels and brief heavy
downpours. Isolated thunderstorms will also develop over the
southern Sierra crest once again this afternoon.

Previous discussion... /issued 715 am PDT Sat Aug 18 2012/

Discussion...
radar loops show a band of showers extending from north central
Madera County northeast through Mariposa County into Yosemite
National Park. Very little precipitation has been noted with this
band...as only the RAWS near Crane Flat /as of 08z...0100 PDT/ has
reported measurable rain with 0.01 inch.


Although middle-level clouds kept some Friday highs cooler than
Thursday...the majority of sites were near persistence and a few
locations /including Fresno/ where the skies cleared were actually
warmer than Thursday. Coalinga and the China Lake north.W.T.C. Tied as
the hot spots with highs of 106 degrees with Fresno a close second
at 105 degrees.


Through August 17th...Fresno has had 12 consecutive days with 100+
degree temperatures. This ties with 2005 for the 5th most
consecutive triple-digit days in August. August 1966 saw 19
consecutive days of 100+ degree weather...while 2005 had 21
consecutive days of triple-digit heat.


Bakersfield only reached a high of 98 degrees Friday...ending its
streak of consecutive 100+ degree days at 8. The record for August
is 20 consecutive days in 1928...while the all-time record is 28
consecutive days at or above 100 degrees in 1933.


The upper-level ridge over the Desert Southwest will slowly weaken
as an upper-level trough approaches the Pacific northwest coast. A
short-wave rotating through the trough is forecast to reach the
Oregon coast this afternoon...turning the flow aloft southwesterly.
Today should see the Last Chance for any convection over the Kern
County deserts and the western Tehachapi Mountains. As the flow
aloft becomes more southwest...convection Sunday will be confined
mainly to the southern Sierra Nevada...and is expected to remain
east of the crest beginning Monday.


The main trough is forecast to reach the coast Monday night and move
onshore Tuesday. 500-mb heights over the central California interior
are finally forecast to fall below 5880 meters Tuesday.


The models are in good agreement with temperatures cooling at 850
mb the next couple of days...then the GFS and NAM-12 level off
850-mb temperatures Monday while the European model (ecmwf) continues its cooling
trend. The GFS resumes cooling at 850 mb Tuesday with both the GFS
and European model (ecmwf) bottoming out Thursday.


Fresno should finally see highs below 100 degrees Monday...with
temperatures actually falling to near normal by Wednesday and below
normal the next day.


The models diverge Friday...with the European model (ecmwf) trying to rebuild the
ridge over Southern California while the GFS keeping 500-mb heights
below 5880 meters. Have favored the GFS for the end of the week and
kept temperatures near persistence.

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

Stay tuned to our home page's NextRad radar displays as well as our Wide Angle Precipitation Map to monitor the current thunder storm activity in real-time.

We will update the journal should we see any potential storm threats for the area later today.

[end of update]



17-Aug-2012 11:06 AM

Some Moderation in Our High Temps Today - Possible Thunderstorms

With an increase in monsoonal moisture flow over the area and the associated cloud cover, this should help to moderate our temps today and possibly through the next few days. This will also bring back the threat of isolated thunderstorms for the area in the late afternoon and early evening hours.

So far we have not seen any heavy weather activity at the station during previous periods of this moisture flow, so our chances are only about 20% for any storm action in the Bass Lake area. As of this update, we are seeing a bank of high cumulus clouds moving into the area from the south east. These clouds can grow and become a thunder storm, so we will be keeping en eye on them throughout the day today and evening.

Here is the latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1006 am PDT Friday Aug 17 2012


Synopsis...
clouds and showers with possible thunderstorms today due to a
monsoonal surge over the desert and mountain areas. Elsewhere,
partly cloudy skies and slightly above normal temperatures are in
store.

Discussion...

Main forecast concerns for this forecast period will be the flash
flood concerns in Kern County and knocking the temperatures down a bit
in the southern valley and desert areas due to the cloud cover
that is currently over the southeastern areas of the County Warning Area.


The 12z kedw upper air profile indicates a moistening up of the
middle to upper levels. Precipitable waters of 1.25 inches is now in place up from
0.83 inches yesterday. An inverted v in the sounding indicates any
thunderstorms that may develop this afternoon will have the
capability of gusty outflows and brief heavy downpours. There are
a few caveats though...among them being the decreased solar
insolation and lack of lifting mechanisms other than the
orographic variety. If storms do develop they will most likely
develop just to the east of our County Warning Area in san bernadino County and
south of Kern County in Los Angeles County where a bit of clearing
exists and higher surface moisture is present. There then is a good
possibility of the storms then moving into the area with the
steering flow. Another wild card is that if thunderstorms do
develop outside of our County Warning Area there will be outflow boundaries
created which could move into Kern County and produce enough lift
to produce thunderstorms.


Thunderstorms will also develop over the southern Sierra Nevada
crest this afternoon. A few cells did develop yesterday and with
extra moisture present today feel there is an even greater threat
today. The thunderstorms that do form have the potential to move
over the foothills and less likely perhaps the far Eastern Valley
areas.


Temperatures will be lowered in the southern valley and desert
areas due to the cloud mass that is moving northwestward into the County Warning Area.
The northern San Joaquin Valley looks to be on track as far as
temperatures go with most likely just a few high clouds moving over.


Previous discussion... /issued 258 am PDT Friday Aug 17 2012/


Discussion...
afternoon convection was not as widespread as we thought...mainly
limited to the Sierra Nevada range yesterday. However satellite
imagery indicates an upper level disturbance that is expected to
cross the central California interior today and bring in some clouds and
the possibility of heavy precipitation to the Kern County desert
and mountains. We may also see some isolated heavy cells develop
along the Sierra Nevada range today.


Nam12 is hitting the quantitative precipitation forecast pretty hard and all the models are
increasing the precipitable water values to over an inch across
most of the cen California interior. BUFKIT indicated edw would see 1.5in
precipitable water values by this afternoon. We are a bit concerned about the
clouds and isolated showers currently moving into the Kern desert
region. This may inhibit maximum heating today and we may not see
the convection get started until later. We are forecasting that we
see some breaks in the debris clouds and thus will see convection
get going by noon and continue through the afternoon and evening
to around sunset. We have issued a Flash Flood Watch in case one
of the heavier cells hits some of our recent burn scar areas in
the piutes burn area and the current Jawbone fire. We may also
see some flooding of roadways near Red Rock Randsburg Road. It all
depends where the cells develop and move to. The vertical wind
profile is not very impressive and movement should be rather slow
with the cells. However inverted v skew T diagrams indicate that
some of the winds may be gusty in some out flows and down bursts.


The upper level disturbance is expected to move through the region
tonight and will keep in only slight chances in on Saturday and
Sunday. We should start to see some reduction in convection as a
SW flow pattern sets up by Monday and continue through the rest of
the week.


The GFS is still advertising our cool down by the middle of next
week as the closed low off the central California coast will begin to lift
NE and swing a trough of low pressure through here on Tuesday
night with a significant cool down expected for the end of next
week.

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

Stay tuned to our home page's NextRad radar displays as well as our Wide Angle Precipitation Map to monitor the current thunder storm activity in real-time.

We will update the journal should we see any potential storm threats for the area later today.

[end of update]


15-Aug-2012 8:37 AM

Station Maintenance Update:
AC Back Up!

Forecast Update:
Continued Above Normal Temps Through Weekend


Our AC system is back up and running but there is an intermittent problem with a coolant control sensor/valve that will need to be replaced, but at least for now the system is working, so we will not need to shut down the weather computer today! :o)

Above Normal Temps Continue Through At Least Mid Next Week

Hanford's latest model runs and SAT data reveals no relief in sight though the weekend. Near record heat will continue unabated well into next week. The earliest we may see some relief will be 10-12 days out, and that is not a guarantee. Fire danger remains pegged at the EXTREME
during the heat of the day, so we urge everyone to remain vigilant and report any unusual smoke plumes to local authorities immediately.

Monsoonal moisture continues to flow into the area so there is still a chance of isolated thunder storms in the Sierra during the late afternoon and evening hours, but so far, only Yosemite Valley and the crest have seen any activity. However, we have been seeing mostly cloudy skies by late afternoon here at the station, but no precipitation or even the sound of distant thunder. Still... Be sure to report any dry lighting strikes in your area to Cal Fire immediately. The local vegetation is tinder dry, so any lighting strikes are going to start fires, and those fires will spread quickly.

the latest from Hanford

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
428 am PDT Wednesday Aug 15 2012



Synopsis...
high pressure aloft will continue to bring above normal
temperatures to central California through the week. Isolated to
scattered afternoon and evening thunderstorms will occur over
the southern Sierra Nevada crest.

Discussion...
at last the lower levels are responding to the lowering 500 mb height
fields over central California. This is resulting in a weak marine push
into the sjv...not only from the Delta...and for time late last
evening...through the lower coastal passes. Overall valley temperatures this
morning are down 3-5 degrees from 24hrs ago...with a few sites on the
west side down as much as 8 degrees. Most dewpoints are down as
well...especially in areas where pooling pushed dew point/S into the 60s
the past few days. Some dewpoints on the east side of the valley are
down 15 degrees. This will make for a much improved maximum temperature
forecast...albeit still above normal by about 8 degrees.


Elsewhere...temperatures are mixed depending on clouds/precip/outflow
from last Eves thunderstorms. Overall little change in the mountains/deserts
temperatures of the past several days.


Thunderstorm chances will be slightly less today...and focused more north
of Kings Canyon into ynp as the region is between systems. A weak
area of positive vorticity advection is pushing north out of central California...with a stronger
mesoscale convective system across Sonora and SW Arizona. Models continue to downplay thunderstorm activity
through Thursday with no important push of monsoon moisture to the northwest.
However that changes a bit by Friday as a weak easterly wave turns
toward socal. Watervapor loops show some middle-level interaction
with ts Hector is already occurring with this wave...so an
increase in activity is possible Friday through early Sat.


Heights rebuild over California over the weekend as the 4-corners high
retrogrades a bit...and centers along the Colorado River valley. This
will keep temperatures above average with slightly less thunderstorm chances.

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

[end of update]


14-Aug-2012 11:39 PM

Station Maintenance Update: AC Repair Scheduled for Wednesday Morning 08/15/12

We have the AC service company coming back out early Wednesday morning to diagnose and hopefully repair the latest problems with our central air conditioning system.

We will let everyone know what the results are as soon as we do, and with any luck we can avoid having to shut down the weather station computer for a second day in a row.

Stay tuned.

[end of maintenance update]


14-Aug-2012 11:30 AM

Central AC Down Again During Record Breaking Heat! - Station Computer Will Need to be Shut Down from 2:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m.

Unfortunately, our recently repaired AC system has failed again and we currently do not have air conditioning at the station. As a result, we will be forced to shut down the station's weather computer during the hottest portion of the day which is 2:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.

With our highs expected to push into the low triple digits today and continuing through the remainder of the week, the lack of AC is going to make continued computer operation dangerous for the health of the machine, not to mention US! You can monitor the "Internal Temperature" at our station computer location using our Station Software Gauges Window until the shutdown.

The weather data will continue to be recorded by the station hardware during the shutdown of the computer and all archived weather data will be uploaded to our website and all other internet based weather sites when the computer is brought back online just after 8 p.m..

If we are able to get the AC system fixed between now and the scheduled shutdown, we will update the journal. The above downtime will possibly need to be repeated again tomorrow, and will continue each day until the problems with the air conditioning are repaired.

We apologize for the inconvenience.

[end of update]


13-Aug-2012 12:31 PM

Above Normal Temps Continue - Thunderstorm Threat Diminishing - D2149 on Google +

The stubborn high pressure ridge that has pushed our local temps close to the triple digits remains in control as we head into the work week. Temps today are expected to range about the same as yesterday, but with less cloud cover expected, we could actually see our daytime high surpass the 97.4 F the station recorded yesterday.

The latest from Hanford

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1020 am PDT Monday Aug 13 2012


Synopsis...
a ridge of high pressure will continue to dominate the West Coast.
This ridge will allow temperatures to reach triple digits across
much of the lower elevations. Monsoonal moisture will continue to
surge northward over the region...increasing the chances of
thunderstorms over the Sierra Nevada...Kern County mountains and
Kern County deserts.

Discussion...
strong high pressure aloft remains anchored over California...
keeping temperatures well above normal. Several record high and
high minimum temperatures were broken on August 12th...and both
Bakersfield and the Merced regional Airport tied their record high
minimum temperatures this morning. /See the record report...
sforerhnx or sxus76 khnx./


Satellite loops show a weak upper-level low off the Pacific coast of
Baja California California. The combination of this low and the upper-level
ridge over the Desert Southwest will keep a southeasterly flow aloft
over Southern California and continue to bring monsoonal moisture
into the southern part of the Hanford warning/forecast area. Storm Prediction Center has
the southern Sierra Nevada including the foothills...the Tehachapi
Mountains and the Kern County deserts under a general risk of
thunderstorms and this looks on track. Will update the forecast to
add a slight chance of thunderstorms to the foothills and also to
the southeastern edge of the San Joaquin Valley where Storm Prediction Center also has a
general risk for any thunderstorms that drift off the mountains.


An upper-level low is forecast to form off the northern California
coast during the next 12-24 hours. This low will turn the flow aloft
over California more southwesterly. Convection that forms over the
southern Sierra Nevada Tuesday will be confined to the high country
and there is a likelihood that cells that form over the crest will
drift east of the southern Sierra Nevada.

Previous discussion... /issued 408 am PDT Monday Aug 13 2012/

a very warm morning due to monsoonal moisture filtering into much
of the district during the weekend. With increased humidity...will
see a good potential for mountains/desert convection and heat
indices reaching well into and above 105 degree-f across the San
Joaquin Valley today. Model instability parameters showing place
the best convective potential across the Sierra Nevada crest...
across the Kern County mountains and the Kern County deserts.
Satellite total precipitation water imagery show a continued surge of
moisture at 1 to 1.50 inches pushing toward the central California
interior this morning. Water vapor imagery is showing a weak upper
low centered near Yuma/Arizona drawing moisture toward the district to
support the continuation of afternoon/evening thunderstorms and
excessive heat across the San Joaquin Valley. Will issue an
excessive heat warning for one more day as heat indices stay above
70 degrees this morning and rise to 105 degrees and above this
afternoon.


While models show little change in the short term with afternoon
maximum temperatures continuing The Reach the century mark for much of the
week...models forecast the development of a cut off low later this
week. By Wednesday...the flow aloft may turn slightly
southwesterly. In addition...models show a weak short wave trough
riding the the main flow which make spark some activity across the
district during its passage. Will wait for better model consensus
before introducing weather outside the mountains and deserts. The
southerly component of the wind will allow thunderstorm activity to
linger for much of the week as moisture in not pushed eastward.
While thunderstorm coverage will diminish...very isolated
thunderstorms may continue over the crest through at least next
weekend. Will make little changes to the longer term of the
forecast due to the uncertainty in progging how the cut-off low
will behave during its passage across the West Coast.

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

Lastly, we wanted to let everyone know that we have setup an account on Google + and have uploaded some of our station photos there. We hope that our presence on this new social network will attract new users to our website. Check it out!

[end of update]


12-Aug-2012 11:46 AM

Another Shot at Triple Digits - Thunderstorm Threat Increasing - Flash Flood Watch in Effect

We just missed the 100 degree F mark yesterday by less than 1 degree with our high topping out at 99.4 F just after 3 p.m. Temps failed to moderate normally last night with the station reporting 80 degree temps right up till 11 p.m. Our low was an unusually warm 68.6 F overnight which will set the stage for a likely triple digit high later today. The much higher dew point readings from increased monsoonal flow, coupled with the extreme heat will bring about a much better chance for isolated afternoon and evening thunderstorms over the Bass Lake area later today as well.

You can follow the progress of any potential thunderstorms in real-time using our Wide Angle Precipitation Map!

Updated Forecast Discussion from Hanford...

Statement as of 10:48 AM PDT on August 12, 2012

... Flash Flood Watch in effect until 7 PM PDT this evening
for the southern Sierra Nevada from Yosemite National Park
to the Kern County line...


The National Weather Service in Hanford has expanded the Flash Flood Watch to include the southern Sierra Nevada from
Yosemite National Park to the Kern County line.

In Effect Until 7 PM PDT this evening

* the presence of monsoonal moisture will help trigger scattered
thunderstorms... some with very heavy rain... this afternoon
into this evening. The slow moving nature of thunderstorms
could produce localized flash flooding.

* Potential impacts include possible Road closures due to high
water... debris flows or rock slides. Rapid water rises and
overflow may occur in normally dry streams and creeks.

Precautionary/preparedness actions...

A Flash Flood Watch means that conditions may develop that lead
to flash flooding. Flash flooding is a very dangerous situation.
You should monitor later forecasts and be prepared to take action
should flash flood warnings be issued.

LINK

Durfee

Weather.Gov/Hanford

Updated Forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1013 am PDT Sun Aug 12 2012


Synopsis...
upper level high pressure remains in control over the central
California interior. Temperatures reaching triple digits can be
expected through the remainder of the weekend. There is also
remnant monsoonal moisture moving north over the southern portion
of the region bringing a chance of thunderstorms to the Sierra and
Kern County mountains and desert regions as well a few drifting into
the Central Valley.

Discussion...
satellite imagery still depicting a good deal of
altocumulus blanketing much of the sj valley and foothills this
morning. The presence of these clouds kept min temperatures well above
normal last night. Many valley locales did not drop below 80
degrees. As a result...today is getting off to much warmer start
than yesterday in these areas. The altocu appears to be slowly
eroding...so expect a fairly sunny afternoon today which will send
temperatures skyrocketing to 105 degrees or higher throughout much of the
sj valley and lower foothills.


Over the higher terrain...conditions appear ripe for more convection
this afternoon and evening. Precipitable h20 values are certainly
higher than yesterday and dewpoint temperatures are in the 50s to lower 60s
in the Kern County desert. Winds aloft are rather light...so thunderstorms
that develop today will be slow-moving with a high potential for
flash flooding. Hence...a Flash Flood Watch was launched for the
Kern County mountains and desert for this afternoon through early
this evening. Thunderstorms will likely flare up over the higher
elevations of the Sierra...too...and will also be rather slow moving.
Will reassess the situation with neighboring weather forecast offices and contemplate
possible issuance of a Flash Flood Watch for the Sierra as well.


The thunderstorm threat today could also extend to the foothills...not just
in the Sierra but also west of Interstate 5 where slight chance probability of precipitation
were introduced in the morning update. The south end and east side
of the sj valley could end up with more debris clouds from collapsing
thunderstorms by this evening. All in all...the high pressure ridge over
The Four Corners region will remain in control...but from today
through at least Tuesday...monsoonal moisture will likely remain
trapped underneath this ridge and so relative humidities will run
higher than usual throughout the County Warning Area. That means the weather will
remain rather muggy at night in the sj valley...lower foothills and
the Kern County desert with a continuation of above normal minimum
temperatures.

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

As we stated yesterday, be sure to report any local dry lighting strikes to local authorities immediately, as well as any unexplained smoke rising from your surrounding forest lands.

You can monitor the latest special weather statements and warnings regarding the current weather conditions via Satellite Images/Warnings/Advisories page HERE.

[end of update]


11-Aug-2012 1:48 PM

Possible Afternoon Thunderstorms Today Through Monday

As temps approach the triple digits today, and our fire weather calculator has posted Extreme Fire Danger Risk for the area, the threat of dry lightning strikes is the last thing we need today! But based on latest NWS forecasts, the chance of afternoon and evening thunderstorms in the Souther Sierra are increasing as monsoonal moisture tracks north.

There are already impressive blooms of Cumulus clouds behind our location and Hanford is warning that some of these cells could drift west and over the Bass Lake area later today. We ask that residents remain vigilant and report any lightning strikes in your area to authorities immediately!

We will be keeping a close eye on the thunderstorm threat, and will update the journal should we see any cells moving into the Bass Lake area.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1137 am PDT Sat Aug 11 2012


Synopsis...
high pressure ridging will be the dominant feature for the central
California interior for the next several days resulting in
temperatures reaching the triple digits throughout the valley and
foothills. Monsoonal moisture will bring afternoon and evening
thunderstorms to the Sierra and Kern County mountains and desert
regions as well.

Update...
forecast was amended this morning to add a slight
chance of thunderstorms to the Sierra foothills and the southeast
portion of the sj valley. Winds aloft are southeasterly...so thunderstorms that
develop over the higher elevations may be carried into the above
referenced areas by late this afternoon or early this evening.

This is supported by the latest forecast from Storm Prediction Center which does add
these areas into a general risk area for thunderstorms today. Additionally... the latest MOS guidance forecasts 12-hour thunderstorm probability of precipitation of 18 percent to 23 percent from bfl to ptv and visible. Although the lower boundary levels are not very moist...there is a threat of isolated dry lightning strikes in these areas today with possibly gusty outflow boundary winds. Definitely an area to watch for development late this afternoon into this evening. Gridded forecasts were updated for sky cover...probability of precipitation and weather accordingly.

A Special Weather Statement has been issued to address this
concern. Also...check out our latest updated weather story graphic
on our National Weather Service website...www.Wrh.NOAA.Gov/hnx.


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

You can monitor the latest special weather statements and warnings via Satellite Images/Warnings/Advisories page HERE.

[end of update]


10-Aug-2012 9:08 PM

No Records Broken Friday - Still a Chance on Saturday

Despite the forecasted record highs for Bass Lake and the Southern Sierra, we missed the century mark by 1.5 degrees F on Friday. The station's recorded high was 98.5 F at 3:09 p.m., falling short of the record 101.6 F the station recorded back on August 25th, 2010.

There were no shortage of laughably improbable highs being reported around the area today however, with some of the more notoriously inaccurate stations reporting highs of 105 F to 106 F in locations above 3200 feet! As a matter of reference and accuracy, the NWS station in the town of Oakhurst, which is also 1300 feet lower in elevation than Bass Lake hit 104 F today.

Factoid:
Bass Lake tends to range between 5 and 8 degrees cooler on any given day than Oakhurst, and our high today falls right in line with that average difference. Bass Lake would NEVER be hotter than Oakhurst no matter what the conditions, so any station at this elevation reporting a high above the Oakhurst high would be suspect in terms of accuracy. The only exception would be Yosemite Valley which is subject to summer temperature anomalies due to the radiant heating from the massive heat absorbing granite cliffs surrounding the valley. This effect is unique to that location and can often push temps on the valley floor above the highs being reported in surrounding areas as low as 2200 feet.

As far as our chances for record breaking heat over the next several days... Saturday is supposed to be the hottest day of this impressive heat wave, so there is still a chance we will surpass our previous record set in August of 2010. Come Sunday, temps are expected to moderate a bit and bring us back down into the low to mid 90s for the first part of next week, with another wave of above normal heat expected by next weekend.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
857 PM PDT Friday Aug 10 2012


Synopsis...
high pressure ridging will be the dominant feature for the central
interior for the next several days resulting in temperatures
reaching the triple digits throughout the valley and foothills.
Monsoonal moisture will bring a slight chance of afternoon and
evening thunderstorms to the desert regions as well.

Discussion...
desert and mountain thunderstorms have come to an
end with Sundown. Axis of moisture continues to move around the
periphery of the large western high pressure ridge and debris
clouds have moved west across the southern San Joaquin Valley.
Heat was as forecast, a very big concern over the area although
Fresno and Bakersfield both just missed record highs. The heat
and Desert/Mountain thunderstorm threat will continue through the
weekend as forecast models keep the ridge in place. The seemingly
most uncertain weather variables are the Prospect of record highs
and the extent of thunderstorm activity. Current forecast grids
look just fine and will not need to update this evening.

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

You can monitor the latest special weather statements and warning via Satellite Images/Warnings/Advisories page HERE.

[end of update]




09-Aug-2012 11:41 AM

Hottest Week of the Year?

Based on current forecasts; the next several days are going to be some of the hottest on record for the Bass Lake area and the Southern Sierra Nevada. There is talk that our high temps by Saturday could break all previous records for the area making this the hottest weekend in Bass Lake history!

The station is already reporting temps in the low 90s just after 11AM which is unheard of even during August. We will have to wait and see what we end up recording later today and through the weekend.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
959 am PDT Thursday Aug 9 2012


Synopsis...
high pressure ridging is the dominant feature for the central
interior. Temperatures can be expected to rise slowly and peak to a
maximum by the weekend.


Discussion...
temperatures this morning are generally up about 2-4 degrees compared to
this time yesterday...forecast looks on track in terms of reaching
forecast maximum temperatures today. Should remain generally clear
today...except for some afternoon cumulus buildups in the
mountain areas and isolated thunderstorms along the southern
Sierra crest. Therefore...not planning any updates this morning.


Strong upper-level ridge of high pressure remains in control over
the western U.S. And continues to move westward. Temperatures will likely
peak during Friday and Saturday...a slight weakening in the ridge
is expected occur by Sunday so that temperatures will slightly
decrease. However...temperatures will remain well above
average...high temperatures are expected to remain at or above 105 in
most locations in the sj valley...desert and foothill areas
through at least Sunday. Minimum temperatures are expected to fall to
only around 80 degrees in the warmest locations...on Friday through sun
mornings. An excessive heat watch remains in effect for these
areas for Friday through Sunday...expect to update with this
upcoming afternoon forecast package. In terms of convective
potential...slight chance probability of precipitation are confined mainly to the Sierra
crest due to diurnal heating through this weekend and even into next
week. Moisture remains limited and will likely preclude isolated
thunderstorm development beyond the higher elevations of the
Sierra Nevada.


By early next week...temperatures are expected to be not as warm
but still slightly above average. Models show ridging retreating
eastward...although there is minor model disagreement in terms of
developing troughing near the coast. Temperatures are anticipated to return
closer to average by the middle of next week...with a drier
southwest flow in place.

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

You can monitor the latest special weather statements and warnings via our Satellite Images/Warnings/Advisories page HERE. If the NWS issues any special advisories related to this record breaking heat wave, you will be able to view them there. This link is always available at the top of this journal page.

[end of update]


08-Aug-2012 3:27 PM

Station Maintenance Update:
Central Air Conditioning System Repaired


We are pleased and relieved to report that our home's air conditioning system was repaired a day ahead of schedule and everything is now back up and running normally. The repairs took nearly 5 hours to complete and the system was only returned to service less than 30 minutes ago. By the time all of the replacement parts were installed and the system refilled with refrigerant, the room where our weather computer resides had already reached 95 degrees, which is actually above the safe operating temperature for the machine!

Fortunately, the indoor temp has fallen rapidly and we are down into the mid 80s. With the AC back in operation there will be no need to shut down the station computer today as was previously planned.

All weather systems are now functioning within normal parameters.

Just in time for what will likely be the hottest weekend of the year, and quite possibly the hottest recorded high temperatures in Bass Lake's history.

[end of maintenance update]


07-Aug-2012 10:36 AM

Record Breaking Heat Likely for Southern Sierra Later This Week!

Conditions are coming together this week with the potential to push our daytime high temperatures into the triple digits by Thursday. The latest special weather statement from Hanford is warning that areas of the Southern Sierra near 4000 feet could reach a sweltering 105 degrees F by Friday. This of course would include Bass Lake.

Special Weather Statement

... Prolonged period of very hot weather to return to the central
California interior this week...


Strong high pressure aloft will build over central California this
week. This will set up a prolonged period of very hot temperatures
in the San Joaquin Valley and adjacent foothills... and the Kern
County desert.

Afternoon temperatures by Thursday are expected to range from 105
to 111 degrees... and continue through the weekend. Friday and
Saturday likely will be the hottest days of the period. An
increasing east to southeast flow of monsoon moisture could move
in by Sunday... possibly lowering temperatures a few degrees.
However triple digit heat will continue into the first part of
next week.

Even in the southern Sierra Nevada and Tehachapi Mountains... high
temperatures will range from 98 to 105 degrees at 4000 feet... to
the mid 80s to around 90 at 8000 feet.

Record or near record high temperatures and high minimum
temperatures are likely in Fresno and Bakersfield later this
week.

Listen to NOAA Weather Radio... or your favorite news source... for
updates on this situation.


Sanger

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

It is extremely rare for the Bass Lake area to hit triple digits even during the hottest of heat waves. We have only reached the triple digits two times since 2009. For us here at the station, these temps are going to be especially troublesome in light of the catastrophic failure of our central air conditioning system.

Scheduled Station Downtime for Several Hours Each Afternoon Until Central AC is Repaired

Apparently the "Main Coil" of the AC side of our central air system cracked and all of the coolant has leaked out leaving the system bone dry and nonfunctional. Replacement parts are on the way, but repairs to the unit are not expected to be completed until Thursday. As a result, we will be forced to shut down the high-end computer that runs the station during the hottest part of the day for the next several days. This is not something that we do lightly, but we can't risk heat damage to this expensive computer system. The room where this computer resides reached 95 degrees yesterday afternoon which was several degrees hotter than the actual air temperature outside at the station ISS! That is about the maximum safe operating temperature for the machine, so with high temps expected to exceed those of yesterday, a forced computer shut down from late afternoon until early evening is unavoidable.

No station data will be posted to our website or any of the other weather sites we report to during such downtime, but all weather data will be recorded and posted later.

The system will be taken offline from approximately 3:00PM to 7PM each day while the AC remains down. The station's ISS hardware outside will continue to operate and will record all weather data during this time. Upon computer restart the backlog of weather data stored by the station hardware will be uploaded to our weather computer and then out to all the various internet sites within a few minutes. An announcement will be posted on our station home page with a link to this journal immediately before system shut down each afternoon.

This journal will be updated with a temporary downtime specific announcement each day just before the system is taken offline until 7 p.m.

[end of update]


02-Aug-2012 2:55 PM

Weekend Forecast Update!

We are posting a forecast update to our morning report because Hanford has just updated their forecast in regards to the timing and probability of monsoonal moisture/thunderstorm potential for our area Friday through Sunday.

The revised forecast from Hanford...

Special Weather Statement for Southern Sierra

... Isolated thunderstorms possible Friday and over the weekend...

An increase in monsoonal moisture from the southeast on Friday will
bring a slight chance for afternoon and evening thunderstorms over
the southern Sierra and Kern County mountains and desert. There is
a better chance for thunderstorms over these areas on Saturday as
a weak disturbance passes through... then still a lingering chance
along the crest of the Sierra on Sunday. Any storms that develop
could cause brief heavy rain... strong gusty winds and dangerous
lightning strikes.


Dch

Weather Image

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

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
226 PM PDT Thursday Aug 2 2012



Synopsis...
a strong high pressure area aloft will continue to bring warm
weather through the weekend. It will also be dry through the weekend
except for an isolated afternoon or evening thunderstorm along the
Sierra Nevada crest and the southeast Kern County desert.


Discussion...
upper high centered over central California providing
above normal temperatures again today. A few cumulus are popping
over the high country near Mount Whitney otherwise sunny skies prevail
throughout the district. The high will slowly shift over Nevada on
Friday with a resulting easterly flow transporting moisture towards
the southern half of the forecast area. Nam12 has 700 mb-500 mb layer relative humidity
over 70 percent...lifted index around -2 and cape around 800 j/kg.
Have therefore added a slight chance for thunderstorms over the
mountains and Kern County desert on Friday afternoon and evening.

A better chance of thunderstorms develops on Saturday as a good
southeast flow continues to bring in moisture. Convection will be
aided by a couple of short wave impulses moving through Saturday
into Sunday. This added lift could lead to some nocturnal thunderstorms
Saturday night as well. Cannot rule out some activity forming over
the San Joaquin Valley either...but for now have gone with just a
10 percent chance. A dry southwest flow will begin to push the
moisture eastward on Sunday and probability of precipitation are confined to the Sierra
crest. Hung on to a slight chance along the crest on Monday as some
residual moisture may linger then a dry forecast the remainder of
the week. Regarding temperatures...model 850 mb temperatures indicate little
change on Friday but some mountain and desert areas may be cooler
due to convection. All areas cool close to seasonable norms for
the weekend through midweek then trending warmer later next week
as The Four Corners high builds a little westward.

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

Stay tuned to our home page and this journal through the weekend for any changes/updates/storm reports should any arise.

[end of update]


02-Aug-2012 10:37 AM

Continued Hot with Possible Isolated Thunderstorms by Sunday

The summer heat continues as we move into August with daytime highs reaching the mid to upper 90s through the weekend. Monsoonal moisture is expected to enter the forecast area around Sunday with a slight 20% chance of isolated thunderstorms bringing the threat of lighting strikes.

With this heat the chance of precipitation actually making it to the ground is low, so the main worry with any potential thunderstorms would be dry lighting, which with the current fire danger running very high to extreme is the absolute last thing we need around here! We will keep an eye on the situation and update the journal accordingly.

The latest model runs are not being very consistent with this potential unstable weather, so at the moment it is still a guessing game as to whether or not we will see any storms around the Bass Lake area. Even less certainty when it comes to any measurable rain from them.

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
954 am PDT Thursday Aug 2 2012



Synopsis...
a strong high pressure area aloft will continue to bring warm
weather through the weekend. It will also be dry through the weekend
except for an isolated afternoon or evening thunderstorm along the
Sierra Nevada crest.


Discussion...
the upper high over central California will provide
another sunny day with temperatures very similar to yesterday. The
high has brought drier air to the Kern County mountains and desert
with dew point temperatures down 5-10 degrees from yesterday across
the mountains and 15-20 degrees in the desert. The forecast looks good
today but will consider adding slight chance probability of precipitation for the mountains
and desert on Friday with the afternoon package as the upper high
shifts east-northeast and an easterly flow over socal brings in some moisture.
Saturday continues to look like the best day for convection as a
good southeasterly flow sets up and transports higher moisture into
the district.

Previous discussion... /issued 149 am PDT Thursday Aug 2 2012/

Discussion...
satellite imagery shows the center of high pressure
over the central coast with quite a bit of dry air in place. Off
to the east moisture continues to move away from the area thus
there shouldn't be any thunder over the Sierra. The main weather
concern for today and Friday will be the heat. Based on forecast
model projections of the high not really moving or weakening, a
near persistence forecast seems to be the way to go. I have made
only some minor nudges to the forecast grids.


Over the weekend things will change as models shift the high to
the north allowing for a return moist easterly flow into central
California. On Sunday models then bring a short wave and vorticity
center up from the south. If the current model timing pans out,
Sunday afternoon could get active as this weather feature will act
as a trigger for thunder. Will keep an eye on this and if future
forecast model solutions show the same projection, probability of precipitation may have
to be increased.


With the high moving east and the above mentioned trough passage,
cooling will take place over the entire area and by Sunday, most
of the triple digit heat will be over...at least for a few days.

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

[end of update]


31-Jul-2012 2:41 PM

Heat Wave Intensifies - Monsoonal Moisture Chances Wane

As you know doubt can tell if you go outside today, our latest July heat wave is well underway! Daytime highs have risen significantly since Sunday with temps now topping out in the mid to upper 90s, with the hottest day expected to come on Wednesday.

The latest model runs from Hanford have played down the previous forecasts of monsoonal moisture moving in from the south east, and replaced it with continued dry days. Our relative humidity lows have been in the teens and are expected to drop further as we move through the rest of the week.

As a result of both the heat and the low humidity, the local fire danger remains pegged at very high with occasional visits to the EXTREME level which is as high as our fire weather calculator goes. This means that we all need to be especially vigilant about open flames outdoors and to report any suspicious smoke in your area to the authorities immediately.

Here is the latest forecast discussion from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1036 am PDT Tuesday Jul 31 2012


Synopsis...
clear skies and slightly above normal temperatures are expected
through the remainder of this week as an upper-level high-pressure
ridge dominates the weather over the central California interior.

Discussion...
a ridge of high pressure remains in place over the region and will
provide another day of mainly clear skies and warm temperatures
across the central California interior. 24 hour temperature trends
are currently running up around 2-6 degrees and afternoon highs
should follow a similar trend. Expect widespread triple digit
readings across the desert zones and at most valley and lower
foothill locations this afternoon.


Convection will continue to fire over Southern California again
this afternoon. Associated moisture is prognosticated to remain mainly
south and east of Kern County. Models show some weak instability
developing over our desert areas and if the moisture sneaks in
there we could see some convective development. For now this is
covered with probability of precipitation below 15 percent. No update is planned for the forecast this morning.

Previous discussion... /issued 300 am PDT Tuesday Jul 31 2012/

Discussion...
the upper-level ridge is firmly in place over Texas and the Desert
Southwest this morning. The ridge will keep temperatures a few
degrees above normal for the next several days...with dry weather
over the central California interior through the remainder of the
work week.


High temperatures across the central and southern San Joaquin Valley
Monday ranged from 97 /at Arvin...Avenal and the Porterville and
Visalia Municipal airports/ to 102 /at Coalinga and Fresno/. The
China Lake was the Hot Spot for the Hanford warning/forecast area
with a high of 106 degrees.


There are a few differences with this morning/S model runs compared
to Monday morning/S. The latest models keep the ridge center over
Texas rather than shifting it west today...and the new models also
develop the secondary high over the central California coast rather
than over the northern half of the San Joaquin Valley.


Monsoonal moisture pushed into southeastern California Monday...but
stayed east of the Kern County deserts. The models bring the moisture
further north today...but the greatest instability is forecast to be
east of the southern Sierra Nevada crest. Therefore...have kept probability of precipitation over the Sierra Nevada crest less than 15 percent...as well as probability of precipitation over the eastern Kern County deserts. For Wednesday through Friday... circulation around the secondary high over the coast will keep the monsoonal moisture from encroaching on Kern County from the south.


An upper-level trough is forecast to move into the Pacific northwest
Thursday...then dig south over the eastern Pacific. This will set up
a southerly flow aloft over California which will advect moisture
into the central California interior over the weekend and into next
Monday. This will bring a slight chance of afternoon and evening
thunderstorms over the southern Sierra Nevada crest each day.

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

We will continue to monitor the weather models and will update the journal should there be any change in the potential for thunderstorms in our area.

[end of update]



27-Jul-2012 1:02 PM

July Heat Returns Monday - Chance of Thunder Storms Tues. - Thurs.

Enjoy the below normal temps this weekend because beginning Monday a high pressure system will move in from the east and raise our highs back to typical late July levels. The warm up will add between 5-10 degrees F to our daytime highs next week as compared to the below normal highs we will continue enjoy through Sunday.

Come Tuesday, monsoonal moisture will once again advance into our forecast area bringing the chance of afternoon and evening thunder storms back into our forecast through Thursday. Currently the chance is only 20%, but whenever we get this monsoonal flow in July and August the outcome is always unpredictable, so be prepared!

Here is the latest from Hanford

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
948 am PDT Friday Jul 27 2012


Synopsis...
a trough of low pressure will remain over the West Coast through
Saturday. Next week...high pressure from the Desert Southwest will
migrate into California. A southeast flow aloft will develop...and
moisture from Mexico will move into the region for a threat of
thunderstorms over the southern Sierra and Kern County mountains and
desert by Tuesday.

Discussion...
a dry southwest flow aloft prevails over the central
California interior today and will persist through the weekend.
Temperatures will show only slight changes from day to day. Very
dry conditions will continue over the Kern County mountains...
especially above 5000 feet.


By Monday good agreement exists between models in slowly moving
the Desert Southwest anticyclone to the west. A slow warming trend
will ensue and by Tuesday as the southeast flow aloft becomes
established...moisture will advect into east Kern County and the
southern Sierra. A slight chance of thunderstorms was added over
this region in coordination with weather forecast office Oxnard and Las Vegas.


Wednesday looks to be the day of the greatest monsoonal thunder
threat as GFS deepens the moisture layer in the persistent
southeast flow. European model (ecmwf) model is not as aggressive in its northwest
trajectory of the deeper moisture however it brings a vorticity
center northward into the region and this could act as a focus for
convective activity. By Thursday or for sure Friday...the
southeast flow is prognosticated to shift to the southwest in response
to an approaching Pacific trough of low pressure. This will push
monsoon moisture eastward.

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

We will of course be monitoring the potential storm situation early next week and will post any relevant updates to the journal should the need arise.

Meanwhile... Enjoy the weekend! We also hope that you are also enjoying the increased accuracy of our new ISS hardware especially after sundown! :o)

[end of update]


25-Jul-2012 2:40 PM

Some Additional Info on Our New Hardware - Some Thoughts on Accuracy from Your Station Operator & Current Weather News! Including a Cool Down To End Out the Week + Monsoonal Moisture Possible Early Next Week!

So far our new sensor array has been performing beautifully. We definitely saw significantly faster temperature sensor response times last night as the first wave of cool ocean air moved into the area to begin a cool down for the Southern Sierra.

Now that our station is equipped with a 24 hour FARS, the difference in daytime/nighttime temps as compared to surrounding stations with non-aspirated sensors is even more dramatic than ever! This just shows how much of a difference there can be in accuracy between a properly sited and aspirated station and the woefully inaccurate surrounding stations who's owners did not give much thought to sensor location and the effects of solar and radiant heating on the accuracy of their overall temperature data. This is especially evident on hot sunny days, where some of them are so far out of whack that they are reporting daytime highs several degrees ABOVE the NWS station in Oakhurst! Talk about a useless data set!

When it comes to professional weather station operations... Either Go Big... or Go Home!
Some thoughts on accuracy and attention to detail from your friendly station operator...

It was during the summer of 2008 after seeing the nearest Bass Lake weather station consistently reporting triple digit highs on days when the NWS station in Oakhurst was only hitting the middle 90s that we decided to take matters into our own hands and do it RIGHT! After a few months of research into professional weather station hardware, we purchased all the equipment that would be required to finally provide accurate weather data for the Bass Lake area. In the course of our detailed research, we learned about all the common mistakes civilian station owners often make and pledged to avoid every single one of them.

Locating the ISS on a roof or near a road or driveway were at the top of the list, followed closely by not spending the money for a FARS system in order to prevent the temp and humidity sensors from being baked by the sun and thus providing wildly erroneous readings. All of the above were in play with our nearest neighbor's station back in 2008, and unfortunately, those problems remain to this day. Just check their high temps today compared to ours and to the NWS station down in Oakhurst. ;o)

Fortunately for all of those who have made our station their choice for Bass Lake area weather, they can rest easy knowing that the numbers our station is providing are correct and as accurate as possible 24 hours a day. Our commitment to data quality is one of the primary reasons D2149 was chosen by the National Weather Service as the official reporting station for Bass Lake Ca.! We would also imagine that not having to wade through a bunch of advertising is another reason our station has become so popular with locals and tourists alike!

Whatever your reasons for using our site, we appreciate your continued support! ;o)

Now on to the current forecast!

Regarding the cool down...

Temps today are several degrees cooler than they were at this same time yesterday and this trend is expected to continue through the weekend. The possibility of some monsoonal moisture reaching our area early next week is looking likely at this point based on the latest info from Hanford.

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1025 am PDT Wednesday Jul 25 2012


Synopsis...
mostly clear skies are expected this week as current conditions
persist. Increasing clouds and humidities are possible by the
weekend as a weak monsoonal flow develops.

Discussion...
a ridge of high pressure is centered over the Desert
Southwest while a trough of low pressure resides off the Pacific
northwest coast. Central California remains between the influence
of these two systems with a southwest flow aloft. Today it looks
like the ridge will be more of an influence...keeping our
temperatures near normal for late July. However...there is some
very dry air over the region...especially across Kern County where
humidities are expected to be in the single digits for a long
duration...mainly at elevations above 5000 feet. These very dry
conditions may continue across Kern County Thursday.

The trough off the coast is expected to deepen slightly Thursday
and Friday. The main influence across the central California
interior will be a few degrees of cooling as the trough swings
inland...keeping temperatures a few degrees below normal. A
gradual warming trend will then be in store through the weekend
and into the middle of next week as the upper ridge expands back
into the region.


The forecast remains dry throughout the period...though models
suggest monsoonal moisture could drift northwest into our area by
early next week.

[end of update]


24-Jul-2012 2:56 PM

Hardware Upgrade Complete!

We just finished our final calibration tests of the new sensor array and brought our new 6163 ISS online! All systems are functioning pefectly including the new 24 Hour FARS system.

Here are a couple of photos of the new ISS after installation:

Weather Image

Weather Image

The new continuously active 24 hour aspiration system should come in handy over the next several weeks when the seasonal monsoonal moisture begins to move north into our area. Overnight temp and humidity dynamics should be noticeably more active due to the continuous airflow this new FARS system will provide to the sensors.

We plan to post another weather related update tomorrow. We are waiting for the latest model runs from Hanford regarding a potential cool down.

Stay tuned!

[end of update]


23-Jul-2012 2:41 PM

Station Hardware Upgrade On Schedule for 07/24/12 - Possible Thunderstorms This Evening

UPDATE:

The new VP2 6163 ISS is still scheduled for delivery Tuesday afternoon. We will be taking the station offline soon thereafter in order to install the new ISS on the station mast.

We do not anticipate any difficulties going forward and hope to have the new system up and running no later than the early evening of the 24th. We will post another journal update when the new station hardware has fully stabilized to the current weather conditions and then made fully operational.

As promised, we will also be including a few photos of the new hardware installation in our next update.

(Please refer to our previous journal posting for more details on this important hardware upgrade!)

The latest from Hanford on probability of isolated evening thunderstorms for our area...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
145 PM PDT Monday Jul 23 2012



Synopsis...
clear skies and warmer temperatures are expected through most of
this week with the possible exception of a slight cool down middle
week...then continued warm up the rest of this week.


Discussion...
thunderstorms continue to develop over the higher elevations of the
southern Sierra Nevada this afternoon...but have not yet become as
widespread as the model instability parameters suggested for midday.
The upper-level low over the northern San Francisco Bay area is
forecast to lift northeast and ride over the upper-level ridge...
allowing the ridge to build westward over California. This will turn
the flow aloft more southwesterly and end the threat of thunderstorms
over the southern Sierra Nevada. Per collaboration with weather forecast office Las Vegas
have lowered probability of precipitation over the southern Sierra Nevada for Tuesday...but
have kept some afternoon and evening clouds over the crest.


At 20z /1300 PDT/...temperatures in the central and southern San
Joaquin Valley were in the middle 90s and continued to be mostly within
a degree or two of persistence. High temperatures for today continue
to look on track to reach triple digits across most of the central
and southern San Joaquin Valley.


One more day of triple-digit heat before the next trough approaches
the Pacific northwest and the California coast. This trough is
forecast by the models to weaken the ridge a bit...allowing
temperatures to cool to near normal Wednesday...and to slightly
below for the latter part of the week. A short-wave drops into the
trough Friday...deepening it and turning the surface flow onshore.
This will allow marine air to spill into the San Joaquin Valley and
lower temperatures to a few degrees below normal for the weekend.

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

Stay tuned, and thanks for your continued patience and support! :o)

[]Rick - Station Operator

[end of update]


19-Jul-2012 9:26 PM

Station Hardware Upgrade Announcement!
Station Will Be Offline for 1-2 Hours for New ISS Installation the Afternoon of 07/24/12


Upgrade Details...

Over the last several weeks we have been having intermittent problems with the circulation fan in our Daytime Fan Aspirated Radiation Shield (aka "FARS") on our station's weather sensor array (ISS). This solar powered fan moves air through the radiation shield which houses our temp and humidity sensors in order to provide the most accurate Temperature and Humidity/Dewpoint readings during the day. If the fan stops running during the day, the temp and humidity readings can rise several degrees above normal and provide inaccurate results. This add-on unit was installed back in February of 2009 and has been running without a problem until this recent problem began. Over the last several days, the problem has grown more dire as the fan has not been spinning up at sunrise like it should, forcing us to literally rap on the side of the ISS housing several times to get the fan to spin up. Once it starts running it works fine, but this is obviously not an acceptable situation and it is only a matter of time before the fan fails completely.

The Solution...

After weighing all the options, as well as the age of our current UV and Solar sensors which begin to drift out of spec after about 3 years of exposure to the elements, we determined that it made the most economical sense to replace our existing VP2 ISS unit with Davis Instruments' Flagship VP2 model 6163.

In addition to everything our current VP2 ISS offers, this top of the line version comes with a factory installed 24 hour FARS system that runs continuously both day and night. This patented air circulation system is only available as a factory installed option and can not be added to an existing VP2 ISS. This is what makes the 6163 such a sought after model. For us serious weather station operators, the 6163 is as good as it gets for achieving the highest weather data accuracy possible!

How the Davis 24 Hour FARS System works...

During the day the air circulation system is powered by a solar panel just like our current Daytime only FARS system, but at night or on cloudy or partly cloudy days the system switches to battery power in order to keep the fan running continuously regardless of the time of day and/or solar radiation levels. The end result is a noticeable 25% increase in overall temp/humidity/dewpoint accuracy because the circulation fan will continue to push fresh air through the sensor array at all times, and not just when the solar panel is receiving enough energy from the sun to power the system.

This dual mode operation is especially useful during the late summer months of August and September when we can have those hot muggy days with enough overcast to prevent a solar power only system from running when it is needed most!

We are posting all this information in the journal because the new 6163 system arrives on Tuesday the 24th and we will need to take the station offline for 1-2 hours in order to swap out our existing ISS and replace it with the new one. Make a note of the time stamp at the top of our home page in order to determine if the station is offline or not. When online the station updates our website roughly every two minutes. We anticipate that the new system will arrive by 2PM, with the installation, testing and sensor stabilization period completed no later than 5PM that evening.

Once the new ISS is installed, tested and allowed to stabilize, we will bring the station back online.

We will post another journal update when the upgrade has been completed along with a few photos of the new ISS installation! If we encounter any problems during the process we will let you know, however we fully expect the upgrade to go smoothly.

We trust that our loyal weather geeks out there will appreciate our decision and continued dedication to providing the Bass Lake area with the most accurate weather data possible!

Stay tuned, and thanks for your patience and support! :o)

[]Rick - Station Operator

[end of update]


16-Jul-2012 1:50 PM

Continued Below Normal Temps This Week - Slight Chance of Isolated Thunderstorms

The latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
120 PM PDT Monday Jul 16 2012



Synopsis...
low pressure off the West Coast will dominate keeping mostly clear
skies and below normal temperatures through Thursday. By Thursday
some moisture will return and bring a few high clouds to the area
along with an increase in the chance of afternoon thunderstorms to
the Sierra crest. Temperatures will return to slightly above normal
beginning Friday.


Discussion...
upper trough of low pressure over the northwest Pacific coast is prognosticated to
move to the northern California coast as the through swings through the central
California interior tonight and cool the region down on Tuesday and
continue into Wednesday. No precipitation is expected with the system as the
trough is dry and cool. Temperatures are running 0 to 3 degrees
down from yesterday in the sjv. More significant cooling is
expected overnight and into Tuesday.


Digging epac trough has reached as far south as 25n on WV imagery.
This ties in nicely with the forecast track of Fabio. The hurricane
center is quickly weakening it by the time it gets to 26n and 120w
on Wednesday night. Both the ecm and the GFS are bringing up plenty of
middle and high level moisture associated with the remnants of Fabio
into central California. What exactly happens to the moisture is yet to be
determined as far as precipitation GOES. One thing is for sure
we will see plenty of cloud cover Thursday and Thursday night. I
have adjusted temperatures down and bump up probability of precipitation ever so slightly.


The remnants are quick to the exit the region as a large scale
upper ridge of high pressure parked over the Central Plains will
keep southeast flow over the area and the continuing slight chance of
afternoon and evening thunderstorms across the Sierra and Kern
Mountains.


An additional feature we will monitoring is an easterly wave that
is currently over central Texas at this time and will move west across northern
Mexico and into Southern California by Sunday evening and increase the chances
of precipitation on Monday as the low moves northwest into Southern California. We
have bumped up probability of precipitation and lowered temperatures early next week with
regards to the system.

[end of update]



12-Jul-2012 11:43 PM

Monsoonal Moisture Arrives Bringing a Slight Cool Down But VERY HUMID Conditions

As you may have noticed over the last two days, the humidity levels have risen sharply along with the arrival of high cirrus clouds. This is the northern edge of the monsoonal moisture that has been bringing moist and very unsettled weather to all points south. While it isn't looking likely at this point that thunder storm activity will extend as far north as Bass Lake, we will be feeling the effects in the form of hot and "sticky" conditions heading into the weekend.

This low pressure flow will be lowering our temps back down to more seasonable norms by Sunday, but we can expect the uncomfortable humidity to linger well into the middle of next week. July is one of the hottest months of the year, so seasonable temps are still going to be in the high 80s to the low 90s.

Fire danger remains HIGH to EXTREME for the Southern Sierra through the period with the potential for dry lightning strikes if we do see the arrival of any unstable weather between now and Wednesday. Be sure to report any observed strikes or unusual smoke plumes to 911 immediately! Burn bans are in effect for all of Madera County, so any smoke should be reported regardless of their cause or origin.

Better to be safe than sorry!

The latest from Hanford

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1032 PM PDT Thursday Jul 12 2012



Synopsis...
monsoonal moisture will continue to bring partly to mostly cloudy
conditions over the San Joaquin Valley through Friday. There will
also be a continued chance of thunderstorms for the Sierra Nevada
crest areas and the Kern mountain and desert areas through Saturday.
Temperatures will continue the downward trend through the weekend. A
drier westerly to southwesterly flow aloft will develop early Sunday
and will push most thunderstorm activity east of the region. This
flow will also bring near normal temperatures Sunday through the
middle of next week.

Update...
a hot and humid day across much of the area. Fresno reported a
high temperature of 108 just one degree shy of the record.
Weather radars showed bands of light rain moving through the Kern
County desert and mountains. However the precipitation was mainly
aloft as no rainfall has been reported. A stronger thunderstorm
occurred just southeast of Florence Lake in the Sierra portion of Fresno
County. Otherwise the stronger storms remained east of the Sierra.


Water vapor images show an upper disturbance over scal with a
significant surge in monsoon moisture towards central California.
Concerned the disturbance will push further northwest tonight. This will
place the Kern County area in the favorable area of lift for a
continue threat of night time elevated convection. Model cross
sections indicated an increase in upper level moisture tonight
with the middle levels remaining dry until Friday morning. The low
may stall south of Kern County Friday. Weak winds aloft will
result in slow moving thunderstorms with the potential for flash
flooding especially in the Kern County desert. Forecast was
updated for a red flag extension and a Flash Flood Watch Friday in
the Kern County desert.


Early discussion [309 pm]...
monsoonal moisture continues to stream into eastern California this
afternoon...spreading high level clouds into the Hanford forecast
area. Where the cloud cover is thickest...in the Kern County
desert...temperatures are 8 to 14 degrees cooler than yesterdays
at this time. In the valley...muggy conditions prevail with temperatures
running near or a few degrees cooler than 24 hours ago. As the
moisture continues to move into the area overnight...scattered
thunderstorms are expected by Friday morning in the Kern desert
and along the southern Sierra crest by Friday afternoon. A weak
upper level trough will push into northern California Friday night...and deepen
over northern California over the weekend. This will allow dryer air to settle
over the valley and help temperatures drop closer to seasonal
normals by Monday lasting through next week.

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

We recommend using our Wide Angle Precipitation Map or the NextRad Radar screens on our home page for the latest real time tracking of any potential thunder storms in the area. We will update this journal if we receive any late breaking information on any wildfire or thunder storm threats to the greater Bass Lake area.

[end of update]


11-Jul-2012 9:11 AM


Cool Down Coming This Weekend - Slight Chance of Thunderstorms

Here is the latest from Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
236 am PDT Wednesday Jul 11 2012



Synopsis...
strong high pressure over central California will continue to
produce clear skies and triple digit high temperatures for the San
Joaquin Valley...lower foothills and the Kern desert through the
week. Afternoon thunderstorms are possible over the higher
elevations of the southern Sierra Nevada and Tehachapi Mountains
today through Friday...with a slight chance of thunderstorms over
the Kern County deserts.

Discussion...
large upper level ridge of high pressure will continue to dominate
the regions weather with near record temperatures and continued
very warm temperatures across central California interior.


Today and tomorrow will be the warmest days this week. We are also
expecting a threat of thunderstorms along the Sierra mountains and
Kern County mountains and desert regions. A weakness in the ridge
will develop late Thursday and continue to intensify into a closed
upper low center off the central California coast and break the ridge down
through the weekend with near normal temperatures and drier
conditions across the Sierra into early next week.

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

[end of update]


06-Jul-2012 1:06 PM

Major Warm Up Coming This Weekend - New NWS Forecast Page Roll Out Complete!

The latest from Hanford is indicating that things will be heating up significantly around here starting today and continuing through the next 7 days. This of course will build upon the already Rising Fire Risk for our area and previous indications of monsoonal moisture impacting the area's 7-day forecast has been reduced significantly. However, there is still a chance that we will see some thunder storm activity in parts of the Southern Sierra during this same period.

The Latest from Hanford

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
857 am PDT Friday Jul 6 2012



Synopsis...
a strong upper level high pressure will build over the western
states this weekend. Daytime temperatures will climb into the
triple digits across the region.


Discussion...
forecast looks on track for the coming weekend. Operational and
ensemble mass fields clearly point to a warming trend this weekend
which we/ve been watching for several days now. Our focus is on
convective potential through the next seven days and just how hot
it will get next week. Will be waiting for the full 12z suite of
data to come in through the morning before making any significant
changes. Cursory glance of the 06.00z and 06.06z data suggest a
continued trend of lower precipitation chances and increasing
temperatures next week. Most models are showing 850mb temperatures near
27c by the middle of next week which would mean highs approaching
110f for the sjv. Previous shift noted differences between the GFS
and European model (ecmwf)...will see how the 06.12z data come out.

Previous discussion... /issued 210 am PDT Friday Jul 6 2012/

Satellite loops show little change in the upper-level pattern this
morning...with the central California interior under a south to
southwest flow aloft. 500-mb heights have risen a bit as the upper-
level trough digs south along 129w...and this has flattened the
marine layer. At 0734z /0034 PDT/ this morning...the marine layer
at Fort Ord had lowered to a depth of around 1300 feet...about half
the depth 24 hours earlier.


Beginning today...the models have a warming trend at 850 mb
through the weekend and into the first part of next week. The
models are in agreement with a slower building of the upper-level
ridge into Southern California today...with the 5880-meter height
line running from Los Angeles to Kings Canyon by 00z Saturday. The
ridge is forecast to continue to build westward Saturday...with
the 500-mb 5880-meter height line from Point Conception to
Yosemite by 12z Saturday. This is 12 hours later than the 05/00z
runs had forecast.


The GFS and UKMET push the 500-mb 5880-meter line north of the
Hanford warning/forecast area by 00z Sunday /1700 PDT Saturday/
although the European model (ecmwf) has the line over Merced County at that time.


For Sunday...there are differences in the strength of the ridge over
California...with the NAM-12 having the highest 500-mb heights over
the region and the European model (ecmwf)/UKMET having the lowest. All of the models
have the 500-mb 5880-meter height line north of the Hanford warning/
forecast area by 00z Monday.


The GFS continues to forecast the arrival of monsoonal moisture
into eastern Kern County next Monday. For this reason...and the
convective activity that developed on the fourth...am reluctant to
remove the slight chance probability of precipitation from the mountains and deserts at
this time.


The European model (ecmwf) continues to warm 850-mb temperatures through next Friday
while the GFS begins a modest cooling after Wednesday. Have gone
with a couple of degrees cooling Thursday and next Friday...but it
must be noted that the GFS guidance has a tendency to go toward
climatology at the end of the run and therefore any cooling might be
overdone. Still...central and southern San Joaquin Valley highs
will be in the triple digits beginning this weekend and continuing
through at least much of next week.


Note...Sunday...July 8th...is the anniversary of the hottest day
ever recorded in Fresno...115 degrees in 1905.

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

National Weather Service Rolls Out Brand New Forecast Website!

After several months of beta testing, the NWS has finally rolled out their brand new Official National Weather Service Forecast Site!

As the official NWS reporting station for the Bass Lake area, our station data is what you will see presented to you on this site when entering either our zip code or Bass Lake Ca.

We have found a few remaining issues with missing links for the 3-day forecast history as well as some other back end issues which we have reported, but overall the new design is working well, and our station data is being pulled from MesoWest every 15 to 20 minutes. This link is always available off our home page as the top right link (Current Forecast) on the top gray nav bar.

Of course, for the most current Bass Lake area weather data, our own website or our Weather Underground Rapid Fire Weather Page is still your best source for the latest numbers from Station D2149.

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

We will keep an eye on the forecast models and if we see any changes to the forecast that could impact our area we will update the journal accordingly. The most likely changes could be the addition of thunderstorm potential if the southern monsoonal moisture flow advances further north than is currently being projected.

[end of update]


04-Jul-2012 10:04 AM

HAPPY 4th of JULY!

Hope everyone has a safe and sane 4th today!

The fire danger is HIGH and trending towards EXTREME based on the continuing hot and dry conditions. Extra precautions should be taken with any open fires, even in local camp grounds, and fireworks should NOT be discharged under any circumstances in any of the local forested areas.

The lack of normal rainfall this past winter has made conditions ripe for major wildfire outbreaks, so PLEASE use caution when dealing with any open flames outdoors.

Extended forecast calls for continued hot and dry conditions through the weekend, with a possible slight cool down by the end of next week.

[end of update]


03-Jun-2012 8:45 PM

Another Major Temperature Drop Coming Tonight through Tuesday
Slight chance of precipitation with this unseasonably cold low pressure system

This system will be moving into our area beginning on Monday and will spread clouds and potential precipitation through our area through Tuesday night. Temps are expected to drop by as much as 20 degrees from the previous levels we have been seeing over the last 7 days.

The Latest from Hanford

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
843 PM PDT sun Jun 3 2012



Synopsis...
high pressure continues to keep skies mostly clear with higher than
normal temperatures. A cool down will take place beginning Monday
when an unseasonably cold storm system enters the region.


Discussion...
ridge of high pressure continues to move slowly east
this evening across southeast California as a very impressive low
pressure system pushes into the Pacific northwest. The central
California interior lies in between with mainly clear skies. For
tonight the weather will remain quiet however on Monday as the
Pacific low moves towards northern California winds will be on the
increase and latest data suggests that Wind Advisory level winds
will be realized even in the San Joaquin Valley as surface
pressure gradients tighten and ample jet stream energy dives into
the region. Over the Kern County mountains and desert areas, wind
advisories will likely be needed and even some local wind prone
areas may have wind gusts easily exceed 60 miles per hour. Midnight shift
will need to evaluate as to which products will need issuing.


As for the the chances of very late season precipitation, the
certainty of a light rain event for areas from Fresno north is
increasing as yet another model run of the NAM model shows 0.03"
at Fresno and 0.10" at Merced. Timing of this precipitation looks
to be after 200 PM with the end by 800 PM. For the mountains
Yosemite could get up to 0.50" of rain with up to a few inches of
snow possible above 10000 feet. Any snow will be short lived and
advisories may or may not be needed.


Tuesday looks like a very cool day over the forecast area with
warming setting in on Wednesday.

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

We will update the journal again if we see any significant weather events in the area including precipitation and possible localized Thunder Storm activity.

[end of update]



22-May-2012 8:06 PM

Possible Thunder Storms on Friday! - Significant Temperature Drop Coming As Well!

The latest from Hanford is that this low coming down out of Alaska is going to drop our temps pretty dramatically (10-15 degrees F from today's high and low) while also bring us a slight chance of some precipitation.

Right now they are only giving us 30%, but I thought that this potential at this point in the season was notable enough to mention.

We will keep an eye on the local data and will post another update either Thursday night or Friday morning regarding any changes to the above forecast.

Stay tuned!

[end of update]


13-May-2012 6:18 PM

Fire Weather Alert System Activated

Just wanted to let everyone know that we have activated our Fire Weather Alert System and accompanying Fire Weather Alerts page. Now our users can check the latest fire danger status in real time time based on the current conglomerated weather data coming in to the weather station hardware.

You can view the Fire Weather page HERE

[end of update]


28-Apr-2012 9:30 AM

HAPPY SUMMER! - OUR LAST WEATHER FORECAST ENTRY OF THE SEASON

As the winter weather pattern winds down and we head into the not so interesting summer months, we wanted to post one last entry for the season.

While we fell far short of an average rainfall year this time around, we did manage to pick up close to 23 inches total, and the fact that much of that came in recently helps to offset the overall deficit in our rainfall for this season.

The weather patterns will be evolving into the stable summer pattern which means that we will not have much to report on for the next 3-4 months. As such, this will likely be our last weather related update for a while.

Our website will continue to provide you with the most current and accurate local weather data possible. We just won't be updating this journal very much until fall arrives and the wet weather patterns hopefully return.

Of course, if we have a local wildfire or a rash of very high UV days, we will update the journal accordingly. The 2012 Fire Season is scheduled to begin in early May, so our next post will be to announce that. We will activate our Fire Weather warning page at that time.

So... Enjoy the spring/summer and stay tuned to BASSLAKE-WEATHER.COM for the most accurate Bass Lake Ca. weather information on the web!


[end of update]



26-Apr-2012 9:25 AM

Nice Precipitation Totals, But Much Below Expectations

These two low pressure storm systems have been moving through our area over the last 12 hours. Unfortunately, precipitation totals have fallen far short of what we had been expecting and hoping for. While we are happy for whatever additional precipitation we can pick up before the season ends on June 30th, this event was a bit of a let down. Our current storm total is 0.68 inches.

The latest Next Rad and IR SAT images show that both systems are rapidly exiting our area and precipitation will end for the most part over the next 1-3 hours. On the upside, there is enough instability remaining in the atmosphere to encourage some additional upslope precipitation for our area.

So far, we are not seeing any of that upslope as the last cell of precipitation moves east of the station.

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
900 am PDT Thursday Apr 26 2012


Synopsis...
an area of low pressure will continue to exit the
region today and as it does will continue producing scattered
showers in the area. Any remaining precipitation amounts are
expected to remain light. High pressure will return this weekend
bringing dry conditions and near normal temperatures.

Discussion...
the low pressure system that was responsible for the
precipitation across our area yesterday and overnight and the late
evening T-storms across the southern portions of our area late
last evening...is now centered over socal near the inland Empire
area and moving east. However...some residual moisture from this
system along with some instability over the southern Sierra Nevada
mountains and foothills has kept showers going across these areas
this morning. Meanwhile...infrared is indicating another low pressure
system centered off the Washington coast near 47n/131w which is moving
east and pushing an upper trough inland iver the Pacific northwest and
norcal. 12z WRF indicating an associated cold front with this
colder system will cross central California later today and keep a chance
of showers across our area through late this afternoon. Mesowest
observations are indicating snow levels are currently running
around 9000 feet but will lower to around 7000 feet behind the
cold front. The main impact that this incoming system will have
however...is it will bring an increase in surface p-grads and
provide for a brief period of windy conditions across the Kern
County mountains and deserts later today. The previous shift
issued a Wind Advisory for these areas for this afternoon and
evening and at this time it looks to be on track. Meanwhile... the
residual moisture from yesterday/S storm and the incoming system will
keep our area under mostly cloudy to cloudy skies today which will
inhibit much in the way if daytime warming from taking place and
result in afternoon temperatures being well below seasonal normals
across our area today. The current forecast for today looks to be
on track so am not planning any updates this morning.


The 12z WRF and prior GFS runs are indicating the trough moving
across the Pacific northwest tonight then remaining quasi-stationary over the
northern rockies Friday and Saturday as it runs into a blocking
ridge ahead of it. Meanwhile...an upper ridge will amplify off
the California coast resulting in a cool a dry northwest flow over central
California. This will keep our area dry Friday through the weekend with
rising heights and thicknesses resulting in a slow warming trend.
Temperatures will approach seasonal normals by Saturday and rise
to slightly above normal on Sunday.


The medium range models are indicating some dampening in the upper
flow early next week as the offshore ridge flattens and a dry
westerly flow becomes established over central California. This will
keep dry conditions and temperatures slightly above seasonal
normals for the first week of may.

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

[end of update]



24-Apr-2012 7:21 PM

Server Move Complete! - Rain on the Way!

After several hours of being totally off the internet today, we are pleased to announce that BASSLAKE-WEATHER.COM is back up and running and now free from that annoying image update issue that forced this latest move in the first place! Lets hope that this spells the end to the problems so that we can focus on our local weather!

Speaking of the weather...

The latest model runs are looking rather interesting tonight. This low pressure storm system has split into two distinct pieces, and both will be grazing the Bass Lake area as they move east. The southern fragment will arrive first, but not before pushing through Southern California with some pretty respectable precipitation totals down there! They can use all they can get heading into the hot summer!

This southern portion is what we will see Wednesday afternoon and into Wednesday night. We may see as much as 0.75 worth or more from this piece.

The northern portion will move into Northern California tomorrow night and then proceed to move south east and over our area on Thursday bringing another round of precipitation to our area. Totals may not be as high as the southern piece, but we may pick up another 0.50 inches from this second system.

Latest IR SAT Image

Weather Image

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
238 PM PDT Tuesday Apr 24 2012


Synopsis...
temperatures will remain cool as low pressure approaches the region.
Rain and higher elevation snow are expected Wednesday and
Thursday...rainfall amounts will likely remain relatively light in
the lower elevations. High pressure will return by this weekend and
bring dry conditions and gradual warming.

Discussion...
satellite imagery shows much of the lower stratus
clouds have eroded with daytime heating however the influx of middle
and high clouds from the southwest continues. Meanwhile out along
130w the nearly stationary Pacific low has split as jet stream
energy races up the east side of the southern low. Forecast
models are consistent in accelerating eastward the southern low
with a landfall in southwest California or northern Baja California Wednesday
afternoon and evening. This trajectory will concentrate the best
threat of heavier precipitation over the south however given the
ample subtropical feed, much of central California will see some
light precipitation. Morning freezing level on the Vandenberg
sounding was 12600 feet thus snow will not be an issue with this
system. Since this is a splitting system, the northern branch has
to go somewhere and forecast models bring the associated trough
across northern California Thursday. This will give the Sierra the
best chance of rain and higher elevation snow (snow levels as low
as 7000 feet due to the lack of warmer tropical air entrainment in
the northern branch). Quantitative precipitation forecast for the 48 hour period suggests up to
0.25" in the San Joaquin Valley with higher amounts up to 0.75" in
the Sierra mainly in rain. Probability of precipitation will be increased today to near
100% however it should be well noted that this will not be a big
precipitation producer.


For the upcoming weekend, forecast models are in good agreement in
building a low amplitude ridge over the weekend and then by Sunday
night and Monday, dropping a baggy trough southwest into
California. By Tuesday and Wednesday the trough is then projected
to develop into a weak area of low pressure situated well
southwest of San Diego. Over the northern U.S. The storm track
will remain with the central California interior having dry weather.

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

[end of update]



24-Apr-2012 6:40 AM

Rain Back in Forecast - Website Move Still Ongoing

Hanford has changed the forecast once again this morning bringing a chance of rain back into our local forecast later this week. However, the low pressure system has indeed split into two pieces with one heading south of us and the other heading to the north of us. Whether we get some precipitation in between these two systems remains to be seen.

If the rain does arrive, it will begin Wednesday night and continue through Thursday, with gradual clearing on Friday. After this system moves out, we will see a return to warm seasonal temps and sky conditions. This will likely be the last pacific storm system we will see for the season.

Server Migration Still Ongoing

Our account has been moved to the new server but we are still waiting for the DNS servers across the world to update with the new server location. In the meantime, we have switched the station uploads back to the old server since it is still being pointed to by the majority of the DNS servers out there. Once we see a significant update to the DNS servers, we will switch our uploads back to the new server and hopefully everyone will be able to access our website off the new server. As of this report, only a handful of DNS servers have received the updated server IP info from our hosting provider.

Users should see a relatively seamless transition going forward, with only modest hiccups to our automated website updates. If you see the home page come up with a time-stamp of around 6AM this morning, that would indicate that you are being directed to the new server which we have yet to resume updating to. As soon as we start seeing this here at the station, we will switch the automation over to the new server and the migration will be officially complete. :o)

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
247 am PDT Tuesday Apr 24 2012


Synopsis...
a cooling trend has begun as the high pressure weakens and shifts
east. There is a slight chance of afternoon thunderstorms along
the Sierra crest today. A chance of precipitation Wednesday and
Thursday as low pressure moves in.

Discussion...
Noticeable cool down yesterday as marine air intrusion finally made
into the sjv by midday and temperatures leveled out. I was bit
concerned...but it all worked out OK. Temperatures will drop a few more
degrees today as a closed low pressure center off the central California
coast will begin to make its impact felt over the central California
interior. Models continue to track this low center over Southern California
with the heaviest precipitation expected near the center of the
low. This low center will have more of an impact over Kern County
on Wednesday afternoon and night as it moves through. Locally heavy
rain along south facing slopes of the Tehachapi Mountains is
possible with even a rumble of thunder or two Wednesday night. Showers
across the Kern desert will be widespread as the low moves by.
Showers will be only scattered across the sjv and precipitation will be
generally light.


Another low center over the Gulf of Alaska will swing a trough
through on Thursday as it move inland into the Pacific northwest. This could
kick off a few showers on Thursday as it moves through. Northwest flow
with cooler temperatures and drying conditions are expected behind the
trough. A Rex blocking pattern sets up over western Canada and the
low center remains stationary over the Great Basin and continues
to provide northwest flow over the region through the weekend with
seasonal temperatures and dry conditions through the weekend. A baggy
trough will remain over the region through early next week and
keep temperatures in check as heights will remain relatively low through
Tuesday. Forecast confidence is moderate with the forecast at this time.

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

[end of update]



23-Apr-2012 6:48 AM

Server Move Still Ongoing - Rain Chances Diminishing for Our Area

We are still waiting for our account to be moved to the new server, so the outage we announced yesterday is still likely to occur at some point within the next 12 hours or so. The web site will likely be down and unavailable during the switch and it may take up to 12 hours before you will be able to access it normally. We do not have an exact time, so just be prepared for this at some point in the future.

Rain Chances Looking Less Likely

We had been holding off calling the rain event for later in the week because the models were all over the place with the quantitative precipitation and overall chances. The latest forecast discussion from Hanford appears to be pulling back significantly on previous forecasts for some significant rain for the Southern Sierra.

One thing is clear however, we will be seeing a very noticeable cool down beginning today (Monday) as the warm high pressure system moves east and is replaced by much cooler air from the coast through the week. Another warmup is forecast for the weekend. The rain event is still a possibility, but don't be surprised if we end up not seeing anything measurable here at the station.

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
349 am PDT Monday Apr 23 2012



Synopsis...
a cooling trend is expected today as high pressure begins to
weaken and shift east. Dry conditions will prevail over the region
early in the week...except for a slight chance of thunderstorms
along the Sierra crest and coastal range mountains.


Discussion...


Temperatures are only down a few degrees at this time across the sjv...not seeing
the major cool down as previously thought in the sjv yet. Have
bumped up temperatures for today into the middle to upper 80s. MOS guidance
does indicate there will be a major cool down today...but mainly
across the northern sjv. South Valley may be almost as warm as
yesterday...depending how far south the marine air intrusion
pushes south. Will remain optimistic for a cool down and see what
happens. Have introduced thunder along the west side coastal range
as a couple of very large cells popped up near Santa Rita Peak
yesterday. There was also a thunderstorm that developed along the
crest as well...so kept in thunder along the crest.


The models have all changed their tune about a significant weather
maker moving into the central California interior on Wednesday PM and Thursday.
The NAM and GFS and Euro are all advertising a split flow now and
diving the closed low well south of the area on Wednesday. This would
leave the forecast area north of Kings and Tulare County pretty
high and dry...except of only a few isolated showers. However the
chances for precipitation would increase over the Kern County
mountains and desert areas on Wednesday PM and into Thursday am. The NAM
is indicating a secondary shortwave to move across the northern sjv and
into the Sierra early Thursday am. So we may see some quantitative precipitation forecast across mce
and Mae...but may not make it as far south as Fresno. Did not
make any major changes to forecast due to uncertainty.


Once the trough moves by Thursday PM northwest flow will bring in drier and
somewhat cooler air but a ridge of high pressure will gradually
build into the area by the weekend with temperatures once again
rising to above normal.


Confidence is very low with this forecast due to models changing.

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

[end of update]



22-Apr-2012 7:58 AM

Impending Website Downtime for Server Migration

We recently had our website account moved to a new server to resolve a problem with connectivity. Unfortunately, this new server is equipped with streamlining features that are wreaking havoc with our webcam and other constantly updated weather graphic images. You may have noticed that the webcam images and other data graphics were not current unless you refreshed the page manually.

This is the problem and the reason that our site account must be moved off of this server and onto another server that doesn't run this software that attempts to economize on downloads to users.

The site may be down for up to 24 hours during the migration but the weather station itself will remain fully operational the entire time.

We suggest that if you are unable to load this website later today and into Monday, that you access our Weather Underground Page instead. This and all other third-party reporting sites will not be affected during this server migration. Only our own website at basslake-weather.com will be effected.

We apologize for any inconvenience this outage may cause our loyal userbase.

Station Maintenance Note: Rain Bucket Heater Swap

The heater equipped rain bucket has been removed and replaced with the stock, non-heater equipped bucket for the summer season.

[end of update]



20-Apr-2012 6:22 PM

High Temps Continue - NOAA Announces La Nina Ending!

The weather disturbance for early next week that we mentioned in our last update appears to be waffling. The NWS was pulling back on this pattern change for mid week next week, but the latest models are now indicating a chance of precipitation returning in the latest runs beginning around Wednesday. We will have to wait and see if we get any additional precipitation before the season ends on June 30th.

NOAA posted an interesting article today about the apparent end of La Nina in the pacific ocean by May. We encourage you to check it out when you get a chance.

[end of update]


16-Apr-2012 7:29 AM

Highs in the 80s By Friday - Wet Weather May Return Next Week!

High pressure has settled into the Bass Lake area and will result in summer like temps by the end of this week. The medium range forecasts however are indicating that this summer like pattern may be replaced by another round of wet weather by next Tuesday.

While we are very near the end of the official wet season, there is always a chance of a few more storm systems between now and June. We will be closely following the models and will update this journal again later in the week as we get closer to the possible pattern change.

[end of update]


14-Apr-2012 7:55 AM

Storm Moves Out - Fair Weather for Extended Forecast

The last remnants of Friday's storm system are all but gone this morning, leaving behind a very frigid morning low of 33.9 F. When all was said and done the station measured nearly 6 inches of snow on the ground, and an impressive storm total of 3.10 inches of total precipitation.

The storm track is shifting to the north once again, with a ridge of high pressure now building into the area for the bulk of the coming week and through next weekend. There are currently no additional storm systems on the horizon, so we may be looking at the official end of the 2012 wet season soon. Our seasonal rainfall total now stands at 21.53 inches which is just under 50% of our average for this date in the season.

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
512 am PDT Sat Apr 14 2012



Synopsis...
the storm system that brought rain and snow showers to the central
California interior has begun to exit the area. There remains
some residual valley showers and scattered mountain snow through
this morning. High pressure ridging is forecast to move in today
bringing a warming trend into the weekend.


Discussion...
satellite pictures show the upper low center moving into
northwest Arizona. A westward extension of the trough will continue to bring scattered
showers this morning with weak cyclonic curvature lingering over
California. Upslope precipitation in the Kern County mountains still bringing some
locally heavy snow. With snow down at pass levels...extended the
Winter Storm Warning until 9am. Most winds in the desert have
subsided so allowed Wind Advisory to expire...although there could
still be a few gusts below passes.


Ridging will build over the West Coast tonite and sun. This will
bring a warming trend that will continue into middle week. The ridge will
flatten out Monday as a series of shortwave troughs move across the Pacific
northwest. Warming temperatures may slow or halt Tuesday and Wednesday with shortwaves.
Both GFS and the European model (ecmwf) resume the warmup next Friday and continue into
the weekend. Could be a warm weekend too as models show 850 mb
temperatures rise to 18 degs/c.

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

This will be our last journal forecast update for the time being, since the weather will be turning fair with little to no weather points of interest to report on. If we start seeing any potential for another round of wet weather, we will of course update at that time.

Stay tuned to our home page for all the latest real-time weather data updates as they come in!

[end of update]


13-Apr-2012 8:16 AM

Impressive Snowfall As Strong Pacific Storm Moves In!

The station has recorded 0.82 inches of water equivalent since this impressive pacific storm began effecting our region earlier this morning. The precipitation has been falling as snow since the initial onset earlier with over 2 inches of accumulation so far. Some strong Thunderstorm cells moved through in the wee hours ahead of the main system, bringing lighting, thunder with periods of heavy rain and hail to the area.

We can expect the precipitation to continue for several more hours, with upslope generated precipitation and possible thunderstorms through tonight and into Saturday morning.

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
442 am PDT Friday Apr 13 2012



Synopsis...
showers and mountain snow expected today with an additional chance
of valley and foothill thunderstorms...occasionally severe. The
system creating the areas severe weather is forecast to move out by
late tonight.


Discussion...
an approaching frontal system continues to push into the
California coast this morning and the precipitation area in
advance of the incoming front has filled in across much of the
central California interior during the overnight hours. This cold
unstable system will be accompanied by a significant upper level
jet maximum and is expected to trigger another round of possibly
strong convective activity across our area today...accompanied by
some more small and even some not so small hail. The currently
occurring showers have already been producing occasional lightning
strikes overnight. The forecast for a cool...wet and stormy Friday
the 13th across our area is on track...with significant snowfall
accumulations in the higher elevations,,,and even a couple of
inches possible at pass levels in Kern County by tonight into
Saturday as snow levels drop a bit below 4000 feet. Winter storm
warnings remain in effect for the mountains...as well as a Wind
Advisory for the deserts...as the storm system blows through today
and tonight.


By Saturday...as the system pulls out of the area...dryer conditions
will set in with just some lingering mountain showers. Temperatures
will begin a warming trend...recovering to around 10 degrees below
climatology tomorrow...after topping out as much as 15-20 degrees below
normal today. The dry and warming trend will continue through early
next week as high pressure builds into the region. Temperatures
will be back to seasonal averages by Monday and will remain near
normal through the end of the week.

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

[end of update]


12-Apr-2012 6:45 AM

STORM UPDATE:
Another Significant Rain Band Heading Our Way!


Despite local news forecasts for a dry day today, the latest radar paints a very different story. We are tracking a rather large and intense band of precipitation moving in off the coast as of this report with expected arrival over our area within the next two hours.

Check the radar image from a few minutes ago:

Weather Image

Unless this rain band falls apart as it hits the Sierra range, we can expect some moderate to heavy rain and snow from this band within the next two hours.

We will update the journal again later with a more extensive forecast regarding additional stormy and wet conditions for later tonight and through early Saturday.

[end of update]


11-Apr-2012 9:53 AM

Respectable Rainfall Total with Rain Continuing Through Week

So far we have picked up an impressive 0.90 inches since the rainfall began just after midnight. The bulk of the precipitation band has already moved east and past the Bass Lake area, but upslope showers through the remainder of the day are not out of the question.

We will likely see a lull between systems late tonight and into the beginning of Thursday morning, but the next and more intense system is still forecast to bring us additional moderate to heavy precipitation late Thursday morning through Saturday. Snow levels with this next system are likely to drop low enough to bring us some accumulation here at the station during the next system.

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion...updated aviation
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
430 am PDT Wednesday Apr 11 2012



Synopsis...
a low pressure trough is expected to move through the region today
lifting out by tonight. Cold air behind this system with afternoon
heating may result in afternoon thunderstorms today. Yet another
system is expected to move into the area by Thursday night through
Saturday.


Discussion...
precipitation shield is now finally moving across
the San Joaquin Valley with the bulk of the radar echoes over Kern
County. Satellite and area radars show the main energy moving into
Ventura and Santa Barbara counties and the best lift is now
affecting the southern part of the forecast area, especially Kern
County. Thus far the snow levels have remained above 5500 feet.
Although this system was very sluggish in its initial eastward
movement, with the next very large low pressure system out near
150w gaining influence on the West Coast, the current trough is
beginning to accelerate east. By this afternoon forecast models
have the trough axis position well east into the Great Basin and
this should bring precipitation to a quick end this afternoon. A
break in the wet weather will occur overnight tonight however the
very impressive and deep Pacific low is prognosticated to quickly bring
its initial precipitation shield into the northwest coast Thursday
evening and then on Friday the center of the low is prognosticated to
move across central California. The prospects look very good for a
cold and unstable frontal passage with low snow levels and a risk
of thunderstorms in the San Joaquin Valley, foothills and Kern
County desert on Friday afternoon. The day shift will likely need
to issue watch products. On Saturday, good agreement exists
between the GFS and European model (ecmwf) models in ejecting the big low into the
Desert Southwest with drying weather for central California. A few
snow showers will linger in the Sierra but by late in the day all
precipitation should be over.


Of note, an unseasonably Cold Saturday night and Sunday morning is
likely in the wake of the low, and frost is certainly a
possibility. I have adjusted the low temperatures for Sunday
morning to reflect this thinking with lots of 34-37 degree lows on
the east side of the San Joaquin Valley. This situation will need
to be watched in case future model data suggests a freeze? We will
see.

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

[end of update]




09-Apr-2012 5:53 PM

A Very Active Weather Week Ahead! - Two Storms on Deck!

High clouds are now moving into the area at the time of this report. This is the fringe of the first of two low pressure systems that will be impacting the Bass Lake and Southern Sierra region beginning Tuesday and will continue to bring us stormy and unsettled conditions through at least Friday.

The first system is expected to be the warmer of the two with snow levels remaining above the 5000 foot level with moderate precipitation for our area through Wednesday night. The second system arriving on Thursday night will be much colder and may bring snow down to the Bass Lake elevation and will effect our area through at least Friday night.

Some models bring the second system in slower and predict it to linger longer thus staying over the area into part of Saturday. We will have to wait and see which model proves the most accurate as we get closer.

One thing is clear however... We will be picking up some additional and much needed precipitation from these two systems with the hope that this pattern change will continue to influence our local weather beyond the next 7 days.

Latest IR SAT Images

Weather Image

Weather Image"

The latest forecast discussion from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
334 PM PDT Monday Apr 9 2012



Synopsis...
middle and high clouds associated with a low pressure center located
off the California coast is advancing over the area. This system is
expected to move through the region on Tuesday and Wednesday...
producing light to moderate recitation over the area. Another...
colder...system is expected later in the week.

Discussion...
an active weather week is on tap as two winter-like storms are
headed for the central California interior. Ahead of these storms...
a warm and very dry airmass is in place over the Hanford warning/
forecast area. At 21z /1400 PDT/...relative humidities were in
single digits over parts of the Kern County mountains...especially
the piutes...where a red flag warning continues through 00z
Wednesday /1700 PDT Tuesday/.


Satellite loops show the upper-level low for the first storm near
42n/137w...west of the Oregon coast. This storm is forecast to reach
western Merced County by Tuesday afternoon...with precipitation
spreading south over the Hanford warning/forecast area Tuesday
night. Snow levels will start out above 7000 feet Tuesday afternoon..but
fall to around 5000 feet near Yosemite Wednesday and to around 5500
feet in the Tehachapi Mountains.


20z rfc quantitative precipitation forecast guidance for this storm is 1.10 inch for Yosemite
Valley...0.90 inch for Giant Forest and 0.46 inch for Fresno. These
values are only slightly below the 14z rfc quantitative precipitation forecast. Based on this
guidance...snow accumulations of around a foot are likely over the
high country of the southern Sierra Nevada. Have issued a Winter
Storm Watch /sfowswhnx or wwus46 khnx/ for the southern Sierra Nevada
from Yosemite to the Kern County line for Tuesday evening through
Wednesday evening.


The trough axis is forecast to move through the central California
interior between 18-24z /1100-1700 PDT/ Wednesday. A 500-mb cold pool
is forecast to move over the central San Joaquin Valley with
temperatures of -27c to -29c. By 18z Wednesday...surface-computed
convective available potential energy over the San Joaquin Valley are 300+ joules/kg with surface- computed lifted indices from 0 to -2. Boundary-layer positive
buoyancy energy is forecast to be 140+ joules/kg and boundary-layer
best lifted indices are around 0. The current forecast of a chance
of thunderstorms for the central/southern San Joaquin Valley and the
adjacent foothills looks on track.


The second of the two storms is south of the Aleutian Islands near
48n/173w. This storm is forecast to reach the northern part of the
Hanford warning/forecast area Thursday afternoon and spread south
Thursday night. This storm has the potential to be a colder and
wetter system than the midweek storm. 1000-500-mb thicknesses over
the Tehachapi Mountains are forecast to fall to 5400 meters by 12z
/0500 PDT/ Friday...which corresponds to a snow level around 4000
feet. The 18z GFS gives Frazier Park a quantitative precipitation forecast of 0.28 inch from this second storm...and 0.16 inch at Tehachapi. As the snow level is
below the high points of the Tejon and Tehachapi passes...one or two
inches of accumulating snow could fall on the major routes between
the San Joaquin Valley and the Southland.


The models build an upper-level ridge into California for the first
part of next week...with 500-mb heights of 5760 meters as far north
as at least Redding. This will bring a return of dry and warm weather
to the region.

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

We will be back with our next update once the first storm has arrived and we start seeing measurable precipitation. In the meantime, you can track the approaching precipitation yourself using our Wide-Angle Precipitation Map

[end of update]




07-Apr-2012 12:51 PM

Warmup Is Here! - Storm For Tuesday and Wednesday Looking Good!

The cold front that has brought us some truly frigid overnight lows over the last few days has moved out to be replaced with a ridge of high pressure. The ridge is doing a good job of warming things up, with our highs expected to be a good 15-20 degrees higher than our daytime highs of only a few days ago.

This strange weather of 2012 continues, and after this current ridge breaks down and moves east, we are tracking a VERY impressive pacific storm system that is currently spinning off the coast of Oregon as the following IR Sat images show...

Weather Image

Weather Image"

Here is the latest forecast info from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1023 am PDT Sat Apr 7 2012


Synopsis...
high pressure over the region will continue to bring mostly sunny
conditions and gradual warming to the area through early next
week. A system will move into the area on Tuesday and will bring
our next chance of precipitation.

Discussion...
our final morning temperature report isn't available yet but a
cursory view shows several East Valley spots fell below the 32
degree mark this morning for a few hours. However...temperatures will
rebound quickly today with very dry air in the low levels and some
downsloping from the Tehachapi Mountains into the South Valley.
The latest RUC sounding shows fairly robust downsloping at kbfl
today. Our current forecast already has a good handle on the maximum
temperature forecast so now changes expected this morning.


Our attention is focused on the upcoming storm systems later this
week. Both feature negatively tilted troughs although the first
storm...slated for Tuesday night into Wednesday...is filling in as it
approaches interior California. Will be considering our probability of precipitation and
timing for these storms along with the new model guidance.

Previous discussion... /issued 425 am PDT Sat Apr 7 2012/

Discussion...
temperatures this morning are generally running a degree or so
warmer than 24 hours ago...although some lingering dry and cool
air is allowing temperatures to drop close to freezing again
in some of the typically coldest valley locations. Despite the
cool start to the morning...building high pressure ahead of the
next developing Pacific low pressure system will allow for
significantly warmer conditions for the next few days. Afternoon
highs will warm to as much as 6-12 degrees above climatology through
Monday.


Models are fairly similar in swinging the next Pacific trough
inland beginning Tuesday...beginning a slight cooldown and
spreading precipitation chances across our area....mainly Tuesday
night and Wednesday. Moisture with this system is somewhat limited
and precipitation amounts are not expected to be very notable.
After a brief break Wednesday night into Thursday...models remain
in rather good agreement...pushing a more significant developing
system ashore and bringing cooler temperatures and better
precipitation amounts for the end of the week.

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

We also wanted to remind or visitors that the web site will be down for up to 6 hours between Sunday and Monday night as our site is moved to a new server. We can't give a specific time for the start and end of the migration, but it will take place between Sunday and Monday. If you are unable to access the site during this period, or the site has not been updating every 2 minutes, this will be the reason.

We will post our next update as we get closer to the storm.

[end of update]


05-Apr-2012 11:51 PM

Warming Trend Begins Saturday - Wet Weather Coming Back Next Week!

With the current temperature at the time of this report approaching 28 degrees it is hard to believe that in less than 48 hours we could be looking at a daytime high on Sunday approaching the upper 70s! The warming trend we mentioned in our last update is still on track to begin effecting the region Saturday with temps rising up to 8 degrees above seasonal norms for early April. Couple that with the fact that we are currently under a cold front with temps 10 degrees below normal, and we are talking about a rise of nearly 20 degrees by Sunday afternoon!

After the high pressure ridge and warming trend begins to break down by Tuesday, models are indicating another pattern change for the middle of next week, which will bring a good chance of rain to the southern Sierra beginning Wednesday and continuing at least through Friday the 13th.

We will be providing more details on this potential storm system as we get closer to the event early next week. In the meantime, here is the latest forecast information from the NWS in Hanford...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
947 PM PDT Thursday Apr 5 2012



Synopsis...
much cooler temperatures are expected tonight and Friday behind a
trough of low pressure passing over the region. High pressure will
return this weekend bringing a warming trend into early next week.


Update...
most shower activity remained north of Merced this evening.
However a few light snow showers continued over the Sierra into
the early evening. Otherwise skies are clearing and winds
diminishing this evening. An indication the boundary layer will
decouple overnight leaving favorable conditions for radiational
cooling. Temperatures running a few degrees cooler than 24 hours
ago. The air mass is dry with dew points 25-30 degrees in the San
Joaquin Valley. Do not see any problem with temperatures reaching
the freezing mark in shelter areas and low spots of the San
Joaquin Valley. No updates planned this evening.


Early discussion...
a deep upper level trough that extends from the provinces of
western Canada southward into the Great Basin is bringing an
unseasonably cool air mass into California today. Despite
sunshine...temperatures this afternoon are staying a good 7 to 15
degrees below normal. Unfortunately...this is a trend that will
likely continue tonight which will put minimum temperatures close
to their records in places like fat and bfl. (The record lows for
April 6th in fat and bfl are 36 degrees and 35 degrees
respectively)


In spite of an impressively strong surface pressure gradient
between sfo and las this afternoon (17.5 mb)...northwest winds
associated with the upper level trough have not breached advisory
thresholds along the west side of the sj valley and in the Kern Colorado
mountains and desert today. Nonetheless...these areas will remain
breezy until gradients decouple this evening...a time when the
upper level trough will be exiting into the Great Basin.
Instability cumulus will quickly dissipate by sunset and set the
stage for patchy frost by late tonight in the coldest locations
of the sj valley. For specific details...please see the sfonpwhnx...
wwus76.


Friday will bring less wind but remain much cooler than normal
as a ridge of high pressure begins to build into California behind the
departing trough. A robust warming trend will occur this weekend
as the ridge continues to build over California and into The Rockies. By
Easter Sunday and Monday...afternoon temperatures will probably average
about 4 to 7 degrees above normal. It would not be a surprise if
the warmest locations of the sj valley and the Kern County desert
top the 80 degree mark both days.


The models are still on board with a change to cooler and
unsettled weather by the middle of next week and beyond. The
GFS and ecm develop an upper level trough over the eastern Pacific
early next week then move it inland Tuesday night or Wednesday.
While Tuesday will probably remain dry...an increase in clouds
and onshore flow will initiate the cooling trend. Showers will
become increasingly likely...especially for the mountains...by
Wednesday. While there are timing differences with the extended
models...the ecm and GFS do forecast another round of wet weather
by Friday the 13th...which for US would be a lucky thing if it
helps reduce our precipitation deficit for the season.

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

[end of update]



04-Apr-2012 11:01 AM

Major Cool Down Beginning Today and Lasting through Friday - Warmup This Weekend - * Web Site Downtime Sunday-Monday (see notes below forecast)

You may have already noticed that the temperature has dropped significantly over the last few hours this morning as a cold front has moved into the area. Temps are expected to be down up to 10 degrees from yesterday's spring-like highs. This cold front is expected to remain over the area through Friday, with a significant warming trend coming for the weekend, as a ridge develops over the area.

Dry conditions are expected through the entire period, with the next shot at precipitation coming in early next week in the Monday - Wednesday time frame.

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1035 am PDT Wednesday Apr 4 2012



Synopsis...
a mostly dry cold frontal passage will continue to move
southeastward through the region today. The passage of the
front will result in breezy conditions at times and much cooler
temperatures through the end of the week.


..Max temperatures lowered in the Sierra foothills and the north and
west facing slopes of the Kern County mountains for today...


Discussion...
a cold front barreled southward through the County Warning Area
early this morning. The front itself brought little more than
some sprinkles to eastern Merced County and a few light showers
in the foothills and higher elevations of Mariposa County.
Otherwise...it was a relatively dry frontal passage early this
morning. It its wake...blustery northwest winds and significantly
cooler temperatures can be expected through tomorrow. Low clouds
will remain banked up along the west slopes of the Sierra and the
north facing slopes of the Tehachapi Mountains through at least
tomorrow morning and might be accompanied by some drizzle. Skies
will be slow to clear at the south end of the sj valley and along the
west side from Fresno County southward. Maximum temperatures in these areas
have been lowered a bit with the middle morning update.


In the broader picture...an unseasonably cold upper level trough
will settle southward over California during the next 24 hours.
A 250 mb jet rounding the base of this trough will support strong
and gusty winds through and below the Kern County mountain passes
and along the west side of the sj valley through tomorrow afternoon.
Temperature-wise...the Kern desert will hang on to relatively warm
temperatures today thanks to some strong downslope winds. Elsewhere
temperatures today will average a good 7 to 12 degrees cooler than
yesterday. Temperatures will average well below normal throughout
the County Warning Area tomorrow through Friday.


The models forecast little change in surface pressure gradients
through 00z Friday. So after a brief lull in wind speeds tonight...
a recurrence of brisk winds is likely on the west side of the sj valley
and the Kern County mountains and desert tomorrow afternoon into
tomorrow evening. Will consider extending wind advisories in these
areas accordingly with the afternoon forecast package. Otherwise...
the models are slower to move the upper level trough into the Great
Basin later this week. If so...this would keep the atmosphere well
mixed and mitigate the threat of frost in the sj valley and lower
foothills early Friday morning. Right now it is still too close to
call...so will assess this in more detail during the next few hours.


A big warmup is anticipated this weekend as an upper level ridge of
high pressure builds into California behind the departing trough. Temperatures will
finally recover to seasonable levels by Saturday afternoon...then
warm a few degrees above normal Easter Sunday and flatline through
Monday as the upper level ridge amplifies over The Four Corners area.
Afterward...the models deepen an upper level trough over the eastern
Pacific and forecast a strengthening onshore flow across central California
Tuesday. The models bring this trough inland Tuesday night or Wednesday
accompanied by cooler and possibly showery weather by the middle of
next week. Will consider introducing at least slight chance probability of precipitation on
day 7 in the afternoon forecast package.

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

* Our website will be down for up to 6 hours beginning Sunday night April 8th through some time on Monday April 9th. Our hosting provider will be moving our web site account onto a brand new server in order to address an intermittent outage issue we have been seeing with web site access a few times per month for the last several months. It is our hope that this move to a new server will put an end to this intermittent problem.

During the move, you may be unable to connect to our domain name, so if you encounter this between Sunday and Monday, you will know why.


[end of update]


01-Apr-2012 9:25 AM


2 Inches of Snow - 0.89 inches of Precipitation from Storm

Dry conditions should take over today and at least through Wednesday. Two more systems are out there but it is not certain at this point if they will come far enough south to effect our area.

The Latest from Hanford

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
401 am PDT sun Apr 1 2012



Synopsis...
lingering showers this morning over the South Valley, Kern County
and Tulare County mountains as a cold front moves out of the
forecast area. Skies will continue to clear today as weak high
pressure settles in.

Discussion...
cold frontal boundary now well east of the district this morning
with lingering showers over the central California interior. Will
expect showers north of Kern County to diminish near sunrise with
the normal pile-up of clouds at the south end of the valley.
Therefore...will allow the Winter Weather Advisory to continue
over the Kern County mountains through mid-morning. Riding will
now be the dominate features for the next few days as skies
continue to clear out.


Before the clearing...surface pressure gradients from sfo to las
remain tight. Within the last 12 hours...the gradient from sfo to
las has increased by around 6mb with values reaching 15mb. At this
level...will see strong winds across the Kern County desert. Will
keep the wind advisories for the desert in effect through middle
morning before having to re-evaluate any extensions. Winds across
the desert have already seen gusts to 40 miles per hour...with these values
continuing today.


Beyond the short term of the next 24 hours...model forecast another
trough toward middle week. Yet...both the European model (ecmwf) and GFS show the
trajectory of the precipitation more over northern California. However...
will keep a mention of a slight potential for precipitation as models
show some uncertainty on how far south the precipitation could extend.
Models then show another trough toward the end of the week...but
will wait on the introduction of precipitation until better consensus
exist among the longer range models.

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

[end of update]



31-Mar-2012 5:07 PM

STORM UPDATE: Heavy Rain/Snow Mix - Temps Falling Rapidly - Snow Soon!

So far we have seen very impressive precipitation numbers here at the station with already over 1/2 of an inch recorded in less than 2 hours! The temperature is falling rapidly along with the barometer, and we are now seeing a heavy rain/snow mix, which should be making a full transition over to snow within the next hour to 90 minutes.

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest live condition alerts and real-time NextRad radar images all on the same page!

[end of storm update]


31-Mar-2012 1:43 PM

Rain Band Approaching - High Winds Preceding Arrival

The station has clocked some impressive wind gusts over the last two hours as the next pacific storm system bears down on the Southern Sierra. The northern half of the state has been seeing some moderate to heavy precipitation from this system all morning, and we are just about to see the southern edge of the system begin to effect our area over the next two hours.

The latest NextRad radar shows the precipitation now appearing in our regional radar sweeps.

Weather Image

As you can see from the state-wide radar map, the precipitation is relatively wide, so once it gets here we should see steady light to moderate rain for several hours and likely well into the evening hours.

Weather Image

The latest IR SAT image shows a well organized cyclonic low pressure system just now moving over the Central California interior.

Weather Image

We can expect the gusty winds to continue for at least another two hours as the frontal boundary pushes through. Snow levels are expected to remain well above our elevation until the early morning hours of Sunday, where snow levels are still expected to drop to 4000 feet, and if there is any moisture still remaining over our area, we are likely to pick up a few inches of accumulation at the station.

The forecast is also calling for the possibility of some isolated thunder storms over the Sierra as the system moves through, so between that and these high winds, there is the unfortunate possibility that we may loose power. The station updates our website weather data every 2 minutes, so if you see a lack of updates during this event, you will know that we have lost power or internet and will be offline until the outage has ended.

We always encourage our subscribers to monitor the latest rain activity using our popular Wide-Angle Precipitation Map. This page gets its data from Weather Underground's powerful NextRad radar network and is updated in nearly real-time. Use the + and - tab on the top left of the page to zoom in or out from the default resolution. You can also move the map around to check out other locations, and the weather data window on the lower right will change depending on where your view is centered.

Enjoy! :o)

Here is the latest information from the NWS in Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
925 am PDT Sat Mar 31 2012



Synopsis...
low pressure and associated frontal system will move through central
California this weekend...bringing valley Rain...Mountain snow and
gusty winds over the forecast area.

Discussion...
satellite loops show the upper-level low near 40n/130w...west of
Point Conception this morning. Radar loops and surface observations
show that precipitation has reached the San Francisco Bay area...and
winds have already gusted to 30 kts at Moffett field. Expect the
precipitation to reach the northern parts of the Hanford warning/
forecast area around 18z /1100 PDT/ today...then spread south this
afternoon.


Ahead of the cold front...southeast winds will continue to increase.
Have already seen gusts to 46 miles per hour at the Panoche Road RAWS...and 43
miles per hour at the twisselman RAWS. The Wind Advisory for the central and
southwestern San Joaquin Valley is on track for today. Winds will
increase over the Kern County mountains and deserts this afternoon
as the front moves through Kern County.


Storm Prediction Center has Merced County and adjacent portions of Fresno...Madera and
Mariposa counties under a general risk of thunderstorms today. The
12z NAM-12 has maximum convective available potential energy over the central San Joaquin Valley of
210+ joules/kg this afternoon and evening...and a very strong 500-mb
thermal gradient over the central San Joaquin Valley at 03z Sunday
/2000 PDT today/. Have updated the forecast to add a slight chance
of thunderstorms for 18z today-03z Sunday with small hail.


Previous discussion... /issued 350 am PDT Sat Mar 31 2012/

cold frontal system continue to push eastward this morning and is
starting to move into the Pacific northwest. Satellite infrared imagery
shows the center of the surface low about 250 miles west and also
moving eastward. Timing of the frontal zone into the region is
still expected later this morning with precipitation expected near noon.
Short range models forecast the precipitation to overspread the district
during the day with precipitation reaching Kern County this evening.
Satellite precipitable water charts still showing a good fetch of
subtropical moisture associated with the frontal system and near 1
inch of water could hit the district. Yet...120kt 250mb jet
driving the cold air toward central California may break the
subtropical moisture connection and limit the amount of moisture
pushing into the district today. However...will maintain the
higher mountain precipitation accumulation values due to good orographic
lift. Therefore...will keep the winter weather products in effect
as model water accumulation show between a 1/2 to 3/4 of an inch
of water over the high County of the Sierra Nevada and almost a
1/2 inch from Merced to Fresno. By Saturday night...short range
forecasts show the frontal zone exiting the region as conditions begin
to quiet down. By daybreak on Sunday...will only expect linger
clouds and light precipitation near the Grapevine. Sunday evening the see
most of the district clearing out.


In addition to the precipitation...models also show strong winds
developing ahead of the frontal system...first across the San
Joaquin Valley...and second across the Kern County mountains and
deserts. Will therefore maintain the wind products across the
district as Wind Advisory level criteria could be met as a strong
temperature gradient could be observed ahead of the cold frontal
passage.


Afterward...another trough of low pressure will dig over the
region by midweek and possibly deepen before the end of the week.
At this point...will only expect cooler temperatures and a very slight
chance of unsettled weather...mainly over the Sierra. Will go with
the faster European model (ecmwf) solution which is less intense with the storm.

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

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest real-time weather condition updates as they happen! These automated alerts will keep you updated on the most current precipitation amounts and rainfall per hour translated into common terms such as drizzle, moderate, steady and heavy rainfall as well as rain/snow mix, and snow depending on current temperatures.

We will provide additional storm updates as conditions warrant.

[end of update]



30-Mar-2012 5:56 PM

Major Pattern Change Begins Tonight - Storm on the Way!

Our pleasant spring-like conditions today will be short lived and thankfully so, as another much needed pacific storm system moves in to the Bass Lake area beginning late tonight and into Saturday morning. The latest models indicate that the Jet Stream will accompany this system into the area, so unlike the previous system that washed out as it hit the Sierra, this one will actually amplify its precipitation potential due to lifting as it moves over the range.

We can expect the precipitation to begin here sometime after noon, with periods of heavy rain. The snow level is forecast to fall to 4000 feet Saturday night, so if the precipitation continues into the evening hours, we should see some snow accumulation at the station.

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
321 PM PDT Friday Mar 30 2012


Synopsis...
a low pressure system will move over the area this weekend and
bring valley rain and mountain snow. Sierra summits and the west
side of the valley will have windy conditions through Sunday as
well as the desert areas. Snow levels may lower to the passes in
the Tehachapi Mountains late Saturday into Sunday. Showers could
linger over the south end of the San Joaquin Valley and the
higher terrain until midday Sunday.

Discussion...although the timing might not be appropriate for those
with outdoor plans or travel plans...another cold Pacific storm is
indeed on the way and its impacts will be felt throughout the central
California interior this weekend. Until then...our spell of splendid Spring
weather will continue with milder than normal temperatures.

We can thank a weak upper level ridge of high pressure centered
over Southern California for the sunshine and mild temperatures this afternoon.
Although a westerly flow aloft will continue to feed high clouds
into the central California interior during the next 12 to 18 hours...our
weather will remain dry with nothing more than some high cloudiness.

The storm referenced above is currently situated several hundred
miles off the Pacific northwest coast and is cutting underneath a parent low
centered over the Gulf of Alaska this afternoon. A plume of fairly
high precipitable water extends well east of this storm on water vapor
imagery and is currently aimed at Oregon and extreme northern California.
It appears that some of this moisture will get tapped into the storm
as it approaches the northern California coast later tonight. The cold front
trailing from this system should arrive in the northwestern portion
of our County Warning Area by midday tomorrow then move southward across the remainder
of the County Warning Area tomorrow afternoon. The precipitation that it brings will
probably not make inroads into Kern County until early tomorrow evening.
Unlike the last system...this storm will be supported by a strong 300
mb jet (120+ kts) which will help generate heavy precipitation and orographic
lift over the southern Sierra north of Kings Canyon tomorrow afternoon
and night. The presence of this jet will also support brisk winds in
the sj valley...particularly in Merced County and along the west side
tomorrow...mainly during the midday and afternoon hours. Strong winds
will also buffet the Sierra crest as well as the Kern County mountains
and desert tomorrow afternoon and tomorrow night and will likely
persist through Sunday...during which time the storm will be exiting
into the Great Basin.


The cnrfc...in addition to the models...have raised the quantitative precipitation forecast with
this system...particularly from Fresno County northward. Precipitation totals
have now warranted Winter Storm Warning criteria in the Sierra from
ynp to Kings Canyon with Winter Weather Advisory conditions for the
remainder of the Sierra. In the Kern County mountains...quantitative precipitation forecast values
would suggest low end Winter Weather Advisory conditions and since
there is now a bigger concern that frozen precipitation...albeit light...
could fall down to pass level tomorrow night...the consensus was to
issue a Winter Weather Advisory for this region with the afternoon
package. Otherwise...one of the primary impacts from this storm in
the Kern County mountains will be the wind...which will occur hours
before the wintery weather will set in. The Kern County desert should
remain dry as brisk westerly winds downslope into these areas.
However...wind gusts will easily reach advisory levels...especially
right below the passes from midday tomorrow through Sunday morning.


Otherwise...Sunday will be unseasonably cool with residual showers
over the mountains and stubborn low stratus lingering through at
least the late afternoon hours in the Sierra foothills...the south
end of the sj valley and the north facing slopes of the Tehachapi
Mountains


A pronounced warming trend will take place early next week as an
upper level ridge builds over California. It is possible that maximum temperatures
bounce back to today's levels by Tuesday. The models forecast a
relatively moisture starved cold front to move southward across the
central California interior late Wednesday or Wednesday night which could
rejuvenate gusty winds on the west side...along the Sierra crest...
and below the mountain passes of Kern County Wednesday afternoon
through Thursday. Otherwise...Thursday will become significantly
cooler again with slightly below normal temperatures finishing out the
remainder of next week.

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

We will update again with some SAT and Radar images tomorrow as the system arrives over the area.

[end of update]


28-Mar-2012 9:07 AM

WASH OUT!

Well... The storm arrived on schedule. Only problem is, it washed out as it hit the Sierra range and as a result the majority of the precipitation went with it.

There is still some chances of upslope generated showers through the afternoon today, but the original precipitation amounts forecast by all the weather models appears to be a bust. Conditions will turn partly cloudy tonight and through Friday.

We will now turn our sights towards Saturday, where a more powerful pacific storm is forecast to arrive over the area bringing potentially heavy precipitation and snow levels well down to our elevation.

[end of update]


27-Mar-2012 10:29 AM

Wednesday Storm Now a Sure Thing! - Another on Saturday

Models have come into better agreement now and the next pacific storm system is poised to enter our forecast area beginning late tonight bringing moderate rainfall to the area through Wednesday. This will be a relatively warm system, so snow levels should remain well above our elevation with current estimates of 6000 feet.

The system should move out of the area by Wednesday night with a return to partly cloudy conditions through Friday before another system moves down from the Gulf of Alaska. This next system will arrive over our area on Saturday for another round of rain for the Bass Lake area.

Latest IR SAT Images

Weather Image

Weather Image"

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
955 am PDT Tuesday Mar 27 2012



Synopsis...
another low pressure system is poised to affect mainly the northern
portion of the forecast area tonight and Wednesday with periods of
rain and higher elevation snow. Otherwise...dry conditions are
expected throughout the region until the end of this week.


Discussion...
satellite loops show the upper-level trough along the California
coast. Radar loops and surface observations show that precipitation
had reached the San Francisco Bay area by 16z /0900 PDT/ this
morning. However...as the trough continues to deepen...the cold
front is coming into alignment with the flow aloft...slowing the
progression of the front until the next jet maximum dives around the
base of the trough and kicks the front inland later today.


The 12z models support the current forecast timing of the
precipitation reaching the northern fringes of the Hanford warning/
forecast area between 03-06z Wednesday /2000-2300 PDT tonight/.
Precipitation will spread south overnight...with the heaviest
precipitation between 06-18z Wednesday /2300 PDT tonight-1100 PDT
Wednesday. This morning/S 14z rfc guidance is considerably wetter
than Tuesday/S 14z or 20z guidance...and gives Yosemite Valley a
storm total of 1.02 inch. This is higher than the 12z GFS...but less
than the 12z NAM or WRF values.


The latest guidance forecasts snow levels to be a bit higher than
originally forecast. Will re-evaluate the current Winter Weather
Advisory in light of this morning/S model runs for possible upgrades.


Previous discussion... /issued 404 am PDT Tuesday Mar 27 2012/

the next in a series of Pacific shortwave troughs is moving into
the Pacific northwest this morning. Trailing cold front will gradually sag southeast
and move across central California Wednesday morning. The front will be in the
weakening phase...and will basically wash out over central California.
Light rain will make it into Merced County this afternoon then
spread south tonite and Wednesday. How far south moisture will make it
is still in doubt...but could clip the northwest portion of Kern County.


A band of heavier precipitation is possible from Merced to Yosemite with
up to an inch of rain possible in the Sierra foothills from Madera
County north. This will not be a particularly cold system and snow
levels will only lower to about 6-7k feet. A foot of new snow is
possible in the higher elevations from Huntington Lake to ynp.
Precipitation will end early Wednesday evening with gradual clearing overnite.


A rather flat westerly flow aloft will prevail Thursday and Friday.
After slightly cooler temperatures Wednesday...warming will resume Thursday into
Friday under partly cloudy skies.


The next system to affect central California will arrive Sat. This system may be
a little stronger and could spread precipitation into socal as well. It
will be colder as well...and could push snow levels down to
4500-5000 feet with GFS and the European model (ecmwf) forecasting 850mb temperatures of -1 or -2 degs/c. This will be a fairly fast moving system with decreasing
precipitation Sat evening...then dry into early next week. Cooler Sat...then
temperatures quickly rebound 1st half of the new week.

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

We will be back with another update sometime tomorrow to report on actual storm conditions and precipitation estimates. Stay tuned to our home page for the latest real-time weather condition updates as they happen!

[end of update]



26-Mar-2012 9:23 AM

0.25 Worth of Precipitation Overnight! - Another Storm Possible Wednesday!

Impressive rainfall amounts during the early morning hours today with some heavy snowfall reported between 1AM and 5AM. The system has pretty much moved out of the area now leaving behind mostly clear skies and temps in the mid 30s as of this report.

The NWS is now predicting yet another late season pacific storm to move through our area beginning on Tuesday night and lasting through all of Wednesday into Wednesday night. Not sure at this point how much additional rain/snow we will receive from this next system, but all of these late season events are most welcome after a mostly dry wet season in 2012.

Long range models are hinting at the possibility of yet another system to come into the area on Saturday, but as of this report, it isn't clear whether or not this will actually come to pass.

Here are some rainfall stats to date:

For the Month: 6.54
Recent Storm Total: 0.81
Rainfall Yesterday: 0.56
Total for the Season to Date: 17.54 inches
Normal Average for the Season to Date: 54.50 inches

We will update again by tomorrow night as we get closer to the next precipitation event.

Nothing new from Hanford this morning.

[end of update]


25-Mar-2012 11:54 AM

Conditions Update: Back to Rain For Now

Rain has returned as the temps have risen enough to transition back from the previous moderate snowfall. We have recorded a current storm total of 0.33 inches and currently seeing steady light rain.

The rain band continues to stream in from the south and fortunately, the system has slowed its eastern movement for now and this is keeping the rain band lined up directly over our location.

Weather Image

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1024 am PDT sun Mar 25 2012


Synopsis...
low pressure is spinning off the California coast and will move
inland later today producing rain...isolated thunderstorms...and
snow to the higher elevations. Gusty southerly winds are also
expected ahead of the system, especially on the west side of the San
Joaquin Valley.

Discussion...
the initial generally north/south oriented band of
precipitation ahead of the incoming upper low continues to press slowly
eastward across the central California Interior. Valley locations
affected by the rain area so far have recorded around 1/10 to 1/4
inch of rain...with up to 1/2 inch measured in higher terrain.
Snow levels are currently running from as low as 3500 feet in the
Yosemite vicinity to around 5500 feet in Kern County. Expect this
precipitation area to continue to move slowly eastward today...with
additional shower development over the area as the upper low
swings inland. The Winter Storm Warning remains in effect for the
mountains above 5000 feet through early Monday morning. The snow
levels will be monitored for possible impacts below 5000 feet as
the storm progresses. Some lightning is being detected near the
incoming low...and with a little bit of clearing there remains a
possibility for thunderstorm development in the sjv this afternoon
as the colder air moves overhead. No update is being made to the
forecast for today at this time.

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

Stay tuned to our website for the latest real-time weather condition updates as they happen!

[end of conditions update]


25-Mar-2012 8:38 AM

Conditions Update: Snow arrives!

The rain has transitioned over to snow as of about 30 minutes ago, and we are now seeing mostly moderate snowfall with a current temp of 35.7 F.

More to follow as soon as Hanford issues their morning update.

[end of conditions update]


25-Mar-2012 7:27 AM

Rain Has Arrived Over Bass Lake!

The rain started falling just after 6AM this morning, and NextRad radar shows a long band of precipitation moving in from the south and slowly shifting to the east. As you can see from these latest images, this precipitation band is relatively narrow with nothing behind it, so we are not sure how long this event will last.

At the moment, this storm does not appear to have the same strength as the last system, so precipitation totals will likely be much lower, and the snow level may not fall to our elevation until the bulk of the moisture band has already moved through.

There is always the chance for local upslope generated precipitation to take over, so there is still a good chance of that kind of precipitation picking up where the actual storm leaves off.

Latest NextRad and IR SAT Images

Weather Image

Weather Image"

Weather Image"

We will update again later today with the latest from Hanford.

[end of update]


24-Mar-2012 1:38 PM

Storm System Heading Our Way! - Rain/Snow Sunday!

This late season pacific storm which originated in the Gulf of Alaska is slowly moving south down the coast today. The Bay Area is already getting wide-spread precipitation, but there are beautiful clear skies and pleasant temperatures south of the frontal boundary. We can expect a rapid change to our current spring-like conditions beginning later tonight with rain developing Sunday morning. Snow levels are still forecast to drop down to around 4000 feet by Sunday night. There will be some moderate to strong gusty winds today as the edge of the system approaches the Central California interior.

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
941 am PDT Sat Mar 24 2012



Synopsis...
low pressure is spinning off the California coast and will move
inland on Sunday producing rain...and snow to the higher
elevations. Gusty southerly winds are expected ahead of the system
tomorrow, especially on the west side of the San Joaquin Valley.

Discussion...
satellite shows the upper low dropping southward
along 130w this morning while skies are mainly sunny across the
central California interior for now. Band of precipitation now affecting
the Bay area may reach the northwest portion of the forecast area
around Los Banos by late aftn/sunset. A Winter Storm Watch is in
place for the southern Sierra and Kern County mountains above 5000
feet on Sunday. While models have backed off some on quantitative precipitation forecast...am
still leaning towards issuing a warning with the afternoon package.
Looks like the frontal band may arrive a little earlier than
previously thought and would go with a start time of 12z (5am)
Sunday. Otherwise...should be a rather nice Spring like day for
the central California interior today with seasonable temperatures.


Previous discussion... /issued 352 am PDT Sat Mar 24 2012/


Discussion...
.Complex low center off the coast is becoming more organized and
is moving south...


Temperatures were cooler across the County Warning Area yesterday behind the cold
front that brought some light precipitation to the Sierra. The
front is southeast of the central California interior and weak ridging over the
area brought mostly clear skies to the region this past evening.
However that is about to change...


The complex low is forecast to split and a piece of energy will
move into Oregon and the main core will slide into Southern California. We will
be caught in the middle and we are expecting the upper trough to
cross the region on Sunday. This will bring precipitation to the central
California interior and significant snow amounts to the higher elevations
of the Sierra. The Kern County mountains will also get into the action
as the surface low will track across the Kern County mountains Sunday
evening.


We have hoisted a Winter Storm Watch for the Sierra. We used the
rfc guidance for quantitative precipitation forecast and the snow amounts were approaching two
feet in the higher elevations of the Sierra. The NAM is not as wet
as the GFS and the European model (ecmwf). The question is where will the low level
jet set up and usher the deep moisture associated with the front.
The timing of the front appears to be middle morning on Sunday and we
may see some isolated convection as the stability parameters
indicate some instability associated with the front and the cold
air advection aloft with the cold pool at h500 of -27c. Snow
levels will start out high and quickly lower behind the front and
in the convection. Some snowfall rates may be quite impressive in
the cold air and with the convection. Would not even rule out some
thundersnow in some of the Sunday afternoon convection as the
front moves into the Sierra.


The surface low is expected to track across the Kern County mountains
Sunday afternoon and evening. Upslope side of the system remains
on the south facing slopes of the tehachapis. Some precipitation will
make its way towards Pine Mountain and towards Frazier Park. The
heaviest snow could make its way over the crest...depending on the
track of the low center.


The entire system departs by Monday with a zonal flow setting up
with seasonal temperatures and partly cloudy conditions through Tuesday.
The next system will impact the northern portion of the County Warning Area by Wednesday am.
Only a weak trough will quickly move through bringing a slight
chance of showers mainly north of Fresno County Tuesday night
through Wednesday night. Weak ridging will return to the area later in
the week and provide seasonal temperatures and mostly clear skies.

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

Stay tuned to our website for the latest real-time weather condition alerts as they happen! We will update the journal as soon as the system arrives and we get a better feel for the actual precipitation amounts we will see in the Bass Lake area.

[end of update]


22-Mar-2012 11:25 PM

Weekend Storm Could Be Bigger Deal Than Originally Thought!

The latest data coming in from Hanford suggests that the next storm system slated for a Sunday arrival could end up packing more of a punch than initial estimates had predicted.

Check out the latest "Special Weather Statement" issued by the Hanford office this evening...

SPECIAL WEATHER STATEMENT
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SAN JOAQUIN VALLEY - HANFORD CA
947 PM PDT THU MAR 22 2012


CAZ089>099-231100-
WEST CENTRAL SAN JOAQUIN VALLEY-EAST CENTRAL SAN JOAQUIN VALLEY-
SOUTHWESTERN SAN JOAQUIN VALLEY-SOUTHEASTERN SAN JOAQUIN VALLEY-
MARIPOSA MADERA AND FRESNO COUNTY FOOTHILLS-
TULARE COUNTY FOOTHILLS-KERN COUNTY MOUNTAINS-
SIERRA NEVADA FROM YOSEMITE TO KINGS CANYON-
TULARE COUNTY MOUNTAINS-INDIAN WELLS VALLEY-
SOUTHEASTERN KERN COUNTY DESERT-

947 PM PDT THU MAR 22 2012

...WET WEATHER RETURNS TO THE CENTRAL CALIFORNIA INTERIOR THIS
WEEKEND...

A STORM SYSTEM ORIGINATING IN THE GULF OF ALASKA WILL DRIFT SOUTHWARD
DURING THE NEXT COUPLE OF DAYS AND BE SITUATED OFF THE CALIFORNIA
COAST THIS WEEKEND. ALTHOUGH THERE IS SOME UNCERTAINTY WITH THE TRACK
OF THIS STORM AND THE ARRIVAL OF ITS PRECIPITATION...IT HAS THE
POTENTIAL TO BRING A SUBSTANTIAL AMOUNT OF RAIN AND MOUNTAIN SNOW TO
THE CENTRAL CALIFORNIA INTERIOR BY THE END OF THIS WEEKEND.

RAINFALL TOTALS OF UP TO AN INCH ARE POSSIBLE IN THE SAN JOAQUIN VALLEY
BY SUNDAY EVENING WITH TWO INCHES OR MORE IN THE FOOTHILLS. IN THE
MOUNTAINS...SNOW ACCUMULATIONS OF UP TO TWO FEET ARE POSSIBLE ABOVE
6000 FEET BY SUNDAY NIGHT. THERE IS A CONCERN THAT VERY HEAVY SNOW
COULD FALL IN THE HIGHER ELEVATIONS OF THE TEHACHAPI MOUNTAINS AND
IN LOCATIONS SUCH AS BRECKENRIDGE...MOUNT PINOS...AND THE PIUTES BY
SUNDAY NIGHT.

AS THE STORM APPROACHES....GUSTY SOUTHERLY WINDS ARE POSSIBLE IN
MERCED COUNTY AND ALONG THE WEST SIDE OF THE SAN JOAQUIN VALLEY
SATURDAY. BRISK WINDS MAY ALSO OCCUR AT THE SOUTH END OF THE SAN
JOAQUIN VALLEY SATURDAY NIGHT INTO SUNDAY. A COLDER AND UNSTABLE
AIRMASS ASSOCIATED WITH THE STORM MAY TRIGGER ISOLATED THUNDERSTORMS
ON THE WEST SIDE OF THE SAN JOAQUIN VALLEY SUNDAY AFTERNOON. IN THE
MOUNTAINS...SNOW LEVELS WILL INITIALLY BE BETWEEN 6500 FEET AND
7500 FEET THEN LOWER TO AROUND 4500 FEET BY SUNDAY NIGHT. IN THE
KERN COUNTY DESERT...RAINFALL TOTALS FROM THE STORM WILL GENERALLY
BE LESS THAN A QUARTER OF AN INCH.

PERSONS WITH TRAVEL PLANS THIS WEEKEND SHOULD BE PREPARED FOR WINTER
DRIVING CONDITIONS IN THE MOUNTAINS ABOVE 6000 FEET AND RAIN SLICKED
HIGHWAYS IN THE LOWER ELEVATIONS WITH POSSIBLE TRAVEL DELAYS. STAY
TUNED TO NOAA WEATHER RADIO OR YOUR FAVORITE MEDIA SOURCE FOR UPDATES
ON THIS DEVELOPING STORM.

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

Sounds promising doesn't it? After that last great storm, it seemed too much to ask to expect yet another system just like it before the season winds down, but if the above predictions come to pass, and the system doesn't stay off the coast, we could be looking at a repeat performance!

We will update the journal again Saturday with the latest model predictions and SAT images. You can of course check all these items out yourself anytime you want by clicking on the various links on this page and on our home page.

Stay tuned! ;o)

[end of update]



20-Mar-2012 8:08 PM

Chances for Another Storm This Weekend Looking Better - Another for Tuesday Night & Wedesday?

The weather models are starting to agree on the likelihood of another pacific storm system moving into our area this Saturday and lingering through Sunday night. This will be one of those coastal sliders that apparently will move far enough inland on the weekend to give us another shot at some precipitation. The exact storm track and precipitation amounts are still uncertain, but the good news is we will probably be getting some additional and much needed rain/snow soon!

Snow levels with this next system will fall as low as 4000 feet on Saturday night, which also gives us a respectable chance of some snow accumulation at our elevation.

By Monday, a weak ridge will build into the area, but weather models are hinting at yet another system pushing the ridge out by Monday night and thus setting the stage for yet another precipitation event on Tuesday night into the day on Wednesday. Of course... this far out things can change between the model runs now and the actual event, and as we have all learned by now, the 2012 weather patterns have been anything but predictable! So... by Tuesday of next week, we could be looking at a completely different outcome.

We suggest that you stay tuned to our website and specifically this journal for further updates on both systems as we get closer to the end of the week. In the meantime... Conditions should stay much like they were Tuesday, with mostly clear skies, occasional upslope cloudiness and temps near or slightly above climatology for mid-March.

Here is the latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
300 PM PDT Tuesday Mar 20 2012


Synopsis...
high pressure will dominate for the rest of this week...temperatures
are expected to warm to seasonal averages...or slightly above.
Another low pressure system could bring the next chance of
precipitation by the weekend.

Discussion...
the upper ridge continues to build into central
California today while a moist zonal flow moves into the Pacific
northwest. The ridge will bring dry weather and warm temperatures
to central California through Thursday. Temperatures are currently
up 8-12 degrees over yesterday across much of the County warning forecast area...with
temperatures in some mountain locations up as much as 18 degrees.
Temperatures will warm anther 6-10 degrees Wednesday.


A trough of low pressure is expected to dig south along 130w
Thursday and Friday...pushing the ridge eastward and cooling
temperatures slightly. As this system develops it will bring
precipitation southward across northern California but will likely
stay just to our north on Thursday.


As the trough begins to deepen and shift closer to the
coast early Saturday...precipitation will begin to spread into
central California. Rain may make it to the northwest part of the
valley early Saturday...the spread south and east Saturday
afternoon. Have increases probability of precipitation for Saturday and Saturday night as
the GFS and European model (ecmwf) are coming into better agreement. Showers will
continue Sunday and Sunday night. Snow levels will be lowering by
Saturday night...down to near 4000 feet near Yosemite to 5500 feet
in Kern County. Snow levels will lower down to 4500 in Kern County
by Sunday night...but by that time most of the precipitation will
be ending.


For Monday...the GFS brings a shortwave ridge over the area ending
the precipitation. The 12z European model (ecmwf) also has backed off on
precipitation. Thus have backed off on probability of precipitation for Monday leaving
just a slight chance of showers. Both models are indicating that
there will be another system moving into the region sometime
next Tuesday or Wednesday...with the precipitation looking more
probable for Wednesday.

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

[end of update]



18-Mar-2012 9:54 PM

Precipitation Continues From One of the Best Storms in Years!

This fantastic and long awaited storm that brought us so much welcome rain/snow just keeps giving! Thanks to the instability in the atmosphere and some good ol Sierra upslope, we managed to pick up another 0.21 of precipitation in the form of 4 more inches of snow this evening.

Even as I am preparing this report, we are getting another round of ice pellets and snow, which may be enough to give us yet another tip of the rain gauge! The storm total currently sits at 5.50 inches since the storm began on Friday, and after this last round of snow tonight, we have received almost 2 feet of accumulation on the ground since last night! There will be a hard freeze tonight, with the temp already down to 31.1 degrees F at the time of this report. Expect conditions to be rather nasty in the morning because everything is going to freeze solid by morning.

Although things are starting to wind down now, we may yet see some additional snow before midnight. Our current precipitation total for today currently stands at 1.20 inches.

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
937 PM PDT sun Mar 18 2012


Synopsis...
variable cloudiness with lingering rain and snow showers are
expected through this evening mainly over the Sierra Nevada and
foothills as well as the Kern County mountain and desert areas as a
strong frontal band exits the forecast area. High pressure will then
set up over the area and bring a warming trend for Monday and much
of the upcoming week.

Discussion...
evening updates to extend and increase the probability of precipitation over
the Kern County mountain area as northwest flow has kept the
upslope snow falling. It appears that snow will be rather
widespread through the late evening and roads have been closed in
some locations. By tomorrow morning all forecast models bring this
precipitation episode to a close, even over the mountains with
ridging building in from tomorrow through Thursday. By Friday the
ridge will shift east and then the forecast gets rather tricky as
the European model (ecmwf) and GFS models are not in agreement as to whether a low
pressure system will move into central California or stay well
offshore. All in all for this week, drying and warming. That's all
for now.

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

We trust that everyone enjoyed this snow filled weekend as much as we did? The coming week should bring some sunny days and warming which will allow all the much needed moisture to soak in. As you read in the latest Hanford forecast, the jury is still out on whether or not we will see another system for the coming weekend. We will just have to wait and see how all that plays out.

This will be the last journal update for the next several days as we await more details on the potential next storm system.

[end of update]



18-Mar-2012 8:45 AM

Amazing Amount of Snow Overnight! - Over 1.5 Feet in 3 Hours!

We had a power outage just after 2:00AM this morning which lasted until 6:30AM. During that time we were seeing heavy snowfall at rates we rarely see here at the station. With the rain bucket heater out of commission for over 4 hours, the snow accumulation was not being melted, and now we have over 8 inches piled up above the rim of the rain bucket!

It is going to take the heater some time to catch up with all that snow and melt it down to be measured by the rain gauge. Expect to see the rainfall total slowly increase throughout the day today as the snow in the gauge bucket is slowly melted and recorded by the station.

As of this update, it is still snowing at a moderate amount, so our final snow accumulation total has yet to be determined either.

Here is a recent webcam image showing the accumulation:

Weather Image

The main portions of this very impressive storm system are now exiting the area, but scattered snow showers are likely to continue into this evening. A gradual clearing is expected over the day Monday with sunny and dry conditions returning on Tuesday along with a gradual warming trend through Thursday.

Latest NextRad and IR SAT Images

Weather Image

Weather Image"

The long range models are hinting at the chance of another storm system for the coming weekend, but it is still much too early to say for sure if this will come to pass or not. We will have to wait until later in the week for more model runs to narrow down the probability.

If you must travel today, be especially careful on the local roads, since our current temps are at the freezing mark, and roads will have a bottom layer of compressed snow and ice. This will make driving on our local roads very hazardous

[end of update]


17-Mar-2012 9:41 PM

STORM UPDATE: Still Snowing!

The snow continues to fall here at the station tonight with about 5 inches on the ground now. We had some rain in between the snow this afternoon so some of the accumulation from earlier today melted off.

The system's center is right over the Bass Lake area now and the inner precipitation bands are rotating through the area bringing on and off moderate to heavy snow.

Weather Image

We expect this pattern to continue for at least another few hours with additional snow showers on Sunday.

Our storm total from this very impressive system now stands at: 4.14 inches, brining our seasonal total to 15.31 inches. Our current temperature is 32.5 degrees F. Our barometric pressure hit a record low for the year earlier today of 29.43 inHg. It has risen slightly as of this report to 29.56 inHg.

We will update the journal again tomorrow morning to recap the activity overnight and to update the storm total.

[end of storm update]


17-Mar-2012 7:04 AM

SNOW Makes at Bass Lake...EARLY!!

Weather Image

Temps lowered just enough over the last hour for the last bit of our intense rain to transition over to snow just before the last of the primary rain band moved east of the area.

The current temp is 33.6 degrees F.

Latest NextRad and IR SAT Images

Weather Image

Weather Image"

We are now heading into the predicted showery pattern which should linger through the day today bringing occasional snow showers to the area, possibly transitioning back over to rain if temps rise a few degrees above where they are right now.

Last night's system was VERY impressive, with intense/heavy rainfall drenching the Bass Lake area for well over 7 straight hours. So far, the station has logged an impressive rainfall total of 3.30 inches since the precipitation began falling just after 7PM last night.

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
513 am PDT Sat Mar 17 2012



Synopsis...
a frontal band moving through central California is producing
overcast skies, light to moderate rain and higher elevation snow to
the forecast area. Showery type weather to continue on Saturday
with the possibility of afternoon and evening thunderstorms through
the weekend.

Discussion...
the frontal band and associated precipitation is now pushing
through the central California interior. As much as a half inch to
around an inch and a quarter of rainfall has been measured in the
Central Valley...with some amounts over two and a half inches in
the foothills. Similar precipitation amounts in the higher Sierra
elevations should translate to a couple of feet of snow so far.
Snow levels have dropped to around 4000 feet in northern portions
of our Sierra zones...ranging to around 7000 feet in Kern County.


The precipitation band is clearing from northwest portions of our
area and will continue to press slowly southeast this morning as
the associated upper low swings inland. As snow levels continue to
lower behind the passing frontal system...snowfall is expected to
get down to near pass level in Kern County by later today.


Occasional lightning strikes have been occurring in the unstable
air with this cold low pressure system and as the low moves
overhead today there will be additional developing shower activity
and some isolated thunder will be possible in the valley and
foothills. Temperatures will be significantly cooler than the
recent mild springlike days...topping out around 10 degrees below
climatology this afternoon.


Precipitation chances will continue through Sunday with the passing
system...with a slight chance lingering over the mountains Monday
on the backside of the system. A Winter Storm Warning continues
for the Sierra through this afternoon as the heavier snow
accumulates...and through Sunday morning for the Kern County
mountains where showers will be enhanced by upslope conditions.
By the time snow levels lower well into the foothills this
afternoon...precipitation will be more showery but should manage
to accumulate a few inches of snow. A Winter Weather Advisory
therefore remains in effect there for late this evening and evening.


Strong gusty winds associated with the passing frontal system will
produce advisory level winds below the Kern County mountain passes
through early Sunday morning.


By Tuesday...shortwave ridging behind the exiting system will
return mild conditions to the area with afternoon highs back to
around seasonal averages. Then expect dry and warming conditions
into the end of the week in southwest flow ahead of another
developing trough over the Pacific.

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

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest NextRad radar images and automated weather condition updates as they happen!

[end of update]


16-Mar-2012 9:09 PM

STORM UPDATE: Heavy Rain Has Begun!

The moisture laden center of this strong pacific storm system is now heading for the Southern Sierra, bringing heavy rain and strong winds to the Bass Lake area at times. The latest state-wide NextRad radar shows a solid and intense front of precipitation now moving inland from the coast with the eastern portion just now reaching the Sierra range. Upslope conditions are likely to intensify the precipitation as the front butts up against the western facing slopes of the mountain range. Bass Lake will likely see more intense rainfall than the lower foothill locations as a result of this additional upslope induced energy.

We don't expect the cold front to move in until tomorrow evening, so there is not much of a chance of any snow in our area tonight. The current temperature at the station is 45.5 degrees F and holding steady.

Latest NextRad and IR SAT Images

Weather Image

Weather Image"

Weather Image"

Based on the current maps and radar, we can expect this heavy rain to continue through tonight and into the first half of Saturday before changing over to showers. The center of the cold front is expected to move through our area by Saturday evening, lowering the snow level to below 3000 feet by dusk.

The NWS is currently predicting between 1-6 inches of accumulation as far down as Coarsegold by late tomorrow night, with possibly larger accumulations here at Bass Lake.

So far the station has recorded 0.24 inches of precipitation in the last two hours with rain rates exceeding 3/4 of an inch per hour at times. This is exactly the kind of storm we have been waiting for all season, and although it is not expected to maintain this intensity for more than another 12-18 hours, we will likely see a final storm total of over 2 inches when the system finally exits the area on Sunday night.

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest real-time weather condition reports from our station computer as they come in! You can also track the storm yourself using our Wide-Angle Precipitation Map.

We will be posting additional storm updates as conditions warrant.

In the meantime... Enjoy the rain! This is precisely the kind of storm system we have been waiting for all season!

[end of storm update]


16-Mar-2012 7:01 PM

FINALLY!! - Rain Moving In To Bass Lake!

The week of waiting is finally over as light rain has begun falling over the station in the last few minutes. The latest radar from our Wide-Angle Precipitation Map looks promising with a sizable cell of medium to heavy precipitation moving into the area from the southwest.

Weather Image

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
408 PM PDT Friday Mar 16 2012



Synopsis...
low pressure will continue to dominate the region producing variable
cloudy skies and periods of rain and higher elevation snow
through the weekend.

Discussion...
water vapor loops clearly show the upper low off the
West Coast beginning to dig southeast per models. This will finally push
the cold front /which has been nearly stationary across norcal the
past several days/ southeast across central California Saturday.


Strong baroclinic band will bring a period moderate to heavy
precipitation to central California from about midnight tonight through Sat morning.
The precipitation will become more showery Sat afternoon in the sjv and
gradually taper off in the Sierra as well. Lowering snow levels
during the day Sat will bring snow to the passes of Kern County
sometime Sat afternoon or evening. With that...upgraded the Winter Storm
Watch for Kern County to warning. In addition...snow levels in the
Sierra lower further Sat night...possibly down to 2k or so. Several
inches of snow are possible Sat night and Sun morning in the
foothill communities...so issued a Winter Weather Advisory.


The approach of the upper trough axis sometime Sat afternoon...lapse
rates in the sjv and adjacent foothills could be sufficient for an
isolated thunderstorm in the afternoon and evening as 500 mb temperatures approach minus 30
degs/c. Cyclonic flow continues sun for scattered to numerous showers
across the region. Trough axis and cold pool aloft will be east of
the region Sun afternoon. With warming 500 mb temperatures on sun...capping
inversion expected to squash any low level convection so removed
thunderstorms from the valley Sun afternoon. Precipitation will begin to diminish
Sun night...with some lingering showers in the mountains Monday. Dry weather is
then expected the rest of the week...however a couple of shortwave
troughs will bring some more precipitation to norcal...and will have to
keep an eye on southward extent.


Temperatures will be well below normal the next 3 days at least in cool
northwest flow behind departing trough. At this time do not foresee
any frost or freezing temperatures in the sjv as skies begin to clear Sun
night and Monday night. But temperatures in coldest cloud-free areas could
drop to 33 or 34 both nites. Warming begins Tuesday with temperatures back
to normal Wednesday and slightly above the remainder of the week.

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

The rain has just now started to wet the roads and sidewalks around the station, but not enough to tip the rain gauge yet. But based on the radar image posted above, we estimate that it won't take long for the first bucket tip, and we are likely in for some pretty decent rainfall, heavy at times and then turning over to snow by midnight and into early Saturday morning.

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest automated real-time weather condition updates as they happen!

[end of update]



14-Mar-2012 10:36 PM

Northern California Sees Record Rainfall - We Get Zilch!

That headline about sums it up!

So far this week, every single storm that we had been expecting to move into our area has remained to our north with record setting rainfall amounts being reported all over the northern half of the state. Unfortunately... (that word has become synonymous with the 2012 wet season) for those of us down here in the central and southern half of the state, we have come up with a big fat 0.00 from this much anticipated pattern change so far.

While the NWS in Hanford is trying to put a somewhat optimistic face on this pathetic situation by keeping our rainfall chances in the 50% range through Thursday, the reality just doesn't agree. That reality is little if any precipitation from this week long string of storms until Friday afternoon.

The Friday/Saturday system looks like it has some teeth, so we could still be in for some serious winter weather in a few days, but unfortunately it will only last for about 24 hours before another amplified ridge begins to build into the area by Tuesday. Even if the weekend storm turns out to be something like what Northern California saw over the last two days, it will only amount to a third or less of the total precipitation originally predicted.

We wish we had some more positive news to report to you, but if you are a weather buff, or someone who understands the importance of a good Sierra snowpack, then the winter of 2012 has proved to be a season of major disappointment and endless frustration. It will likely end much the same way it began... BORING and DRY.

This will be our last journal update until we get some measurable rainfall at the station. Until then, stay tuned to the website, the precipitation map and our two NextRad radar maps on the home page for current precipitation in the Bass Lake area.

[end of update]


14-Mar-2012 11:29 AM

The Wait for Rain Continues

The jet stream has slowed its southern migration and stopped moving just north of us which is keeping all the moisture north of the area. Mariposa and Merced counties are seeing some light rain, but most of the heavier stuff is further north up by San Francisco. The radar images look like carbon copies of the returns from this same time yesterday, and it doesn't look like any of the moisture from these current systems are going to make it down this far.

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
908 am PDT Wednesday Mar 14 2012


Synopsis...a series of low pressure systems will begin to move
through the region through the end of the week bringing chances of
valley rain and higher elevation snow through the weekend.

Discussion...
moisture band associated with a stationary front
north of our area continues top stream across norcal with
precipitation extending as far south as Merced and Mariposa
counties where mesowest has indicated several stations have picked
up a few hundredths of an inch of rainfall overnight through this
morning. Visible imagery is indicating middle and high clouds
extend southward to Kings and Tulare counties while Kern County
is mostly sunny this morning. Little change is expected through
this afternoon and with a mild southwest flow prevailing over
central California...another day of above normal temperatures is expected.
The forecast for today looks to be on track so am not planning to
update this morning.


12z WRF is indicating impulses moving through the moisture band
will bring rain at times to Merced and Mariposa counties through
Thursday night with some light precipitation possible further
southward. Snow levels will generally be at or above 8000 feet
with a mild airmass in place south of the front over norcal
further south...there will be a chance of rain as far south as
Kings and Tulare counties during this time frame while Kern County
will remain precipitation free through Thursday night. The eastern
Pacific trough is prognosticated to deepen and approach California on Friday
bringing increased moisture to our area. The trough is expected to
move inland on Friday night and Saturday resulting in a period of
significant precipitation across our area. Rfc quantitative precipitation forecast forecasts are
indicating 2 to 3 inches of liquid equivalent during this time
frame across portions of the southern Sierra Nevada while much of
the San Joaquin Valley County pick up between half an inch to an
inch of rainfall.


Medium range models are indicating snow levels will plummet on
Saturday afternoon and evening as a strong cold front pushes
southward through central California. Showery precipitation is expected to
prevail across our area on Sunday with a cold and unstable airmass
in place. Travel over the passes in Kern County and over the
southern Sierra Nevada foothills will be impacted on Sunday as
snow levels lower to 2000 to 2500 feet. Thunderstorms will also be
possible over the San Joaquin Valley and adjacent foothills on
Sunday as a result of the unstable airmass and cold pool aloft.
The trough is expected to move east of our area on Monday with
scattered showers continuing over our area as central California will be
under a cold cyclonic flow aloft. An upper ridge is then prognosticated
by the medium range models to build into California on Tuesday and bring a
warming and drying trend to our area for the middle portion of
next week.

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

[end of update]


13-Mar-2012 9:34 AM

Jet Stream Slow to Move South - Rain Delayed Another 24-36 Hours

Unfortunately, the low pressure systems that had been predicted to arrive over the area by now are remaining north of the area at the time of this report, which means that we will not be seeing any significant chance of rain today. The latest model runs now indicate the first rain won't arrive until later tonight and into tomorrow.

This is just a continuation of the very unfortunate pattern we have been forced to endure this entire wet season, and the promised week of rain/snow is now seriously in doubt.

You can see from this latest NextRad radar image of the state that there is significant precipitation north of the area, but it isn't really moving. It has been sitting in its current position for the last several hours.

Weather Image

Latest IR SAT Image

Weather Image

At least for now, the wet weekend we had previously mentioned is still on track, but as we have seen with the early week forecast, you just never know anymore. It is getting to the point that forecasting rain for the Sierra is getting nearly impossible to predict.

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
856 am PDT Tuesday Mar 13 2012



Synopsis....
a series of low pressure systems will begin to move
through the region this evening and will keep temperatures at or
below average through the end of the week. There will also be a
chance of precipitation each day from Fresno north...spreading
south into Kern County possibly as early as Thursday. Unsettled
weather is expected to continue into the weekend.

Discussion...

a moist upper trough off is situated off the Pacific northwest
coast and is well depicted by IR/WV. Visible imagery is indicating some
middle/high clouds from Fresno County northward with radar composite
indicating precipitation with the Pacific northwest trough north of our County warning forecast area.

Areas south of Fresno County are mostly sunny this morning. 12z
WRF/GFS are both more progressive with this system moving it
inland acorss the Pacific northwest today. As a result...somewhat less
moisture riding underneath the trough will affect our area today
as most of it will remain over norcal. Infrared indicating a weak vorticity
maximum near 39n/127w which may push the precipitation band southward
into Merced and Mariposa counties by this afternoon. Have
therefore kept mention of a chance of rain for our northern most
areas with the snow level around 6500 feet. Precipitation chances
decrease substantially south of Merced and Mariposa counties. Have
subsequently lowered probability of precipitation and sky cover slightly for today and
have also nudged up maximum temperatures by a few degrees in a
morning update.


12z WRF/GFS are trending a bit slower at pushing the moisture band
further south. For the next two days there will mostly cloud y
skies and a chance of precipitation for Merced and Mariposa
counties with precipitation chances and cloud cover decreasing
further southward. The mild southwest flow will result in
temperatures remaining above seasonal normals for middle March for
the remainder of the work week across our area.


The medium range models continue to indicate a deep upper trough
pushing into California by Friday night which will bring a wet weekend to
our area along with much colder temperatures it it slowly pushes
eastward through the western Continental U.S.. snow levels are prognosticated to
lower to around 3000 feet by Saturday night and travel over the
major passes will likely be adversely impacted on Saturday night
and Sunday. A cold and unstable airmass will provide for a slight
chance of thunderstorms over the San Joaquin Valley and adjacent
foothills on Sunday and Sunday night. Our area will remain under a
cold cyclonic flow on the back side of the departing trough on
Monday which will keep a chance of showers over our area before an
upper level ridge builds into California next Tuesday and begins a warming
and drying trend.

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

[end of update]


11-Mar-2012 9:26 PM

Most Significant and Long Lasting Wet Pattern of the Season Begins Monday Night!

After months of dry days with very few storm systems since November, we are very pleased to report that the Bass Lake area will finally see some serious winter weather that will last through the entire week and possibly into early next week as well.

The jet stream, which has remained far north of our area most of the season, will gradually shift further and further south as the week progresses, bringing with it a series of low pressure systems with precipitation chances increasing as we get closer to the weekend. The first in this series of storms arrives over the area Monday evening and into Tuesday after a day of mostly sunny skies Monday. We will go from a 20% chance of showers early Monday evening, to a 50% chance of rain beginning late Monday night into Tuesday morning and continuing through Wednesday night.

The next major pacific storm system will arrive over the area on Thursday as the jet stream shifts even further to the south. Come Friday, yet another pacific storm will move into the area bringing heavier precipitation to Central California with lowering snow levels and a 70% chance of rain and snow by Friday and continuing through Saturday night. The storm parade continues Sunday night and possibly into early next week with additional systems coming in off of the pacific, although it is still too early at this point to predict exactly how much additional precipitation we will see after the system on Saturday.

All in all this is fantastic news for the Southern Sierra which has been hit by the worst sustained winter drought in the region's history. However, as most of you who follow this site know by now, even with this impressive procession of storms this week, we will still fall far short of a normal rainfall total for this season no matter how many systems we see between now and the end of the wet season. There has just been far too many months with little to no precipitation for any hope of making up that missing 50 inches. Time has simply run out for us for this season.

Still... We should receive enough precipitation from these rain makers to put a slight dent in the precipitation deficit for the 2012 wet season. Exactly how much will be added to the seasonal total remains to be seen, but we are more optimistic about these upcoming storms than we have been all year!

This is GREAT NEWS for everyone who lives in the Southern Sierra!

Latest IR SAT Images

Weather Image

Weather Image"

This will be a very busy and exciting week for all local weather buffs who have been waiting months for a week like this, and we hope that you will make basslake-weather.com your storm tracking HQ for the latest real-time weather condition alert postings and live NextRad radar screens as they are automatically updated by the station's weather computer.

And if you haven't already done so... Be sure to book mark our Wide-Angle Precipitation Map to track the storms in nearly real-time using this custom Next-Rad storm tracking radar map for the Bass Lake area!

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
340 PM PDT sun Mar 11 2012



Synopsis...
a low pressure trough pattern is beginning to develop which will
keep temperatures at or below normal through the week. There will
also be a chance of precipitation each day beginning Tuesday
through the end of the week. The best chances of precipitation
will be for areas from Fresno County northward.

Discussion...
temperatures are running around 5-10 degrees below this time
yesterday across the central California interior...as system one
in an upcoming series of systems continues to push through the
region. Mainly just some thin high clouds are associated with the
system over our area. Expect a slightly cooler night across our
area tonight and a few showers can not be ruled out over the
Sierra near Yosemite. Winds will also be locally gusty over the
mountain ridges and through and below the passes of Kern County.


Monday looks generally dry and seasonable behind the departing
system and ahead of the next approaching disturbance. A moderately
moist onshore flow with occasional passing disturbances will then
bring precipitation chances to much of the area through the end of
the week with temperatures hovering near climatology. Mostly moderate
snowfall amounts are prognosticated until the end of the week...slightly
higher in the Yosemite vicinity Tuesday and Wednesday nights.


By Friday more significant cooling and precipitation amounts are
on tap as more potent shortwave energy drops into the region.

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

Stay tuned to our web site throughout the week for continuing journal updates as storm conditions warrant!

[end of update]



10-Mar-2012 10:12 AM

Significant Pattern Change Coming Next Week - Best Chance for Measurable Rain/Snow Friday and Saturday

The current high pressure ridge that has brought us so many days of spring-like weather will be breaking down and moving east today. This will set the stage for a series of low pressure troughs to move into the area as soon as Sunday night into Monday morning. High clouds are already being observed over the station from the first short-wave trough, but this first trough will unfortunately not bring us any moisture.

If the current model runs hold true, the storm systems that will be guided into our area next week would be the first sustained wet weather pattern we have seen this entire wet season, and could bring some much needed snow to the Sierra. The current Sierra snow pack is only 30% of normal as of this report, and at this late in the season it would take a miracle to prevent serious drought conditions this spring and summer, along with an extreme fire risk beginning as early as April.

Most of these systems will be centered far to the north of the Bass Lake area, but we could still see some precipitation from the first few. A better chance for significant precipitation comes towards the end of next week and into next weekend with rain/snow over the Sierra and rain in the SJV.

As we have seen over the past several months, the overall weather trends this year have been tilted very negatively towards maintaining any sustainable wet pattern, so we won't know for sure if the wet pattern will hold for the entire week, nor how much measurable precipitation we will actually receive until the systems are literally over the area. Weather prediction is never easy, but this year it has been nearly impossible.

The Latest Long Range Eastern Pacific IR SAT Image

Weather Image

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
907 am PST Sat Mar 10 2012



Synopsis...
high pressure will weaken and move east of the region. This
will open the door for a low pressure pattern bringing cooling to
the area Sunday and possibly much of next week. Precipitation is
expected later in the week with the best chances from Fresno
County north.


Discussion...
very weak upper level shortwave will pass through
today. Only change in weather with this trough will be a few high clouds
and slightly lower maximum temperatures. No update needed this a.M.


Previous discussion... /issued 208 am PST Sat Mar 10 2012/


Discussion...water vapor imagery shows the ridge over California
becoming elongated and narrowing as the influence of the big
Pacific trough is increasing. For today the ridge will still
maintain control over central California with the only sensible
indicator of a change in the pattern residing with some high
clouds. By tomorrow the first short wave trough is prognosticated to move
into the Pacific northwest and just clip northern California.
Although I don't think it will rain, I have included some slight
chance probability of precipitation for the north to better coordinate with other weather
offices. The projected pattern for next week continues to feature
a series of wet disturbances taking aim on the Pacific northwest
and northern California. Again, the Main Point of concern is the
southern extent of the precipitation threat. Based on the latest
model data, I have made just some minor tweeks to the pop and
weather grids with the north having the highest threat of getting
wet. If current model data holds true, Friday and Saturday will
have the best chance of a widespread precipitation event as both
GFS and European model (ecmwf) models drive a much colder through deep into
Southern California. Snow levels should fall to rather low
elevations is the amount of projected cold air comes to fruition.
All in all in this very dry year any precipitation is rare and
much needed for snow pack.

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

A reminder to set your clocks ahead one hour tonight, as daylight savings time begins at 2AM Sunday, March 11th.

[end of update]



07-Mar-2012 3:38 PM

Dry Weather Returns with Another Warming Trend Through the Weekend

Gusty winds continue over the area today as the last remnants of Tuesday's system exit the area. Conditions should remain sunny and dry through the weekend as a warming trend replaces the low pressure trough from earlier in the week. Long range models are indicating the possibility of another storm system early next week, but models have yet to agree on quantitative precipitation for our area, as the center of this next system will be far north of our location.

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
251 PM PST Wednesday Mar 7 2012


Synopsis...
colder air has moved into the area and will remain through tomorrow
morning. An upper level ridge will begin to build into the region
and moderate temperatures tomorrow afternoon. Dry conditions and
near normal temperatures will remain through the weekend.

Discussion..
upper low continues to head east towards The Four
Corners region as upper ridging begins to build in over the West
Coast. Some breezy to locally gusty northeast to east winds will
continue to affect the mountains and desert this afternoon then
diminish later tonight. Ideal radiation cooling conditions will
be in place tonight with light winds and clear skies. This should
allow temperatures in much of the San Joaquin Valley to drop to
below freezing for several hours overnight. A freeze warning is
in effect for the central and southern San Joaquin Valley from
1 am to 8 am Thursday morning. Upper ridging will strengthen over
the region through Friday bringing a warming trend under sunny
skies.

Several degrees warming on Thursday will bring temperatures
up to near seasonable levels then a few degrees above by Friday.
Models agree with breaking down the upper ridge Friday night as
a weak short wave trough races over the pacnw. From there a long
wave trough develops over the epac/west Continental U.S. Anchored by the
Gulf of Alaska low. There remains quite a bit of uncertainty
regarding the individual short waves rounding the trough and over
the West Coast.

Timing differences continue and now the 12z European model (ecmwf)
has shifted these impulses farther north than the GFS. Have made
little changes to the extended with slight chance probability of precipitation remaining
in from around Fresno County north beginning Sunday night and
continuing through the week. Temperatures will cool back down near
climatology by Sunday as the trough settles over the region.


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

We will update the journal later this week as weather conditions warrant.

[end of update]



06-Mar-2012 12:46 PM

UPDATE:

Picking up some snow flurries and occasional ice pellets at the station now. Unstable air is creating some upslope precipitation which may intensify as the partial clearing heats the lower atmosphere and creates a good environment for upslope precipitation and possibly some isolated thunder storms.

[end of update]


06-Mar-2012 8:46 AM

Measurable Rain Arrives Over Bass Lake!

We are pleased that we were wrong about the precipitation question this morning as the low pressure trough and accompanying cold front moves through the area. The station has already recorded 0.11 inches of rain over the last 40 minutes with a very dense and steady light rainfall. The system is moving through at a very high rate of speed, so we are not sure how long the current conditions will remain in place.

Temps are expected to continue to drop throughout the day as the system moves through, so the rain may transition over to snow later, and all moisture on the ground will likely freeze solid later today and through this evening. Driving conditions will be hazardous in the Sierra during this event, and high winds are forecast for the SJV due to the pressure gradient west of the Sierra range.

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
459 am PST Tuesday Mar 6 2012



Synopsis...
a frontal system will move through the forecast area Tuesday. Gusty
winds and much cooler temperatures will accompany this system,
however little precipitation is expected.

Discussion...
a moisture-limited frontal system continues pushing into the
region accompanied by mainly middle and high cloudiness and little
precipitation. Still expect some showers over the Sierra zones
today as the front tracks through the area...with snow levels
dropping into the foothill elevations. Due to the scant associated
moisture...snowfall accumulations will be relatively light and no
advisories will be required. Even a light accumulation of snow on
the roads can make travel treacherous however and this is
highlighted in a Special Weather Statement. This is even more
notable in the Kern County mountains...where heavily traveled
passes may see some frozen precipitation later this afternoon and
evening in upslope flow.


The frontal system will also bring windy conditions as onshore
surface pressure gradients strengthen by this afternoon
accompanied by a strong upper level jet. A High Wind Warning
remains in effect for the Kern County mountains and desert areas
this afternoon and evening as well as a Wind Advisory for the
valley zones. Later tonight as the winds subside and colder air
settles into the valley...expect some freezing overnight
conditions in the coldest locales. The temperatures should be
borderline between frost advisory and freeze warning criteria.
Given the likely sensitivity of area vegetation this time of the
season...we have opted to upgrade our freeze watch to a freeze
warning for the valley zones for Wednesday morning. Strong gusty
winds could also spill over the higher Sierra elevations from the
east on the backside of the system late Tuesday night and early
Wednesday morning.


Conditions should clear out Wednesday as the system departs.
More freezing valley temperatures may be possible overnight
Wednesday night as cold air remains in place. There will then
be a general warming trend through the end of the week as high
pressure rebuilds over the region...with afternoon highs quickly
recovering to above normal readings.


Conditions will become more seasonable by early next week as a
broad trough displaces the ridge overhead and onshore flow
develops.

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

We will update the journal later as conditions warrant.

[end of update]



05-Mar-2012 2:16 PM

Cool Down Tuesday and Wednesday Followed by Another Warm Up This Weekend

The odd weather continues with another ridge currently bringing the area June-like temps and dry weather. Things will change dramatically tonight and into Tuesday as a low pressure trough grazes the forecast area dropping temps by as much as 20 degrees from our highs today. and the past several days.

Once this trough moves through, yet another amplified ridge will rebuild back into the region raising temps back up above seasonal norms. The NWS is giving us a 50% chance of precipitation Tuesday, but models remain conflicted on this solution, so we personally are not expecting to see any measurable precipitation from this low.

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1020 am PST Monday Mar 5 2012


Synopsis...
high pressure that has been in place the last few days will
continue to weaken. Tomorrow a storm system will move into the
region bringing strong winds and minimal precipitation. As the
storm moves out late Tuesday night colder temperatures will usher
in early Wednesday morning. A ridge will begin building into the
area Thursday morning along with warmer temperatures.

Discussion...
satellite loops show an upper-level low off the coast of northern
Baja California California. This low has spun some high clouds over the central
California interior...otherwise it has had no impact on the Hanford
warning/forecast area.


The GOES water-vapor loop shows an upper-level trough approaching
the Pacific northwest coast at this time. Limited moisture appears
available to this system as an upper-level low near 35n/152w is
pulling the moisture stream away from the trough. The 12z NAM has
picked up on this and reduced quantitative precipitation forecast from Sunday/S runs. In contrast...
the GFS has increased quantitative precipitation forecast from Sunday/S runs.


The main concern for Tuesday continues to be winds. Both the NAM and
GFS continue to forecast strong surface-pressure gradients across
the region. The 12z GFS forecasts the San Francisco-Las Vegas
gradient to peak at 21.5 mb...down slightly from the 18z Sunday/S
run which ha a peak value of 23.4. The 12z NAM has a stronger peak
gradient /20.6 mb/ than its 18z Sunday run...which had a peak of
19.5 mb. The MOS guidance for the Kern County deserts continues to
forecast warning-level wind speeds...so the High Wind Warning looks
on track.

Previous discussion... /issued 308 am PST Monday Mar 5 2012/

Upper ridge will hold in one more day with Spring like conditions
across the central California interior. With temperatures well above
normal and mostly clear skies over the region. We will see another
beautiful day before we are reminded it is still winter.


Low pressure center in the Gulf of Alaska will drop south today along
the West Coast of the US and bring a very strong cold front across
the region on Tuesday. Very little in the way of precipitation is expected
with the system as it moves through. The big concern will be the
very strong winds and significantly colder temperatures. We will
see high temperatures drop from upper 70s to lower 80s in the sjv
today to upper 50s to lower 60s on Tuesday...around a 20 degree
drop in 24 hours!


The winds associated with the front will be valley wide and quite
strong...especially along the west side. Wind gusts could approach 50
miles an hour on Tuesday as the front pushes through. Blowing dust
and tumbleweeds and loose items will make conditions hazardous
for travel and just being outside. Isolated power outages are also
possible and maybe a few downed trees. Winds are expected to die
off later in the afternoon and evening as high pressure builds in.


The airmass will be quite cold behind the front and we have issued
a freeze watch for the sjv for cold temperatures in the sjv
Tuesday night into Wednesday am...mainly towards sunrise Wednesday. Temperatures
are expected to get down to the upper 20s in the colder rural
areas and into the lower 30s in the urban areas. The South Valley
will probably be in the middle 30s near bfl with some isolated
colder spots in rural areas. Cold air will stick around another
day as temperatures are expected to remain below normal on Wednesday and into
Thursday am before moderating on Thursday.


Upper ridge will build in over the area on Thursday PM and continue
into Sat. A weak upper level disturbance will move across norcal
early Saturday as a weak front dissipates across central California. Some
cooling can be expected on Sat...however temperatures will still be above
normal this weekend. The trough will move through on Saturday with
an increase in clouds. We have kept out probability of precipitation for now and will see if
the models continue to put in a slight chance. The models are not
in very good agreement right now with this feature and we are
leaning towards the GFS at this time.


A large scale long wave trough of low pressure develops in the
epac and brings a cold front towards the region by Sunday night.
Have introduced probability of precipitation for Sunday night and Monday as both the GFS
and the ecm are advertising the front.


Confidence is high in the short term with the wind event and the
freeze event. Models do differ with the short wave trough on
Saturday and become aligned again with sundays long wave trough.

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

We will update the journal later this week as weather conditions warrant.

[end of update]



02-Mar-2012 8:22 AM

Dry Pattern Returns

The first week of March will unfortunately be a dry one as yet another amplified ridge builds in over the area beginning today. There is a slight chance of showers on Tuesday, but models have yet to agree on a solution so far. We expect things to remain dry through the weekend and likely through all of next week as well. This doesn't bode well for the remainder of the wet season with our seasonal total now only 11.00 inches. This 2011/2012 seasonal total is close to 50 inches below where we should be at this point in the season.

The snowpack in the high country of the Sierra is still only 8-10% of normal which will not provide much for Bass Lake's water level come the spring thaw, which is now less than two months away.

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
345 am PST Friday Mar 2 2012



Synopsis....
high pressure moving into central California will keep skies clear
and temperatures mild through the weekend.


Discussion...
central California is currently in a dry northwest flow aloft. Weak
cyclonic curvature continues to produce some low clouds from
Hanford and Visalia south to the north slopes of the tehachapis.
These clouds should gradually erode this morning...but may linger
over the foothills into the afternoon. Temperatures today moderate a few
degrees over yesterday...but still a couple of degrees below average.


Longwave ridge in the east Pacific is centered along 140w. This ridge
will gradually move toward the West Coast the next 24-36 hour then
move inland sun. Temperatures will warm to about 10 degrees above climatology by
sun. The ridge will begin to flatten out later sun into Monday as
as a shortwave trough digs southeast out of the glfak. Models still have
varying solutions on the strength and movement of this system as it
moves across the western US. Overall...the Euro has been the most
consistent model in dragging a moderately wet cold front across
central California Tuesday. GFS has been mostly dry with this
feature...though it did bring a wet front through on yesterdays 12z
run. GFS keeps it more of an inside slider through the Great
Basin...which is similar to the Gem. For now have kept the forecast
trended in favor of the Euro just because of its better stability
the past 2 days. So...Monday will be a nice day with temperatures above
normal...then much cooler with a chance of showers Tuesday. This
trough will move through pretty quick...with a ridge rebuilding Wednesday.


By the end of the week GFS and the Euro still at odds on east Pacific
evolution of systems. The Euro holds on to a stronger ridge through
the end of the week...while GFS breaks the ridge down by Thursday and
precipitation precipitation coming in on a SW flow aloft. The stronger ridge
solution that far out is probably the better way to go...and will
not put probability of precipitation in just yet. And...especially not yet since there
are still too many variables with the Tuesday system.

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

As always, we will update the journal as conditions warrant.

[end of update]


01-Mar-2012 12:22 PM

50% Chance of Rain/Snow Showers Through This Evening

We ended February 2012 with only 1.83 inches of precipitation for the entire month. This was far below our average of 9.50 inches in what is normally the wettest month of the year. Our seasonal total now stands at 11.00 inches which is over 50 inches below an average seasonal total as of the first of March.

Our total rain for yesterday was 0.32 inches, with most of that precipitation falling as rain. This low pressure system is now moving out of our area but there is still enough instability in the atmosphere to bring us a 50% chance of additional precipitation through this evening. We have already observed a few scattered showers in the last hour, but not enough to tip the rain bucket.

The extended forecast calls for a gradual clearing by tomorrow with a return to clear and dry conditions through at least the coming weekend. Models are indicating the possibility of another low pressure system for the middle of next week, but there is not a high level of confidence in any significant precipitation from this next system. While the NWS hasn't ruled it out, they are sticking with a dry forecast for next week as of this report.

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
935 am PST Thursday Mar 1 2012



Synopsis...
a system passing through the area tonight will begin to lift out
today. But...before the storm moves out there are valley rain
showers expected especially north of Fresno. Mountain snow showers
with breezy conditions are also expected. Windy conditions are
likely in the High Desert areas today. Below normal temperatures in
the region will last through Friday. A ridge will then begin to
build and bring warmer temperatures to the area this weekend.

Update...
minor update this morning to place most of Fresno County under a
chance of precipitation today. Based on regional Doppler radar returns
from northern California and upper air analysis...could see some
precipitation pushing into the northern sections of the district later
today. As the flow aloft turns more westerly...precipitation shadowing
will occur over the southern sections. Yet...the westerly flow
aloft...along with pooling of cooler air around Bakersfield...will
allow for strong winds over the Kern County mountains and deserts
today. Upper air observations currently show northwest to north
winds of 20 to 30 knots...which should support Wind Advisory level
speeds for the above mentioned locations. Therefore...will keep
the Wind Advisory statement in place for today as surface
observation values were reaching 40 miles per hour this morning. Again...
will only make minor changes to place Fresno County in the chance
category of precipitation for today.


Previous discussion... /issued 407 am PST Thursday Mar 1 2012/

the upper level trough over the region was shifting slowly east.
Partial clearing occurring in the valley early should fill back in
as the morning progresses and low level instability increases.


Several vorticity maximum/S moving down the back side have reached
norcal...then tracked inland. The last one on watervapor pictures is
over norcal now...and heading east. This basically takes precipitation
out of central California today. However there is still enough energy to
keep at least some slight chance probability of precipitation down to Fresno. Elsewhere
its done.


Snow accumulations in the southern Sierra from Fresno County north
will be light and scattered. Cancelled the winter weather products
for this area. Temperatures today will be well below normal by 5-10 degrees.
Gradients will pick up this afternoon and early evening for some gusty
winds across the Kern mtns/deserts. These winds will begin to
subside before midnight as the winds shift to the N-NE.


Skies will begin to clear tonight...except over and near the
foothills where trapped moisture will keep some low clouds from
about Fresno south into the Tehachapi Mountains


Models in pretty good agreement with a longwave ridge developing
in the east Pacific over the next 24hrs...then slowly shifting it
inland this coming weekend. Temperatures Friday will still be slightly below
climatology as region will still be in the cooler northwest flow aloft ahead of
the ridge. The weekend will see stronger warming as the ridge
shifts inland...and a weak offshore flow across central California.


For the first half of the new week...models have various solutions
on a middle-week shortwave moving across the area. Made no change to
previous mainly dry forecast. The European model (ecmwf) is wettest Tuesday/Tuesday night.

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

[end of update]


29-Feb-2012 3:27 PM

Light to Moderate "Rain" Falling at the Station Now

We have picked up a total of 0.08 inches of rain so far today with all but 0.01 coming down as rain and not snow. Temps rose into the high 30s to low 40s just after 11AM which transitioned our precipitation over to rain. Light to moderate showers have been observed on and off all day today.

Current radar is showing scattered cells of precipitation moving into our area from the south west. If the precipitation continues into the evening hours, we fully expect that temps will fall back down into the low 30s and snow will return to the area at that time.

[end of update]


29-Feb-2012 9:45 AM

Picking Up Some Light Snow - Nothing Measurable Yet

Light snow has started falling at the station, but so far there hasn't been enough to tip the bucket. No accumulation observed as of this report and current radar is showing a scattered precipitation pattern with nothing terribly organized either coming in from the coast or forming locally as upslope precipitation. Hopefully things will intensify as we begin to see more ground level heating from solar radiation later today.

Latest NextRad and IR SAT Images

Weather Image

Weather Image"

Weather Image"

Weather Image"

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
920 am PST Wednesday Feb 29 2012



Synopsis...
a system passing through the area today will lift out by Thursday.
Below normal temperatures are expected at least through Friday.
Valley rain especially Fresno north is likely with mountain snow and
strong winds over the Sierra peaks. Windy conditions is expected to
transit into the High Desert by Thursday.


Update...
precipitation...heavy at times...continues to race across northern
California with the back edge near Interstate 80. Based on the
track of the frontal system and the upper jet driving the system
southeast...will see precipitation spread further into the district this
morning before the storm diminishes. Snow level based on the
Oakland and Vandenburg upper air observations will be near 4000
feet with some convective snow near 3000 feet. Heavy snow will
remain closer to areas above 5000 feet with 1 to 2 feet expected
by early Thursday morning. Upper air observations were also
showing 40 t0 50 knot (45 to 60 mph) winds around the 700mb
(10-thousand foot) level. Therefore...will see very windy
conditions along the Sierra crest as winds could gusts to near 100
miles per hour. Further down in elevation...winds could gusts to 25 to 35 miles per hour
during frontal passage today. Will maintain the winter weather and
winds products in effect for today as the storm is ongoing. Main
concern will be the progression of the storm further south and
allowing strong winds over Kern County on Thursday. Will evaluate
if a High Wind Warning is warranted for Thursday. At the moment...
will make no updates this morning and just watch the action
unfold.

Previous Discussion

The next incoming storm system is beginning to push into the
region from the Pacific and radar shows some showers beginning to
encroach on our northern counties. The area of rain and showers
will continue to spread southward across our zones as the system
tracks farther inland. Today will be cloudy cool and breezy with
the best precipitation chances remaining mainly north of Kern
County. The strongest winds will occur over the Sierra crest and
through and below mountain passes in Kern County. A Wind Advisory
continues for the Kern County mountain and desert areas this
afternoon.


Precipitation chances continue tonight through Thursday evening as
additional energy tracks through the broad cyclonic flow over the
region. The incoming jet energy will keep gusty winds over the
mountains and desert areas through Thursday and the Wind Advisory
has been extended through noon Thursday...while a high wind watch
has been issued from noon Thursday to Thursday evening for all
the Kern County mountains and deserts.


The bulk of the precipitation will occur today and tonight...with
over a foot of snowfall accumulation possible over the higher
elevations of the Sierra north of Kings Canyon and a few inches of
snow possible down to around 3000 feet. The Winter Storm Warning
for the Sierra north of Kings Canyon and a Winter Weather Advisory
for the adjacent foothills above 3000 feet thus remain in effect
through early Thursday morning.


After Thursday...drier and calmer conditions are in store as high
pressure builds into the region. Temperatures will warm to around
seasonal averages by Saturday and continue to warm a few degrees
into the first part of next week.

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

We will post additional updates today as conditions warrant.

[end of update]


28-Feb-2012 3:23 PM

Wednesday Storm Looking Better and Wetter!

Unlike the weak Monday system that split before heading south of our location, the next system arriving late tonight looks a lot more promising for our area both in track and in precipitation probability. The NWS is giving us an 80% chance of rain/snow tomorrow although we are still not certain exactly how much precipitation we will receive from this next system. The latest reports are suggesting that this system could linger around through early Thursday with possible snow showers Wednesday night into Thursday morning.

There is also a 20% chance that we will see some light rain/snow showers later this evening as well. As of this report we are under mostly cloudy skies with some sprinkles at 39.8 degrees F.

Latest IR SAT Images

Weather Image

Weather Image"

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
255 PM PST Tuesday Feb 28 2012



Synopsis...
the next system will pass through the area beginning Wednesday
morning and lift out by Thursday. Below normal temperatures are
expected at least through Friday. Valley rain especially Fresno
north is likely with mountain snow and strong winds over the
Sierra peaks. Windy conditions is expected to transit the High
Desert areas by Thursday.

Discussion...
strong upper level low center parked off the Pacific northwest
coast will move inland very slowly and allow an elongated upper
trough to move through the region starting late tonight and
continuing through Wednesday night. A very cold system with 500 mb temperatures
near the core of -36c off the Pacific northwest coast shows up very nicely
with the infrared imagery this afternoon. A rapidly developing wave along
the boundary is taking aim towards cen cal and the models have
just been picking up on this feature in the recent model run.


With a wetter and faster frontal boundary approaching the region
we have hoisted some no routine weather products for low snow
levels in the southern Sierra north of Kings River canyon. Snow
levels are expected to start out around 3000 feet and lower to
around 2500 feet on Wednesday as the coldest air moves through behind
the front. Snow amounts are expected to be 4 to 6 inches between 3
and 5 thousand feet. Snow is expected to be 6 to 12 inches 5 to 8
thousand feet with some amounts approaching 2 feet above 8
thousand feet.


The timing of the precipitation begins around 10-12z (2-4 am pst) tonight
across the Sierra. The precipitation will move into the valley by
middle morning and continue through the day with around one third of
an inch in the northern sjv to around one tenth of an inch near bfl.
The NAM model is keeping the Kern County area dry for this event
and bfl may not even see anything. One thing for certain is that
Kern County will see winds. Winds are expected to pick up with the
front as it moves through the region Wednesday afternoon. We have
issued a wind advection for the Kern County mountains and NE desert
region of Kern County for Wednesday and may possibly need another one
for Thursday.


The system is expected to linger into Thursday as onshore flow
continues over the cen cal area. Have increased probability of precipitation for Thursday
and kept in showers as the cool pool moves by. Upper ridge will
move in for the weekend with very nice conditions returning to the
region on Saturday. Temperatures will once again be above normal
and dry conditions are expected into early next week. Another
trough of low pressure is expected to move into the area by
Tuesday and continue into Wednesday. Have left the extended alone with
the immediate concern being the system for tomorrow.

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

We will post updates on this system tomorrow as local conditions warrant.

[end of update]


27-Feb-2012 4:16 PM

Light Snow Now Arriving at the Station

We are finally seeing some measurable precipitation in the form of light snow here at the station as of this report. So far the station has recorded 0.03 inches of liquid equivalent with a light dusting of accumulation on the ground. So far the snow is not sticking to pavement, but is sticking to trees, grass, soil and cars.

The current temperature is sitting at 35.5 F, so the snowfall should continue as long as we are receiving measurable precipitation. Local radar courtesy of our Wide-Angle Precipitation Map page shows some upslope generated cells of moisture moving over the Bass Lake area from the south.

Weather Image

We will update the journal again as conditions warrant. In the meantime, enjoy the snow and be careful on the roads as we head into the evening hours where temps will likely fall into the freezing range.

[end of update]


27-Feb-2012 11:55 AM

Storm #1 Fails to Deliver!

The first low pressure trough has arrived over the area, but so far the precipitation amounts have been very disappointing. Radar shows what little moisture contained in this wimpy system far to our north and primarily down near Southern California, with nothing measurable so far at the station. We see no measurable rain reported at any of the other stations within a 30 mile radius of our location.

We have seen a few snow flurries since dawn, but nothing approaching the level needed to tip the rain bucket.

Latest NextRad Radar

Weather Image

Weather Image

The NWS is still giving us a 60% chance of showers today, but based on our own observations this morning, we remain dubious that we will see anything measurable from this first system. Definitely a disappointment since we so badly need all the precipitation we can get before the patterns shift towards the typical dry spring/summer patterns.

A second and currently forecasted wetter system will arrive over the area on Wednesday with a break in the two systems expected on Tuesday.

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
845 am PST Monday Feb 27 2012



Synopsis...
a low pressure system will continue bringing scattered rain
showers and mountain snow showers to the region today. This system
will also bring much colder air and an increase in winds to the
area. Another system is anticipated to arrive Wednesday bringing
with it the next chance of precipitation for the region.

Discussion...
system is coming through the region in pieces this
morning and this is keeping the precipitation output at a minimum.
With the main vorticity center rotating into Southern California
it appears the most concentrated precipitation will occur over the
Kern County mountains. Morning soundings from Vandenberg and
Oakland show the freezing level around 3000 feet and this matches
up well with the current gridded forecast package. Will not need
to make any updates at this time. The Winter Weather Advisory will
likely verify nicely and conditions over the Grapevine and
Tehachapi Pass will need to be watched.


The storm complex is prognosticated to lifted quickly to the east
overnight with ridging for Tuesday. In contrast to today's
southern system, Wednesday will feature a trough targeting the
north. More to follow later.

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

As always, we will update the journal as weather conditions warrant.

[end of update]


26-Feb-2012 9:56 PM

Snow Showers Likely Monday and Again on Wednesday - Snow Levels Down to 2000 Feet Monday!

Two low pressure troughs will move through our area beginning late tonight (Sunday). The first system's primary precipitation will arrive early on Monday morning with increasing probability throughout the day. This first system is expected to bring a 60% chance of measurable precipitation in the form of snow to the Bass Lake area through early Tuesday morning. The current precipitation estimates are on the light side, so any accumulations will likely not exceed 3 inches at our elevation. Snow levels will be as low as 2000 feet during this first system, so most Sierra foothill communities can expect any precipitation they receive to fall as snow through all of Monday. Even though snow levels will be low, the precipitation amounts will be much less further down the Sierra and the SJV floor.

There is a 20% chance of rain/snow tonight after 10PM, but so far we see nothing on the radar across the entire state. It is possible that the first precipitation we see will be upslope generated, and as a result will not be as easily trackable since upslope generated precipitation usually forms directly over the areas that receive it.

Tuesday should be sunny, but another weak low pressure system will arrive over the area on Wednesday for a similar round of light snow but higher snow levels down to about 4000 feet. We will update the journal as needed based on current conditions during both weather events.

Latest IR SAT Images

Weather Image

Weather Image

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
915 PM PST sun Feb 26 2012



Synopsis...
a low pressure system is expected to arrive by Monday morning. A
much colder airmass is associated with this system and will bring a
chance of rain and mountain snow...with snow possible on the higher
elevations of the southern Sierra Nevada foothills. Another system
is anticipated to arrive Wednesday with the next chance of
precipitation for the region.

Discussion...
the weather pattern is changing as the next trough approaches the
Hanford warning/forecast area. The cold air behind the front that
moved through the region Saturday lowered temperatures to below
normal today...with central and southern San Joaquin Valley highs
only in the upper 50s to middle 60s.


Satellite loops show the upper-level low near 36n/128w...west of
Monterey Bay. The 18z UKMET had the best placement of this feature...
although the forecasted position for 06z Monday /2200 PST Sunday/
was a bit east of the actual position at 03z Monday /1900 PST
Sunday/. The low has been tracking south...although the 12z European model (ecmwf)
turns it eastward toward Point Conception by 12z Monday.


The trough is developing a split...with the northern branch closing
off near Cape Mendocino while the southern branch is anchored by the
Pacific low. Based on model timing...precipitation will move into
the northern part of the Hanford warning/forecast area by 12z Monday
with the northern low moving across the central California interior
between 18z /1000 PST/ Monday and 06z Tuesday /2200 PST Monday/.
While the models still have some differences on the specific details
concerning this storm...the models are in agreement with the upper-
level trough moving into the Great Basin by 12z Tuesday.


The 00z models are wetter with this system...and snow accumulations
of 1-3 inches will be possible on the passes through the Tehachapi
Mountains. Gusty winds will develop over the Kern County mountains
and deserts by midday Monday with gusts of 45-55 miles per hour continuing
overnight Monday night. Have issued a Winter Weather Advisory for
the Kern County mountains from 20z /noon PST/ Monday to 06z Tuesday
/2200 PST Monday/ and a Wind Advisory for the Kern County deserts
from 20z Monday to 12z /0400 PST/ Tuesday.


There will be a break in the weather Tuesday...but the next storm
will arrive Wednesday. The 00z models forecast this to be a wetter
system with snow levels around 3500-4000 feet near Yosemite to 4500
feet in the Kern County mountains. However...snow levels could be
placed lower as the details of this next storm are refined.


A cool and dry northwest flow aloft will be over the region
Thursday before a building ridge in the east Pacific moves toward
the coast Friday and then inland Saturday. This will bring a warming
trend to central California...and temperatures are expected to be several
degrees above normal for the first weekend of March.

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

[end of update]


24-Feb-2012 9:39 PM

Two Weak Storm Systems and Associated Cold Fronts Arriving Late This Weekend - Dry Lake by End of Summer?

As the unseasonably warm weather continued Friday, the station posted a record high for February, topping off at 73.1 F. This unseasonably warm and dry pattern dominated all of Central California and the Southern Sierra this week, while we continue to see little chance for any "significant precipitation" through the end of the month. It is already clear that February 2012 will be the driest February on record for Bass Lake with a paltry 1.41 inches of precipitation recorded so far. Our average precipitation for February is 9.50 inches. Our current seasonal total sits at 10.58 inches. Our average seasonal rainfall up to and including 02/24 is 50.75 inches.

On the bright side, Hanford is calling for a 40-50% chance of light rain/snow showers for our area Sunday night and into Monday with an associated cold front that moves in ahead of the system on Saturday. While any precipitation is welcome, this will be a weak system and is not expected to deliver more than a few hundredths worth of precipitation. Another weak system is now forecast for Tuesday night and into Wednesday, but again, this will not likely produce any significant precipitation for our area. However, both of these systems will knock our temperatures down to well below normal for this time of year with snow levels falling to 3000 feet at times during the precipitation events. We can expect our high temps to be as much as 20 degrees colder than the daytime highs we had been seeing up through and including Friday.


The latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
845 PM PST Friday Feb 24 2012



Synopsis...
a cool down is expected this weekend as a dry cold front passes over
the area. Gusty winds and areas of blowing dust are possible mainly
along the west side of the San Joaquin Valley. A much colder low
pressure system will then impact the region Monday...with a chance
of Sierra snow and slight chance of showers elsewhere.


Update...
upper air observations along with satellite infrared imagery is showing
the high pressure ridge continuing to move east today. The ridge
axis...now over the Great Basin...brought further warming to the
district with record setting temperatures. Several locations
across the San Joaquin Valley saw temperatures reach into the 80s
today under clear skies and locally breezy conditions. Yet...
change in the on the way as the shifting of the ridge pattern will
allow a trough to push across the Pacific northwest and northern
California. While moisture remains limited with this trough...
satellite imagery is showing a good area of cold air behind the
trough. Short range models show the trajectory of the trough to move
pass extreme northern California and into the Great Basin before
pushing onto The Rockies. This trajectory will leave the district
dry but begin the downward trend of temperatures across
California. By Sunday...a second trough will dig deeper into
California with a better chance of possible isolated precipitation and a
deeper push of colder air. Short range models also show 850mb
temperature/S lowering to minus 3 to minus 5 by Monday morning. These
values cloud lower any possible snow levels down into the
foothills. In addition...based on current conditions...
temperatures by early next week could drop by some 20 deg-f.
Forecast has a good handle on present thinking...so no updates
needed currently.

Previous Discussion...
the upper ridge over the region is shifting east as
a trough of low pressure approaches the Pacific northwest this
afternoon. The trough will move through the Pacific tonight with
the trough axis/dry cold front moving across central California
Saturday morning. Although this system will not bring any
precipitation to central California...it will bring cooler
temperatures. After several days of above normal temperatures...we
will cool back to slightly below normal by Sunday. This system will
also bring breezy conditions down the west side of the San Joaquin
Valley and across the Kern County mountains and desert Saturday
afternoon and evening. Although the winds will be below advisory
levels...they may be strong enough to produce some areas of
blowing dust on the west side of the valley.


A second trough will drop into northern California Sunday
afternoon and into central California late Sunday night and
Monday. The European model (ecmwf) has been consistently wetter with this system
over the past few model runs and now the GFS...which had been
consistently dry...has come closer to the European model (ecmwf) solution with the
past 2 runs. Thus...confidence is increasing that we will see some
light precipitation over the mountains and possibly some light
showers over the San Joaquin Valley Monday. This system will also
bring colder air with snow levels lowering down to 2500 to 3000
feet. Precipitation amounts are expected to be light...so no
winter weather advisories are anticipated at this time.


Tuesday should be dry as the upper trough exits the area. Yet
another trough is forecast move across the Pacific northwest and
northern California Wednesday which may brush across the northern
portion of the County warning forecast area. A slight chance of showers ill continue over
the Sierra Thursday. Although temperatures will moderate a few
degrees Tuesday through Friday...they will remain slightly below
normal through the week.

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

Bass Lake in Danger of Evaporating This Summer!

Based on all current weather data, it is looking more and more likely that Bass Lake may be completely dry by early September due to the lack of any measurable snowpack in the Sierra to feed the lake during the spring thaw. The lake is currently sitting at 37% of capacity and falling daily, and when averaging the typical evapotranspiration between April and August, the most likely scenario will be a lake volume of 10% of capacity or less by September 1st. Unfortunately, with the La Nina pattern predicted to remain in control through most of 2012, we can find nothing in NOAA's extended forecasts through April that would reverse this very bleak outlook for the summer.

How the lack of a viable lake level will effect the local economy during the height of the summer tourist season is anyone's guess but most likely, revenues will be sharply lower than anything we have ever seen. We are in uncharted territory here since this would be the first time in the history of the area that Bass Lake will be too low to be useable for boating or any of the other usual summer activities associated with the lake.

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

We will update the journal if either of these two storm systems manage to deliver any significant precipitation to the area.

[end of update]


21-Feb-2012 11:36 AM

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1016 am PST Tuesday Feb 21 2012


Synopsis...
dry conditions and gradual warming will continue through the end of
this week. A cool down along with a slight chance of precipitation
appears to be on the way for the weekend beginning Saturday
evening.

Discussion...
some high clouds are spilling over the Pacific upper ridge and
tracking across the central California interior. Temperatures
across the area are currently running at or slightly below
readings from this time yesterday. As the ridge expands eastward
into the region we can expect a few degrees of warming
today...with highs topping out a bit above climatology. Models remain
in general agreement...keeping the ridge in place for the next few
days and maintaining dry and mild conditions. For the weekend into
early next week there remains model discrepancy in the strength...timing
and trajectory of an incoming trough. No updates are planned for the
forecast this morning.

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

[end of update]


19-Feb-2012 9:30 AM

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
915 am PST sun Feb 19 2012



Synopsis....
another weak low pressure system could bring a few
showers to the Sierra tomorrow...dry conditions are otherwise
expected through the end of next week. Temperatures are expected
to be slightly cooler over the rest of the Holiday weekend...then
a warming trend begins Tuesday as high pressure rebuilds.


Discussion...
IR/WV indicating a weak Pacific shortwave off the
central California coast near the Bay area which is dropping southward at
this time. This feature has brought a noticeable increase in high
clouds over our area. In addition...visible imagery is indicating
low clouds banked up along the south end and east side of the San
Joaquin Valley and over the southern Sierra Nevada foothills. Have
made an update to the grids this morning to account for the
presence of upslope clouds. The forecast for today looks on track
otherwise.


12z WRF/GFS indicate our area remaining under a northwest flow as
an upper ridge amplifies around 135w. Another weak shortwave is
prognosticated to drop southward through central California on Monday afternoon
and evening which will bring some middle/high clouds to our area as
well as possibly some light showers to the Yosemite park area. The
ridge is prognosticated to push inland ion Tuesday and Wednesday and
provide our area with dry conditions and a warming trend. The
medium range models are in good agreement with keeping the ridge
in place off the western Continental U.S. Coast through the end of the week
that will keep mild and dry weather across our area. The ridge is
prognosticated to flatten next weekend as a low pressure system pushes
into the Pacific northwest next Saturday then drop into the Great Basin next
Sunday.

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

[end of update]


17-Feb-2012 8:42 AM

Slight Chance of Rain/Snow on Saturday Night/Sunday Morning

The latest model runs are indicating a slight chance of precipitation for the northern portions of the Hanford forecast area which includes Bass Lake. The main portion of this trough will be hitting southern Oregon and extreme Northern California, so we do not expect this to be much of an event for us here, but this year, you never know.

We will just have to wait and see if we actually get anything measurable from the extreme southern tip of this system. We could see overcast skies on Saturday afternoon and Sunday morning regardless of any precipitation.

The Latest IR Sat Image

Weather Image

We will update the journal as conditions warrant.

[end of update]


16-Feb-2012 7:56 AM

Record Breaking Wind Gust This Morning - Dry Weather Returns Today

The station recorded a 37 mph wind gust this morning just after 6AM with sustained winds well above 10 mph for several hours. This high wind gust broke our previous record of 25 mph recorded back in January.

The compression from these high winds actually raised our high temperature several degrees to nearly 40 F, but temps have now fallen back down to 35 degrees F as this wind event came to an end about 30 minutes ago.

Heading into the next 7-10 days, weather models are suggesting yet another period of clear and dry weather through at least the middle of next week. Based on this, we will likely be setting yet another dubious weather milestone for the driest February on record for the Southern Sierra Nevada.

The Latest from Hanford

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
235 am PST Thursday Feb 16 2012



Synopsis...
frosty conditions are possible in the San Joaquin Valley during the
night and morning hours through Friday. Gusty desert winds are also
expected in Kern County through this afternoon. Another low pressure
system may bring some snow showers to the Sierra crest this
weekend...otherwise dry conditions are expected through presidents
day.

Discussion...
satellite loops show clouds banked along the valley-facing slopes of
the Kern County mountains south of the Kern River Canyon. The clouds
that had been over the south end of the San Joaquin Valley have
mostly dissipated...and with a cold dry airmass moving into the San
Joaquin Valley...expect strong radiational cooling toward daybreak.
Lows in the coldest San Joaquin Valley locations this morning will
be in the 29-32 degree range...although durations in most areas may
be a couple of hours less than originally forecast.


The upper-level low is over the California/Baja California California border
this morning. The models forecast the low to drop southeast...
allowing an upper-level ridge to build into central California. This
will bring stable conditions with the potential for either frost or
fog in the central and southern San Joaquin Valley tonight...and some
spots may see both. Lows Friday morning are forecast to be slightly
colder than this morning...but will hold off any advisory for now as
fog development may mitigate the cooling.


An upper-level low is forecast to approach Vancouver Island Friday
night. The associated trough will move into the Pacific northwest...
then dig south into California during the day Saturday. This will
bring a slight chance of showers to the southern Sierra Nevada for
the weekend. Although the trough is forecast to move into the Great
Basin Sunday morning...a trailing impulse will keep a slight chance
of snow showers over the high country into Sunday evening.


An east-Pacific upper-level ridge is forecast to build onshore into
California next week. The GFS and European model (ecmwf) are in agreement through
midweek...then the GFS brings another trough into the Pacific
northwest next Thursday while the European model (ecmwf) has ridging along the coast.
The forecast will be dry next Monday through Wednesday...and have
not added any precipitation to the day 8 grids due to model
differences.

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

We will update the journal as conditions warrant.

[end of update]


15-Feb-2012 7:20 AM

Heavy Snowfall This Morning - Rain Bucket Heater Overwhelmed!

Starting at about 4:30 AM this morning we began receiving a VERY heavy amount of snow. The rate was so intense that it completely overwhelmed our rain bucket heater, so we are still measuring this unusual event as of this report. It will take some time for all the snow in the rain bucket to melt and be counted. This is the first time we have ever seen this much snow this fast.

We are looking at about 5 inches on the ground with the bulk of that snow coming down in less than two hours. The cell that produced this unusual event has now moved out of the area leaving partly cloudy skies.

Radar looks clear at the moment, so that could be it for the day today in terms of precipitation. We may see some upslope generated precipitation later today, but we are not sure at this point.

The current report from Hanford precedes this event, so we will not be including their now sorely outdated forecast in this update.

Current WebCam Image

Weather Image


[end of update]


14-Feb-2012 8:08 AM

Break in the Action Today - Next Storm Arriving During the Day on Wednesday

We picked up 0.65 inches of precipitation from the storm system yesterday, with a large portion of this precipitation arriving in the form of a rain/snow mix and pure snow. There wasn't much to this last system and as a result we only saw about 1/2 of an inch of snow on the ground that quickly melted during the day.

The next system isn't looking any more impressive than the one we saw Monday. We may pick up an additional 1/2 of rain from this next one late tomorrow, and hopefully more. Unfortunately, none of these systems are what we would normally be seeing during the middle of our wettest month of the year.

Our current rainfall total for Feb. currently stands at: 0.92 with 10.09 inches for the entire season. Normally, we would be well over 40 inches for the season by this date. Our average rainfall total for Feb. is 9.5 inches.

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
756 am PST Tuesday Feb 14 2012



Synopsis...
the storm system that had impacted the area yesterday has continued
to move south out of the region. A ridge axis behind the system has
moved from the north into central California. This ridge axis will
temporarily bring clearing skies and dry conditions. As the ridge
axis moves southward...the next system will enter the region early
Wednesday from the north bringing increased chances for
precipitation.

Discussion...
light rain and drizzle early over the San Joaquin
Valley this morning as a weak trailing shortwave trough moves
through. I have updated the grids to reflect this reality. For
later today skies should clear as the short lived ridge moves over
the region. The next system is on track for tomorrow with very
good agreement between models. May need to increase probability of precipitation later
today but no other updates now.

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

We will update the journal sometime tomorrow as conditions warrant.

[end of update]


13-Feb-2012 8:58 AM

1/2 Inch of Snow on the Ground - More Systems Expected Through Wednesday

We have picked up 0.64 inches of precipitation so far today with a portion of that coming down in the form of light snow. We have about a half inch of accumulation on the ground here at the station with a current break in the activity. Our current storm total now stands at 0.80 inches since the storm arrived yesterday.

Local radar shows that the bulk of the system has already passed overnight, so we are not sure how much more precipitation we will receive through the day today. Additional upslope generated precipitation is a definite possibility as the day progresses. As the lower atmosphere heats up under partially clear skies, this will increase the chances for Thunderstorms forming over our area later this afternoon. Definitely worth watching.

Current State-Wide NextRad Radar Image

Weather Image

The Latest IR Sat Image Showing the Next Inbound System

Weather Image

Follow the Storm Yourself Using Our: Wide-Angle Precipitation Map

Here is the latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
846 am PST Monday Feb 13 2012



Synopsis...
an upper level low pressure system will continue to bring the
threat of valley rain and higher elevation snow through today.
Higher than usual desert winds and possibility of desert rain is
also expected with the passage of this storm system. Another break
in the active weather will take place on Tuesday before another
weak system moves into the region bringing a chance for more
precipitation on Wednesday.


Discussion...
satellite and radar show the main frontal band now
pushing quickly east into the Sierra and Kern County mountains.
Visible imagery shows a large clear area to the west and this
should allow for surface heating and increased instability later
this morning. The upper low is nicely defined on water vapor
imagery dropping southeast into the forecast area and although the
center was not sampled by any of the upper air sites, the cold
pool aloft is certainly heading this way. Forecast model
convective parameters indicate instability will be sufficient for
some isolated thunderstorms with nam12 forecast soundings
indicating lifted indices to around -2 and cape to around 300
j/kg. Based on this, I have added isolated thunderstorms to the
forecast for the sjv and adjacent foothills for today. As for the
Winter Weather Advisory, Tuolumne Meadows just reported 7 inches
of overnight snow and over the Sierra the convective snow shower
coverage will be sufficient to keep the advisory in place.


By this evening, things should wind down with the system moving
east of the area. Short wave ridging to follow on Tuesday with
another trough of low pressure dropping south into the Great Basin
on Wednesday. Will need to look more closely at this feature and
latest European model (ecmwf) model run to determine if probability of precipitation need any changes.

That's all for now.

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

We will update the journal as conditions warrant throughout the day today.

[end of update]



12-Feb-2012 8:29 PM

Precipitation Inbound - Rain Bucket Has Already Tipped!

The edge of the anticipated storm is just now reaching the Sierra Foothills. Light rain is falling at the station with 0.01 already recorded from the initial activity over the last 30 minutes.

The heavier portions of the system are just now coming onshore and moving over the Bay Area. We expect these heavier showers to arrive here sometime before midnight.

Current State-Wide Radar Returns

Weather Image

Rain should continue and increase in intensity as the main portion of the system arrives later tonight and into most of Monday. Still unclear at this point whether temps will fall low enough for snow to develop here at Bass Lake, but we wouldn't rule it out between now and daybreak Monday.

We will be back in the morning to re-cap the latest storm-totals and the future of this system heading into the week.

{Station Maintenance Note: Rain Bucket Heater activated 8:27 p.m.}

[end of update]


12-Feb-2012 11:14 AM
Forecast Update: 11:14 a.m.

Upslope generated clouds have blossomed over the area and brought mostly cloudy skies to the area. These clouds are not part of the actual storm system that will be moving in later today and contain no precipitation, but will bring an end to the clear sky/sunny day forecasted for the first half of the day today.

Latest WebCam Image

Weather Image

We still expect the low pressure system to move in later this afternoon with rain developing late this evening and intensifying by early AM Monday.

[end of update]


12-Feb-2012 8:42 AM

Previous Journal Update:
Monday Storm Still On Track - Unstable Weather Could Last Through Wednesday


We picked up 0.01 inches of precipitation just after midnight this morning as a result of some persistent drizzle and mist last night. The high dew point has kept some fog over the lake this morning, but skies are clear as of this report and we expect a sunny pleasant day through at least the noon hour. The edge of the Monday system will begin moving in later today, so expect to start seeing high clouds moving in from the west this afternoon, turning mostly cloudy by this evening.

Rain will begin falling late tonight and into Monday as the system comes onshore. Quantitative precipitation estimates are still unclear as of this report, but we are confident that we will pick up at least 1/2 an inch in the next 36 hours.

The latest NWS forecast calls for the unstable airmass to linger through Wednesday morning, so the complete storm total from this coming event will remain uncertain until we are actually under the influence of this cold low pressure system.

The Latest IR Sat Image Showing Inbound Pacific Systems

Weather Image

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
620 am PST sun Feb 12 2012



Synopsis...
today there will be a break in the somewhat active pattern
that has started taking shape. But...beginning late tonight into
early Monday our next system will move into the region. This next
system will increase the threat of valley rain and higher elevation
snows. Gusty winds are also a good possibility on Monday in the Kern
County deserts, Tehachapi Mountains, and the Grapevine area along
with the increased chances of precipitation.

Update...
patchy dense fog has developed in the central and southern San
Joaquin Valley. At 1350z /0550 PST/ this morning...Madera Municipal
Airport had a visibility of less than a quarter mile...Fresno-
Yosemite international and Hanford Municipal airports were reporting
0.5 mile visibility...and both Castle and Merced regional airports
were at 3/4 mile. But at the same time...Fresno Chandler Airport was
at 3 miles and Tulare Municipal Airport was at 7 miles. Updated the
forecast to add patchy fog in the central and southern San Joaquin
Valley this morning.

Discussion...
the upper-level trough moved through the Hanford warning/forecast
area Saturday...bringing Fresno its first measurable rain since
January 30th. A few upslope showers continued along the southern
Sierra Nevada foothills through the evening hours in upslope clouds.


Gusty winds behind the cold front continue early this morning
through and below the passes of the Tehachapi Mountains. Wind gusts
have been around 35-45 miles per hour for the past few hours and have issued a
significant weather advisory /sfospshnx or wwus86 khnx/ for the Kern
County desert from the Tehachapi Pass to the Kern County line through
16z /0800 PST/.


The clouds that moved over the central California interior kept lows
in the central and southern San Joaquin Valley well above normal.
Bakersfield/S low of 52 for the 11th was only 4 degrees off the
record high minimum of 56...set in 1925...while Fresno/S low of 51
was only 2 degrees shy of the record of 53 degrees...set in 1970.


Satellite loops show upslope clouds persisting along the southern
Sierra Nevada foothills and over the south end of the San Joaquin
Valley this morning. Patchy stratocumulus was elsewhere in the San
Joaquin Valley and partly cloudy skies will continue through the day.


A stronger...colder storm will move into northern California tonight
and drop southeast across the state during the day Monday. The latest
model runs now track the upper-level low as mainly an inside slider
moving east of the southern Sierra Nevada crest...and to over Las
Vegas by 12z /0400 PST/ Tuesday.


Rainfall amounts on the central and southern San Joaquin Valley
floor are forecast to be up to a quarter inch. In the southern
Sierra Nevada...total snow accumulations above 6000 feet will be 5-8
inches near Yosemite...and up to 5 inches in the Tulare County
mountains. The snow level will start around 5500 feet tonight near
Yosemite...falling to 4000 feet during the day Monday...and into the
foothills around 3000 feet Monday night after the heaviest snowfall
has ended. Have issued a Winter Weather Advisory for the southern
Sierra Nevada from Yosemite National Park to Kings Canyon from 08z
/midnight/ Monday to 04z Tuesday /2000 PST Monday/.


Further south...snow levels will fall to around 3500 feet Monday
night. Light snow accumulations...up to an inch...will be possible
on the Grapevine and Tehachapi Pass late Monday into Monday night.


The upper-level trough is forecast to linger over Southern
California into Tuesday. The models do not agree on the trajectory
of the low beyond Monday night...so have allowed for some backwash
precipitation over and adjacent to the southern Sierra Nevada
Tuesday.


Another upper-level low is forecast to impact California Wednesday.
The medium-range models are in poor agreement with the trajectory
with the low...even from run to run. The 00z GFS tracked the low
south off the California coast...while the 06z GFS drops the low
through California to off the Southern California coast by 06z
Thursday /2200 PST Wednesday/. The 00z European model (ecmwf) has the low as an
inside slider...dropping through Nevada and reaching the lower
Colorado River valley by 06z Thursday. The current forecast is based
on a compromise of the 00z and 06z GFS tracks...and the timing of
the 00z run...but confidence is low.

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

We plan to update the journal Monday morning to report on the current conditions and the trajectory of the Monday storm.



11-Feb-2012 8:04 AM

Spotty Showers Today - Partly Cloudy Tomorrow - Bigger Storm on Monday

The latest radar returns from this first low pressure trough do not look very impressive so far. We can detect a few pockets of light precipitation moving through the state from the SouthWest. Since the air is unstable, there is a chance that once the day progresses, we may see some lower atmospheric heating that could help to form some upslope precipitation in the Southern Sierra. Even with that, we don't expect more than a trace to a few hundredths of an inch from this system today, if anything.

The bigger weather story will come on Monday as a much colder and larger system moves into our area from the Gulf of Alaska. This system will be very cold and will bring snow levels down to the foothill elevations Monday into Tuesday morning. The NWS is estimating that precipitation amounts could range from ½ to ¾ of an inch for our area with a chance of light snow accumulation through the period.

The Latest IR Sat Image Showing Current and Inbound Pacific Systems

Weather Image

Current Wide-Angle Precipitation Map Radar

Weather Image

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion...updated
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
700 am PST Sat Feb 11 2012



Synopsis...
change is on the way...a series of weather systems are expected
to move over the region the next several days...beginning this
morning...bringing cooler temperatures and the threat of valley
rain and higher elevation snows.


Update...
a few showers already have produced measurable rain in the San
Joaquin Valley and in the Tehachapi Mountains at Grapevine Peak.
Have updated the forecast to chance the slight chance of showers to
isolated showers.

Discussion...
after another day of well above normal temperatures...with
Bakersfield coming within a degree of its record high for February
10th and Fresno only 2 degrees off...the weather pattern is beginning
to transition to a winter-type regime. Satellite loops show an upper-
level low west of Monterey Bay this morning...and radar is picking up
some rain over the east Pacific. The models forecast this low to come
onshore this morning...with the associated trough moving through the
Hanford warning/forecast area by 00z Sunday /1600 PST Saturday/.
Model and rfc quantitative precipitation forecast are light...with only a trace to a few hundredths
of an inch of rain on the San Joaquin Valley floor...and an inch or
two of new snow over the high country of the southern Sierra Nevada.


An upper-level short-wave ridge is forecast to move over California
Sunday...bringing a break in the precipitation before a stronger
and colder storm arrives late Sunday night. The models continue to
have trouble with the exact track and the strength of this storm...
with little run-to-run continuity as well as poor inter-model
consistency. For example...the 00z NAM-12 brought the 500-mb cold
pool over the San Joaquin Valley by 21z /1300 PST/ Monday with a
lowest temperature of -30.2 c and surface-computed lifted indices of
-2 over the southern Sierra Nevada and the west side of the San
Joaquin Valley. The new 06z NAM-12 tracks the cold pool east of the
Hanford warning/forecast area Monday afternoon and evening and has
positive lifted indices over the region.


Have made only minor changes to the forecast for the Monday storm.
Snow levels will lower to around 4000 feet near Yosemite Monday and
to 3500 feet Monday night. In the Kern County mountains...snow
levels will fall below the pass levels late Monday...and to 4000
feet Monday night.


The models forecast winds to increase Monday over the Kern County
mountains and deserts. The 00z GFS mav guidance gave Edwards AFB a
sustained wind speed of 30 kts at 00z Tuesday /1600 PST Monday/...
and 31 kts at the Edwards AFB north base auxiliary field. Expect
gusts to around 45 miles per hour over the Kern County mountains and deserts
Monday afternoon and evening.


The forecast quantitative precipitation forecast is a compromise among the models and the rfc
guidance and calls for up to a half inch of rain on the San Joaquin
Valley floor and 5-8 inches over new snow over the high country of
the southern Sierra Nevada.


Will issue a Special Weather Statement /sfospshnx or wwus86 khnx/ on
this storm due to its impact on travel through the Kern County
mountains and deserts.


The models disagree on the movement of the trough Tuesday...although
unsettled weather will continue over the region with decreasing probability of precipitation
from the west. The medium-range models do agree on an upper-level
ridge building into the northern half of the state for the latter
half of the week for a return of dry weather and possibly some late
night and morning San Joaquin Valley fog.

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

We will update the journal as local weather conditions warrant.

[end update]



10-Feb-2012 7:53 AM

Pattern Change Coming Saturday - Rain/Snow Through Tuesday

The Weather Gods have smiled on us for the weekend with a series of low pressure troughs moving into the area beginning tonight and continuing through early Tuesday. The latest models bring some low chances of precipitation to the area on Saturday and Saturday night, with a second more powerful storm on Monday.

The Monday storm will be COLD, as it will be shooting down from the Gulf of Alaska. Because of the nature of this very cold storm, snow levels are expected to drop well into the foothill elevation range. This means that the chance of snow for Bass Lake on Monday afternoon/Monday night looks good as of this report.

As our readers have no doubt learned this winter, nothing is for certain when it comes to predicting the weather during this very strong La Nina pattern. We will keep our fingers crossed that the current models are calling these two systems accurately and that we will indeed pick up some additional measurable precipitation from both systems.

The Latest IR Sat Image Showing Inbound Pacific Systems

Weather Image

The Latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
305 am PST Friday Feb 10 2012



Synopsis...
an upper level high pressure ridge continues to be the dominant
feature in the interior central California weather pattern. This
has brought near normal temperatures and clear skies. A change is
in store for the region this weekend when we return to cooler
temperatures and an unsettled weather pattern.

Discussion...
some high clouds continue to move across the central California
interior this morning ahead of the upper-level trough approaching
the Pacific northwest. Ahead of the trough...the upper-level ridge
remained over California...keeping temperatures well above normal.
Bakersfield was the warm spot in the central and southern San
Joaquin Valley with a record-breaking high of 77 degrees...16
degrees above normal. Bakersfield also was the warmest spot in the
entire Hanford warning/forecast area...followed closely by Coalinga
at 76 degrees.


The first in a series of upper-level troughs will move into northern
California this afternoon and tonight as part of a double-trough
system. While this first trough will stay north of the Hanford
warning/forecast area...it will push the ridge eastward and set the
stage for the second trough to arrive Saturday.


Temperatures will continue well above normal today ahead of this
system...although do not expect any records to be threatened. Cold
air moving into California tonight and Saturday will cool
temperatures to near normal. There will be a chance of showers over
the southern Sierra Nevada with snow above 6000 feet...and a slight
chance of showers elsewhere across the region. The models forecast
limited quantitative precipitation forecast with this system...so expect only a few hundredths of an
inch of rain on the San Joaquin Valley floor and a couple of inches
of snow over the high country of the southern Sierra Nevada. The
models forecast a cold pool to move over the central California
interior Saturday...with 500-mb temperatures down to -24 c. This may
result in an isolated thunderstorm with small hail...although the
convective parameters are not favorable.


The storm also will bring gusty winds to the mountains and deserts.
Gusts to around 45 miles per hour will be possible through and below the passes
and canyons of the Kern County mountains.


The trough will move east of the region Saturday night...with short-
wave ridging over California Sunday ahead of a stronger and colder
storm. Rain will move into the northern part of the Hanford warning/
forecast area by midnight Sunday...spreading south to Kings and
Tulare counties by daybreak. Monday will see a chance of rain over
the central and southern San Joaquin Valley and the Sierra Nevada
foothills...with snow above 4500 feet. The trough axis is not
forecast to move through the region until 00z Tuesday /1600 PST
Monday/ with the coldest air moving in Monday night. The snow level
will fall to 3500-4000 feet...into the foothills. There likely will
be some accumulating snow on the Grapevine and Tehachapi Pass Monday
night...and gusty winds over the mountains and deserts.


The latest run of the European model (ecmwf) brings a very cold pool of air over the
northern part of the Hanford warning/forecast area Monday afternoon
with 500-mb temperatures as cold as -31 c. Both the European model (ecmwf) and the
GFS have shifted their tracks eastward...with the GFS dropping its
coldest air into the Great Basin. If the European model (ecmwf) is right...there
could be a threat of afternoon and evening thunderstorms over the
region. However...given the continued differences between the GFS
and European model (ecmwf)...and the changing storm tracks...it seems premature to
add thunder to the forecast.


The models disagree on the movement of the trough Tuesday...although
unsettled weather will continue over the region with decreasing probability of precipitation
from the west. The medium-range models do agree on an upper-level
ridge building into the northern half of the state for the latter
half of the week for a return of dry weather and possibly some late
night and morning San Joaquin Valley fog.

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

Stay tuned for additional updates to the journal as conditions warrant through the weekend.

[end of update]


09-Feb-2012 11:59 AM
UPDATED FORECAST:


Rain Looking More Likely This Weekend!

Models are coming into better agreement that a string of low pressure troughs will move through our area beginning on Saturday. Actual storm tracks and precipitation totals remain uncertain, but it does appear now that we will see some additional rain over our area soon!

Click on the RED "SAT Images - Warnings - Advisories" button above for the latest sat images from NOAA.

The Latest Full Pacific IR Sat Image Showing Inbound Storm Systems

Weather Image

The latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1004 am PST Thursday Feb 9 2012


Synopsis...
building upper level high pressure ridging dominates the central
California weather with slightly above normal temperatures. There is
a possible change in the dry pattern by this weekend.

Discussion....
a ridge of high pressure over the region is
providing mostly clear skies and above normal temperatures across
the central California interior today. The ridge will begin to be
pushed eastward Friday afternoon as a shortwave trough begins to
affect northern California. This trough will move into central
California early Saturday and will bring a chance of light
precipitation to the mountains. There may be a few light showers
in the San Joaquin Valley Saturday...but many areas will only
experience sprinkles. This system will also bring some cooler
air...which will bring temperatures back to near normal.


There will be weak shortwave ridging on Sunday before another
system drops into California Sunday night and Monday. This system
looks to be wetter...but the 12z GFS has slowed it down and now
holds off on any precipitation until early Monday morning for
central California. There are differences between the GFS and
European model (ecmwf) with the timing and track of the low and the associated pool
of cold air aloft. The European model (ecmwf) tracks it more along the coast while
the GFS has more inland track down the Sierra. The track will
have an impact on how much precipitation we receive and whether or
not we see thunderstorms develop. For now will not mention
thunderstorms as confidence is low. A few showers may linger into
Tuesday.


The trough that the GFS was advertising yesterday for the
Wednesday time frame has been replaced with a ridge...so Wednesday
and Thursday look to be dry days at this time.
========================================

[end of update]


08-Feb-2012 7:09 AM

10th of an Inch from Tuesday's System - More Possible This Weekend

We picked up a respectable rain total yesterday after all was said and done, with the station recording 0.10 inches for the event. Local upslope conditions really helped to wring out as much precipitation as was possible from what little we received over the area. This is a good thing, but far from what we would normally be seeing by this point in the season.

Extended forecast models are indicating the possibility of yet another two systems coming into our area over the weekend, but based on the flow pattern, they will be moisture starved by the time they reach us, so percip amounts may be anywhere from a trace to a few 100ths. This could change as we get closer to the actual system arrival, but anything storm related is better than nothing at this point. More as conditions develop later in the week.

Here is the latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
254 am PST Wednesday Feb 8 2012


Synopsis...
a passing storm system leaves middle and high clouds behind with
more clearing later in the day. Fair skies continue as a ridge of
high pressure builds into central California producing dry weather
and above normal afternoon temperatures to the district through
Friday.

Discussion...
Radar shows the last of the sprinkles now coming to
an end as the low pressure system fills and moves south of the
area. Ridging is shown well on water vapor imagery building in from
the west. Forecast models are in good agreement in keeping this
ridge firmly in place over central California through Friday and
then by Saturday dropping a shortwave trough into the Great Basin.
Models then push this feature towards the Colorado River by Sunday
morning. I have introduced slight chance probability of precipitation over the Sierra
Saturday night and Sunday in response. Another seemingly deeper
and stronger weather disturbance is then prognosticated by the GFS and
now the European model (ecmwf) models to move into northern California on Monday an
then race down the east side of the Sierra on Monday. Additional
probability of precipitation have been introduced for this feature as well. It should be
noted that the trajectory of both of these systems is not that
favorable for significant precipitation. In the dryer than normal
winter, systems in northwest flow such as these have not produced
much rain or snow and these may follow suit. Winds may be a bigger
issue especially over the mountains and desert.

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

We will post another local weather update as conditions warrant.

[end of update]


07-Feb-2012 10:23 AM

RAIN UPDATE: Light Rain Arrives Over Bass Lake

The fact that we are trumpeting the arrival of trace amounts of rain in February speaks volumes as to how dry this winter has been. But... There it is!

Local radar currently shows an upslope generated cell of light precipitation over the Bass Lake area at the time of this report. The extended radar looks spotty at best, so we don't expect much activity for our rain gauge today.

Weather Image

In addition to the light rainfall, we have also been seeing some gusty winds in the area. We picked up an 18 mph gust about 30 minutes ago just ahead of the current drizzle.

If this light precipitation continues for another 20-30 minutes, we should see at least one bucket tip on the rain gauge.

More later as conditions warrant.

[end of update]


07-Feb-2012 7:04 AM

Hit and Miss Rain Day - Dry Conditions Return in Spades Tomorrow

Early radar returns are showing the storm system hugging the coastal areas of California this morning. The track of the eastern edge of the rotation is due North at the moment, and radar shows light precipitation contained in the southern arm of the rotation as of this report. Much of what you see on the radar right now is "Verga" which translated means "High Altitude Precipitation". Verga rarely makes it to the ground before evaporating. The atmosphere is VERY dry right now, so it is going to take time for any of this light rain to actually reach the ground AND our rain bucket.

The NWS is still predicting that this southern arm will swing into our area later today. The eastern movement of the system has all but stopped so it is still unclear whether we will see a more moisture rich portion of the system move east and over our area later this morning.

At this point, we are expecting VERY light precipitation for the area through late afternoon with totals of 1/4 inch or less for the entire event. Definitely not what we had hoped for since after this system exits the area, we will be right back to the same old dry weather pattern for the forseable future.

The Latest IR Sat and Radar Images:

Weather Image

Weather Image

Weather Image

The latest from the NWS in Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
209 am PST Tuesday Feb 7 2012



Synopsis...
a storm system affecting the coast has brought gusty winds to the
area...especially for the west and far southern parts of the San
Joaquin Valley. The winds will continue through the morning hours
and begin to weaken this afternoon. Blowing dust is possible with
the strongest wind gusts. There also is a slight chance of light
valley rain and a dusting of mountain snow through tonight. Dry
conditions are then expected to return Wednesday and through the
rest of the week as high pressure builds back into the region.

Discussion...
winds have been strong at times over the Kern County
mountains and south end of the San Joaquin Valley with Lamont
showing sustained winds of 43 miles per hour earlier while Grapevine Peak
gusted to 73 miles per hour. I expect the winds to continue to Ebb and flow
through the morning hours as the storm system responsible for the
winds continues to slow as it approaches the coast. The High Wind
Warning and wind advisories will remain in place. Forecast models
do keep the winds up through early afternoon then diminish
velocities by late afternoon as the storm system moves down the
coast.


Precipitation wise Hanford radar shows lots of virga as the lower
atmosphere is very dry and downsloping winds are enhancing the
drying. To the west, Vandenberg radar shows the main precipitation
remains just offshore and the push to the east has slowed quite a
bit. With satellite imagery showing the low pressure center
already southwest of Point Conception and forecast models pushing
it down the coast towards Baja California on Tuesday and Wednesday,
precipitation will be most likely on the light side. In the wake
of the low, you guessed it...another ridge of high pressure is
prognosticated to build in over California from Wednesday through Friday
with a weak transitory short wave trough dropping through the
Great Basin on Saturday. More ridging next week through Tuesday
with dry weather in the resulting northwest flow.

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

We will be monitoring the storm closely throughout the day today. If we see any news worthy activity in our area, we will update the journal accordingly. Stay tuned to our home page and our Wide-Angle Precipitation Map to track the system yourself in real-time.

[end of update]


06-Feb-2012 8:11 AM

Latest Revised Forecast Puts Rain BACK Into the Picture Tuesday

Models have been all over the place the last 7 days in trying to predict the behavior of the approaching low pressure system on tap for tomorrow. While the exact trajectory and moisture content of the system remains uncertain, it does look like we will pick up some measurable rain out of this thing.

For now, we are going to be looking for a couple of tenths over the Bass Lake area, with possibly more if we managed to get some upslope generated energy from the unstable air hitting the Sierra range.

We are already seeing the outer edge of the system moving in this morning. Looks like we will be mostly cloudy today, so previously forecasts highs for the area are now moot. Rain will begin late morning Tuesday and last through early evening, with lingering shower activity into early Wednesday.

The Latest IR Sat Image

Weather Image

Here is the latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
552 am PST Monday Feb 6 2012



Synopsis...
after mostly clear skies tonight...clouds will begin to increase
on Monday...and then gusty winds...light rain and mountain snow
are possible throughout the region Tuesday due to an approaching
low pressure system. Dry conditions are expected Wednesday and the
rest of next week as high pressure returns.

Discussion...
looks like I may have to eat crow on this one. After
several days of following the drier models...they turned on ME and
now all...ECMWF/Gem/GFS/NAM...prodce some light precipitation across
central California. Best chance and most quantitative precipitation forecast will still be along and west of the I-5 corridor...but most everyone should get some light amounts.

The exception being the far south end of the sjv where rainshadow will be in place...at least until south winds die off Tuesday afternoon or evening. Speaking of winds...GFS and NAM show strong low level subsidence developing from the Tehachapi Mountains into the
far south end of the sjv. Most vulnerable to strong wind gusts
will be I-5 over the Grapevine to the Junction of Highway 99. Gusts
could approach 70 miles per hour at times toward daybreak Tuesday...especially
windprone areas through and below north facing passes and canyons.


High clouds will be on a slow increase today...however southerly
flow should somewhat offset this...and temperatures today will continue well
above seasonal average. Temperatures will be closer to normal Tuesday most
areas...the exception being the south end of the valley where
downslope will linger one more day. Precipitation should begin late
tonite or early Tuesday on the far west side of the sjv...gradually
spreading east to the Sierra during the day. Quantitative precipitation forecast values will range
from a quarter of an inch along and west of I-5...to a tenth of an
inch or less remainder of the area. The highest quantitative precipitation forecast values are
likely in the western Tehachapi Mountains where strongest upslope along
the Coast Ranges could produce a half to one inch in the Cuddy
Valley/Frazier Park area. Snowfall in the Sierra will be light and
generally in the 1-3 inch range above 7000-8000 feet. Snow in the
Kern County mountains will be confined to the higher peaks and no
significant impact is expected.


The upper low will be southeast of the region Tuesday night as it
migrates toward northern or central Baja California California. Precipitation will end and
should mostly be over with by mdnt. For the remainder of the week
a high amplitude upper ridge will quickly rebuild over the west.
This will again bring a modest warming trend. Shortwave troughs will
flatten the ridge over the weekend...but at this time it looks
like any precipitation will be north of this forecast area through at least sun.

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

We will post another local weather update as conditions warrant.

[end of update]


05-Feb-2012 10:37 AM

Fire Weather System Activated - Latest Forecast from Hanford

Due to the extremely dry conditions we have seen this winter, we have decided to activate our Fire Weather Alert System. This is a highly unusual move, since we are technically in between fire seasons, but as you know, the conditions are hardly what we would normally be seeing in February. The system is currently indicating a HIGH risk as of this update.

We will leave the system active until such time as we see a significant reduction in the local wildfire threat.

Here is the latest forecast from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
915 am PST sun Feb 5 2012



Synopsis...
weak high pressure and mostly clear skies will prevail throughout
the region for the rest of this weekend. Clouds will begin to
increase on Monday...and then rain and mountain snow are possible
throughout the region Tuesday due to an approaching low pressure
system. Dry conditions are then expected for the rest of next week
as high pressure returns.

Update...
blocking high pattern keeping the district dry this morning with
some cirrus clouds starting to roll-in. Will not expect much
change in the weather...mainly temperatures...as high clouds
overspread the state. While weak...surface pressure gradients
remain offshore with a continuation of downsloping winds. These
gradients will allow temperatures to warm up again across the
valley as the San Joaquin Valley reaches well into the 60s today.
Yet...because the gradient is much weaker today...strong winds
around the Grapevine area of Kern County did not develop. At this
point...will wait for Tuesday storm to see another increase in
winds.


Short range models still progging the blocking high pattern as the
dominate feature across the west through at least Monday. Models
still attempting to push an upper level trough onto the West Coast
on Tuesday/early Wednesday. While models agree on developing a
split flow pattern during trough passage...precipitation amount continue to
show high uncertainty. Will continue with chance wording of
possible precipitation and keep precipitation amounts low during the storm. Will
see possible precipitation linger into Wednesday before the storm exits
during the day on Wednesday. With low confidence on where the bulk
of the precipitation will go during the next storm...will make no changes
to the forecast for now.


Previous discussion... /issued 516 am PST sun Feb 5 2012/


blocking pattern over the western U.S. Is producing a dry north-NE
flow aloft over central California. The offshore flow is also bringing
mild temperatures to much of the region...by as much as 10 degrees above
average for early Feb.


The Block will remain in place through at least Monday...with east Pacific
trough energy turning north before reaching the coast. However a
developing trough in the central Pacific along 150w...is forecast to
push east and begin to split. Northern part of the split will lift
north back into the Gulf of Alaska. The southern stream portion will
dig southeast off the California coast Monday night and Tuesday as it heads for central
Baja California California.


This is where problems arise in the models. Proximity to the coast
will be key to whether the interior gets any rain or not. GFS is
the wettest model...with the upper low hugging the coast and a
wave of precipitation moving inland Tuesday afternoon. The European model (ecmwf) is about
100-200 miles farther off the coast...and brings very little
precipitation east of the coastal ranges. The Canadian Gem is even
farther offshore with the upper low...and produces no precipitation east
of the coastal ranges.


The GFS...and most its ensemble members...are likely much too
progressive with the system as it tries to undercut The Block. The
compromise solution is to follow the Euro...keeping highest probability of precipitation
confined to the west side of the sjv and western portion of the
Tehachapi Mountains generally speaking the best chance of rain will be
along and west of the I-5 corridor...with little or no precipitation over
the rest of the region.


Confidence in the above scenario is not particularly good...and
elected to keep some small probability of precipitation over all of the interior Tuesday and
Tuesday evening. A high amplitude ridge will rebuild over the western
U.S. Wednesday into Friday. The weekend looks dry at this time for central
California. However the upper ridge could weaken enough to allow some
systems to begin moving into the Pacific NW/norcal.

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

We will return with our next update on Tuesday, with a time dependent on local weather conditions.

[end of update]



04-Feb-2012 11:35 AM

Tuesday Storm Likely to Remain Offshore and South - Little Chance of Rain for Bass Lake

As has been typical this La Nina plagued winter, the Tuesday low pressure system we had been looking forward to is now forecast to split with the southern portion moving down the coast instead of moving into Central California as we had hoped. This means that our chances for any measurable rain have all but vanished.

While we may see an overcast day on Tuesday, unless we see some upslope generated local shower activity, the area will remain dry through the period with yet another high pressure ridge building in behind the front on Wednesday. This will bring us back to the same dry pattern we have seen for the last several months with sunny clear days and little to no chance of precipitation.

Here is the latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
910 am PST Sat Feb 4 2012


Synopsis...
weak high pressure and mostly clear skies will prevail throughout
the region this weekend...with the exception of patchy valley fog
and low clouds during the nights and mornings. Clouds will begin to
increase on Monday...and then rain and mountain snow are possible
throughout the region Tuesday due to an approaching low pressure
system.

Update...
first few visible satellite imagery from this morning show some
high clouds rolling over the state and a some patchy ground fog.
Otherwise...will expect dry conditions today with mostly sunny
skies under a blocking high pattern. Yet...with the ridge axis
east of the district...will see the continuation of the offshore
wind flow. This flow pattern will allow the San Joaquin Valley to
warm up under downsloping winds...especially Bakersfield...as may
locations will reach well into the 60s today. Short range forecasts
show little change in the next 24 hours...so will expect minor
change on Sunday as the offshore flow pattern weakens. As the flow
weakens...will see a decrease in overnight strong downsloping
winds...mainly over the Kern County mountains...as the flow
becomes more onshore. This change in the flow will precede a storm
still timed for early next Tuesday. For now...will make no changes
as all weather elements remain on track for a warm sunny day.


Previous discussion... /issued 710 am PST Sat Feb 4 2012/


high pressure at the surface is producing a moderate offshore
flow. Occasionally gusty S-southeast winds are occurring along north
facing slopes of the Tehachapi Mountains these downslope winds will
again send temperatures into the middle-upper 70s in the south end of the
sjv again today. Elsewhere temperatures will continue to be about 5 degrees
above climatology. Some high level convergence between an elongated
upper low from the Great Basin to the central rockies...and a
shortwave trough approaching 130w will produce some high...mainly
thin clouds today. Somewhat drier air in the sjv this morning has
kept fog minimal to none.


The overall pattern shows little change through Monday...with a slight
warming trend in the mountains and deserts. Models are in somewhat
better agreement Tuesday with a shortwave trough approaching the West
Coast. This trough is then forecast to split...with the northern portion
pushing across the Pacific northwest and the southern portion sliding southeast off
the California coast toward central Baja California. This pattern is one we have seen
often this winter...with precipitation mainly confined to the coastal
areas. Some light precipitation could make to the interior of California Tuesday if
the low tracks close enough to the coast. Slightly cooler temperatures
are on tap mid-week...but modifying end of the week as an upper
ridge rebuilds into Friday. Valley fog should continue to be patchy at
the worst.

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

[end of update]


03-Feb-2012 1:16 PM

Tuesday Storm Still On Track - Unfortunately, Just a Band-Aid to Our Continuing Winter Drought

Fortunately, models are still forecasting the arrival of a low pressure system for the area on Tuesday and Tuesday night, albeit a very short lived pattern change. Precipitation estimates have yet to be determined since models are still conflicted on exactly how much moisture will be contained in this system. The European model insists on keeping this closed low off the coast which would result in ZERO precipitation for the Southern Sierra, but the more time tested GFS model is still predicting a respectable precipitation event.

Any way you slice it, we are still in a very dismal situation. This in light of what has traditionally been the wettest month of the year for our area over the last 100+ years since weather records have been kept.

The latest from the NWS Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
943 am PST Friday Feb 3 2012



Synopsis...
weak upper level disturbances will continue to move over the
forecast area until early next week...producing intermittent
scattered middle and high clouds. In addition...valley fog and low
clouds remain a possibility during the nights and mornings through
Monday. By Tuesday...rain and mountain snow are possible throughout
the region due to an approaching low pressure system.

Discussion...
fog in the San Joaquin Valley was focused on Merced
and part of western Madera County this morning. The fog and low
stratus should be gone by 11 am. Otherwise only some high clouds
are moving over central California.

Models remain in general agreement with the pattern over the next
few days...with a weak ridge continuing over the region between
an upper low centered near Colorado this morning and a trough in
the northeast Pacific. The ridge will bring continued mild
conditions under occasional high clouds through the weekend and
into the first part of next week...with temperatures running a
bit above climatology each day and patchy valley fog developing each
night and early morning. An offshore flow will continue over the
region and will be fairly weak over the Sierra. However the flow
will turn southeasterly and funnel through the passes in Kern
County at times with gusty winds...especially through and below
the Grapevine.


A developing trough will approach the West Coast by Tuesday. The
models have some differences with the evolution of this
system...as the GFS shows a wetter more progressive solution for
central California...swinging the trough inland Tuesday. This
will bring cooler temperatures and chances for precipitation to
all of our forecast zones Tuesday. The European model (ecmwf) splits the trough
with the southern part forming a closed low which remains
offshore and drops south...keeping precipitation chances very
minimal over our area. The forecast at this time continues to lean
toward the wetter GFS solution but confidence is low.


For the remainder of next week...models trend back toward
moderate agreement in rebuilding a ridge across the region. This
will provide dry conditions with temperatures warming back to a
few to several degrees above seasonal averages.

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

We will keep our collective figures crossed that this increasingly RARE rain event actually delivers come Tuesday. In the meantime, May-like conditions will persist through the remainder of this week and into Monday of next week.

[end of update]



02-Feb-2012 8:50 AM

Tuesday Storm Looking More Likely, But Sadly, Wet Pattern Will Be Short Lived

Models are coming into better agreement today regarding the low pressure storm system we mentioned in our previous update. While the NWS is now expecting this system to be wet over our forecast area, the system will be fast moving and will only give us a single day of wet weather. Far from what we need right now in what has become a record winter drought for the Southern Sierra and all of Central California.

Once this system moves out on Wednesday, high pressure will rebuild back into the area for another prolonged period of dry weather through the remainder of the extended forecast period.

The Latest IR Sat Images

Weather Image

Weather Image

The latest forecast from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
847 am PST Thursday Feb 2 2012



Synopsis...
weak upper level disturbances will continue to move
over the forecast area this week producing intermittent scattered
middle and high clouds but little if any precipitation. Valley fog
remains a possibility during the nights and mornings.


Discussion...
upslope stratus persists over the east side and
south end of the San Joaquin Valley as well as over the portions
of the southern Sierra Nevada foothills and the valley facing
slopes of the Tehachapi Mountains. Elsewhere skies are clear
across our area this morning as we remain under a cool northerly
flow since central California remains situated in between a ridge off the
California coast and an upper trough over The Rockies and Desert
Southwest. The low clouds are expected to slowly burn off later
this morning with daytime heating giving way to a mostly sunny
afternoon across our County warning forecast area. Temperatures are running fairly close to
yesterday in the valley but a few degrees below yesterday over the mountains
and Kern deserts under clear skies and cold air advection overnight. Temperatures
look to be on track to reach forecasted highs which are prognosticated
to be slightly below yesterday at most locations...but still above
seasonal normals for early February. The forecast for today looks
to be in good shape so am not planning any updates this morning.


Increased onshore p-grads kept breezy conditions over portions of
the Kern County mountains and deserts overnight...but the
gradients have relaxed this morning and are prognosticated to continue
decreasing today then turn offshore by Friday as a surface high
builds into the Great Basin. Meanwhile the offshore ridge is
expected to build into California by tonight and bring dry conditions and
a warming trend to our area through the weekend. However...night
and morning fog in the San Joaquin Valley might have an impact on
temperatures in some valley locations.


Both the GFS and European model (ecmwf) have been indicating the ridge breaking
down on Monday followed by a significant upper trough moving
through our area Tuesday and Tuesday night providing our area
with a chance of precipitation. With the medium range models now
showing better run to run continuity and better ensemble agreement
with this system during this time frame...am strongly considering
boosting sky cover and probability of precipitation for Tuesday and Tuesday night with the
afternoon package. This system is prognosticated to move east of our area
on Wednesday then a dry upper ridge will become re-established
over central California by next Thursday.

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

[end of update]




01-Feb-2012 11:27 AM

MISSED AGAIN! - Still Chance of Possible Rain Early Next Week

The low pressure that we had hoped would bring us some potential precipitation today fizzled. Still... We are seeing some upslope generated clouds forming over Goat Mountain (See webcam), which may grow into a denser cloud base and bring overcast to the area later this afternoon. There is a very low chance of seeing any upslope precipitation from these local cloud formations, but it remains a slight possibility. VERY slight.

Further out... The NWS is still looking at long range models and seeing that there is still a possibility that another low pressure trough "may" bring us some rain early next week. Still... Considering the very rain negative La Nina pattern that we have been shackled with this winter has a very good chance to destroying our chances for this rain between now and early next week.

Operator's Commentary:

The following is in response to a few very disturbing emails we received recently regarding our mentions of CLIMATE CHANGE in our recent forecast reports...

Based on the literal volumes of overwhelming evidence gathered by climate scientists over the last 30 years, this dry winter is only a "taste" of what our "new normal" here in the Sierra is going to look like over the coming decade. The "CURSE" of La Nina which is being amplified in intensity by global warming continues to screw us over time and time again this winter and most likely, the next! This IS the reality of Climate Change which is HERE NOW! Not some distant future that we don't need to concern ourselves with!

Something to think about the next time an ignorant tool of the oil and gas industry tells you that climate change is a myth! Nothing could be further from the truth! Claims to the contrary from the climate change denier camp speaks volumes as to the intelligence of those who regularly ooze such utter stupidity for the sake of an academically/intillectually bankrupt political ideology!

We trust that the majority of those who follow this station are reasonably well versed in weather science and understand the significant threat that looms before us and our local environment, regardless of what political party they are affiliated with.

To those who are offended by our weather science based reports... EDUCATE YOURSELF or LEAVE!! We will continue to report based on WEATHER SCIENCE! We are not a TOOL of any political party, ideology, or corporate interest.

As I told these unbelievably STUPID individuals personally... I would prefer to keep our user base IDIOT FREE, so if they can't handle the overwhelming truth of climate change and our continued references to those FACTS, I suggested that they find another source for your local weather! Considering that our station is the ONLY accurate weather station within an 8 mile radius of Bass Lake, I wished them luck, and more importantly, good riddance! ;o)

Thank you.

The Latest NWS Forecast

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
850 am PST Wednesday Feb 1 2012



Synopsis....
weak upper level disturbances will continue to move
over the forecast area this week producing intermittent scattered
middle and high clouds but little if any precipitation. Valley fog
remains a possibility during the nights and mornings.

Discussion...
the upper trough which pushed through our area
overnight is now pushing southeast through southeastern California. Other
than some isolated Post-frontal showers over Yosemite park noted
by earlier radar composites...our area remained precipitation
free from this feature. Meanwhile...skies cleared out across the
remainder of our County warning forecast area and a few patches of fog formed toward
daybreak in the San Joaquin Valley. Will be making a quick update
this morning to include fog this morning and reduce cloud cover
for this afternoon across our area. Temperatures look to be on
track to reach forecasted highs today which will be close to yesterday
in the San Joaquin Valley and a little cooler than yesterday over the
higher elevations.


12z WRF and GFS are indicating a dry upper ridge building into California
tonight and Thursday. This feature is prognosticated to keep our area dry
through the upcoming weekend with temperatures rising to above
seasonal normals for early February. The only forecast problem for
Thursday through Sunday will be the extent of any night and
morning fog in the San Joaquin Valley.


The medium range models are in fairly good agreement with breaking
the ridge down early next week and bringing a split trough into California
by next Tuesday. It is still too far out to tell if this system
will bring any precipitation to our area as there is some
disagreement amongst ensemble members...but feel that at least a
slight chance to low chance of rain and mountain snow will be
Worth mentioning if the 12z operational runs of the medium range
models indicate a significant trough impacting our area by next
Tuesday like previous operational runs were.

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

[end of update]


31-Jan-2012 11:25 AM


Trace Precipitation Last Night - "Slight" Chance of Rain Wednesday and Early Next Week

The center of a weak low pressure system moved through our area early last night allowing for some upslope generated showers around the Bass Lake area. Because this low center did not arrive until close to dusk, there wasn't enough radiant heating to permit the upslope effect to really get going. As a result, we only received a trace of precipitation which was not enough to tip the rain bucket.

Another low pressure trough will move through on Wednesday but we are not sure if we will see any precipitation from this system at this point. Based on what happened last night with a similar system, we could pick up some additional trace precipitation and possibly some measurable precipitation.

Looking Forward Into Next Week

Long range models are hinting at the possibility that the amplified ridge pattern that will be building into our area later this week will break down by Monday. This might allow another low pressure trough to move into Central California. The Hanford office remains skeptical at this point because not all the models agree on this solution this far out. They are keeping the region dry next Tuesday, but there is still a chance we could see something a week from today.

The Latest IR Sat Images Showing the Wednesday System Inbound

Weather Image

Weather Image

The latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion...updated
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1012 am PST Tuesday Jan 31 2012



Synopsis...
weak cold fronts will move through the region at times by middle-week
bringing cooler weather and some clouds. Dry conditions will
prevail much of this week...while valley fog remains a possibility
during the nights and mornings.

Discussion...
well after some rain across the County Warning Area last night we are seeing mostly
clear skies across the central cal interior. There continues to be
some low clouds and patchy dense fog near mce and fat this am and
it might be slow to burn off. Elsewhere temperatures are already up
significantly and have updated the forecast to increase temperatures across
the central California interior.

Models are still having trouble with the next system. And will
evaluate whether or not to put in probability of precipitation and will wait for some more
model guidance to come in. Right now...I am leaning towards
putting some probability of precipitation across the northern portion of the County Warning Area Wednesday night.

No changes are expected to the extended at this time.

Previous discussion... /issued 238 am PST Tuesday Jan 31 2012/

weak but pesky weather disturbance continues to move
east across the forecast area this morning. Had to update grids
already to reflect light rain and sprinkles through 400 am and
based on the eastward movement this should suffice with all
activity gone by sunrise. For the rest of today skies will be
clearing over the region however in the San Joaquin Valley the
extent of low level moisture and clouds will be difficult to get a
handle on. In the overall pattern, ridging will amplify over
California today however the next Pacific system is moving east
along 40n/140w. Models bring this feature into the northern
California coast Wednesday morning and then drive a trough of low
pressure across the central California interior during the day.
Forecast models again project this to be a mainly dry system
however based on past model performance, this may not be the case.
By Thursday the pattern over the west becomes very amplified with
a blocking ridge that is projected to last into Monday. The European model (ecmwf)
model then breaks down the ridge more quickly than the GFS model
and actually pushes a weakening frontal system into central
California on Tuesday. Meanwhile the GFS model keeps this feature
offshore. Not much confidence in the model solutions at this day 7
time frame and will keep the forecast dry.

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


[end of update]


30-Jan-2012 5:03 PM

Upslope Generated Showers!

NextRad radar is indicating the blossoming of some upslope generated precipitation that just began occurring a few minutes ago. We are actually getting some light rain here at the moment. Not sure if this will be enough to tip the rain bucket, but we shall see.

If this starts turning into a more substantial precipitation event, we will update the journal. Check out our home page in the meantime as well as our precipitation map to check on the development of these upslope showers for yourself!

[end of update]


30-Jan-2012 11:42 AM

Area forecast discussion...updated
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
953 am PST Monday Jan 30 2012



Synopsis...
some weak cold fronts will move over the region at times through
middle-week bringing cooler weather and some clouds. Dry conditions
will prevail...while fog will remain a possibility during the nights
and mornings in the San Joaquin Valley.

Discussion...


..will update clouds and temperatures for today...


Middle and high clouds above the patchy fog layer this morning. Fog
will continue to burn off as high and middle clouds will increase this
afternoon. Would not rule out a sprinkle across the northern sjv and
into the southern Sierra. Upper vorticity maximum is expected to cross the
County Warning Area this afternoon and evening. Post frontal stratus is being
forecast by the nam12. Will adjust grids to reflect this mornings
update to the short term. No changes to long term forecast.

Previous discussion... /issued 208 am PST Monday Jan 30 2012


Discussion...
satellite imagery shows some amplification of the
ridge offshore as the latest shortwave trough moves across the
Pacific northwest. Over the forecast area, the flow is certainly
anticyclonic aloft and as the high pressure center shifts east
today this will continue. Over the majority of the forecast area
just high clouds will prevail today however over the San Joaquin
Valley sky cover will be tricky to pin down depending on several
factors including whether or not fog forms and how thick any
remaining high clouds are. As of 200 am the clouds have been thick
enough to prevent for formation however the next 2-3 hours will
decide if the fog forms or not. Overall the pattern will be
dominated by periods of clouds as weak shortwave troughs ride over
the ridge however the chances of any precipitation look dismal.
Based on coordination with offices in Reno, Sacramento and Las
Vegas I have removed the slight chance probability of precipitation for the Sierra for
tonight and early Tuesday as the forecast models keep the threat
well to the north. Models then indicate the next trough will pass
to the north on Wednesday with another round of just middle and high
level moisture. A highly amplified ridge is then projected by both
the GFS and European model (ecmwf) models to reside over the region through next
weekend for continued dry weather in this very dry winter.


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

[end of update]



28-Jan-2012 10:26 AM

No Relief in Sight

As we approach the normally wettest month of the year, the long range forecasts continue to paint a very grim picture for the possibility of any rain in the foreseeable future. Once again our area is trapped under an all too familiar amplified high pressure ridge pattern that will likely persist at least through the first week of February but likely well beyond that.

The latest IR Sat image clearly shows the ridge as an invisible circle just off the coast of Southern California and Baja California. You can see the train of pacific storms being diverted well to our north as a result:

Weather Image

While there will be a few shortwave troughs moving through to our north by the end of the coming week, they will only bring us some scattered high clouds. No chance of any precipitation for us from these weak low pressure systems.

Here is the latest forecast from the NWS in Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1004 am PST Sat Jan 28 2012


Synopsis...
upper-level high pressure will continue sitting over the region
through early next week with generally mostly clear skies...except
for morning and evening low clouds and patchy fog in the San Joaquin
Valley.


..Max temperatures raised and sky cover decreased in the sj valley today...


Discussion...
visible satellite imagery shows low clouds and fog
blanketing the southeastern portion of the sj valley this morning while
skies are generally clear over the remainder of the sj valley and the
rest of the central California interior. Gradients have trended offshore
since yesterday...so would expect low clouds and fog in the sj valley
to dissipate by this afternoon. Temperatures could top the 70 degree mark
in the warmest spots of the sj valley this afternoon where sunshine
prevails but where low clouds are slow to burn off...temperatures will be
closer to 60 degrees. Low clouds and fog will likely reform in
parts of the sj valley during the next 2-3 nights and the dissipating
process will repeat itself each morning. But exactly where and
when low clouds and fog form and dissipate in the sj valley and
resultant maximum and min temperature forecasts will be very problematic during
the next 48 hours.


In the broader scope of things...our weather pattern will remain
pretty mundane through the weekend as an upper level ridge of high
pressure remains in control. A dry offshore flow will prevail during
this time with clear skies and exceptionally mild afternoon temperatures...
especially over the higher terrain. A couple of storm systems will
track eastward through the Pacific northwest next week. The first system will
drag a cold front southward through the County Warning Area Monday afternoon. Another
cold frontal passage is expected late Wednesday or Wednesday night. Although both
of these fronts will be weak and moisture starved...enough of these
lift could accompany them to squeeze drizzle out of any low stratus
in the sj valley...much like what happened a couple of nights ago.


Otherwise...temperatures will cool to seasonable levels over the higher
terrain by Monday and change little each day through midweek thanks
to a predominant onshore flow. The models forecast an upper level
ridge to build back over California during the second half of next week and
remain in control at least into next weekend. That means dry weather
will not only finish out the month of January but continue through
the first week of February.


Previous discussion... /issued 426 am PST Sat Jan 28 2012/


clouds which piled up along the south end and east side of the
valley this evening have sloshed back northward overnight and now
cover much of the valley to just south of Merced. Drier air has
made it into extreme northern portions of our valley zones where
dewpoints are in the middle 30s...while dewpoints remain around 50
degrees in the south end. The clouds are prognosticated to mix out during
the day today and temperatures are expected to warm to around
climatology across the central California interior beneath a rebuilding
high pressure ridge.


The ridge will begin to break down again by Sunday...leaving a
general zonal flow over the region through midweek as additional
shortwave energy tracks into the West Coast. The shortwave troughs
are forecast to remain mainly north of US and are not expected
to produce precipitation in our area. The ridge will then
re-amplify and track east across our area through the end of the
week ahead of a more significant developing trough approaching the
West Coast. The forecast remains dry through the period in this
pattern...with episodes of patchy overnight valley fog...and
temperatures hovering at or slightly above seasonal averages.

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

Once again, we wish we had more positive news to report, but all indications are that February will likely be just as dry as the previous winter months have been. While the welcome series of storms last weekend brought us close to a near normal January in terms of monthly precipitation, our seasonal total is still abysmal with a 40 inch precipitation deficit heading in to what would normally be a month of 9-10 inches of rain. Even if we were to magically pick up that much rain in February, we would still be 30 inches below normal. We will be lucky to pick up half that much this year.

This should give you a sense of how dire our current situation is.

This will be our only weather update for the coming week, since there will not be any weather news to report. Expect the next 7-10 days to be dry, with temps slightly above seasonal norms and mostly sunny skies.

We may have a few station maintenance reports to post here in the next several days, but nothing weather related.

[end of update]


24-Jan-2012 9:55 AM

Back to the Old Grind

The last of the storm systems has exited the area leaving behind cold and icy conditions this morning. We racked up an impressive three day storm total of 5.39 inches which brings our seasonal total to 9.17 inches. The higher elevations of the Sierra picked up over 5 feet of snow during this same period which is also a welcome addition to what had been a totally barren Sierra range.

While this was an impressive three day total, it barely made a dent in our current precipitation deficit for the 2011/2012 rainy season. We are still about 40 inches below where we should be for a normal winter, so we have a very long way to go before we will be anywhere close to a normal year.

Unfortunately, the next 7 days will offer nothing towards reaching that goal as yet another high pressure ridge is setting up shop over the area and will be bringing us yet another long stretch of above normal temperatures with no chance of precipitation. Long range forecasts for February/March from the Climate Prediction Office looks bleak in this regard as well. While we will no doubt see at least a few more storm systems between now and the end of the season, the usual train of storms we have always relied on in our wettest month of February will not be there for us this year.

Wish we had more positive news, but there is no getting around the fact that we are going to be seeing the driest winter on record for our area.

Here is the latest from the NWS in Hanford

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
851 am PST Tuesday Jan 24 2012



Synopsis...
higher pressure is building over central California which will bring
the potential for dense morning fog into the San Joaquin Valley for
the rest of the week.

Discussion...
visible satellite imagery and surface observation show
mainly clear skies outside the San Joaquin Valley and the upslope
areas of the Kern County mountains. Meanwhile in the San Joaquin
Valley a mix of locally dense fog and stratus clouds is the rule.
Expect the fog and stratus to slowly diminish today however with
ridging building in over the region, the amount of clearing and
the extent of overnight redevelopment remains a little uncertain.
For areas outside the sjv, the forecast for the next several days
looks dry with a warming trend. Periods of high clouds will likely
occur as weather systems pass to the north. In the sjv a
persistent fog to stratus pattern is setting up and the resulting
temperatures may need an overhaul as much cooler and damp
conditions will likely ensue for the next several days.

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

This will be our last scheduled journal update for this week as there will be very little weather related news to report on. We may post an update related to our Weather Bug data as soon as we are able to select our station for the Weather Bug iPad app and the other desktop weather products that Weather Bug offers. Our station is now available on the Weather Bug website which can be accessed via our D2149 Around the Web page, but as of this update our station is still not available via the iPad or iPhone app, nor is it available on the Weather Bug dashboard app for OSX.

We have sent a support inquiry to the Weather Bug staff and will relay any info they provide regarding our missing station.

[end of update]


23-Jan-2012 1:12 PM

Some Serious Rain Action Last Hour! - New Link Page on Our WebSite!

If you have been monitoring the station website recently, you no doubt witnessed a very impressive deluge of rain and ice pellets hitting the station's rain gauge! It reported an hourly rain rate of 1.11 in/h for a short period bringing our daily precipitation total to 1.31 inches so far.

We are still seeing light rain in the area at the time of this update, and radar is showing a lot of upslope generated precipitation rotating near our location. The center of this low contains a lot of unstable air and the chances of some isolated thunderstorms is a distinct possibility over the next few hours!

The Latest Local NextRad Radar Image

Weather Image

On this most recent local Nextrad Radar image, you can see the center of the low just north of the station. See that black dot with the white outline at the eastern border of Fresno County? This is a lightning strike and these dots will appear on the map in real time to display lighting strikes to the ground detected in our area.

New Web Page!

We also wanted to announce the addition of a brand new page on our web site. We have recently begun sending our weather data to several other weather related websites including PWS and Weather Bug. The latter having a very nice iPhone, iPod Touch and a dedicated iPad app for viewing our station data off of Weather Bug. As of this report, our Weather Bug data has still not appeared on their site, so the link on our new page is currently pointing to the North Fork MADIS Station C6459, which is the closest station to ours on the Weather Bug network. As soon as our station comes online there, (24-48 hours from now) we will update the Weather Bug link to point directly to D2149's page there.

The new page on our site is called: D2149 Around the Web and is also linked on the lower right corner of the gray link bar on our home page. Now you have a one stop shop for all of the various third-party weather sites that we send our weather data to.

Here is the latest from the NWS in Hanford

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
849 am PST Monday Jan 23 2012



Synopsis...
continued cloudy skies with periods of heavy rain and higher
elevation snow expected through today as another storm system moves
through the area. High pressure will move in on Tuesday bringing
the potential for dense fog to return to the San Joaquin Valley for
the rest of the week.

Discussion...
upper low continues to push southeast across the Bay
area this morning and radar shows the surface low approaching
Sacramento. Winds at the surface continue from the southeast in
the San Joaquin as a result however to the south the middle level
wind maximum and the jet take aim on western Kern County. Based on
track of the jet and upper low, the central California interior
will be in a favored location for thunderstorms and the current
grids show this well. Oakland sounding did not Sample the cold
pool as the colder air was still to the west thus the airmass
instability was not sampled well. None-the-less forecast soundings
have the best shear in the pre-frontal environment and the best
instability Post frontal. By middle afternoon the convection will be
over as the system pulls east.

Winds will continue to be locally strong but with time the main
focus will shift to the Kern County mountains and desert.

The snow in the Sierra will target Tulare County for the remainder
of the morning and begin to wind down north of Kings Canyon.
Snow levels will likely fall to around 4000 feet in the colder air
behind the front. Winter weather products will remain in effect.

_____________________________________________

That's all for now! We will be back with another update as conditions warrant.

Enjoy the last storm! It might be awhile before we see another one!

[end of update]




23-Jan-2012 8:41 AM

Cold Front Misses Bass Lake - Snow Level Stays Above 5000 Feet

The low snow levels predicted never materialized this morning as the center of the low pressure system stayed well to our north. This kept temps well above freezing overnight resulting in warmer surface temps at our elevation and kept any precipitation we have received liquid.

The Latest NextRad Radar

Local

Weather Image

State Wide


Weather Image

As you can see from the radar images, this system is a lot less defined than the two previous systems which has resulted in a more scattered and intermittent precipitation pattern. The air remains unstable, so upslope generated precipitation is likely through most of the day today.

The station has recorded close to one inch of precipitation since midnight with a current day total of 0.98 inches. Rain rates have been modest with our highest rain rate coming in earlier this morning with a 0.60 inches per hour being recorded at 5:42 AM.

We are also seeing some dense fog at the station right now, with visibilities down to a 1/4 mile or less.

This system is forecast to remain over our area through most of the day today and then exits the area Tuesday morning.

More Questions on Our Rainfall Totals

We continue to get emails from some users about our rainfall totals being lower than what they are seeing on their backyard rain gauges.

First of all, cheap grocery store rain gauges are notorious for "over-reporting" rainfall totals. This gives these folks a false impression of the "actual" rainfall for their area. Our station hardware retails for $2500.00 and its rain gauge is one of the most accurate of any professional level weather station on the market. You simply can not compare the totals you may see on a $20.00 or under rain gauge mounted on a fence to our station and expect them to be the same.

We calibrate our gauge every 3 months and before the start of every rain season. The totals it reports are as accurate as they can possibly be.

If you would like to measure the rainfall at your exact location there are two things you need to do first...

1) Buy an "accurate" high quality rain gauge
2) Site it properly!


The siting of the instrument is vital to collecting the most accurate rainfall data possible for the instrument you choose. The gauge must be clear of any trees or objects that can deflect runoff into the gauge and thus add additional water to your totals. Mounting the gauge on a fence, a tree trunk, a roof molding or within 150 feet of tall trees is a NO NO!

To do it right, the gauge should be mounted on a mast or tripod about 5.5 feet above the ground with an unobstructed circle around the gauge of at least 20 feet in diameter. The larger this circle the better. If mounted within 150 feet of any trees taller than your gauge height your data will likely be compromised, especially during periods of high winds with rain/snow.

We recommend the Stratus Long Term Professional Rain and Snow Gauge

While this device is still not as accurate as the gauge on our Davis VP2+ station, it will be a lot closer to the same readings our station reports. It takes a lot more rain than most people realize to equal 100th of an inch in the gauge. Relying on an improperly sited low cost rain gauge will give a false impression of how much observed rainfall equals a 100th of an inch in the gauge.

Siting is still the most important aspect of setting up your own rain measurement device. If not properly sited, your rain totals will be way too high and far from the same totals you will see reported by our professional station.

Even an Expensive Professional Gauge Will Over-Report if Improperly Sited

Some of the other local stations in our area are using the exact same Davis VP2 that we are using, but they have failed to site it properly, which results in similar over-reporting errors of 1 inch or higher per 24 hour period. This problem is exacerbated with the addition of high winds which will drive large volumes of water off of tall trees and other objects and into the gauge.

Finally... Remember that our station was selected by the National Weather Service to be the official reporting station for Bass Lake for many reasons. Our accurate reporting of rainfall data is one of the big ones.

The Latest Forecast from the NWS Hanford

Area forecast discussion...updated
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
650 am PST Monday Jan 23 2012



Synopsis...
continued cloudy skies with periods of heavy rain and higher
elevation snow expected through today as another storm system moves
through the area. High pressure will move in on Tuesday bringing
the potential for dense fog to return to the San Joaquin Valley for
the rest of the week.

Update...
winds continue to gust to 41 miles per hour at Pacheco Pass and to around 35
miles per hour near Los Banos. Have extended the Wind Advisory for the west
central San Joaquin Valley until 18z /1000 PST/ this morning.

Previous update...
southeast wind gusts have increased to around 30 kts at The
Castle...Madera and Merced airports ahead of the approaching cold
front. Have issued a significant weather advisory for gusty winds in
the east central San Joaquin Valley through 15z /0700 PST/ this
morning.

Discussion...
light precipitation continues to move across the Hanford warning/
forecast area early this morning...with radar loops showing heavier
precipitation over the Sacramento Delta and along the central
California coast. A few lightning strikes have been detected along
the coast from Sonoma County southward as the upper-level jet takes
aim on central California.


The NAM-12 forecasts a 300-mb 120+ jet maximum to move onto the
California coast near San Luis Obispo County by sunrise. By 18z
/1000 PST/ this morning...500-mb temperatures over much of the
central California interior are forecast to fall to -24 c or
colder. Surface-computed convective available potential energy increase to 200+ joules/kg...and
surface-computed lifted indices over the western half of the valley
are -2. The forecast of isolated thunderstorms for today looks on
track.


At 10z /0200 PST/...a few stations in the west central San Joaquin
Valley were reporting southerly winds gusting to 30-35 miles per hour. The Wind
Advisory is in effect for this area through 15z /0700 PST/. Further
south...a Wind Advisory is in effect for the southwestern San
Joaquin Valley from 12-18z /0400-1000 pt/ this morning for gusty
southerly winds ahead of the cold front.


In the mountains above 5000 feet...a Winter Storm Warning remains in
effect for the southern Sierra Nevada from Yosemite to the Kern
County line...and a Winter Weather Advisory is in effect for the
Kern County mountains. Both are in effect through 02z Tuesday /1800
PST today/. As the cold front drops into the Kern County deserts
later today...winds will increase. A Wind Advisory is in effect for
the Kern deserts from 10z this morning to 03z Tuesday /1900 PST this
evening/.


The models forecast the upper-level trough to move into the Great
Basin this afternoon. Behind the trough...an upper-level ridge is
forecast to build into California Tuesday and continue to strengthen
Wednesday with 500-mb heights over the central California interior
rising to over 5820 meters.


There is less model continuity beyond Wednesday this morning. The
00z European model (ecmwf) brings a short-wave into northern California Thursday...
weakening the ridge. The GFS weakens the ridge as well...but without
the trough the European model (ecmwf) has.


Both the European model (ecmwf) and GFS rebuild the ridge over the West Coast Friday
ahead of another upper-level trough. The European model (ecmwf) fills in the trough
Saturday while the GFS keeps the trough intact and brings the trough
into California Saturday night. The trough then drops into central
California Sunday afternoon with a 5330-meter low over Bakersfield
at 00z Monday /1600 PST Sunday/. At the same time...the European model (ecmwf) has
500-mb heights of 5760+ meters over central California.


Through Saturday have gone with a stable airmass with night and
morning Tule fog in the central and southern San Joaquin Valley each
day. For next weekend...have kept to persistence due to model
differences.
___________________________________________

We will update the journal as soon as conditions warrant. There is a chance of isolated Thunderstorms in our area today, so we will not rule out periods of heavy rain, high winds and lighting and thunder.

Stay tuned to our website for the latest real-time updates on current conditions and rainfall totals.

[end of update]


22-Jan-2012 6:14 PM

Rain/Snow Still on Tap for Late Tonight and Monday

The third and final pacific storm of this weekend is just now moving onshore, having slowed its eastward motion as compared to earlier today. This has delayed the arrival of the main front over the Bass Lake/Southern Sierra Nevada by several hours. We are now expecting it to arrive late this evening or just after midnight.

The NWS is still expecting the system to pack a decent punch with up to 2 inches of rain for the foothills and up to 3 feet of snow for elevations above 6000 feet. Temps remain well above freezing at the time of this report, so we may see rain first with a transitioning over to snow in the early morning hours and into Monday morning.

The Latest Enhanced IR Pacific Sat Image

Weather Image

Here is the latest forecast from the NWS in Hanford

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
301 PM PST sun Jan 22 2012



Synopsis...
another storm system is on its way...and is expected to bring heavy
mountain snow to the Sierra and more rain to the lower elevations
tonight through Monday evening. Afterward...a ridge of high pressure
will begin building and set up over the region on Tuesday...dense
valley fog will be a good bet during the nights and mornings for
the rest of the week.

Discussion...
a band of precipitation moving over Yosemite and north sectors of
sjv as an upper disturbance acts on lower level moisture along a
stalled front. The disturbance will bring stronger westerlies into
central California keeping the front pushing southeast this evening.
Satellite images show several additional disturbances offshore
along a strong upper level jet aimed towards central California. Lots middle
to upper level moisture along the west-east oriented jet. However precipitable water
images show the higher precipitable water located just south of the jet. Models
forecast some of the higher precipitable water may get entrained into a developing low
pressure system offshore increasing the potential for heavy
widespread rain and heavy snow in the Sierra tonight and Monday.
The associated surface low develops off the San Francisco coast
tonight. This will result in strong surface gradient along the
central coast bringing the potential for strong winds tonight
over the mountain passes of the west side of the San Joaquin
Valley and Merced area. Snow levels will fall to around 4500 feet
near Yosemite and to near 5000 feet in the Tehachapi Mountains by
Monday. A Winter Storm Warning continues over the Sierra and a
Winter Weather Advisory for the Kern County mountains above 5000
feet starting tonight and Monday. Models continue to indicate
weak instability with the arrival of cooler air aloft thus will
leave isolated thunderstorms for Monday. The potential for strong
gusty winds will shift towards the Kern County mountains and High
Desert Monday afternoon. After the upper trough moves out of the
region Monday night...an upper- level ridge moves into California.
This will result in a stable airmass bringing the threat for night
and morning fog to the San Joaquin Valley. The models are
indicating another upper level trough may move into California
next Friday.

_______________________________________________

Unless we see some major storm activity before 11PM this evening, we will wait until tomorrow morning to post our next weather update.

Stay tuned to our website for the latest real-time weather information for the Bass Lake area.

[end of update]



21-Jan-2012 6:21 PM

A Break in the Action Until Sunday Night

The second powerful pacific storm system has now departed the area leaving us with an impressive two day rainfall total of 1.74 inches yesterday and an even more impressive 2.09 inches today. The precipitation today fell first as rain and later as a rain/snow mix followed by ice pellets and snow. Not any real accumulation to speak of, with most of the white on the ground coming from the ice pellets early this afternoon.

We are expecting the third and final system of this impressive triad of storms to arrive over our area beginning sometime in the late afternoon Sunday and continuing through a good portion of Monday. We are not sure at this point exactly how much additional precipitation we will see from this last system, but based on the temp forecasts, there is a high probability that we will see all of this precipitation arrive in the form of snow. The best chances for significant snow accumulation will come from this last system.

Some Much Anticipated Totals!

The storm total as of this update stands at: 3.84 inches

Our total for the season now stands at: 7.62 inches which is more than double our previous total for the entire season since July, 1st 2011. Barely a dent in our 40+ inch deficit, but it is a good start! The higher elevations of the Sierra also saw some awesome snowfall totals of 2-3 feet with another 1-2 feet expected from the Sunday/Monday system. Again, while far below a normal amount for late January, it sure beats the bare granite slopes we have seen until this weekend! Lets hope that it remains in place through the spring!

We are also pleased to report that all of the various station automation scripts performed flawlessly during this first series of winter storms this season, and everyone who was monitoring our website today was able to get the latest real-time weather condition updates posted automatically as they happened! Its always nice after such a long stretch of dry weather to see all of the rain/snow related hardware/software perform so beautifully! :o)

The 7-10 Days After Tuesday...

Unfortunately, it is looking like after this last system leaves our area on Tuesday morning, the area will once again be visited by another high pressure ridge pattern which will bring back the unseasonably warm and sunny conditions that we have been seeing for the last two months. It will also usher in another round of dense fog for the SJV region which will be amplified by the moist soil conditions these storms will have left in their wake. Hopefully the fresh new Sierra snowpack remains in place during this warming trend and doesn't end up melting and running off into the pacific ocean!

Long range forecasts are hinting at another pattern change back to more seasonable conditions in the first few days of February, but it is still too early to say for sure if we will indeed be picking up more rain/snow a week and a half from now. February has traditionally been our wettest month of the year, so what happens in February 2012 will be the make or break month for us having any chance of pulling out anything resembling a normal rainfall season this year. We will just have to wait and see how things go.

We won't be posting another update until we see the radar screens light up with precipitation, so we will either be back tomorrow night with our next storm update, or we will wait until Monday morning to report on current conditions.

The station has already sounded a freeze warning for tonight and with all the wet roads and walkways out there, it is going to be a VERY icy/slippery evening. Definitely use extreme caution when walking or driving outside tonight.

More as conditions warrant. Have a good evening and stay safe!

[end of update]


21-Jan-2012 10:43 AM

UPDATED JOURNAL ENTRY:

Temperatures have been falling rapidly over the last hour, and we are now seeing a mix of rain and snow at 36.7 degrees F. This is right in line with the NWS forecast for scattered snow showers for the Bass Lake area today. The transition has occurred a little faster than we had expected, so there is a very good chance that we will see a full transition over to snow within the next hour. We are also seeing some high winds associated with the arrival of the center of the cold front over the area.

The latest IR Sat Image of the current storm systems:

Weather Image

Impressive Rainfall Overnight! - Scattered Snow Showers Possible Today!

The station has recorded an impressive 3.64 inches of precipitation since rain began falling yesterday morning. Our rainfall total yesterday was 1.74 inches and so far today we have logged 1.90 inches with scattered showers moving through the area. Gusty winds and even some lightning have been reported in the area as the unstable air interacts with the Sierra Nevada.

Other "official" NWS stations have recorded similar impressive precipitation totals so far today:

Oakhurst: 1.81 inches (CWOP ID: WX6HNX-2)
Yosemite Valley: 1.66 inches (CWOP ID: K6IXA-2)
Fishcamp: 1.89 inches (CWOP ID: DW0826)
Mariposa: 1.48 inches (CWOP ID: CW1522)
Fresno: 1.08 inches

Rainfall Data Inaccuracies With Surrounding Private Stations

We only included official NWS stations above because all of the private weather stations in our area are improperly sited, placing them too close to large/tall trees. This makes them subject to high degrees of rainfall data contamination caused by wind blown moisture being driven off these trees and into the rain gauge. This contamination can add 1.00 inch or more of erroneous precipitation data per 24 hours to their rainfall totals. The more wind we see with the rain, the higher the inaccuracies with these stations will be. This is why the NWS only uses a handful of privately operated stations for their official data archives.

D2149 is the "Official NWS Reporting Station for Bass Lake", and the only private weather station in the Bass Lake/Northfork area that reports accurate rainfall data.

The latest NextRad Radar images:

Weather Image

Weather Image

Here is the latest forecast from the NWS in Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
949 am PST Sat Jan 21 2012



Synopsis...
the Pacific storm will continue to move through central California
today bringing heavy snow to the Sierra...moderate to heavy rain in
the nearby foothills and San Joaquin Valley. After a brief
break...another storm system is expected...mainly from Sunday
evening until Monday afternoon. Otherwise a ridge of high pressure
will set up over the region Tuesday...dense valley fog will then be
a possibility during the nights and mornings.


Update...
precipitation has turn to convective showers this morning. A few
vorticity spokes may provide convective squalls over the valley
and Sierra until midday. Main threat with these storms will be
small hail and damaging wind gusts. A strong upper level jet of
130kt is aligned with the pressure grads from west-east over Kern
County. May need to upgrade the Wind Advisory for Kern County to a
High Wind Warning. Will leave thunder threat out for this
afternoon since models indicate atmosphere becoming drier and
stable. However shower activity should continue over the Sierra
and tehachapis due to the strong upslope flow behind the upper
low.


Early discussion...
satellite and radar loops show the cold front moving through the
central California interior this morning. Gusty southerly winds have
developed ahead of the front...mainly along the far west side of the
San Joaquin Valley. Pacheco Pass gusted to 39 miles per hour...Avenal has had
gusts to 35 miles per hour...and Sunflower Valley has gusted to 32 miles per hour. Have
issued a significant weather advisory for the far west side of the
San Joaquin Valley through 1615z /0815 PST/ this morning. Winds over
the Kern County mountains and deserts will increase later this
morning as the cold front moves through...and a Wind Advisory is in
effect for those areas through 03z Sunday /1900 PST this evening.


Rainfall amounts through 11z /0300 PST/ have been up to a half inch
on the central San Joaquin Valley floor...and up to 4 inches in the
foothills and higher elevations of the southern Sierra Nevada. Mesoscale-
west observations place the snow level in the southern Sierra Nevada
around 8000 feet this morning...but the snow level will fall to
around 5000 feet during the day in the cold airmass behind the
front. Both 06z model and 20z rfc quantitative precipitation forecast guidance forecast the
precipitation to diminish after 18z /1000 PST/ this morning. A
Winter Storm Warning remains in effect for the southern Sierra
Nevada...above 5000 feet and north of Kern County...through 00z
Sunday /1600 PST this afternoon/.


The models forecast the upper-level trough to move into the Great
Basin this afternoon...with an upper-level ridge building into the
state tonight behind the trough. This will bring a break in the
precipitation tonight through Sunday morning.


The next upper-level trough is forecast to approach the Pacific
coast Sunday night...with the trough axis moving across the central
California interior between 18z Monday and 00z Tuesday. The latest
model quantitative precipitation forecast for this system have come in wetter...with quantitative precipitation forecast/S similar
to this morning/S storm.


Another upper-level ridge is forecast to build into California
Tuesday and strengthen Wednesday. 500-mb heights over the San
Joaquin Valley are forecast to increase to around 5820 meters by 00z
Thursday. With a stable airmass over the region and some ground
moisture...the stage will be set for a return of late night and
morning Tule fog to the central and southern San Joaquin Valley next
week.

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

We will be posting additional journal updates today as conditions warrant, especially if we start seeing significant snow developing in the area.

Stay tuned!

[end of update]



20-Jan-2012 5:41 PM

Precipitation Intensifies Thanks to Upslope Effect

Since our first bucket tip just before noon today, we have been seeing a very steady upslope condition persisting from the Sierra foothills, extending up the range through the Bass Lake elevation, and then proceeding up the mountain range to the crest where snow is currently falling.

Those who have been monitoring the storm via our Wide-Angle Precipitation Map page have witnessed rain cells "blooming" out of thin air as the unstable air hits the Sierra range. This is a "textbook" example of upslope generated precipitation.

Our storm total so far now stands at 0.24 inches, with rain rates ranging from 0.05 to as high as 0.25 inches per hour so far. The NWS is predicting that the rain rates will increase as we proceed through this evening and into Saturday morning. This translates into heavier and heavier rainfall as the night progresses.

The latest series of NextRad radar images show a growing volume of upslope generated precipitation moving into the Bass Lake area.

NextRad Radar - Close Range

Weather Image

NextRad Radar - State-Wide

Weather Image

We are pleased that we are finally seeing some significant rainfall in our area after our two month long drought. However, we must remind our users that we are far from reaching a normal level of precipitation for this point in the rain season. Even if we receive 5 inches of rain from these weekend systems, we will still be down by 40 inches for the season.

Enjoy the rain! We will be back tomorrow with a recap of the overnight storm totals.

Update 7:54 p.m.

The NWS is now forecasting the cold front to move in sooner than expected so we may actually see the rain turnover to snow before dawn on Saturday. We will be engaging the rain gauge heater late tonight just in case we see snow here at the station.


[end of update]


20-Jan-2012 12:24 PM

FINALLY!

Literally 2 months to the day since our last measurable rainfall on November 20th, 2011, we saw our first bucket tip of the rain gauge at 11:54 a.m. this morning. Light rain continues at the time of this quick update, as upsloping has managed to squeeze some moisture out of the remnants of yesterday's departing system.

Here are the latest NEXTrad radar images showing the scattered shower activity moving through our area this afternoon. Conditions are now in place to permit upslope conditions to occur, which amplify the moisture as it bumps up against the Sierra range and grows moisture weak approaching cells into heavier moisture rich cells.

You can follow this storm activity in real time using our Wide-Angle Precipitation Map

Because of our extended dry period, it has taken the lower atmosphere this long to saturate enough to allow for precipitation to actually make it to the ground without evaporating. The table has now been set, and hopefully we can now look forward to continuing precipitation through today with ever increasing rain rates into tonight and Saturday.

NextRad Radar - Close Range

Weather Image

NextRad Radar - State-Wide

Weather Image

Our rainfall total so far stands at 0.02 inches.

More later today or tonight as conditions warrant.

[end of update]


20-Jan-2012 10:14 AM

Still Waiting for Measurable Precipitation - NWS Still Predicting Heavy Rain Tonight

So far, the pattern change has not produced any measurable precipitation for the Bass Lake area as the first system broke up as it arrived at the Sierra foothills bringing only a few scattered sprinkles, lasting for a few minutes at a time. Only one automated station in Yosemite National Park actually recorded measurable precipitation with a 0.07 in total as of this journal update. The NWS is sticking with their weekend forecast which brings the first measurable rain/snow to our area later today and intensifying through tonight. Saturday is forecast to be showery with a 70% chance of showers through most of Saturday.

The unstable conditions continue on Sunday and into Monday with the possibility of some snow for our area late Saturday night and through early morning hours on Sunday. The precipitation is forecast to continue through Sunday and into early Monday. The Sunday/Monday system will be a very cold one, so the snow levels are prognosticated to lower to 4500 feet, which of course will mean measurable snow for the Bass Lake area.

However, based on the latest NOAA Water Vapor SAT images, we are not seeing the moisture content in the approaching systems that would traditionally indicate all of the above forecasted precipitation, so we remain dubious as to the viability of any of the above mentioned precipitation predictions. The NWS has been all over the map this week in their predictions for precipitation and none of their previous precipitation predictions actually occurred. This disappointing track record adds to our doubts regarding these most recent round of forecasts. We will just have to wait and see what actually develops as the systems come ashore.

Latest NOAA INFRARED SAT image:

Weather Image

Latest NOAA Water Vapor SAT image:

The blue areas indicates moisture, so you can see for yourself how little moisture is contained in the southern portions of these approaching weather systems.

Weather Image

The latest from the NWS in Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
958 am PST Friday Jan 20 2012


Synopsis...
weather pattern turning wet as a series of winter storms will
impact central California through early next week. A Pacific storm
will move through central California late this afternoon through
Saturday with heavy snowfall likely over the southern Sierra Nevada
and moderate to heavy rainfall possible in the Central Valley and
Sierra foothills. Gusty winds will also affect the Kern County
mountain and desert areas Saturday in the wake of the storm.

Discussion...
satellite water vapor imagery shows the impressive
Pacific storm system taking aim on the pacnw and norcal. A healthy
fetch of moisture (~1.5" tpw) along with favorable dynamics and a
~160kt upper jet all point to some substantial precipitation over
the central California interior. The bulk of the activity will occur
during the overnight hours tonight and the Winter Storm Warning for
the southern Sierra above 5000 feet from 4 PM today through 4 PM
Saturday looks to be in good shape. A tightening surface pressure
gradient along with upper level support will produce gusty winds
over the Kern County mountains and desert where a Wind Advisory is
in effect from 3 am to 7 PM Saturday. No updates are needed at this time.


Previous discussion... /issued 409 am PST Friday Jan 20 2012/

Discussion...
very busy night as we are fine tuning the forecast for the strong
system expected to hit the central California interior tonight and
continue through Saturday. Quantitative precipitation forecast amounts are very impressive with
the system as a long fetch of a strong 130+ knots upper jet will pile
up the moisture over the region. Precipitable water values are 1.25 inches in
association with the front. The warm occlusion front is expected
to move into the northern portion of the County Warning Area by 2000 PST tonight and
the heaviest precipitation is expected overnight tonight and
gradually taper off by daybreak as the front moves through. Plenty
of cold air behind the system will provide instability showers to
continue most of the day on Saturday and taper off by Saturday
afternoon.


Winds are expected to kick up over the Kern County mountains and
desert regions especially behind the front as the cold air Ushers
in stronger upper level winds in association with a strong upper
jet.


There will be a break on Sunday before another system moves into
the region later Sunday afternoon. This system will be a cold
system and snow levels will possibly drop to around 4000 feet in
the Sierra. Quantitative precipitation forecast amounts at this time are advertising another foot of snow
possible with this system. The ecm is wetter than the GFS and also
is more dynamic. Once the system moves through by Monday
afternoon...we will see an upper ridge build in over the area and
continue through the end of next week. This pattern will provide
beautiful conditions across the Sierra and the Kern County desert
regions...however it will only mean foggy and cool conditions for
the sjv. We are expecting dense fog to develop in the sjv Wednesday
through Friday and with the fresh rainfall it will be hard to burn
off in some fog prone locales.


Confidence is high with the system tonight and Saturday and is
decreasing with the Sunday night and Monday system due to the
inconsistencies with the GFS and European model (ecmwf).


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

As I mentioned above, while the NWS in Hanford is predicting heavy precipitation tonight and into Saturday, we are not seeing this level of moisture in the SAT images, so we remain cautious about going with their predictions. Still... If the predicted precipitation does indeed arrive over our area, this coupled with the predicted cold temps will result in snow accumulations in our area. Bass Lake residents are encouraged to adopt the usual winter weather travel cautions, and be prepared for significant winter weather conditions through all of this weekend.

We will be back with another update as soon as the station begins recording any measurable precipitation. Stay tuned to our website and our webcam for the latest real-time reports on current weather/storm conditions in the area.

[end of update]


19-Jan-2012 9:56 AM

Storm Watcher Links on Our WebSite

As we await the arrival of the first in a series of low pressure systems over the next 24 hours, we wanted to remind our visitors about all of the helpful storm watching pages we have provided on our website. Bookmark them for fast access during the coming storms and future weather events! ...

1) Wide-Angle Precipitation Map - This is our most popular page for tracking storm systems. The page utilizes the NextRad radar system from Weather Underground for nearly real-time updates of any precipitation in our area. In addition to the user scalable coverage area, this page also provides real-time weather data from our station as well as any NWS watches and warnings.

2) Local Citizen's Observation Program Stations - This page provides the latest weather data from all the local reporting stations in our area. Our station is listed at the top of this page and the listings moves out from our location, with the other local stations below ours based on distance from our station location. Use this page to compare rainfall totals and other weather data to our own data. (Remember that our station was selected by the NWS office in Hanford to be the "Official" NWS reporting station for Bass Lake based on our accuracy in data reporting, so our weather data, especially rainfall data trumps any of the less accurate private/commercial stations near Bass Lake)

3) LIVE WebCam Feed - This page provides a LIVE feed from our WebCam that allows users to monitor actual weather activity at the station in real-time. We also offer a smoother "Server Push" version of this page for Mac, iPad and iPod touch users. Click the "RED" button below the cam image for the "Server Push" version.

4) NOAA Sat Maps / Watches and Warnings links - This page offers up the latest NOAA Sat images that we often include in these journal updates. Click the RED "NWS Watches / Warnings / Advisories" button on the top left of this page for the latest local severe weather news from the NWS in Hanford.

5) Station Gauges/Graphs Window - View the actual displays right off of our weather software. This page includes graphs of various weather data as well.

6) Rapid Fire Instant Weather Page - This page contains many of the same elements as our main homepage, but with the addition of our Weather Underground rapid fire feed that provides weather data updates every 2 seconds. This is our fastest updating weather data page on the site. Check it out!

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

Where is the Rain/Snow?

Here is the latest forecast from the NWS in Hanford, Ca.

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
942 am PST Thursday Jan 19 2012


Synopsis...
the cold and Dry Ridge that has been locked in place will begin
weakening today which will allow low pressure systems to begin
skirting the area tonight...mainly from Fresno and northward...the
next storm systems inbound will then progressively begin spreading
southward as the ridge retreats further southward through the
weekend.

Update...
a change in the weather is still on the way as northern California
currently experiences significant precipitation. While precipitation
may not reach central California until after 400 PM PST today...
due mainly to the atmosphere needing to moisten-up first. Yet...
the trend based on radar should have precipitation reaching Yosemite
first then Merced County and moving southward during the night. In
the meanwhile...another cold morning as many valley locations were
able to drop into the middle 20s this morning with a freeze warning
in effect until 900 am PST. However...this will be the last night
of freezing temperatures as rain and mountain snow will moderate
temperatures for the coming days. Will allow the freeze warning to
expire at 900 am PST and turn the attention to winter weather
products for the next few days. The first in a series of storms is
timed for later tonight for the highest locations of the Sierra
Nevada. As some subtropical moisture was drawn in as the short-
wave responsible for this first storm. Upper air observations
showing the freezing level near 11000 feet with wet-bulb temperatures
between 4000 and 6000 feet this morning. Based on these values
..will maintain high snow levels as this first storm may be
slightly warm for middle January. Therefore...will keep the Winter
Weather Advisory in effect for well above 5000 feet and expect
colder air this weekend along with significant moisture for a
possible heavy snow event for much of the Sierra Nevada. Will
update to remove freeze warning and a few minor changes to the
first period forecast.

Previous discussion... /issued 348 am PST Thursday Jan 19 2012/

a few high clouds over the central California interior at this time with
dewpoints in the valley around 5 to 10 degrees warmer than this
time yesterday. However temperatures are only averaging 2 to 5
degrees warmer in the sjv than this time yesterday. Will not see
the widespread freezing temperatures like we have seen the past couple of
nights...however it will be cold.


Well...the long awaited pattern change is finally taking place as
the first system is plowing into the Pacific northwest with very heavy
precipitation. The models are progging the system to move into the
central California interior by tonight. The models have backed off the quantitative precipitation forecast
amounts for tonight and the snow is not expected to be very heavy.
We are carrying a Winter Weather Advisory for about 4 inches
tonight in some of the heavier snow fall near Yosemite.


There will be a break on Friday...with the next system moving in
Friday night. There is more moisture associated with the second
system as a more prolonged upper jet will feed plenty of Pacific
moisture into the central California interior along the atmospheric river.
The valley may see moderate to heavy rain late Friday night and
Saturday morning. The mountain regions will see plenty of heavy
snow...especially in the favored upslope regions. The storm will
taper off Saturday afternoon and we will see a break on Sunday.


The last is the series of the three systems will move in on Monday
afternoon and continue Monday night with light to moderate
precipitation. The European model (ecmwf) is wetter than the GFS with the last
system. The storm will be addressed as we get closer to Monday.
The exact timing and intensity remains uncertain at this time.


The models are in decent agreement with building an upper ridge
in here Tuesday through Thursday of next week. The foothills will
see warm temperatures and Spring like weather as the sjv will more
than likely be foggy with low clouds and stratus and cool temperatures
below the inversion. Have introduced dense fog in the extended as
the ridge builds in.


Confidence is decreasing right now...as the models have backed
off any quantitative precipitation forecast for today and even into tonight. The timing and
intensity of the systems expected to move through remains somewhat
uncertain.

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

So there you have it! As feared, it looks like we are not going to see the level of storm activity we had been hoping for, but anything is still better than nothing I guess.

We will be back tomorrow with the latest on our local stats including any rain/snow totals. In the meantime, refer to our NOAA SAT images page and the Wide-Angle Precipitation map to track the systems from your own computer! :o)

[end of update]


18-Jan-2012 11:05 AM

Storm System/Low Pressure Arrival Delayed by 24-36 Hours - Precipitation Estimates Revised Downward

Models are starting to diverge on the timing and actual strength of the approaching weather systems, which is never a good sign for wet weather fans. While the pattern change is still going to take place, it appears that the strength and quantity of precipitation is going to be lower than originally predicted, although the NWS is still calling for 1-2 FEET of snow for the higher elevations of the Sierra. The arrival time has also been pushed back 24-36 hours from what we were expecting based on model runs yesterday. This brings the first chances of rain to our area beginning on Thursday afternoon and increasing overnight and then on through Saturday.

So, expect Thursday to be mostly cloudy with the possibility of some gusty winds ahead of the first system, and rain developing over the day on Thursday.

There is still time for things to change yet again, but you can clearly see from the latest SAT images that the bulk of the first storm's moisture is still being diverted to our north and hitting northern Oregon and all of Washington state. Seattle is currently being hit by a record snow storm.

Latest NOAA INFRARED SAT image:

Weather Image

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
930 am PST Wednesday Jan 18 2012



Synopsis...
with the cold and dry high pressure still much in control the colder
temperatures will continue until Thursday. A wet pattern appears to
be setting up for later in the week and through the weekend as a
series of low pressure systems are expected to move through the
region.


Update...
first of this morning/S satellite pics is showing clouds rolling
over extreme northern California and possibly pushing southward.
Across the district...another cold morning as many valley
locations dropped below the freezing mark. Looking further out...
infrared satellite imagery shows the clouds pushing through the Pacific
northwest as a ridge of high pressure remains in control of the
west today. Yet...with the southern stream jet shifting north...
moisture is moving through the area today and Thursday. Short
range models still progging the ridge to shift east on Thursday
and allowing the westerly to finally pushing toward central
California. Current timing has the precipitation entering the district
late Thursday afternoon to early evening and pushing through the
district closer to Friday morning. Based on this timing...will
keep the advisory and watch in effect for the Sierra Nevada and
make no changes for now.

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

Previous discussion
another cold morning in the valley...but temperatures are
up a few degrees in most areas. Expected cloud cover has been delayed
until Thursday morning. While it wont be quite as cold Thursday
morning...temperatures in rural areas from Fresno south could drop to 28
degrees of lower for several hours prior to sunrise. Reissued freeze
warning to include Thursday morning...with main threat Fresno south.


Otherwise...skies will be mostly sunny today. Temperatures will moderate a
couple of degrees from yesterday...but still at or slightly below
climatology.


Models are still showing significant differences in arrival of
individual shortwaves that are prognosticated into the West Coast the
remainder of the week. At this time...it now looks like precipitation
will hold off till late Thursday/Friday morning. There is no lead system to
produce winter weather conds...until main shortwave moves in Friday
afternoon to middle night Friday. Sat and sun look showery but not great
qpfs. The second system that was supposed to bring a good surge of
moisture sun has been delayed to Sun night...and not that wet now.


Winter products issued yesterday are already off and will need to
be reassessed pending 12z models. However I did take Thursday day
portion out of the Winter Weather Advisory...and moved the watch up
from Friday evening to noon Friday. Snow levels were lowered too much Sat
and sun. These shortwaves will be in the warmer sub tropopause
flow...not winter storms from the Gulf of Alaska.


As I mention most of the week...Sat looks like a transition day
with a few lingering periods of light rain or showers...and snow
above about 8k. May need to significantly back off on probability of precipitation sun.
Did not make changes this morning however...as this is the only
run of the past few days that kept sun dry. 00z models are now dry
after Sun night or Monday into middle week. Hesitant to remove probability of precipitation
completely just yet...again as this is a big change from previous
model runs.


The bottom line this forecast...turning unsettled by Friday with a good
chance of precipitation from Fresno north Friday-early Monday...making it into
Kern County Friday night or early Sat. Nighttime temperatures will warm
significantly Thursday night and continue into next week. Daytime highs
will be at or slightly above climatology in mild flow aloft.


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

So... Looks like another day of clear and cold conditions, and likely little cloud cover until late Thursday afternoon/early evening.

Lets hope that this entire pattern change doesn't disintegrate before our eyes, as has happened earlier in the season with other promising storm systems.

Next update will be delayed until we see some actual radar returns showing precipitation heading for our area.

[end of update]


17-Jan-2012 9:25 AM

Cold Snap Ahead of Pattern Change

Early this morning the station recorded our coldest overnight low so far this winter with a chilly 20.7 F. Clear skies overnight helped to amplify the rapid cooling along with the primarily overcast day we saw yesterday. Our high temp yesterday was only 42.6 F.

Today will likely be the last day of clear skies as the approaching low pressure systems begin to arrive along the coastal west and then proceed east and over our area. This will begin the long awaited pattern change and the much needed precipitation arriving Wednesday night and continuing through the entire weekend. Quantitative precipitation estimates for the Sierra are between 2 and 4 inches, with a snow level remaining around 6,000 feet, but possibly lowering to 4-5 thousand feet later in the weekend. The current models suggest that Sunday will likely see the highest level of storm activity and precipitation though all of this can change rapidly with such a rapid pattern change as this will be. Either way, it looks like we will finally break our nearly record long dry spell.

While these short-wave storm systems and their precipitation are a very welcome event, we must remind everyone that we are now nearly 45 inches below last year's seasonal total up to and including January 17th, so we have a VERY long way to go to even approach an average year in terms of total precipitation. We would need several months of consistent storm activity like we will be seeing this weekend to bring us back to where we should be. Lets all hope that this is only the beginning of a multi-week storm pattern for the Central California interior. There is a 50/50 chance that the pattern could revert back to the previous dry pattern next week which is not what we want to see happen.

Here are the latest Pacific Satellite images showing a very impressive storm system brewing due west of San Francisco. Today we begin inclusion of some additional NOAA weather satellite images showing "Enhanced Infrared (EIR)" and "Atmospheric Water Vapor (AWV)". Notice in the AWV image the high degree of moisture in the southern half of the approaching system. Great news for us, since this is the portion of the storm we will likely see over our area soon.

Weather Channel Infrared Sat image:

Weather Image

NOAA Enhanced Infrared SAT image:

Weather Image

NOAA Atmospheric Water Vapor Image:

Weather Image

The NOAA SAT images can also be monitored on our "Severe Weather Related Links" page, which is also linked at the top of this page via the red "Watches * Warnings * Links" button.

The latest from the NWS in Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
534 am PST Tuesday Jan 17 2012


Synopsis...
much colder temperatures expected tonight and tomorrow behind a
frontal system that passed through central California earlier
today. A wet pattern is setting up for later in the week as a
series of low pressure systems are expected to move over the
region.

Discussion...
most valley temperatures this morning have dipped to
28 degrees or lower. Most mesoscale-west observation range from 21 to 28
degrees most locales. Temperatures today will struggle into the
lower 50s before another cold night tonight. Similar temperatures can be
expected by Wednesday morning. However...as a low pressure area nears
the West Coast later today...central California may see increasing clouds
during the overnight. This could help keep temperatures up a few
degrees...or at least lessen the sub-freezing durations.

Otherwise skies are clear across the region...except for a couple
of patches of residual low clouds in the foothills of Tulare and
Kern counties.

The shift into a more unsettled weather patter will begin Wednesday as a
series of upper level shortwave push moisture onshore. This first
of the series could push some scattered light precipitation as far south as
Fresno Thursday or Thursday evening. A stronger shortwave will arrive Friday
with rain chances spreading south into Kern County...probably
later in the day or evening hours. This system will move out quickly
in the fast quasi-zonal flow off the Pacific. There will be a
short break in the precipitation sometime Sat or Sat night...before
another wet system arrives sun. This shortwave looks like it will be
the strongest of the series with a good wetting rain in the valley
and foothills...maybe even the High Desert. Heavy mountain snow is
possible above 6k feet in the Sierra.


The 00z Euro and 06z GFS indicate the upper jet will begin lifting
back to the north early in the week...but central California will still be
susceptible to some scattered light showers into Monday.

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

The next several days should prove very interesting, with the big question being whether or not the jet stream will remain in this more southerly position, or will it once again shift north like we have been seeing over the last few months.

More tomorrow as the pattern change begins to really take hold and show itself.

[end of update]






16-Jan-2012 9:06 AM

Models Continue to Look Good for Measurable Rain/Snow by Week's End

Today's surprise overcast is a good sign that the storm track is indeed beginning to shift towards the south, opening the door to a string of moisture-filled systems to move through our area beginning as early as Wednesday.

Here is the latest from the NWS in Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
425 am PST Monday Jan 16 2012



Synopsis...
a dry upper level low moving over Southern California today...and
this feature will open the door for much cooler temperatures
during the next couple of days. A wet pattern is in store by late
in the week as a series of low pressure systems are expected to
move over the region.


Discussion...
a dry cold front was moving through central California early
this morning. However in its wake...considerable low cloudiness
has developed in the sjv and adjacent foothills of the southern Sierra
and the north and west facing slopes of the Tehachapi Mountains this
cloudiness is expected to slowly erode away today as drier air
moves in.


Tonite...
skies should be mostly clear across the region. With very
dry air at the surface...sjv temperatures will drop well into the 20s by
Tuesday morning. Have upgraded the freeze watch to a warning through Wednesday
morning. However clouds may be on the increase later Tuesday
afternoon or evening. This could help limit sub-freezing temperatures by
Wednesday morning.


A series of weather disturbances are poised to move into the West
Coast for the second half of the week. Unsettled weather with
periods of rain and mountain snow are becoming a good bet now as
medium range models are quite similar. Some light precipitation could
arrive as early as Wednesday afternoon or evening in northern parts of the
valley and the Sierra north of Kings Canyon. The forecast probability the
next several days will be timing of individual systems in the fast
moving quasi-zonal flow across the east Pacific. Also problematic will
be how far south each system will push the precipitation.


The first couple of shortwave troughs Wednesday and Thursday should keep
light precipitation limited to Fresno County north. By Friday...more
substantial rain and higher elevation snow is possible...and
probably spreading south into Kern County. Saturday could be an
in-between day...but model timing could be off this far out. The
last of the shortwave energy into central California looks like later sun
or Monday.


Overall...
probability of precipitation through the medium range are in the chance to likely
categories. However it will not be a continuous precipitation event...as
there will be breaks between individual systems. At this time it
looks like some very heavy snow is possible in the mountains by Friday and
Friday night...and winter products will likely be needed.


Central California is forecast to be on the warmer side of the storm track.
This will likely keep snow levels at or above 8k through most
periods...then lowering sun and Sun night to 4-5k. While still too
early for quantitative precipitation forecast...the wetter Euro model has a 4 day total of 2 to 4
inches of precipitation from Sequoia Park to Yosemite...with a quarter to
half inch in the sjv and Tehachapi Mountains

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

Station Maintenance Note: 01/16/12 - 11:22 AM PST

Rain Gauge systems checked for debris and rain bucket heater system tested for proper operation and optimal heating. All systems are optimal and ready for the approaching weather systems.

The Latest Pacific Satellite Image

Weather Image

We will be updating this journal daily now between today and the arrival of the first system later this week.

[end of update]



15-Jan-2012 7:09 AM

Best Chance for Major Pattern Change Since November 20th, 2011!

We are starting to see the makings of a major pattern change for our area that could result in measurable precipitation for the SJV and the Sierra beginning at the end of the week.

While still too early to say for sure if all of this will come to pass, the fact that models continue to advertise these radical changes are news in and of itself! Up till a few days ago, the models continued to forecast the continuation of the amplified ridge that has plagued our winter weather pattern for over two months now.

Here is the latest from the NWS Hanford with more details:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
258 am PST sun Jan 15 2012


Synopsis...
there will be another round of above average temperatures today.
However...high temperatures are expected to cool a little due to the
persistent ridge of high pressure finally weakening. A dry upper
level low will move over Southern California on Monday and is
expected to open the door for much cooler temperatures into mid-week.

Discussion...
long wave deep trough moves into the Pacific northwest and will impact our
forecast area by late tonight with strong winds along the crest of
the Sierra. Cold air will return to the central California interior
Monday and Tuesday. Overnight temperatures will be quite cold
early next week and a freeze watch may be needed for Tuesday.


Northwest zonal flow will set up over the west and open the door for
storm systems to begin to impact the area...mainly north of
Fresno by Thursday. Precipitation will be light initially with the first
system as it quickly dissipates by Thursday evening. The next and
stronger system is prognosticated to move into the northern portion of the County Warning Area
by Friday night and move south through the forecast area on
Saturday. Precipitation will taper off by Saturday night as the system
moves east. Both the GFS and the European model (ecmwf) are painting very
impressive quantitative precipitation forecast amounts with the system and we may see moderate
rain in the sjv and heavy snow in the Sierra on Friday night and
into Sat. Snow levels at this time are expected to be around 6000
feet in the Sierra for Saturday.


Another break is expected next Sunday as another storm gets
organized off the central coast of California for next Sunday night and
into next Monday. Confidence remains moderate as the pattern is
expected to make a significant change from what we have seen over
the past 2 months. With run to run consistency and inter model
consistency we are becoming more confident as the time frame
becomes closer.

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

We are keeping our collective fingers crossed that the above predictions come to pass! The summer tourist season at Bass Lake as well as a reduced threat of major wildfire risks hang in the balance.

We plan to step up our journal update frequency this week based on these optimistic predictions for some long overdue rain/snow for our area.

Stay tuned!

[end of update]


11-Jan-2012 10:57 AM

The Latest Forecast from the NWS Hanford - Continued Dry - Record Breaking String of Dry Days Approaching

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
948 am PST Wednesday Jan 11 2012



Synopsis...
dry weather and above normal temperatures will continue through this
week and into the weekend. A persistent upper level ridge of high
pressure will continue to remain in control.

..sky cover increased and maximum temperatures lowered a bit across the southern
half of the County Warning Area for today...


Discussion...
another balmy day is in store for the central California
interior. Although high clouds filter the sun...especially across
the southern half of the County Warning Area...maximum temperatures will still average a
good 7 to 15 degrees above normal today. The high clouds are
being drawn northward by a weak upper level low currently centered
several hundred miles off the central California coast. The models are in
good agreement and keep this low nearly stationary through Friday.
During this time...the models develop a Rex block over the eastern
Pacific...amplify an upper level ridge along the West Coast...and
forecast a weak to moderate offshore flow across central California.


As the ridge amplifies over California...high clouds should thin out across
central California by tomorrow. A strengthening offshore flow after today
could bring some downslope warming to the south end of the sj valley...
especially Friday. Although winds will become gusty over the
Grapevine by then...it does not look as though they will exceed
advisory levels. However...maximum temperatures in bfl could challenge the
records of 73 degrees tomorrow and Friday which last occurred on
those dates in 1914 and 1980 respectively.


The models remain in good agreement this weekend and bring an upper
level trough into the Pacific northwest. Supposedly this trough will pick up
the closed low over the eastern Pacific and carry it inland across
Southern California Sunday night. Moisture is greatly limited with this
low...so it will probably bring nothing more than some middle and high
cloudiness to the County Warning Area this weekend with slight cooling.


More significant cooling is expected across the central California interior
early next week as the upper level trough slides into the Great
Basin and a dry northwesterly flow aloft becomes established across
California. By Tuesday...the only thing that will seem normal for middle
January will be temperatures as they cool to seasonable levels.
Otherwise...the pattern will remain Bone dry through day 7.


On a final note...today is the 52nd consecutive day that no measurable
rain has fallen in Fresno. The longest string of dry days in Fresno
during the winter/Spring season...November 1st through April 30th...
is 64 which was established in 1972. If no measurable rain falls in
Fresno before January 25th...it will be the longest stretch of dry
weather for this period since records began in 1880. The latest ecm
solution offers a glimmer of hope that wet weather could return north of
Kern County by the end of next week.

[end of update]


09-Jan-2012 10:06 AM

Power Grid Update

The power upgrade has been postponed. We will update the journal again in the next few days when we have a day and time for the scheduled downtime.

[end of update]


08-Jan-2012 12:02 PM

Local Power Upgrade Monday 01/09/12 - Station Will Be offline from 9AM to approx. 1:00PM PST

PG&E will be upgrading our local step-down transformer tomorrow. During this time the power to our area will be shut off. The station will resume normal operations as soon as the upgrade is completed and power is restored.
Thanks!

[end of update]


05-Jan-2012 1:01 PM


Extended Forecasts Remain Bleak for Rain/Snow

We wish we had better news to report, but unfortunately the latest model runs continue to indicate little change to the current high pressure ridge which has diverted every single winter storm system to our extreme north. The northerly track of the jet stream is so extreme that even the Pacific Northwest is showing significant rain/snow deficits this season.

Based on the current long range forecasts, we don't expect to see any precipitation for our area through January 15th, and very likely through the entire month of January. As alarming as December 2011 was without rain or snow for the first time in recorded history, a January without precipitation will also be a dubious first for the Bass Lake area, based on weather records going back as far as the late 1800s.

Snow Pack Depth Measurements Cancelled Due to Lack of Snow in the Sierra

Another worrying record was set last week when the crews who normally measure the Sierra snow pack cancelled their annual trips to the range due to the obvious lack of snow on the satellite images. This is the first time in history that there hasn't been enough snow in the Sierra to measure!

Here are the images they used:

Weather Image

Weather Image

Definitely some cause for major concern!

An Empty Lake This Summer??? - It Could Happen!

If this current dry pattern continues through another full month of the wet season this raises the probability for an empty lake this summer simply because with no snow pack in the Sierra to fill Bass Lake, the water level will remain at or below current off season percentages!

While it is too early to say for sure if this will happen, yet again, for the first time in recorded history, we may see a dry lake for the summer tourist season. We can only imagine what kind of economic toll such an event would have on the local economy!

Something for all the blissfully ignorant sun worshippers to consider the next time they delight in the cloudless skies and 70 degree temps in January!

The latest forecast from The National Weather Service Hanford Ca.

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1009 am PST Thursday Jan 5 2012



Synopsis...
high pressure will continue to dominate over the region into the
weekend. Patchy night and morning fog is expected to continue in the
San Joaquin Valley. Otherwise...clear to partly cloudy skies will
prevail with generally above average daytime high temperatures
across interior central California...especially over the foothill
and desert regions.

Update...
much less fog in the San Joaquin Valley this morning. An area of
fog formed in the early this morning in between Highway 99 and 43
from Pixley to Fowler than northwest to Kerman. Otherwise sunny skies
across central California. Vandenberg sounding shows a more
westerly flow above 5kf. This should result in a cooler maritime
flow into the interior. Expect temperatures a bit cooler over much
of the area. The only exception may be in parts of the San Joaquin
Valley where fog was late to clear yesterday and will be a bit
warmer today. No updates planned this morning.


Early discussion...satellite imagery shows a weak vorticity
center moving harmlessly across central California with just middle
and high clouds. This winter any weather disturbances have been
very hard to get close to central California but this one is dry.
With the main storm track remaining well to the north and weather
models projecting this to continue for the most part, the forecast
remains dry. Forecast models do agree that an inside slider trough
will move across the eastern Great Basin on Saturday. This feature
will not bring any precipitation however an increase in wind will
occur over the mountains along with cooler temperatures for the
entire area. You guessed it...the ridge builds back in strong in
the wake of the slider and persists through Tuesday. The latest
European model (ecmwf) model tries to bring a closed low into California on Tuesday
however if it develops and tracks like nearly of the prognosticated
systems this winter season it will be weaker and farther north
than currently forecast.

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

The Latest IR Sat Image

Weather Image

We will update the journal again if we see any significant changes to the current weather pattern either in the short term or long range forecasts.

(Station Maintenance Note: Batteries replaced in Rain Bucket Heater Temp Sensor)

[end of update]


31-Dec-2012 1:30 PM

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

We wanted to wish all of our weather watchers a very happy new year! Lets hope that 2012 brings us some long overdue rain and snow soon!

Unfortunately, the latest extended forecast doesn't look good for at least the first 7-10 days of January.

Here is the latest from the NWS Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
925 am PST Sat Dec 31 2011



Synopsis...
upper level high pressure continues to be the most dominate
feature of the region. A generally stable pattern is expected to
persist into early next week. A pattern change appears to be taking
shape for later next week.


Update...
first few picture of the visible satellite imagery was showing
high clouds still moving overhead with some stratus over the San
Joaquin Valley. May have trouble burning off some of the stratus
as high clouds move through the ridge pattern. Current forecast
already has partly cloudy conditions through today...so no updates
needed in sky cover. Short range models still progging a high
pressure ridge over the West Coast...but shift slightly east
through early next week. Models are in good consensus in
introducing a short wave trough on Monday...which will shift the
ridge axis east...and ride over the ridge through middle week. Will
not expect any precipitation from the short wave trough and the ridge will
quickly rebound over the West Coast. The ridge will then become
the dominate feature through the latter part of the week before a
more zonal flow pattern develops. With no significant changes in
the weather expected through at least the middle of next week...
will make no updates for now.

Previous discussion...
/issued 306 am PST Sat Dec 31 2011/

another repeat performance of high clouds moving over the area...
however a little more moisture has advected into the San Joaquin
Valley. Stratus clouds are noted at several airports and it
appears that these clouds will move over much of the valley later
this morning. No real change in the dry weather pattern as
forecast models keep the ridge in place over the weekend and then
just clipping northern California with a shortwave trough on
Monday. The ridge then rebuilds Tuesday and Wednesday then the
next trough of low pressure is projected to move across the
Pacific northwest on Thursday and Thursday night. Latest model
data suggests this feature will move farther to the north than
previously advertised. In this dry year, I have pushed the slight
chance probability of precipitation north to the far north only. By Friday and Saturday
both the GFS and European model (ecmwf) models drop a low pressure system into The
Rockies. The European model (ecmwf) model is deeper with the low however the
trajectory indicates it will be dry, however colder air may be
drawn into the Great Basin.

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

The Latest Eastern Pacific IR SAT Image

Weather Image


[end of update]


28-Dec-2012 8:44 AM

The Sierra Snow Drought of 2011-2012

The drought that we have been reporting on here for well over a month is finally starting to attract the attention of the main stream weather sites who up till now have largely ignored this alarming situation. Even our local news stations like ABC 30 have totally failed to report on what we believe is one of the biggest weather related stories in decades!

Ken Clark over at Accuweather dedicated his entire blog post today to our situation.

Here is a copy of the comparison images he posted of the Sierra snowpack data from last year compared to this year.

Weather Image

They say a picture is worth a thousand words, and the above comparison is no exception. The current dry pattern shows no signs of breaking down any time soon, so unfortunately the extended forecast for our area continues to predict a complete lack of storm activity through at least the next 7-10 days.

Based on our own station data, we are now close to 40 inches below last year's precipitation totals and nearly 30 inches below our 10 year average for this date in the season.

All we can do is watch and wait and pray that this insufferable weather pattern changes between now and the end of the wet season in mid-April.

Here is the latest forecast from the NWS in Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
412 am PST Wednesday Dec 28 2011



Synopsis...
the San Joaquin Valley will have one more cold night on tap for the
overnight period tonight. But, relief from the cold is in sight. The
high pressure ridge that has been keeping the San Joaquin valleys
low temperatures below freezing will begin to weaken on Thursday.
This will bring a slight moderation in temperatures and should help
to keep low temperatures in most areas of the San Joaquin Valley
above freezing beginning Thursday night and continuing through the
weekend.

Discussion...
a generally zonal pattern continues across the region with a
series of disturbances passing mainly to the north of our area in
the westerly flow. Some high cloudiness in the flow is sagging
southward over the central California interior and is helping to
slightly moderate the radiational cooling in the valley. Despite
the clouds and occasional light breezes in the valley...the cold
dry airmass remains in place and temperatures have still lowered
to freezing and below at many locations...with some middle and upper
20 readings in the coldest rural areas. A freeze warning remains
in effect for the San Joaquin Valley this morning.


Models suggest the current pattern will continue through the end of
the week...with disturbances passing to the north...but a
continued gradual modification in temperatures resulting in fewer
areas of freezing temperatures in the valley over the next couple
of days. Thursday morning temperatures are expected to be
borderline for freeze warning criteria.


By the weekend...an amplifying ridge over the western US will
turn the flow more southwesterly across our area and eliminate any
threat of frosty temperatures in the valley...though fog development
will increase as the ridge strengthens. Afternoon highs will
continue to run at or slightly above climatology through the period...with
precipitation prognosticated to remain north of our area.

[end of update]




24-Dec-2011 7:49 PM

MERRY CHRISTMAS, HAPPY HANUKKAH, HAPPY HOLIDAYS from Station D2149!

Wanted to wish all of our faithful readers and weather watchers a very merry holiday from all of us here at the station! We are looking forward to the new year and hope that we will soon see an end to this insufferable and highly unusual winter drought that has plagued the Sierra for well over a month now.

We don't see anything precipitation related coming our way in the next 7-10 days, but perhaps by the middle of January things will start to change for the better. All we can do is wait for the long overdue pattern change to arrive, but this is simply a wish and not based on any of the current climate data.

Our hearts go out to all the Sierra based ski resorts who must be having a heck of a time remaining positive about their prospects for a profitable 2011/2012 season in light of the complete lack of natural snow over the entire range.

Here is the latest IR Sat image showing yet another major storm system being forced up and over California and into the Northwest by this stubborn, amplified high pressure ridge. This is the 7th such system to totally miss our area since Thanksgiving. Normally, this and all the previous systems would have tracked straight into California on their way east.

West Coast/Eastern Pacific IR SAT 12/24/11

Weather Image

The station also recorded its highest pressure reading of all time on 12/23/11 with a barometric pressure of 30.556 inHg. This demonstrates how truly amplified this ridge over the state has become over time.

On a more positive note, Yosemite Park is reporting one of their best winter seasons of all time, due in large part to the fact that all of the normally closed roads and passes like Tioga Pass have largely remained open in December for the first time in recorded history. As a result, more locals and tourists alike are able to enjoy the sights and sounds of Yosemite Valley than usual for this time of year, albeit not the winter wonderland views we would normally associate with Yosemite in the dead of winter.

The upcoming Sierra Snowpack measurement reports should prove very interesting this year. Many locations have less than a foot of snow and most have no snow at all! This at a time when they would normally be measuring the depth in feet, not in tenths of inches!

Until our next update, enjoy the holiday and pray for snow!

Sincerely,
Station Operations for MADIS D2149
Bass Lake Ca.


[end of update]


18-Dec-2011 1:03 PM

Extended Climatology Outlook Bleak in Terms of Rain/Snow for Next Four Months

If you have been wondering what happened to the wet season of 2011, the latest report from the NOAA Climate Prediction Center issued on December 15th paints an even grimmer picture for 2012 and the remaining wet season. The current La Nina that has produced an unprecedented amplified high pressure ridge pattern over Central California for over a month is only going to get worse as we enter into January and is expected to continue to grow even stronger this coming spring and beyond.

The following graphics issued by the center last week paints a very clear picture of what we have to look forward to:

Precipitation chances for January 2012

Weather Image

January through March 2012

Weather Image

February through April 2012

Weather Image

Temperature predictions for January 2012

Weather Image

Temperature predictions for January through March 2012

Weather Image

Temperature predictions for February through April 2012

Weather Image

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

First December Without Rain in at Least the Last 30 Years

Unfortunately, this kind of weather is going to become more and more normal for the west and in particular, the Southern Sierra Nevada. A combination of traditional cyclical patterns such as La Nina, now being amplified by the added dynamic of climate change is responsible, and most climate scientists predict that this radical departure from our previous wet winters will become more and more common, leading to increased chances of drought and extreme fire danger during the spring and summer months heading into the summer of 2012 and well into 2013.

We wish we had better news for everyone and had been waiting for this report to come out before posting this dire prediction that we were already expecting, and as all Bass Lake residents paying attention are starting to realize, our days of predictable wet/snowy winters are coming to an abrupt end.

More bad news

As of today, we are now 30 inches below last year's seasonal rainfall total from July 1st to December 18th, and 20 inches below the average rainfall total for this same period based on the last decade of data.

Our seasonal total for this season remains static with a pathetic 3.78 inches with no relief in sight as far out as the middle of next month according to the National Weather Service.

If the dry pattern continues as predicted, this will be the first December in the last 30 years that the Bass Lake area has seen no measurable precipitation for the month. I haven't had a chance to pour over the data before 1971, but I wouldn't be surprised if this is the first December without rain in the history of the area.

I've personally never seen such an amplified ridge pattern like this over central California in the 28 years I have lived here. It resembles the kind of pattern you would expect to see over the Sahara desert region of Africa in mid summer and is producing similar results.

Sorry to have to post such a depressing report, but this is the new reality being brought to you courtesy of Global Warming.

The Latest IR Sat Image of the eastern Pacific

Weather Image

The high pressure bubble over the central west coast is clearly visible as it diverts some very impressive/large storms to our north and south of California.

Pray for Rain folks! That's about all we can do at this point.

We will post another update as soon as we have something positive to report. (It might be awhile)

[end of update]


09-Dec-2011 1:09 PM

Continued Dry Through at Least the End of Next Week

The insufferable high pressure ridge that has blocked every single storm system since November 20th continues to dominate the west coast weather pattern. While models suggest a very small chance of precipitation early next week, we personally don't hold out much hope that we will be seeing a return to "normal" winter weather anytime soon.

As of this update we are over 13 inches below last year's seasonal rainfall total to date and nearly 9 inches below the seasonal average for precipitation to date.

Season total for October - December 9th 2010: 17.46 in
Seasonal average for October - December 9th: 11.50 in

Seasonal total for October - December 9th 2011: 3.78 in

Here is the latest update from the NWS:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
932 am PST Friday Dec 9 2011



Synopsis...
Temperatures through the upcoming weekend is expected to continue to
moderate as weak ridging begins to build into the region. An area
of low pressure may produce precipitation to the local area early in
the week.

Discussion....
Most valley min temperatures are up 1-3 degrees from yesterday
but still some colder pockets where upper 20s have been reported.
Airmass will continue to slowly modify and tonight should be the last
night to have sub-freezing temperatures. Elsewhere...temperatures in the mountains
and deserts are up 5 degrees or more as the upper ridge builds a bit
more over central California. Overall...current forecast looks on track and no
update needed this a.M.

Previous discussion... /issued 242 am PST Friday Dec 9 2011/

Discussion...
weak ridging is beginning over the area...as temperatures are
slightly warmer tonight. This trend is expected to continue
through this weekend. Dew points and relative humidity have also
been trending slightly upward and are also expected to continue
during this weekend. However...the ridge will weaken by later this
weekend as a closed upper low moves southward along the coast of
California during Sunday.


As this upper low approaches the central California coast...precipitation
is expected to begin spreading over the area by early Monday
morning. Highest...or likely...probability of precipitation are generally over the
southern County Warning Area...in much of Kern and Tulare counties...during Monday
and Monday night...as the low is forecast to remain along the
central California coast. By Tuesday morning...the upper low is expected
to turn eastward over Southern California. Have kept some
lingering chance probability of precipitation over much of Kern and Tulare counties during
Tuesday while the low gradually moves over so cal bringing wrap-
around moisture over the area. Overall confidence with this
system is fairly good.


It appears the middle of next week could be a brief dry period
as models bring yet another low to the region by Thursday. The
latest Euro model brings a closed low along the coast of northern
California before moving over central California...although the GFS tracks
this low further inland over the Great Basin. Due to the model
discrepancies during the extended...confidence is low beyond
Tuesday. However...have slight chance probability of precipitation over the
Sierra...nearby foothills...and in the sj valley mainly north of
Fresno for Thursday as showers cannot be ruled out due to middle-December
climatology.

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

The Latest Pacific Satellite Images

Weather Image

Weather Image


At this point, the huge deficit in rainfall for this season will be getting harder and harder to erase even if January through March turns out to be major rain months this year which based on current trends is highly unlikely. Based on the strength of the La Nina pattern that has brought us this unwelcome dry pattern, we seriously doubt that we will be able to make up for the lost precipitation for October through December.

Does this dry winter signal a return to drought for the west? In our opinion, yes. I predict the start of yet another drought for Central California and the majority of the Southwest.

I would love to be proven wrong and I am keeping my fingers crossed that we see a major reversal in the current trends and the long absent storm track returns before we run out of wet season.

This will be our last journal update until we see a significant pattern change and a substantial chance of rain for the Bass Lake area.

[end of update]



06-Dec-2011 10:10 AM

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
815 am PST Tuesday Dec 6 2011



Synopsis...
freezing temperatures will continue during the late night and
morning hours in the San Joaquin Valley through Thursday morning as
a cool and dry airmass remains over the region. Some moderation in
temperatures are then expected through the upcoming weekend as weak
ridging sets up over the region.

Discussion...
another very cold morning over the forecast area.
Freeze warning levels have again been observed at quite a few
locations in the San Joaquin Valley. The freeze warning will
expire at 900 am and another may need to be issued for tonight.


Even colder readings were observed over the Kern County desert
with record lows being exceeded at China Lake (16) Edwards (16)
and a tie at Inyokern with 19 degrees. For today under the ridge
sunny skies will prevail with some warming over the Sierra and all
elevations above lower level inversions. Grids reflect this
thinking and I feel no updates are needed.


Ridging will continue this week with some moderation in morning
lows and warming over higher terrain. By later in the weekend, the
ridge is prognosticated to give way to an intruding area of low pressure.
The track however is rather questionable for either a potential
rain event for Southern California per the GFS solution or a wind
event as projected by the European model (ecmwf) model.

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

Fortunately, the wind that had been forecast for yesterday never materialized, but the chance of additional wind events over the next week is high, so we will have to keep a close eye on the sat maps and models as long as this stubborn high pressure bubble remains fixed over the west coast.

The Latest Pacific Sat Image

Weather Image

As you can see, there is plenty of weather activity going on out there. Problem is, the high pressure is preventing any of it from reaching the California coast. Only thing we get from these passing systems is the unstable edge as they pass by resulting in high winds and extremely cold surface temps.


[end of update]


04-Dec-2011 10:49 AM

La Nina Continues to Plague the Sierra - No Rain. Just Cold/Wind in Extended Forecast

The latest from Hanford:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1006 am PST sun Dec 4 2011



Synopsis...colder than normal temperatures have settled in over the San
Joaquin Valley and will continue through the beginning of the
week...in the meantime an additional dry trough is expected to drop
into the the region and bring windy conditions to the mountains and
deserts as early as Monday.


Discussion...it was another cold night across the region with
temperatures in the teens and 20s over the Kern County mountains
and desert with middle 20s to middle 30s across the San Joaquin Valley
and the Sierra foothills. Over the freeze warned San Joaquin
Valley...temperatures dropped as low as 26 degrees at several
locations with numerous locations 27-28 degrees. Fresno briefly
dipped to 31 degrees while at Bakersfield the temperature
bottomed out at 32. Some moderation in the airmass may occur
night...however another shot of cold air from the north will
arrive on Monday. This will keep temperatures 28-32 degrees across
many valley locations for the next few nights.


The synoptic pattern over the west is extremely amplified with the
Pacific Ridge axis extending to northern Alaska and the ensuing
flow traveling due south from northwest Canada to the western US.
Embedded in this flow is the next vorticity center which will drop
south into the Great Basin this afternoon and become the next
closed low near the 4 corners region by Monday morning. It
continues to look like the low position should be far enough east
to keep the associated jet stream winds oriented in a northerly
direction rather the northeast which is responsible for a Mono
wind event. There will certainly be gusty wind...however this
time is should affect the Sierra crest and the Kern County
mountains and Indian Wells Valley and the Kern County portion of
the Antelope Valley late tonight and Monday. Due to the source
region of the airmass the reinforcing cold air will arrive over
the region...with the coldest air remaining east of the Sierra.


For the extended forecast...the ridge is prognosticated to remain strong
over the west for at least the next several days. This will keep
the pattern dry and cool through at least middle week.

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

Station Operator's comment:

We are currently 12 inches below last year's rainfall total for the season based on totals up to December 4th 2010 as compared to this date in 2011. Additionally, things are looking pretty bleak for the rest of the wet season into 2012 based on current climate predictions. We can only hope that the current patterns break down at some point between now and the end of March and we see a return of the winter storm track. Otherwise we are looking at cold, dry and windy conditions like we have recently seen continuing through the remainder of the wet season.

More wind on the way:

We are seeing a good chance for another wind storm to hit the area on Monday and Monday night as yet another major storm system misses us and is pushed north by this persistent high pressure bubble that maintains its grip on the west coast through at least the middle of next week.

It doesn't get much more alarming than this for folks who were expecting our usual rain/snow amounts during the wet season. Just another example of how big an anomaly last year's La Nina winter was in terms of precipitation. :o(

The Latest Pacific Sat Image

Weather Image


[end of update]



03-Dec-2011 10:41 AM

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1021 am PST Sat Dec 3 2011



Synopsis...
colder than normal temperatures have settled in over the San
Joaquin Valley resulting in areas of late night through morning
frost over the rural areas. The colder conditions is expected to
extend through the weekend.


Discussion...
minimum temperatures in the San Joaquin Valley
were mainly between 28 and 32 degrees early this morning with a
Lemoore and Hanford dropping to 27 degrees. The frost advisory
expired at 9 am as temperatures have warmed above freezing.
However...with a cold airmass in place...temperatures overnight
tonight are expected to be a few degrees colder in many areas of
the valley...possibly as cold as 25 degrees in the coldest
locations. Thus a freeze warning has been issued.


An upper level low over southern Nevada this morning is bringing
north to northeasterly winds over the Sierra Nevada and the Kern
County mountains and desert areas. These winds have become locally
strong and will be gusty through the afternoon. The upper low will
move farther south tonight while surface high pressure remains in
the Great Basin. Some locally gusty northeast to east winds will
continue tonight...but with less upper level support the wind
speeds will not be as strong.


From previous discussion... /issued 240 am PST Sat Dec 3 2011/


The models have been consistent with the next upper-level low
moving out of the Gulf of Alaska and riding over the ridge Monday.
The ridge is pushed westward as the low spins a trough into the
existing system. There are some differences beginning Tuesday
between the latest model runs and those from Friday morning. The
upper-level trough is now forecast to move into the Great Plains
Tuesday ... another trough rotating around the low over
Hudson Bay to drop into the Rocky Mountains Thursday. However...
the trough is now forecast to remain progressive with a northwest
flow persisting over California as the east-Pacific Ridge builds
back eastward. This will keep dry weather over the central
California interior with temperatures trending near to slightly
below normal. Sanger

Latest Pacific Satellite Image

Weather Image

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

[end of update]


02-Dec-2011 11:04 AM


Power Restored for Now... System Back Online

Our power came back on about 20 minutes ago and appears to be stable, so we have activated our weather computer and are once again updating to the net.

The wind storm that tore through our area last night was not forecast and caught everyone by surprise. We logged the highest wind gusts of the year last night with sustained winds above 15 mph with gusts to 25 mph. While this is nothing like the speeds seen in the SJV or So Cal, it was far stronger than anything we normally see at this location, even during our worst winter storms. It really made a mess of things outside, especially for those of us who have already put up their Christmas decorations! :o/

We will keep our fingers crossed that the power remains on and stable. The latest forecast calls for diminishing winds this morning and a return to sunny and very dry conditions through all of next week.

Here is the latest forecast from the NWS in Hanford Ca.

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
940 am PST Friday Dec 2 2011



Synopsis...
area of low pressure located over northwest Arizona continues to
produce brisk winds over the Sierra Nevada. Clear skies, light winds
and cooler than normal temperatures have settled in over the San
Joaquin Valley resulting in areas of late night through morning
frost over the rural areas.

Update...
wind event has finally ended across central California with only
breezy conditions continuing this afternoon. Main concern now is
the possible frost expected tonight through early Saturday
morning. Min temperatures this morning ranged from 30 to 33 degree-f
over the south end of the valley with middle to upper 30s across the
rest of the valley. With a ridge of high pressure now taking
control...may see more widespread frost by Saturday morning.
Forecast on track with this thinking...so will only update to
remove wind and today/S frost products. Otherwise...benign
weather pattern will exist over the West Coast with temperatures
being the main issue. Models to forecast a secondary upper low
skirting California and mainly tracking through the Great Basin.
This secondary low will remain too far east to produce strong
winds over central California. Yet...will may experience a breeze
today as the upper low drops toward Arizona.

====

Previous discussion... /issued 245 am PST Friday Dec 2 2011/
satellite loops show the upper-level trough over the Desert
Southwest and the southern half of California this morning...with
a short-wave dropping through the Pacific northwest into the
trough. A few high clouds were moving across the northern part of
the Hanford warning/forecast area...but should have little...if
any...impact on the weather.


Winds have subsided below warning criteria across the southern
Sierra Nevada...so will let the High Wind Warning for the foothills
and higher elevations expire at 12z /0400 PST/. Will also allow the
Wind Advisory for the Tulare County mountains to expire.


Per coordination with weather forecast office Oxnard...will extend the Wind Advisory for
the Kern County mountains and deserts through 18z /1000 PST/ this
morning. The models do have fairly strong surface-pressure gradients
over the region through at least 12z...and cannot rule out that the
winds could increase to near advisory criteria...especially over the
eastern deserts and the Indian Wells Valley.


One wind concern is that the models forecast the surface-pressure
gradients to tighten again tonight as the short-wave moves over the
Great Basin as it drops into the trough. Gradients are forecast to
be lower than with Thursday/S event...which saw the peak wind at
Fresno come within 3 miles per hour of the record gust for December /45 miles per hour
vice 48 miles per hour on December 28th 1991/.


The next forecast concern is the threat of frost this morning. At
10z /0200 PST/...the temperature at the Hanford Municipal Airport
had fallen to 31 degrees and dew-points in the central and southern
San Joaquin Valley were mostly in the middle 20s to lower 30s. As winds
subside...temperatures will continue to fall and could reach 32
degrees by daybreak with 2-4 hours between 29-32 degrees later this
morning. Conditions are more favorable for a more widespread frost
with temperatures a couple of degrees colder Saturday night.


The weather pattern is forecast to remain stagnant through the first
part of next week. An upper-level low moving out of the Gulf of
Alaska is forecast to ride over the top of the ridge...flattening it
and pushing the ridge westward as a trough rotating around the low
drops into the Pacific northwest around midweek. The 00z European model (ecmwf) is
more robust with the trough...digging it into central and Southern
California next Thursday. Differences between the European model (ecmwf) and GFS
become more pronounced next Friday into the weekend...lowering
confidence in the forecast for the end of the 7-day forecast period.

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

[end of update]


01-Dec-2011 8:09 PM
Power Outage Caused by High Winds!

The power has gone out here at our location so we must shut down the system until power is restored.

The web site will not be updated during the outage.

[end of update]


01-Dec-2011 3:23 PM

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
256 PM PST Thursday Dec 1 2011



Synopsis...
A stationary low pressure center is located over Southern
California. Strong pressure gradient between this low and higher
pressure to the north is creating Mono winds over the Sierra Nevada
and foothills and brisk winds over parts of the San Joaquin Valley.
Frost is possible over parts of the valley tonight in the rural
areas where the winds become lightest.


Discussion...
The weather remains highly diversified in the San
Joaquin Valley this afternoon. In the southeastern portion of the
valley...winds have been very light and temperatures are in the
50s with humidities averaging about 55 percent. The remainder of
the valley has been very windy with temperatures in the middle 60s to
lower 70s and humidities between 10 and 15 percent. The highest
wind gusts in the sj valley today ranged from 48 miles per hour at Castle AFB
to about 65 miles per hour along and just west of the I-5 corridor. Strong
winds will likely persist until about sunset...then diminish and
become relatively light in most areas by 6 PM. In the Kern County
desert...however...brisk northerly winds will likely persist for
several more hours...perhaps up until midnight...in which case the
Wind Advisory for this area might need to be extended a little
longer. Will leave this for the evening crew to assess.


The storm responsible for the strong winds is currently centered
near Yuma Arizona. Although the core of the 300 mb jet (110+ kts)
will remain over the County Warning Area tonight...surface pressure gradients will
fortunately decouple and allow the winds to abate rather quickly
early tonight in most areas. Weak ridging aloft and at the surface
will gradually build into the County Warning Area later tonight and Friday. The
overall pattern will change very little...however...through the
weekend. During this time...a high amplitude ridge will remain
anchored over the eastern Pacific while upper level disturbances
ride over the top of this ridge and maintain...if not deepen...an
upper level trough over the Great Basin. This is a pattern that
will continue to bring a northerly flow of dry...cool air into California
directly out of British Columbia. Once the wind dies down tonight...
frost will become a concern in the sj valley. It was felt that there
might be just enough wind present to minimize that threat later
tonight. Nonetheless...in the normally coldest...wind sheltered
localities of the sj valley...temperatures will briefly drop just below 32
degrees around daybreak. And in the southeastern sj valley where
the driest air has not yet trickled in...some dense fog could also
accompany these temperatures late tonight.


Frost is likely to become more widespread in the sj valley this
weekend with a longer duration of below freezing temperatures. The
only places that might escape a frost in the sj valley will be in the
major urban areas such as Fresno and Bakersfield. Otherwise...
temperatures will generally average a good 3 to 5 degrees below
normal throughout the central California interior this weekend. Temperatures
will moderate somewhat during the early to middle part of next
week as the epac ridge builds eastward. By Tuesday or Wednesday...
night and morning fog might become more of an issue in the sj valley
than frost. The extended models forecast another upper level trough
to drop out of western Canada next Thursday and track like an inside
slider into the Great Basin next Thursday night and Friday. The ecm
tracks this system a bit farther west than the GFS and brings some
precipitation into the Sierra by then while the GFS keeps the central California
dry. Considering how well the GFS has been performing lately...would
not be surprised if the pattern remained dry at the end of next week.
Only with time and several more model runs will we be able to answer
that definitively.

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

[end of update]



01-Dec-2011 7:10 AM

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
340 am PST Thursday Dec 1 2011



Synopsis...
winds of breezy to strong and gusty criteria are expected in the
region through Friday. Much colder temperatures are expected Friday
and Saturday...with frosty conditions in the San Joaquin Valley.

Discussion...
satellite loops show the upper-level trough moving south through the
Hanford warning/forecast area this morning with the embedded low
dropping into the lower Colorado River valley. At the surface...a
high is over the Pacific northwest while a low is over western
Arizona. This pattern has created very tight surface-pressure
gradients over central California. At 09z /0100 PST/...the San
Francisco-Las Vegas gradient was 17.3 mb...and the Salinas-Reno
gradient was -7.7 mb. This has set the stage for a possible Mono
wind event later this morning.


There are three main weather concerns for the central California
interior this morning. The first is the winds in the mountains...
deserts and the San Joaquin Valley. Have already seen advisory-level
gusts over parts of the west side of the San Joaquin Valley and in
the Indian Wells Valley. Only a few places have reached warning
thresholds in the southern Sierra Nevada. However...model guidance
indicates that the strongest winds will be around 18z /1000 PST/
this morning...and 850-700-mb winds will be northeast up to 50 kts
over much of the region. The southern Sierra Nevada foothills have
not seen high winds yet...but if the winds over the southern Sierra
Nevada pick up later this morning...high winds could work their way
down to the surface and funnel through favorable passes and canyons.
For these reasons...will keep the High Wind Warning in place for the
southern Sierra Nevada...including the foothills...north of Kings
Canyon and the Wind Advisory for the central and southwestern San
Joaquin Valley and the Indian Wells Valley. Also will issue wind
advisories for the Kern and Tulare County mountains and the
southeastern Kern County desert.


The second concern is patchy fog that developed mainly over the
southwestern San Joaquin Valley Wednesday evening. At 1025z /0225
PST/...the visibilities at the Municipal airports at Reedley...
Tulare and Hanford were one-quarter mile or less. Visibilities at
Delano...Porterville and Visalia had improved to 3 miles or
better...but could decrease toward daybreak. Have issued a
significant weather advisory for the fog as satellite loops show it
confined mainly to western Tulare County.


The third concern is the threat of frost from the cold...dry airmass
behind the cold front. At 10z /0200 PST/ this morning...dewpoints in
the central and southern San Joaquin Valley were down as much as 20
degrees from 10z Wednesday morning. As the surface-pressure
gradients begin to relax tonight and winds subside...temperatures in
the coldest...wind-sheltered areas Friday morning will fall into the
upper 20s to lower 30s for several hours. Saturday morning could see
more widespread frost as a northerly flow aloft sets up over
California. Will issue frost advisories for the central and southern
San Joaquin Valley for both Friday and Saturday mornings with the
morning forecast package.


The models are in good agreement with the upper-level trough
deepening over the Great Basin Friday and Friday night as a short-
wave drops into the back side of the trough. As the trough deepens...
the upper-level ridge over the east Pacific amplifies...creating the
above-mentioned northerly flow aloft over California. This flow will
continue to bring colder air into the state...with patchy morning
frost for the first half of next week.


Another trough begins to drop out of the Gulf of Alaska next morning.
This system is forecast to ride over the ridge...weakening it before
the trough drops into the northern rockies. The models deepen the
trough southwestward through the Great Basin and into California
next Thursday...with the GFS having precipitation mainly over the
southern half of the Hanford warning/forecast area. The European model (ecmwf) does
not bring precipitation to the area until Friday. Have added probability of precipitation to
the southern half of the forecast area for next Thursday /day 8/ but
kept below 15 percent for now.

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

[end of update]


29-Nov-2011 12:24 PM

Area forecast discussion...updated
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1125 am PST Tuesday Nov 29 2011



Synopsis...
high pressure continues over the area with nighttime/morning fog
over the San Joaquin Valley through Wednesday. A change in the
weather is in store by Wednesday evening as a low pressure system
approaches the area. This system will move southward over the area
Thursday and is expected to bring mainly gusty winds to the area
Wednesday night and Thursday. In addition...much cooler temperatures
are expected Friday and Saturday behind this system.


Update...
fog and dz over the sjv this am and will lower temperatures and increase
clouds below 200 feet. Models are still advertising a very strong
system to move into the region tomorrow. Winds will be the biggest
threat. Expect winds to increase tomorrow and continue into Thursday
across the west side of the sjv. Mono wind event over the Sierra
and into the Sierra foothills will blow starting Thursday and continue
into Friday. Will update for temperatures and weather today and look closer
at wind for tomorrow.


Previous discussion... /issued 328 am PST Tuesday Nov 29 2011

Discussion...a mix of fog and drizzle this morning over the San
Joaquin Valley with visibility not too low at several normally
foggy locations. Without doubt there are areas with below 1/4 mile
visibility however if the drizzle continues even these areas may
see an increase in visibility as the late night and morning wears
on. Satellite imagery shows the quick reformation of the fog over
the Sacramento Valley after an afternoon clearing. Cirrus clouds
continue to stream across the southern portion of the forecast
area and this is obscuring the fog and stratus over this portion
of the San Joaquin Valley. For today, an afternoon breakout of the
stratus and fog seems probable however I am betting on later than
sooner and have kept temperatures down accordingly. Outside the
sjv another sunny day across the north and a clearing day over the
south is on tap as satellite images show the back edge of the
clouds about 250 miles offshore.


The big change in the weather pattern will arrive beginning
Wednesday as forecast models lift the big area of low pressure out
near 50n/137w up and over the top of the mean West Coast ridge
later today and tonight. On Wednesday this feature is prognosticated to
dive southward from Idaho and end up near the Colorado River south
of Las Vegas on Thursday per the GFS and European model (ecmwf) models. The latest
run of the NAM model has the low taking a track farther
east...ending up over southern Arizona. The main difference in
these two solutions is the strength and duration of a very windy
period over the Sierra Nevada and the likely Hood of a Mono wind
event. The GFS has been very steady for several days in its
tracking of the low and with the European model (ecmwf) model in agreement is the
preferred solution. Given this a high wind watch for Mono winds
will be issued for zones 93 and 96 covering the Wednesday night
through Friday morning time period. Given the north to eventually
easterly flow across the Sierra, I have remove the probability of precipitation in this
area as it should be a dry, but cold downsloping wind event.


Over the Kern County mountains and desert areas, winds will become
an issue as the gradient and upper level winds align for a
significant northeast wind event. Will need to closely watch the
Kern County mountain area for possible headlines. The pattern for
the weekend looks dry but chilly as the flow will remain from the
north as the low ejects eastward. To add yet another round of
uncertainty to this very amplified pattern, the latest European model (ecmwf) model
after ejecting the first low, drop another right into place over
southern Nevada and the Colorado River valley by Sunday. The GFS
doesn't have nearly as strong of a low, rather a trough of low
pressure instead in the northerly flow. Stay tuned for this one.
All in all dry through the period, windy then colder sums it up
pretty well.

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

[end of update]



28-Nov-2011 9:45 AM

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
437 am PST Monday Nov 28 2011



Synopsis...
high pressure continues over the region with nighttime/morning fog
over the San Joaquin Valley through mid-week. By Thursday...a
low pressure system will bring a chance of precipitation to the
southern Sierra Nevada and Tehachapi Mountains. However...the main
threat will be gusty winds in the lower elevations...including the
Kern County desert areas and the west side of the San Joaquin
Valley.


Discussion... the strong upper ridge of the past 2 days is
gradually being flattened as a weak shortwave trough moves through the
Pacific northwest. Considerable middle and high cloudiness is associated with
the trough. Dense fog developed in the valley prior to the arrival
of the higher cloud deck...and thus far the cloud deck has had
little affect on the fog. These clouds may also inhibit burnoff
later today. While visibilities should improve to more than a quarter of
a mile by late morning,,,it could remain rather murky much of the
day. Dont expect much sunshine until later in the afternoon if any
at all.


The shortwave passage later today is still expected to mix the
lower layer of the atmo enough to keep fog a little more patchy in
nature tonight...or at least not quite as dense. It is also
possible that the upper trough may pass over the top of the
inversion without disturbing it...resulting in more dense fog
tonight. Will just have to play this on an hour by hour basis
later today.


Clouds across the region will help lower maximum temperatures a few degrees
today from yesterday...but it will still be well above normal
outside of the valley fog and low clouds. Little change is
expected Tuesday as the Flat Ridge remains over the area. Models continue
to show a an inside slider digging south into the Great Basin
Wednesday...then developing into a closed upper low over socal Thursday.
The associated cold front will move through late Wednesday or early Thursday.
It still looks like little if any precipitation will occur with the
trough...and any that does occur will be confined to the mountains and
deserts.


Gusty winds may develop Thursday behind the front as highly modified
Canadian air builds in from the north. However this will depend on
where the upper low actually develops. East-NE winds will be
strongest Thursday and Friday over the Sierra crest. There is a small
chance a Mono wind event could occur in favored canyons of the
southern Sierra Thursday night and early Friday. However surface pressures in
the Great Basin are marginal for a strong Mono wind event. Would
usually like to see a 1040 mb high...but models only approach
1035 mb/S.


The upper trough will be progressive...and should be over northern Mexico
and Arizona by Sat with a dry northerly flow across central California through the
weekend. With drier air in place...fog will patchy if any at all
through the weekend. Good radiational cooling at night may produce
the first widespread frost of the season in the sjv. Depending on
amount of clouds...frost is possible Friday and/or Sat mornings. A
hard freeze is not expected. Otherwise temperatures in the medium range
are expected to be close to seasonal averages Friday into early next
week.

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

[end of update]



25-Nov-2011 9:26 AM

Sunny Days With No Serious Storm Threat for Next 10 Days

Looks like this year's La Nina is already starting to live up to this pattern's NORMAL effects, which translates into increased storm activity for the NorthWest, but equally dry and unseasonably warm for most of California and the SW of the US. For today on, high pressure has parked itself off the California Coast and will continue diverting all winter storms to the north and south of our area. This type of chaotic pattern doesn't bode well for our local snow pack and overall water table stability heading into the summer of 2012.


Our rainfall totals for 2010 compared to 2011 speak volumes


November 2010: 5.34 inches - 2011: 1.71

Seasonal Total Comparison through November 2010 vs 2011:

2010: 10.84 in

2011: 3.78 inches

Difference since July 1st: 7.06 inches


As you can see, things are already a lot drier this season than last year's unusually WET La Nina which was likely a once in the last 100 years level anomaly.

LA Nina typically diverts the normal storm track we would normally expect this time of year to the north because of the warped and unbalance Jet Stream, leaving us and areas south of us high and dry when it comes to winter storm activity going forward.

Unfortunately, the current long-range forecast for our area is predicting just that. Sat maps show high pressure building offshore resulting in fair skies for our area for extended periods. The current large high is building now and will remain parked over the state for at least the next 7 days. This is what a REAL La Nina pattern results in for Bass Lake. Sunny days in the Sierra along with heavy morning and evening fog for most of the SJV for the foreseeable future.

If the dry and sunny trend continues through March, we can expect a nail biting fire season in the summer of 2012 with risk levels reaching into the EXTREME range.

Pray for rain, and LOTS of it between now and March 1st! Otherwise, we could see one of the worst wildfire seasons in decades here during the summer and fall of 2012. December will prove to be the month that makes or breaks the trend. If we end up with a relatively dry December, then yet another drought looks likely for most of California heading in to the summer months of 2012.

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
434 am PST Friday Nov 25 2011



Synopsis...

High pressure is expected to move into the region today through the
weekend bringing dry conditions. However...with the ridging in place
and moisture from the recent rains...night and morning dense fog is
anticipated through the weekend.


Discussion...

Only some patchy mainly light fog has developed around the San
Joaquin Valley this morning as areas of stratus have piled up
around the edges and over southern portions. A ridge of high
pressure is building in from the Pacific and this will generally
bring dry and warming conditions to the central California
interior through the weekend...except valley fog development will
become more prevalent as the ridge strengthens. This will inhibit
warming in the valley as the fog/stratus struggles to burn of
each day and is expected to become a quasi permanent feature for
several days.


GFS continues to show a relatively weak shortwave trough tracking
across the region by Tuesday while the European model (ecmwf) keeps the disturbance
farther north and east with little to no effect on US. The European model (ecmwf)
then forecasts an incoming system for the end of the forecast
period...while the latest GFS run no longer shows this feature.
Our forecast at this time shows some improvement in the fog regime by
the end of the week...a bit more in line with the latest European model (ecmwf) run.

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

[end of update]


23-Nov-2011 11:16 AM

Thanksgiving Day Forecast for Bass Lake - Cloudy with Little Chance of Measurable Rain

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1039 am PST Wednesday Nov 23 2011



Synopsis...
For Thanksgiving there is a very slight chance of rain showers in
the Valley. High pressure is expected to move into the region by
Friday through the weekend bringing dry conditions. However...with
the ridging in place and moisture from the recent rains...night and
morning dense fog is anticipated to return to the San Joaquin Valley
Friday night/Saturday and again Saturday night/Sunday.

Update...
Areas of fog continue this morning in parts of the San Joaquin
Valley mainly over Kings and Fresno counties. Think fog will burn
off around midday with wind mixing due to an increase in south
winds as a frontal system nears central California. Additional
middle level clouds ahead of the front should provide thicker cloud
cover towards the Central Valley along with cooler temperatures.
While the Bakersfield area should see the warmer temperature with
less clouds and downsloping winds off the tehachapis. No updates
planned this morning.


Early discussion...
Patchy dense fog has once again formed over
the usual fog prone areas of the San Joaquin Valley and it will
persist through middle morning. Fog is not as widespread as last
night and the Special Weather Statement will suffice. Lots of
cirrus clouds are streaming into central California well out ahead
of now very impressive Pacific weather system. If this weather
system were to come ashore as a single entity it would certainly
be a significant weather maker.

Forecast models however continue
to steadfastly split the system into two parts with one heading
across northern California and Oregon and a second, developing low
pressure system heading in a very familiar track for this season,
southeast while remaining well offshore with landfall in northern
Baja California California. Given this scenario the most likely outcome will
be a slight chance of rain on Thanksgiving day as the stretched
out and weakening baroclinic zone between the two systems moves
across the forecast area. By Friday the low is prognosticated to move
into Arizona with ridging building in over central California.


This ridge will be the main weather feature for several days and
a warmer than normal and dry forecast is in the offing for all
areas outside the San Joaquin Valley where a strong temperature
inversion will keep fog and stratus clouds in place for the
duration. Cool and dreary weather will be the rule at elevations
below 1500 feet.

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

Station Operator's comments:

Looks like so far this year, the strong La Nina pattern is behaving normally, which translates into far less storm activity for our area through the remainder of the winter. Lets hope that this extreme northerly Jet Sream doesn't hold true through the entire wet season! Otherwise, we are looking at a significant deficit in precipitation for the 2011/2012 wet season.

[end of update]



22-Nov-2011 7:46 AM

Strong/Wet Thanksgiving Day Storm Looking Less Likely

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
258 am PST Tuesday Nov 22 2011



Synopsis...
mostly clear skies and valley fog will prevail through Wednesday due
to high pressure over the area. Another storm system will bring the
next chance of precipitation into the central California interior
beginning Wednesday evening and continuing into Thanksgiving day.
Another ridge of high pressure is expected by the weekend along with
dry conditions. However...night and morning fog is anticipated to
return to the San Joaquin Valley by Friday night/Saturday.

Discussion...
as expected dense fog has formed over the San
Joaquin Valley and visibilities have crashed. Expect this
situation to persist through middle morning. I do expect a full
clearing this afternoon but certainly later than Monday afternoon
and high temperatures will likely be a couple to a few degrees
cooler over the San Joaquin Valley. Over the remainder of the
forecast area a warmer day is on tap as ridging rolls in from the
west. For the very important Thanksgiving forecast, models
continue to trend weaker with the incoming split system. Even the
latest model ensemble forecast is backing down on the strength of
this feature. At this time forecast chances of precipitation are
at the chance level over much of the area with very light
precipitation amounts forecast. I wouldn't be too surprised to see
this backing off trend continue and I have removed the chances of
precipitation on Wednesday night however I have left the chances
in on Turkey day. Again at this time any precipitation looks
light. By Friday and into the weekend forecast models continue to
be in rock solid agreement in building a strong ridge of high
pressure over the region and this will set the stage for the first
long duration fog and stratus episode over the San Joaquin Valley
and lower foothills. Persistant dense fog will likely occur on
Saturday and Sunday mornings however by Monday the transition to a
low stratus situation is a good bet. In either situation areas
outside the San Joaquin Valley will have a mainly clear and
certainly dry period from Friday into the middle of next week. In
the sjv cool, foggy to cloudy and dreary weather will occur.

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

[end of update]



21-Nov-2011 8:03 AM

Snow and Rain for Bass Lake Later This Week

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
243 am PST Monday Nov 21 2011



Synopsis...
dry conditions will prevail through the middle of the week with
high pressure moving in. There will also be a good possibility of
early morning patchy dense fog in the San Joaquin Valley today
through Wednesday with ample moisture from the recent rains and
the incoming ridging. Another storm system could bring our next
chance of precipitation into the central California interior
region by Thanksgiving day.

Discussion...
Last of the precipitation has moved well east of the
area this morning as the low eject across southeast California.
Over the San Joaquin Valley some patchy fog has formed and this
situation will need to be monitored. For the next 3 days the
forecast looks dry with low amplitude ridging today and Tuesday
giving way to a southwest flow aloft on Tuesday night and
Wednesday as the next trough moves towards the West Coast. At this
point the forecast becomes rather problematic as the forecast
models show a split pattern developing with one branch of the jet
moving across the Pacific northwest while the southern stream
takes a second area of low pressure down the California coast as
it keeps the main energy offshore. Between these two features, a
band of light precipitation is projected in the deformation zone
stretching between. At this time, this looks to be the most
favorable scenario for precipitation in the central California
interior and this will occur on Thanksgiving day. For Friday and
into the weekend, models then agree on building a large area of
high pressure over the region. All areas outside the San Joaquin
Valley will see warming and dry weather in this pattern, however
the first widespread fog to stratus episode of the season will
likely set in just in time for the busy travel weekend.

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

[end of update]





20-Nov-2011 9:19 AM

Winter Storm Update

The second winter storm of the month has arrived over the Bass Lake area, bringing scattered showers, rain/snow mix or snow to higher elevations. We can expect the precipitation to continue for the next few hours, with more later today.

Here are the latest Radar and Sat images:

Regional NextRad Image

Weather Image

State-Wide NextRad Image

Weather Image

West Coast IR Satellite Image

Weather Image

Full Pacific IR Satellite Image

Weather Image

We can expect this current band to pass through the area within the next few hours leaving unstable air behind the front. This may result in continued upslope generated rain and snow showers for our area for the remainder of the day.

Current storm total from the station's rain gauge stands at: 0.21 inches

Here is the latest regional forecast from the National Weather Service.

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
500 am PST sun Nov 20 2011



Synopsis...
rain and higher elevation snow are expected today and through this
evening as the cold front moves south across the region. Dry
conditions will prevail Monday and through the middle of next week
due to weak ridging. Another storm system could bring another
chance of precipitation Wednesday night and much of Thanksgiving day.

Discussion...
the band of precipitation associated with an incoming frontal
system is currently pushing south through the central California
interior. The upper low is sliding southeast just off the
California coast and is prognosticated to swing inland across central
Southern California today and tonight. The current precipitation band
will continue its March through the area this morning then
additional showers will develop behind it today in the unstable
air as the cold upper low tracks over the region. The best
instability will remain along and off the coast but a thunderstorm
or two is still not impossible along our west side so the slight
chance of thunder remins in the forecast there today. Gusty winds
will accompany the passing front today and a Wind Advisory is in
effect for the west side of the sjv through noon today. Although
there is no strong moisture tap with this system...it will be
capable of accumulating a few to several inches of snow over the
Sierra above 4000 feet and above 5000 feet in the Kern County
mountains. The gusty winds and snow will cause travel impacts in
these areas and a winter weather advisories continue through this
afternoon/evening. The clouds and precipitation along with cooler
incoming air will make for a cool day today with temperatures as
much as 10-15 degrees below climatology.


Activity will taper off tonight as the system pushes eastward out
of the area. Tomorrow will then begin a few days of drier and
warming conditions ahead of the next approaching system...though
overnight and morning fog will return to the forecast in the sjv.
By Wednesday temperatures should return to at or slightly above
seasonal averages.


Models are pretty similar in dragging the next system through our
area Thanksgiving day into Friday...returning cooler temperatures
and precipitation chances. High pressure then rebuilds over the
area for the en of the week

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

[end of update]


20-Nov-2011 12:08 AM

Area forecast discussion...updated
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
957 PM PST Sat Nov 19 2011



Synopsis...
another low pressure system will impact the region beginning
tonight. Therefore...rain and higher elevation snow are expected
later tonight through Sunday evening. Dry conditions will prevail
Monday and through the middle of next week due to weak ridging.
Another storm system could bring another chance of precipitation by
Thanksgiving day.

Discussion...
after a very nice fall day across the central California interior...we
will once again see precipitation moving into the County Warning Area. Regional
radar indicates precipitation just moving into Merced County at this time.
Models have been advertising the low center to drop out of the
Gulf of Alaska and remain along the coast. The exact track has been an
issue and definitely a forecast problem.


Satellite imagery indicates the complex low pressure center is
sliding south-southeast along the California CST at this time. Very impressive frontal band
with strong vertical ascent in association with an upper jet maximum
around 120 kts digging into the backside of the upper trough. The
surface low is expected to remain along the coast overnight and then
begin to move southeast into Southern California by Thursday afternoon. Quantitative precipitation forecast amounts will
be limited due to lack of sub tropical connection. However the
dynamics with this system will wring out any moisture associated
with it and quantitative precipitation forecast amounts will be respectable in favored upslope
areas.


Low level jet at h850 around 40kts will play a very important role
on the winds along the west side of the County Warning Area. Downsloping
conditions will bring the stronger winds to the surface Sunday morning
as the low center moves by to the west. Tight gradients in the
deformation zone along the warm occlusion front will provide
strong winds in some of the heavy showers...mainly west of the
Interstate 5 corridor. Vertical enhancement of moisture will take
place as strong upslope conditions will develop along the Sierra
due to the position and track of the system. Enhanced precipitation
is expected along the Sierra and associated foothills on Sunday.


Precipitation is also expected along the Tehachapi Mountains as
the low center passes to the south. We are concerned about the
possibility of heavy snow above 6000 feet Thursday afternoon as
low level jet will provide plenty of moisture and strong upslope
over the Ventura County mountains and dumping snow into frazaier
park and Cuddy Valley. Snow levels will flirt with the Grapevine
and the Tehachapi Pass and may see some light snow at pass
level...but little or no accumulation.


Have added thunder along the west side of the sjv for Sunday.
Several strikes associated with frontal boundary at this time offshore.
Storm Prediction Center mentions the west side of the County Warning Area for possible thunderstorms
with the frontal passage and possibly Post frontal in the cold
air and steep lapse rates. Some small hail and gusty winds are
possible with some of the stronger cells late tonight and into Sunday.


Once the low moves out Sunday night...we will see a nice break
in the action and a warming trend across the central California interior
through Wednesday with mostly clear skies and diurnal valley fog...which
may become locally dense at times in the morning hours. However the
fog is dependent on how much rain we receive with the system.
Upper ridge will warm things back up to near normal and give US mostly
clear skies.


The forecast models and associated confidence products are
indicating that a deep trough of low pressure will move through
the region on Thursday and provide plenty of precipitation to the
region. The system is currently over the Aleutians and is being
fed by a deep subtropical tap in the central Pacific. The
associated slug of moisture is expected to move into the region
late Wednesday and continue all day on Thursday before quickly moving
out on Thursday night. Plenty of cold air and gusty winds behind
the front is possible on Friday as unsettled weather is expected.
A strong epac ridge is forecast to build in over the area on
Saturday with warmer and drier conditions.


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

[end of NWS update]


18-Nov-2011 11:11 AM

Winter Storm Conditions Likely for the Southern Sierra This Weekend

Here is the latest forecast from the NWS Hanford, Ca.

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1057 am PST Friday Nov 18 2011



Synopsis...
a trough of low pressure is moving into the region...bringing
stronger winds above 8000 feet and increasing chances for light
precipitation today in the valley with higher elevation snow. A
break in precipitation is forecast for Saturday with another slight
chance of precipitation for the area on Sunday. Dry conditions are
expected during the early part of next week due to weak ridging.

Update...
widespread cloud cover across the San Joaquin Valley with strong
gusty winds over the high elevations of the Sierra as well as
below the mountain passes of Kern County and High Desert.
Otherwise dry conditions elsewhere in the district. Higher
elevations of the Sierra remains clear and windy. Shower activity
remains over north California this morning. Cloud cover starting
to move over the north sectors of Yosemite. Expect showers to
develop this afternoon as an upper level short wave moves through
the area. This system appears moisture starved and the main
weather hazard being strong gusty winds. Mainly light amounts of
precipitation with an inch or two towards Yosemite resulting in
blowing snow in the higher elevations. No updates planned this
morning.


Discussion...
the frontal system dropping into the region is so far producing
just some increased cloudiness across the central California
interior. This is generally providing a bit higher overnight
temperatures and will help to inhibit development of early morning
fog in the San Joaquin Valley this morning. The NAM and GFS
generally break up the precipitation area as it moves into our
district today while the European model (ecmwf) is a bit more generous with the
quantitative precipitation forecast...though still showing generally light amounts.


The timing of any precipitation that does occur looks to be
mainly later this afternoon and this evening as the system slides
south over the region. Gusty winds are expected to accompany the
passing trough and although just a few inches of snow
accumulations are expected at the higher elevations...blowing snow
could create some hazardous conditions and a Winter Weather
Advisory remains in effect over the Sierra north of Kings Canyon
above 8000 feet today and tonight.


Temperatures will be around 10 degrees cooler today than yesterday.
Slight ridging ahead of the next approaching low pressure system
will provide dry conditions Saturday but temperatures will remain
cool...topping out around 10 degrees below climatology.


The next developing low dropping south from Alaska is still
prognosticated by the GFS to slide along the California coast
Sunday...keeping precipitation chances mainly west of US. The
latest European model (ecmwf) however now swings it inland across northern/central
California producing a wetter forecast for our area Sunday. The
forecast is a compromise...keeping main precipitation chances along the
west side of our area.


A building ridge ahead of yet another approaching system will then
provide dry and warming conditions for early next week with
temperatures trending back to seasonal averages. The European model (ecmwf) splits
the incoming midweek system...while the GFS slides a more
consolidated trough and associated precipitation across our area
Thanksgiving day. Our forecast continues to be closer to the
GFS...with a cooler and wetter Thanksgiving Holiday.

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

We will update our local Bass Lake forecast as conditions warrant.

[end of update]


15-Nov-2011 9:27 AM


Late Week Storm Intensity Now Uncertain

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
854 am PST Tuesday Nov 15 2011



Synopsis...
upper level ridging is moving into the region which may bring areas
of patchy dense fog during the late night and early morning hours
through Thursday. This same ridging will also bring fair skies
and seasonal temperatures to the area as a dry northwest flow aloft
prevails over the area. Thursday evening a trough will begin to
spread south over the region...bringing another threat for rain and
higher elevation snow at times during Friday and into the weekend.

Discussion...

Fog and stratus clouds continue over the southern
San Joaquin Valley and sjv facing slopes of the Kern County
mountains in a very typical northwest flow. Expect much of this to
dissipate this afternoon however with hours of sunlight and sun
angle reduced some may linger through the day. Over the eastern
Pacific the ridge remains in place along 140w however lots of
moisture continues to spread over the top of the ridge into the
Pacific northwest and northern California. For the next 3 days,
the ridge will remain in control however by Friday a trough is
prognosticated by GFS and NAM models to move quickly across the Pacific
northwest and into northern California. For the central California
interior the big question is how far south the precipitation
threat will extend with the Friday system. Latest GFS and NAM
continue to confine the majority of the rain and snow to the far
north of the forecast area and the general grid trend looks okay,
however probability of precipitation for Friday may need some trimming back. Saturday
continues to look dry before the second seemingly more robust low
pressure system heads down the West Coast. This is another of
those tricky "coastal hugger" type of lows and the big variables
include any tropical moisture entrainment (as with last week's
system) and track of the low center in relation to the coast. Will
again take a close look at all model data and see if probability of precipitation for
Sunday need refinement. Stay tuned for more this afternoon.

[end of update]


14-Nov-2011 8:32 AM

New COLD Storm System Forecast for Friday through Sunday

Not much detail available at this early point, but it is looking likely that a cold front and associated storm system moving down from the Gulf of Alaska will effect the area beginning on Friday.

More details as they become available. Fair weather and near normal seasonal temperatures are predicted for the remainder of this week leading up to this next weather event.

[end of update]


13-Nov-2011 6:59 AM

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
240 am PST sun Nov 13 2011



Synopsis...
dry conditions...along with fair skies and seasonal temperatures
are expected for the next few days as weak ridging sets up over the
area.

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

Discussion...
satellite loops show that the upper-level low currently is west of
Baja California California. This has allowed the east-Pacific upper-level ridge
to build onto the coast...setting up a dry northwest flow aloft over
the Hanford warning/forecast area. This flow will continue through
midweek with dry weather and near seasonal temperatures.


The main forecast concern is the extended forecast. Both the European model (ecmwf)
and the GFS forecast another storm to drop out of the Gulf of Alaska
and move into California by the weekend. Although both the GFS and
European model (ecmwf) predict this to be a very cold system...there are considerable
differences in timing and the strength of the trough. Further...the
models initially overforecast the strength of the last storm...and
subsequent model runs also could back off on the strength of the
coming storm.


The GFS and European model (ecmwf) do bring the trough into the Pacific northwest by
00z Saturday /1600 PST Friday/...but then the GFS brings the storm
through California Friday night . A series of short-waves dive down
the back side of the trough..keeping it over California through
Saturday night. The GFS then moves the trough into the Great Basin
as the east Pacific Ridge begins to build back onshore.


The European model (ecmwf) drops the low embedded in the trough south along the coast
Friday and Friday night to off the northern California coast. The
European model (ecmwf) then swings the trough inland over the state Saturday night...
then a short-wave drops into the trough to keep the trough axis over
central California Sunday. The trough moves into the Great Basin
Sunday night as the ridge rebuilds over the east Pacific.


The 00z GFS is 245 hours faster with the trough than the 00z European model (ecmwf).
The GFS brings precipitation to the southern Sierra Nevada Friday...
then rain moves into the central San Joaquin Valley Friday evening
before spreading south to the Tehachapi Mountains by 12z /0400 PST/
Saturday. The GFS ends precipitation Saturday evening with a dry
Sunday.


The 00z European model (ecmwf)...despite the slower movement of the trough...brings
precipitation to the northern part of the Hanford warning/forecast
area by 12z /0400 PST/ Friday morning...18 hours faster than the GFS.
The heaviest precipitation arrives during the day Saturday...with
up to 1.34 inch liquid in 12 hours over Kings Canyon. The European model (ecmwf)
tapers off precipitation from the north Sunday night.


Both models forecast sharp cooling at 850 mb for next weekend. The
GFS drops 850-mb temperatures over Fresno down to -4.5 c by 18z
/1000 PST/ Saturday...and again by 12z /0400 PST/ Sunday. With its
slower trough...the European model (ecmwf) does not bring the cold airmass into the
San Joaquin Valley until Saturday night...when 850-mb temperatures
over Fresno fall to -2.5 c by 12z Sunday.


Both models forecast the snow level to fall to around 2500 feet
Saturday...with the GFS plunging snow levels below 1000 feet
Saturday night...while the European model (ecmwf) places the snow level around 2100
feet. Have favored the European model (ecmwf) for the snow level...as this model did
better than the GFS with the November 10th storm. Otherwise...the
forecast is a compromise between the two models.


Even with the current forecast of low snow levels...do not expect
any snow on the San Joaquin Valley floor. However...valley snow in
November is possible...albeit rare. The earliest snow at Fresno was
on November 21st 1931...when a trace of snow fell. For
Bakersfield...the earliest snow was on November 25th 2003...also
with a trace.

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

[end of update]





12-Nov-2011 11:24 AM

Upslope Showers Still Possible Today

We picked up 0.42 inches of rain from this latest system, with the last two 100ths added to that total earlier this morning.

The air is still unstable over the Sierra range, so upslope generated clouds and precipitation is very possible today throughout the entire Bass Lake area. Spotty showers with measurable precipitation would not be unusual on a day like today.

Here is the latest NWS forecast:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
941 am PST Sat Nov 12 2011



Synopsis...
widely scattered showers and higher elevation snow will continue
over the area this morning...mainly in Tulare and Kern counties.
Some clearing is expected this afternoon as the front moves out of
the area. Dry conditions will then prevail Sunday and much of next
week.


Discussion...
Satellite water vapor imagery shows the upper low
centered near 30n/121w this morning as it continues to slide
southeast. Mostly cloudy skies prevail over the central California
interior with just a few very light showers detected by radar. Will
hang on to the slight to low chance probability of precipitation for this afternoon but
additional rainfall amounts will be light. A precipitation summary
/sfopnshnx/ from yesterday through this morning will be issued
next hour after the 18z data comes in. Dry conditions are expected
by this evening but patchy fog is likely to develop across portions
of the San Joaquin Valley overnight. Winds over the Grapevine have
diminished significantly the last couple of hours and have allowed
the advisory to expire.

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

[end of update]


11-Nov-2011 8:22 AM

Rain and Strong Winds Possible Today

The low pressure system that was supposed to have remained off the coast and moving south has somewhat altered its course and is now tracking east by south east.

Latest IR Sat Image

Weather Image

While the bulk of the circulation remains off the coast, there is now enough eastward movement to bring more of the unstable air over the Sierra which may fuel some upslope precipitation and possibly some isolated Thunderstorms.

UPDATE for Latest NWS Forecast

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
944 am PST Friday Nov 11 2011



Synopsis...
an area of low pressure located off the coast of northern California
is expected to continue moving south along the coast through
Saturday. Therefore...mostly cloudy skies with isolated rain showers
and higher elevation snow are anticipated over central California.
Dry conditions will then prevail during Sunday and much of next
week.

Discussion...
ominous skies over much of the central California
interior this morning but the bark is worse than the bite. Some
light showers have developed but rainfall amounts are very light
with mainly a trace to a few hundredths of an inch. Even the Kern
County desert has seen a little rain this morning. The upper low
off the central California coast is beginning to slide southeast with a
frontal band of precipitation extending from the sf Bay area southward
offshore of Point Conception. While it is nudging eastward...it's
unlikely to push very far inland as the low parallels the coast.
However...given a healthy southwesterly flow with a subtropical
moisture feed and good upper diffluence...have updated forecast to
bump up probability of precipitation a little for today and tonight. Also...strong low
level southerly flow ahead of the front is resulting in some
increased gusty winds over the west central San Joaquin Valley. A
Wind Advisory is being issued for this area from 10 am - 7 PM and
the ongoing Wind Advisory for the Kern County mountains and extreme
south end of the San Joaquin Valley will be extended through 7 PM
as well.


[end of update]


10-Nov-2011 10:45 AM

Approaching Storm System May Become a Non-Event for Central Cal/Sierra Nevada

Current Sat Images of Systems in Pacific

Weather Image

Weather Image

The latest forecast discussion from the NWS:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
930 am PST Thursday Nov 10 2011



Synopsis...

an area of low pressure is located off the northern coast of
California and is expected to transit south along the coast. Mostly
cloudy skies with isolated rain showers and higher elevation snow
is expected Friday night through Saturday over central California.

Discussion...

southerly winds have been howling at the base of the
Grapevine during the past 24 hours and over exposed summits of
Kern County. Peak gusts of 69 miles per hour were observed at the Grapevine chp
station around 6 am this morning and have frequently gusted between
45 miles per hour and 55 miles per hour at Grapevine Peak. Although wind speeds have
ebbed a bit since then...they will likely intensify later today and
persist through at least midday Friday in these areas. Additionally...
downslope winds have produced significant warming and drying at the
south end of the sj valley where 24-hour temperature trends are +20
degrees and humidities are currently around 15 percent. As a result...
temperatures this afternoon have the potential to warm into the lower 80s
in the Kern County portion of the valley.


The weather is considerably more tranquil elsewhere across the County Warning Area
this morning with mostly clear skies where temperatures are generally
trending slightly higher than 24 hours ago.


In the broader picture...a storm system continues to spin over the
eastern Pacific and has moved very little since this time yesterday.
A broad southwesterly flow aloft ahead of this system is transporting
high cloudiness into central and Southern California and will continue to do
so through Friday morning while the eastern Pacific storm remains
nearly stationary. While the storm is prognosticated to drift slowly eastward
Friday afternoon and night...all of the models keep this system well
offshore the California coast through Saturday where the deepest moisture
and dynamics will be.

Nonetheless...clouds will probably lower and
thicken across much of the central California interior Friday afternoon.
While the offshore low tracks well to our south and west Friday night
another storm system in the northern branch of the jet stream will
track across the Pacific northwest and leave central California split in the
middle. Normally when this happens...the central California interior gets
robbed of precipitation. At any rate...the best chance of wet weather in
the County Warning Area appears as though it will be from Friday evening into Saturday.
Even then...quantitative precipitation forecast will be nominal at best. This is reflected well in the latest models and the forecasts from HPC and the cnrfc. It would
not be a surprise if the sj valley got nothing more than sprinkles out
of this system.


By Sunday a dry northwesterly flow regime will become established
across California and likely continue through the middle of next week.
Temperatures during this period will average pretty close to normal
but there may be some residual low clouds through Monday along
the west slopes of the Sierra Nevada and the north facing slopes of the
Tehachapi Mountains.

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

If conditions change and it looks like the station will encounter a significant rain event, we will post an update accordingly at that time. Stay tuned to our station web site for the latest weather conditions, radar returns and precipitation events!

[end of update]


09-Nov-2011 8:48 AM

Here is the latest from the NWS in Hanford Ca.


Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
422 am PST Wednesday Nov 9 2011



Synopsis...
high pressure will dominate the central California region into
Thursday. Today and Thursday early morning patchy dense fog can be
expected. A storm system will begin to move into the area by
Thursday night and last through the weekend.

Discussion...
shortwave ridging is pushing in over California this
morning. Temperatures today will warm several degrees more over yesterday
with sunny skies. An increasing southerly flow at the surface and
aloft will help push temperatures to slightly above normal Thursday. Weak
downslope warming could push temperatures to near 80 in the south end of
the valley. Locally gusty southeast-S winds may develop over the Kern
County mountains Thursday afternoon...and may require an advisory.
However models are trending farther west and south with this system
than previous model runs. Confidence at this time is not high enough
to issue an advisory.


A deep longwave trough in the east Pacific along 140w is beginning to
close off/cutoff as it tracks slowly east. Models bring the
cutoff low toward the central California coast Friday. There is still
considerable difference between the European model (ecmwf) and GFS with regard to
precipitation over the central California interior. Experience has shown many
times that coastal huggers dont...as a rule...yield much in the
way of precipitation east of the Coast Ranges.


However the system does have a narrow band of subtrop moisture
still feeding into the cold front...and I see no reason this will
be shut off. Best chance of precipitation will be along and ahead of the
trough axis later Friday into Friday night. Raised probability of precipitation most areas for Friday
and Friday night as the deformation moves through. Quantitative precipitation forecast amounts with this
system will be highest near the western foothills of the valley Friday
spreading into the Tehachapi Mountains Friday night.


Snow levels with this system will remain relatively high for this
time of year...as coldest air remains well offshore. Dont expect
much if any accumulating snow below about 7000 feet. And with very
low quantitative precipitation forecast amounts in the southern Sierra...no winter headlines are
anticipated. Some moderate to briefly heavy rainfall could occur
in the tehachapis Friday night...otherwise only light amounts of
precipitation are expected.


The upper low will begin to open up as it progresses east
Sat...with the main upper low and trough axis crossing over Baja California
into Arizona by Sunday morning. Precipitation will diminish from north to
south Sat and be mostly ended late Sat night. A few lingering
showers may persist over the mountains sun...otherwise dry.
Models show a persistent northwest flow aloft across California well into next
week. Overall models indicate at dry forecast with only minor day to
day fluctuations in temperatures. Embedded shortwave troughs in the flow
will bring some clouds from time to time for a partly cloudy forecast.

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

We will be posting our own storm reports this weekend as conditions warrant. In the meantime, we will continue to re-publish these local NWS forecast discussions from Hanford Ca. as the latest reports become available

[end of update]


08-Nov-2011 10:09 AM

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
850 am PST Tuesday Nov 8 2011


Synopsis...
high pressure will dominate the central California region for the
the remainder of the week. Late night and early morning patchy dense
fog can be expected in the San Joaquin Valley. A storm system by the
weekend is expected to increase sky cover and chances for
precipitation.

Discussion...
by 16z /0800 PST/...temperatures in the Kern County deserts had
risen above 28 degrees...so have allowed the freeze warning for the
deserts to expire.

A cold...dry Canadian airmass moved into California Monday night...
allowing temperatures across the central and southern San Joaquin
Valley to mostly fall into the lower to middle 30s this morning. As a
result...there was less fog than Monday morning but there was some
patchy valley frost. Lows Wednesday morning are expected to be a few
degrees warmer than this morning...so there likely will be more fog
and less frost.

The new 12z GFS has restored the trough for Saturday night/Sunday
that had been missing from the last few runs. This only increases
the uncertainty for the weekend forecast. No changes to the forecast
planned at this time.

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

Previous discussion... /issued 349 am PST Tuesday Nov 8 2011/

transitory shortwave ridge will push in over California during the next
24-36 hours. This will bring a warming trend to central California...with
850mb temperatures rising some 10 degrees/c by Thursday. In addition...a weak
offshore flow at the surface is forecast by Wednesday afternoon. This will
assist the warmup in the South Valley as some downslope breezes
develop across the Tehachapi Mountains /as a side note...these breezes
will not be nearly as strong as the event of last week however/.
Most areas by Thursday will be slightly above normal...the exception
being the high deserts where the surface high across the Great
Basin is relatively cool.


Advertised changes for Thursday night into Friday are still on track.
However...there remains quite a bit of uncertainty on whether
there will be much rain east of the Coast Ranges. The closed upper
low stays off the coast before opening up and turning inland late
Sat. For certain...the bulk of rain will be over the coast. But
how far inland it gets is the forecast problem. Coastal huggers are
typically not very wet...if any at all for the interior.


However models have a weak subtropical tap of moisture as the low
tracks toward the central coast...especially the Euro. For now have
hedged the forecast more toward climatology and the GFS. The exception being
the southern zones south of Fresno County where the best chance of
precipitation will be Friday night as the low begins to move inland across
socal. Should be some pretty good rains in the tehachapis and
maybe the extreme southern tip of the Sierra. Maybe even the high
deserts could see some locally MDT amounts as well. Because of the
offshore track of the upper low...snow levels will not be
particularly low...generally at or above 5500-6000 feet. No winter
weather products are expected at this time.


Precipitation will begin to diminish from north to south Sat...with some
lingering showers Sat night. A rather significant change in the
computer models has occurred for Sunday however. Runs from the
past couple of days had indicated another stronger and colder
system digging southeast into the Great Basin sun...with a good shot of
precipitation across central California.


Latest GFS and European model (ecmwf) runs however have completely lost this
system...instead shifting to a fairly dry northwest flow aloft. A couple
of weak embedded shortwaves produce some light shower
activity...mainly over the mountains sun through Tuesday of next week.
The consensus with surrounding forecast offices was not to completely
strip out probability of precipitation from sun Onward based solely on one model cycle.
However did trim probability of precipitation back from previous forecasts. Will have to play this
one on a day to day basis for now.

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

[end of update]



06-Nov-2011 8:34 AM

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
956 am PST sun Nov 6 2011



Synopsis...
frontal system transiting through central California is producing
a few rain showers in the San Joaquin Valley and foothills along
with snow in the Sierra Nevada. Precipitation will taper off later
in the day and partly cloudy skies will be the norm until mid-week.


Discussion...
National Weather Service Doppler weather radar indicated that snow
showers had diminished over the southern Sierra Nevada...so have
cancelled the Winter Weather Advisory. Only a few residual upslope
showers are expected this afternoon with light accumulations.


On the San Joaquin Valley floor...overnight rainfall totals
generally were between two-tenths and a third of an inch. Snow
levels in the Kern County mountains were lower than expected...with
snow falling as low as around 2700 feet...and 1-2 inch accumulations
near the 4000 foot level.


Satellite loops show the cold front has moved south of Kern County.
There are numerous cold cumulus behind the front...so a few light
instability showers cannot be ruled out over the San Joaquin Valley
floor and the foothills this afternoon.


Have updated the forecast to drop the Winter Weather Advisory and to
adjust snow levels a bit for today.


Previous discussion... /issued 248 am PST sun Nov 6 2011/


Synopsis...
frontal system transiting through central California is producing
rain showers to the southern San Joaquin Valley and foothills as well
as several inches of new snow to the higher elevations of the Sierra
Nevada. Precipitation will taper off later in the day and partly
cloudy skies will be the norm for the next few days.



Discussion...
light to moderate rain over the sjv at this time with snow falling above
5000 feet in the Sierra. Back edge of the precipitation is now moving
into the extreme northwest corner of the County Warning Area near Los Banos. However
showers continue well off the north.


The system will weaken over the next few hours and move east.
Upper low will move to the east of the area and dig south into northern
Arizona by late tonight. Breezy northwest flow will be over the region early
Monday and winds will quickly die off as an epac upper ridge
builds in over the central California interior Tuesday and continue over
the area through Thursday with near normal temperatures and mostly
clear skies. Late night and early morning fog will develop in the
usual fog prone areas in the sjv. The fog should burn off by middle
morning each day through Thursday. It will be a very nice week
weather wise through Thursday.


The next weather maker will approach the region as a rapidly
intensifying closed low developing over the epac on Wednesday and will
drift southeast on Thursday. The forecast problem arises with the
exact track of the upper low. The 00z GFS and 00z European model (ecmwf) are much
more in line than what we have been seeing in previous runs. The
track is trending south of the County Warning Area and only brushing the County Warning Area.
Previous runs were bringing the low right across the County Warning Area with
copious amounts of liquid precipitation across the region. Based on the
new track...we would see a considerably smaller amount of
precipitation across the area. Have increased probability of precipitation over the area
for Friday and Saturday based on the models being more in line
with each other. The UK and dgex are very similar to the European model (ecmwf) and
not as aggressive with meridional phasing of the northern stream with
the cutoff. The GFS is dumping a tremendous amount of modified
polar air into the backside of the system as it kicks east on
Sunday. The other models are not advertising that solution. Will hold
off on significantly colder air for now for Sunday...but will
monitor. Will issue a heads up Special Weather Statement for
upcoming system late in the week.

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

[end of update]


05-Nov-2011 9:02 PM

SPECIAL LOCAL WEATHER UPDATE

A large and rather moisture laden band of precipitation is currently heading for the Bass Lake area from the west northwest at about 35 mph.

Based on current estimates it will impact the Sierra range in the next 2-3 hours, possibly sooner. With current temperatures in the high 30s, the threat of moderate to heavy snowfall is possible within the next 8-12 hours.

Residents of the Bass Lake area should be prepared for winter like driving conditions including black ice and snow covered side roads through the late evening through Sunday morning.

We will update this journal as the precipitation gets closer to our area. With current atmospheric conditions associated with this approaching system, the collision with the Sierra range could either result in significant upslope amplification of the precipitation on south/west facing slopes, or tear the cell apart.

We will know which way this goes over the next few hours.

Stay tuned to our home page for LIVE NextRad radar returns as well as current weather conditions at the station location.

[end of special update]


05-Nov-2011 6:21 PM

Snow Flurries Possible Tonight by Midnight - Rain/Snow Sunday

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
403 PM PDT Sat Nov 5 2011



Synopsis...
rain showers and mountain snow are expected tonight and Sunday as
the next low pressure trough moves over interior central California.
Dry conditions are in store Monday through at least the middle of
next week after the trough moves east of the area.


Discussion...
precipitation associated with the next approaching storm system is
currently pushing through the Bay area while middle and high clouds
have overspread the central California interior. Highs this
afternoon are on track to top out around 10-15 degrees above climatology.


Models continue to show the precipitation pushing into the
northern portions of our area this evening and spreading southward
over the district overnight. Snow levels will drop to around 4000
feet over the Sierra north of Kings Canyon...with several inches
of snow accumulating at the higher elevations. A Winter Weather
Advisory remains in effect there from this evening through
tomorrow morning. Tonight will be cool again but overnight lows
will not be as chilly as last night with the clouds and
precipitation in place.


Expect lingering showers Sunday on the backside of the frontal
system...especially over the higher terrain where precipitation
chances will linger into Sunday night. Dry and warming conditions
will then be in store for our area into the end of the week as
high pressure builds overhead in advance of another storm system
dropping south from the Gulf of Alaska. By midweek high
temperatures will be back to around seasonal averages.


Models have some differences in handling the weekend system...the
GFS splits it and drags a low across Southern California/northern
Baja California while the European model (ecmwf) swings a trough inland farther north...across
our area. Our forecast for the weekend will lower temperatures back to a
few degrees below normal with at least a slight chance for
precipitation across the area.

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

[end of update]



04-Nov-2011 11:45 AM

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
945 am PDT Friday Nov 4 2011



Synopsis...
partly to mostly cloudy skies and isolated rain
showers and light mountain snow showers remain over the region
through this afternoon...mainly over Kern County...as a frontal
system exits east over the Sierra Nevada. Much cooler temperatures
are expected through early next week over all of central
California. Another round of rain showers and mountain snow is
possible in the area late Saturday night and Sunday.


Discussion...
upper low which dropped down the California coast overnight
and spread precipitation across our area...is currently situated
west of Santa Maria near 34n/123w. This feature is prognosticated to
cross socal this afternoon and evening. In the meantime...a vorticity maximum
associated with this system is pushing inland across socal and is
spreading some showers across the western portion of Kern County.
Expect the shower activity to continue today as the WRF and GFS
are indicating the favored lfq of a 130 knots 250 mb jet maximum moving
across socal today. Mesowest observations and spotter reports are
indicating the snow level is currently running around 4800 feet
and above the Tejon and Tehachapi passes. However...as the band of
precipitation moves through Kern County the snow level may lower
to near pass level. Have been covering this with a significant
weather advisory because of the showery nature of the jet enhanced
precipitation and variation with snow levels as the heavier
showers could briefly lower the snow levels to pass level today.
Meanwhile...the precipitation has tapered off over the southern
Sierra Nevada so have allowed the Winter Weather Advisory for the
affected area to expire in a morning update. Colder air associated
with this system has already pushed into our area and as a
result...temperatures will be well below seasonal normals today.
As the trough axis swings east of our area tonight a slow clearing
and drying trend is expected on Saturday.


12z WRF is indicating the next trough dropping into California on Saturday
night and Sunday bringing another round of rain and mountain snow
to our area. At this time snow levels are prognosticated to run around
4500 feet over the southern Sierra Nevada and around 5000 feet in
the Kern County mountains during the bulk of this evening which
would suggest that the major passes in Kern County will receive
mainly rain. Dynamics do not appear to be as strong with this
system as with the current one although relative humidity forecasts are showing a
lot of deep moisture with it.


The medium, range models have converged on the idea of an upper
ridge building over California on Monday which will bring a warming trend
and drying conditions to our area for 3 or 4 days before a
potentially strong storm moves through central California over the
Veterans Day weekend.

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

[end of update]



03-Nov-2011 2:15 PM


Rain Bucket Swap Completed

With our first "winter"storm fast approaching, we thought it was time to install our heater equipped rain gauge collector bucket. This allows us to continue to track rainfall data even when the precipitation is falling in the form of snow or hail. The heater keeps the collector cone section a toasty 75 degrees even when the outside air temp is close to ZERO! Our weather station software determines what form of precipitation is being measured and selects the appropriate alert banners on our home page.

The bucket heater was tested after installation and everything checked out perfectly! We are now ready for whatever Mother Nature decides to throw at us! :o)

It should be noted that this is the latest winter season bucket swap we have performed so far, with October 25th being the most common winter swap day of the year.

Weather News - The Latest from the NWS:

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
907 am PDT Thursday Nov 3 2011


Synopsis...
an approaching frontal system will move through the area later in
the day increasing clouds and the chance of rain showers to the
valley and mountain snow showers through Friday. Another round of
showers is possible in the area late Saturday and into Sunday. Much
cooler than average temperatures are expected Friday through early
next week.

Discussion...
a pleasant day is in store for the central California interior
but it will probably be our last really nice day for quite some time.
The well advertised change to colder and unsettled weather looks on
track as a storm that originated in the Gulf of Alaska heads in our
direction. The cold front trailing from this system looks rather
moisture starved on the latest satellite imagery. However...as it
approaches from the northwest...it will bring an increase in high
clouds to the County Warning Area today along with a strengthening southwesterly flow
aloft. Winds along the Sierra crest could gust to 75 miles per hour this afternoon
into this evening. The day could end with a few sprinkles or a light
shower in Merced County and Mariposa County. Otherwise...it looks as
though dry weather will prevail today for those with any outdoor
plans.


The cold front is slated to move southward across the County Warning Area tonight
with some showers. The models bring the upper level trough inland
over California Friday. Underneath the cold pool aloft...instability showers
will frequent the higher elevations and become more isolated in
the sj valley. As the upper level trough exits into the Great Basin
Friday evening...any residual showers will be confined to the
mountains. However...low clouds will bank up along the east side
and south end of the sj valley and the adjacent foothills through at
least Saturday morning. Short wave ridging aloft will bring US a
break from wet weather Saturday. Another upper level trough will
bring a renewed chance of showers to much of the County Warning Area Saturday
night into Sunday with a continuation of much cooler than normal
temperatures.


Dry weather and a modest warming trend is slated for early next
week as an upper level ridge builds over California. Beyond Tuesday...there
is a big question mark as to whether our pattern remains dry or
wet weather returns. The ecm maintains an upper level ridge over
California in the 5 to 7 day period while the GFS brings another deep
upper level trough into the central California interior Wednesday into
next Thursday. We are currently leaning toward the more reliable
ecm but it will be interesting to see what the 12z runs bring.

[end of update]




02-Nov-2011 8:14 PM

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
258 PM PDT Wednesday Nov 2 2011



Synopsis...
high pressure will keep skies mostly clear today with mild
temperatures. A frontal system will move through the area Thursday
bringing an increase in cloudiness and a chance of rain showers to
the valley and mountain snow showers through Friday. Another round
of showers is possible in the area late Saturday.

Discussion...
strong surface high pressure in the Great Basin
continues to bring an offshore flow across the region. The
strongest winds have been out of the southeast across Kern County
..especially through the Tehachapi area and along I-5 through
the Grapevine as well as into the southern end of the San Joaquin
Valley including Bakersfield...Arvin...and Lamont. This has
created areas of blowing dust and an advisory continues in effect.
The offshore flow has also brought drier air into the region with
humidities dropping into the single digits across many areas of
the mountains of southern Tulare and Kern counties. The very low
humidity along with the gusty winds prompted a red flag warning
for those areas which remains in effect until 11 PM. Expect the
winds to diminish late this afternoon as the offshore pressure
gradient begins to decrease. However it will take a little longer
for the humidities to increase.


A change in the weather is expected to begin Thursday as a storm
system approaches the region. There is a slight chance of
precipitation reaching the northern end of the County warning forecast area late Thursday
afternoon...but the majority of the precipitation will occur
Thursday night into Friday morning with shower activity continuing
through Friday afternoon. This system will bring much colder air
into the region Thursday night and Friday...with 850-mb
temperatures over Fresno falling to near 0 c by 12z Friday. The
snow levels Thursday afternoon will be around 8000 feet...but will
lower through the night and be down to 3500-4500 feet by early
Friday as the colder air arrives, temperatures will drop nearly 20
degrees from Thursday to Friday.


The trough will begin to move east of the region Friday
afternoon... but upslope showers may linger over the southern
Sierra Nevada into at least Friday evening. There will be a break
in the precipitation Saturday...but then the next trough reaches
California Saturday night for another round of rain and mountain
snow.


The models had been forecasting yet another trough to reach
California next Tuesday...but have now slowed it down and instead
leave a ridge of high pressure over the region through Tuesday.
The European model (ecmwf) holds the ridge in place for Wednesday as well...keeping
a closed low farther off shore than the GFS. The GFS weakens the
ridge Wednesday and allows a closed low to drop south along the
California coast. This scenario would bring precipitation along the
coast...but likely not much inland. But confidence in the forecast
beyond Monday is low.

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

[end of update]


01-Nov-2011 9:55 AM

Rain Likely Beginning Thursday

A series of storms is forecast to begin moving through our area on Thursday and continuing through the weekend. The amount of new data coming in on this storm series is large enough to warrant publishing the entire full detailed forecast report from the NWS in Hanford as follows...

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
215 am PDT Tuesday Nov 1 2011


Synopsis...

the first in a series of storm systems is expected to arrive today
with not much to it except some increased cloudiness and cooling.
The second and third systems arriving later in the week are expected
to be stronger with the addition of higher elevation snow and valley
rain.

Discussion...

..wet and unseasonably cold weather expected Thursday afternoon
through next weekend...


The first in a series of upper-level troughs is dropping into the
Great Basin this morning...heralding a change in the weather to
unseasonably cool and wet conditions later this week.


Ahead of this trough...temperatures Monday continued above normal.
Highs in the central and southern San Joaquin Valley ranged from 78
/at Delano...Kettleman City...Los Banos and the Madera Municipal
Airport/ to 84 degrees /at Coalinga and Wasco/. The latter two
cities also were the warm spots in the Hanford warning/forecast area.


This first trough will cool temperatures back toward seasonal values
and will bring breezy to locally gusty conditions to the Kern County
mountains and deserts and to the west side of the San Joaquin Valley.
As the trough continues to drop into the Great Basin...a cold
airmass will move south through eastern California and into the Kern
County deserts Wednesday...cooling temperatures into the middle 60s to
lower 70s.


As the trough moves east of the region...the flow will turn briefly
offshore. This could warm temperatures in the south end of the San
Joaquin Valley several degrees above normal...with Wednesday/S high
at Bakersfield in the upper 70s.


The second...and much stronger...trough will approach the British
Columbia coast Wednesday...then dig south through the Pacific
northwest into California Thursday. This trough will bring sharp
cooling to the region Thursday night and Friday...with 850-mb
temperatures over Fresno falling 10-12 c in less than 24 hours.
Although the 00z European model (ecmwf) is not as cold as the GFS...both models
forecast 850-mb temperatures over Fresno to fall below 0 c by 12z
/0500 PDT/ Friday. This would drop the snow level to around
4000-4500 feet near Kings Canyon National Park...and even lower at
Yosemite National Park.


Precipitation will move into the northern part of the Hanford
warning/forecast area Thursday afternoon...spreading south down to
the Tehachapi Mountains Thursday night and over most of the central
California interior Friday morning.


The 00z GFS quantitative precipitation forecast at Yosemite from this system is 0.45 inch...with
0.20 inch at Fresno and 0.04 inch at Bakersfield. It must be noted
that these values are preliminary,,,and the Pacific satellite mosaic
shows an upper-level low northwest of Hawaii that is beginning to
feed moisture into the trough.


The trough will begin to move east of the region Friday afternoon...
but upslope showers may linger over the southern Sierra Nevada into
at least Friday evening. There will be a break in the precipitation
Saturday...but then the next trough reaches California Saturday
night for another round of rain and mountain snow.


The 00z European model (ecmwf) is slightly more progressive with this trough than the
GFS...or even the 12z European model (ecmwf) run. To allow for these differences...
have kept a slight chance of residual showers over the southern
Sierra Nevada as far south as Sequoia National Park.


The models have been forecasting a fourth trough to reach California
next Tuesday. The latest GFS run continues to forecast a significant
trough...but the 00z European model (ecmwf) weakens it considerably. Have gone with
some showers over the southern Sierra Nevada with this system...but
confidence is lessened with the latest European model (ecmwf) run.

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

We will be closely monitoring the situation and will be providing live storm updates as they happen once the first system arrives. Looks like we are going to be seeing some pretty intense weather later this week so please make preparations accordingly!

[end of update]


31-Oct-2011 2:20 PM

Possible Rain Arriving Late This Week!

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
222 PM PDT Monday Oct 31 2011



Synopsis...


a series of low pressure systems will be trailing into the region
through this week. The second and third systems are expected to
be stronger than the first. The first weak system will arrive
Tuesday with the second to arrive by Thursday and a third by the
end of the week. With the second and third systems...higher
elevation snow and valley rain can be expected.


Discussion.

..high pressure aloft is weakening over central California as
a shortwave trough over the Pacific northwest begins to sharply dig toward the
Great Basin. This upper trough will move through the region rather
quickly during the day Tuesday. It will not have any precipitation with
it...but will bring cooler temperatures. It will be breezy at times
behind the dry cold front...but winds will diminish Tuesday evening as an
offshore flow develops.


In this fast moving pattern...a shortwave ridge will traverse the
region Wednesday with mainly clear skies and light winds. Temperatures will be
very close to seasonal norms.


Another fast moving system will dig south along the West Coast
Thursday. This system...currently nearing the western glfak...has a
weak tropical connection at this time. This connection will be lost
by the time it reaches the West Coast. However there will be ample
moisture already available...and this system will bring a good
chance of rain and mountain snow to much of the region. Amounts however
will generally be light due to the fast movement. Snow levels
could fall to 3500-4500 feet with the cold air Friday...but much of the
precipitation will be over. At this time do not anticipate any winter
weather products for the mountains Thursday night or Friday.


Another weak transitory shortwave ridge will follow Friday night and
Sat...before yet another inside slider brings a re-enforcing shot
of cool air and a chance of light precipitation Sunday.


All in all...a changeable and at times unsettled pattern is in
store through day 7...with the best chances of precipitation Thursday night and
again Sunday.

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

Station operator's comments on the extended forecast...

The models are still all over the place with this setup of systems. With so many variables it is nearly impossible to call this early, so suffice it to say that things are a changing, and Fall is most definitely about to arrive!

[end of update]

P.S. HAPPY HALLOWEEN!


20-Oct-2011 8:40 AM


Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
217 am PDT Thursday Oct 20 2011



Synopsis...
dry conditions with near normal temperatures through Friday then a
slight warming trend is expected over the weekend.


Discussion...
after a cool down on Wednesday due to a marine
intrusion, temperatures today will show just a little warming over
Merced County with other areas having little change. Water vapor
imagery shows another short wave trough now crossing 130w as it
heads for the Pacific northwest. Forecast models bring this
relatively weak feature across northern California tonight and
then build in a large high pressure system over California for the
weekend. The short wave passage tonight will likely push a little
marine air through Pacheco Pass however the cooling will not be
significant. Under the high, temperatures will warm to above
normals this weekend with sunny skies and light winds for the
entire area.

The high is prognosticated by all models to shift east on
Monday as another Pacific disturbance pushes across the Pacific
northwest. This trough should be strong enough to produce an
increase in winds and bring both synoptic and marine cooling to
the forecast area Monday and Tuesday. By Wednesday the GFS and
European model (ecmwf) models both bring another ridge of high pressure to the
west, however the European model (ecmwf) is much more amplified with the pattern
and projects a northerly flow into central California while the
GFS has a weaker high pressure system with just a light northwest
flow aloft. In either case it will remain dry.

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

[end of update]



19-Oct-2011 10:07 AM

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
933 am PDT Wednesday Oct 19 2011



Synopsis...
a dry cold front will cool temperatures to near normal today
through Friday then slight warming over the weekend.

Discussion...
a trough of low pressure is moving across northern
California this morning. This has deepened the marine layer to
near 3000 feet at Fort Ord and the marine air is spilling into
the San Joaquin Valley this morning. The combination of cooling
from the trough and the marine air will bring temperatures back
down to near normal across the central California interior.

Expect little change from the near normal conditions for the next
few days as the additional weak shortwaves move across the Pacific
northwest...then warming a tad over the weekend as the ridge
rebuilds overhead. Another passing low pressure trough will drop
temperatures back to a bit below seasonal averages during the
first part of next week...although models have some differences
with the timing and strength of the system. Conditions continue to
look dry throughout the period and no precipitation is in the
forecast.

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

[end of update]



18-Oct-2011 9:06 AM

Extended Period of Fair Weather For Bass Lake

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
850 am PDT Tuesday Oct 18 2011



Synopsis...
high pressure in place will keep temperatures well above
normal on today. A dry cold front will bring cooler than normal
temperatures Wednesday followed by gradual warming to near seasonal
temperatures along with dry conditions into the weekend.


Discussion...
satellite loops show the upper-level ridge over California this
morning. Monday/S highs across the central and southern San Joaquin
Valley were in the 80s...and at 14z /0700 PDT/ this morning...the
24-hour trend was mostly within a couple of degrees of persistence.


Satellite loops show the upper-level low near 35n/133w...with the
upper-level trough along 150w. The models continue to forecast the
low to lift northeast today and open into a short-wave along the
leading edge of the trough. The southerly flow ahead of the short-
wave may bring a couple degrees of warming to the central California
interior...with highs today near to slightly above Monday/S readings.


Little change in short-term model timing...with the short-wave on
track to move into northern/central California by 12z /0500 PDT/
Wednesday. The short-wave axis will be east of the Hanford warning/
forecast area by 18z /1100 PDT/ Wednesday...but before the
short-wave departs the area it will bring a strong push of cooler air
as well as deepen the marine layer.


The NAM-12 and GFS forecast 850-mb temperatures over Fresno to drop
5 c from 00z Wednesday /1700 PDT this afternoon/ to 00z Thursday...
and the European model (ecmwf) has a 4.5 c drop. This will cool the region to near
normal Wednesday...with little change expected through the end of
the week.


Do not plan any changes to the forecast at this time.


Note...the latest 100-degree day for Fresno is October 14th 1978
with 100 degrees.
The latest 100-degree day for Bakersfield is October 17th
1959 with 100 degrees.
The earliest freezing temperature for Fresno is October 19th
1949 with 30 degrees.
The earliest freezing temperature for Bakersfield is October
21st 1906 with 32 degrees.


[end of update]


14-Oct-2011 11:52 AM

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1020 am PDT Friday Oct 14 2011



Synopsis...
high pressure continues to reside over the region. This will bring
well above average temperatures through Saturday. Gradual cooling is
expected Sunday and into early next week as the ridge begins to
weaken.


&&


Discussion...
high pressure continues over the region today.
However there is a weak upper low that has been residing off the
coast of Baja California the past few days and it is beginning to lift
northeast and is spreading some high level clouds into
California. The clouds are spreading northward faster than
previously expected...so have increased sky cover in the grids for
today.


These high clouds will be the only effect from this
weak low as it weakens further as it runs into the ridge Saturday.
The question for today is how much the cloud cover will affect
temperatures. Throughout the San Joaquin Valley temperatures are
expected to be about 90 degrees today. But even if we fall a
degree or two shy of 90 it will still be above normal for middle
October.


The ridge will remain over the region through the weekend.
Temperatures will edge back toward normal by Tuesday as a low
pressure system currently near 140w lifts moves closer to the
coast. The GFS and European model (ecmwf) continue to have timing differences with
this system...but they are in general agreement in moving the
trough across northern California sometime between Tuesday
afternoon and Wednesday afternoon. The 12z GFS remains dry as this
trough passes while the 00z European model (ecmwf) indicates some precipitation is
possible across northern California...but it should stay north of
the Hanford County warning forecast area.

[end of update]




08-Oct-2011 6:13 AM

The Latest Forecast from The NWS Hanford Ca.

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
333 am PDT Sat Oct 8 2011



Synopsis...
high pressure aloft will gradually build over the region through
the weekend with a warming trend. A weak disturbance will move
across central California Monday...before an even stronger upper
level high moves into the area middle week. This high will push
temperatures to above normal readings Wednesday through Friday.


&&


Discussion...high pressure aloft was gradually pushing toward the
West Coast early this morning. A dry northerly flow prevails
across central California...and this will continue to bring below normal temperatures
to the region today...though 5-8 degrees warmer than yesterday. Still
some patchy low clouds early this morning...and with slight
cyclonic curvature still across central California cant rule out some
afternoon clouds over the Sierra foothills with daytime heating.


The upper ridge will continue to be anchored in the east Pacific west of
California over the next several days...as a series of shortwave troughs
move over the top of the ridge. These shortwaves will have little
impact on central California...except to slow the warming trend a bit Monday
and Tuesday.


By Wednesday...the center of the ridge will push inland over California bringing
stronger warming...along with a neutral or weak offshore flow.
Maximum temperatures middle to late week are still a bit in question...as
models have not had consistent 850mb forecasts. But overall...it will
warm to above normal levels...with the likely return of a few 90
degree readings in the valley and deserts Thursday and/or Friday.


Beyond the scope of this forecast just yet...next weekend looks cooler
with more clouds. Medium range models highly divergent with
respect to any precipitation at this time...the ecm wettest/GFS driest.

[end of update]



06-Oct-2011 10:39 AM

Bass Lake Rainfall and Storm Totals

Due to a malfunction of our rain gauge yesterday, the system did not accurately report our rainfall totals until the issue was discovered and corrected at around 10:30 PM last evening.

We have recently lost a very special pet and the grief over this loss has distracted us from our usual vigilance regarding station operations. Had I been in a normal frame of mind, the debris clogged rain bucket would have been noticed and cleaned out long before it was allowed to fill up with water. The bucket was cleared of the debris plugging the release hole and the accumulated rainfall was then allowed to pass through the tipping bucket system to be counted. No rainfall total data was lost during the incident. Only the real-time conditions, total and rainfall rates during the day were effected.

We apologize for this oversight and it will not happen again!

Here are the current rainfall totals from the station:

Total Yesterday: 1.80 inches
Total so far today: 0.08 inches
Storm Total to Date: 1.88 inches
Total for the season: 1.92 inches


Weather Image

Radar is currently indicating a band of precipitation moving towards our area from the north west. Upslope precipitation is expected to arrive within the next few hours. Expect periods of light to moderate rainfall with periods of dry conditions in between these cells of unstable air until this evening.

Overnight lows are expected to dip into the high 30s once again tonight to be followed by a gradual warming trend through the weekend with fair skies continuing into all of next week.

[end of update]


04-Oct-2011 7:30 PM

Rain Arriving Late - Heavy at Times Wednesday Through Thursday Afternoon

The big northern cold front we have been talking about for weeks is almost here! Radar is detecting significant rain with this system and portions of Northern California are already being effected.

We can expect our first measurable precipitation to begin sometime around midnight and continue heavy at times through all of Wednesday. The storm will then exit the area on Thursday with lingering rain and snow showers well into Thursday afternoon and quite possibly Thursday evening.

After that we expect a gradual warming with fair skies forecast for Friday and the weekend.

Here is the latest Infrared Satellite image of the pacific showing the current front with the larger system moving slowly in from the north west.

Weather Image

Here is the latest NextRad radar image of the state showing the incoming precipitation currently effecting Northern California.

Weather Image

We will be back tomorrow with some rain and storm totals!

Stay tuned and don't forget to register on our new Bass Lake Weather Discussion Forums

[end of update]


03-Oct-2011 10:08 PM

Possible Light Rain Late Monday Night - Dry Tuesday with Rain Late

A weakening frontal system is moving into central California from the south west. Current radar shows a light band of precipitation just now entering the central valley. If the band does not break up as it hits the Sierra, the Bass Lake area could see some light showers near midnight and into early Tuesday.

Here is the latest Infrared Satellite image of the pacific showing the current front with the larger system still in the pacific but moving slowly in from the north.

Weather Image

However, this is not the big winter storm we have been talking about for the last week. That system is still at least 24 hours away at the time of this update. Expect cloudy skies tomorrow with mainly dry conditions with rain developing near midnight and intensifying through the morning and afternoon of Wednesday.

Rainfall totals are expected to be between 1.00 and 2.50 inches before the system exits east of the area on Thursday.

A Winter Storm Warning will be in effect from 3AM Wednesday morning until 5AM Thursday morning for the Sierra above 7000 feet. (Click the Watches and Warning Tab at the top of this page for more details)

We will have more on the big storm starting tomorrow afternoon depending on the speed and direction of the approaching cold front.

Stay tuned!

[end of update]


02-Oct-2011 9:22 AM

NEW Weather Discussion Forums Added to Website!

We have decided to open up the discussion to you our visitors by creating a new weather discussion forum on our server! Now you can ask us questions and discuss the local weather with other residents and folks who visit our station website!

The forum system is now open to new users, so we invite everyone to follow the link below and sign up today!

Bass Lake Weather Discussion Forums

We will be posting a new weather related update later today or tomorrow morning so stay tuned!

[end of update]


30-Sep-2011 8:11 PM

First Winter Storm of the Season to Arrive Tuesday Night!

All of the various model runs have come to a consensus that the Bass Lake area and much of Central California will see its first winter storm of the season arrive sometime Tuesday night. The system is expected to make land fall in Northern California Tuesday afternoon and then slowly drift south east throughout the night. Rain and snow is forecast for the Sierra beginning on Tuesday night and lasting trough Thursday morning.

Rain total amounts remain unclear at this still early stage of the forecast, but the NWS seems all but certain that we will pick up some measurable precipitation from this system.

In the meantime, another system is moving in from the south and already impacting parts of Southern California. This is monsoonal moisture containing the remnants of Hurricane Hilary which has broken down considerably over the last few days. There is a slight chance that our area will see some unstable air from this southerly flow and there is the suggestion that we could see some scattered Thunderstorms over the weekend.

We can expect periods of clouds and sun on Saturday and Sunday with an increasing amount of cloud cover Monday and into Tuesday before the more potent cold front arrives. Expect the high temps of the last few days to give way to below normal temps beginning on Sunday.

We will of course be closely monitoring both weather systems and will update this journal when we feel enough new data has come in to add to next week's forecast.

Stay tuned, and start preparing for some very winter-like weather very soon!

[end of update]


28-Sep-2011 1:11 PM

First Major Storm of the Season Next Week?

By all indications it is looking likely that by this time next week we could be seeing some measurable rainfall for the Bass Lake area! Going back through our journal to this same span of time last year it would make sense.

Last year the station logged the first measurable rainfall of the season on October 2nd with 0.06 inches total. Nothing huge, but this was the official first day. One thing that is different this year that we did not see in 2010 was a small bit of precipitation in July (0.02 in) and again in September (0.02 in). So, we are heading into October with a bit of a head start of 0.04 in.

Between now and next week we can expect the current ridge to remain over the area until Sunday, bringing us nice warm temps and an overall pleasant weather pattern before the arrival of this first system. As we mentioned above, the latest model runs are coming into agreement and predicting a rather significant system by the middle of next week. The fact that we are once again in a relatively strong La Nina pattern similar to the one that brought us so much rain and snow last year, coupled with another early fall system could indicate a repeat of the winter of 2010.

This of course would be welcome news since it will finally top off all of the reservoirs including Shasta Lake which had been so incredibly low for the past 5 years! Welcome news indeed! It will also likely bring the 2011 fire season to a close without any major wildfires for our area. Again...Good news!

We will of course be closely monitoring the weather pattern change and will report the storm's arrival as it happens, IF it happens! In the meantime, stay tuned to our website for the latest realtime weather data as it develops!

In the meantime...

Here is the latest information from the NWS in Hanford regarding next week...

Medium range forecasts are indicating a drier onshore flow becoming
established on Saturday...but there remains some timing
uncertainty of when it will push out the high based moisture. By
Sunday the Great Basin ridge will be knocked down as a strong
storm takes aim at the Pacific northwest. This will in turn open the door
for a potentially strong winter storm type system to hit central
California by the middle of next week. There are considerable timing
differences with the models as the GFS brings it into our area
Tuesday night and Wednesday while the European model (ecmwf) lags the GFS by a day
and brings it into our area beyond the forecast period. Either way
confidence is improving that our area will have a significant
precipitation event next week that will bring the first modest
snowfall of the season to the higher elevations of the southern
Sierra Nevada.

[end of update]


27-Sep-2011 7:04 AM

The Latest from the National Weather Service Hanford Ca. (Updated at 2:47PM)

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
247 PM PDT Tuesday Sep 27 2011


Synopsis...
an upper level ridge has moved into the region and will continue to
create a gradual warming trend through the remainder of the week. A
strong cold front will move through the region next weekend bringing
a chance of showers to the central California interior.


&&


Discussion...just a few high clouds are drifting southwest this
afternoon as high pressure is now centered near Mono Lake.
Forecast models keep this high pressure ridge in place through
Thursday and then shift this feature to the east setting up a
southeast flow aloft. The WRF model continues to bring a weak area
of low pressure into the Southern California coast on Friday
however whether or not this will be strong enough to trigger any
convection over the mountains remains sketchy. I have left the
slight chance probability of precipitation over the Kern County mountains for this
scenario. By Saturday the incoming Pacific trough is now prognosticated
to be weaker than previous projections thus the precipitation
forecast for the weekend has been adjusted downward. Additionally,
hurricane hillary is now longer prognosticated to move northward into Baja California
California rather stay on a westward track and then dissipate over
the ocean.


The emphasis on precipitation chances now shifts to end of the
extended period as the GFS and European model (ecmwf) models bring another,
seemingly stronger Pacific frontal system into the region. The GFS
model is faster and stronger with this system and brings the
threat of precipitation well into central California by Tuesday.
On the other hand the European model (ecmwf) model is slower by about 24 hours and
is farther north, keeping all threat of rain well to the north. I
have included a chance along the northern border on Tuesday
however this will likely change with time.


The main weather impacts this week will be a warming trend
followed by cooler weather on the weekend.

[end of update]



23-Sep-2011 10:22 PM

Possible T-Storms This Weekend!

The latest from Hanford!

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
845 PM PDT Friday Sep 23 2011


Synopsis...
tropical moisture moving northward into the region will produce
isolated to scattered thunderstorms...primarily over the Kern County
mountains through Saturday. Otherwise...high pressure will continue
to bring above normal temperatures. Cooling over the are is expected
by Sunday as lower pressure invades California.


&&


Update...
thunderstorms becoming more widespread this evening and moving
across the San Joaquin Valley. Have made updates to the forecast
this evening with more changes expected through out the night.
The first concern will be the red flag warning for the Kern County
mountains this evening. Based on the number of lightning strikes
this evening and convective development still rolling in from the
south to southeast...may have to extend the warning beyond 11 PM
PDT this evening. Short range models continue to show activity
beyond 11 PM PDT and through 200 am PDT on Saturday. While the
atmosphere does stabilize overnight...models show a continuation
of convective activity on Saturday afternoon. Yet...with the flow
aloft shifting more westerly...convective activity should be
confined to the higher terrain of the Sierra Nevada and Tehachapi
range. At this point...models show the upper level trough finally
moving east and through central California by Saturday night as a
cold frontal system pushes into the Pacific northwest. Therefore...
after the last lingering showers on Sunday the atmosphere will dry
out as cool air filters into district later this weekend. The
cooling trend will be short lived as ridge regains control of the
west toward midweek. Yet...a dry flow aloft will keep the district
dry through the end of the forecast period. Will make updates as
convective activity continues to roll through.

[end of update]




21-Sep-2011 10:11 PM

The Latest from The National Weather Service Hanford Ca.

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
832 PM PDT Wednesday Sep 21 2011


Synopsis...high pressure will continue to bring above normal
temperatures to the region through Saturday. Enough moisture is
available for isolated afternoon and evening showers and
thundershowers over the southern Sierra. Otherwise dry. The high
pressure area will weaken Sunday with a cooling trend Sunday and
Monday.

[end of update]


19-Sep-2011 11:50 AM

Ken Clark of Accuweather: "Early Winter Prediction: La Nina Making a Big Comeback"

As I have mentioned a few updates back, the Climate Prediction Center has been warning of increasing La Nina activity out in the Pacific. Today, Ken Clark dedicates his entire report to this development and explains what all this means for us up here in the Southern Sierra Nevada.

Check out Ken's La Nina report HERE!

As you will read in his report, it is still unclear whether we will see the same increased storm activity that we saw last year from a similarly strong La Nina pattern.

[end of update]


18-Sep-2011 7:49 PM

Warming Trend This Week Followed by Possibly Unsettled Weather by Late Sunday
Here is the latest from the NWS Hanford Ca.

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
218 PM PDT sun Sep 18 2011


Synopsis...
high pressure continues to build over the region raising
temperatures several degrees by tomorrow...and remain above normal
through Friday.


&&


Discussion...

The central California interior is enjoying a splendid sun
splashed afternoon. Even the beaches are cashing in on sunshine
today as a weak offshore keeps low stratus away from the coast. The
nice weather is compliments of an upper level ridge of high pressure
that is currently centered over the Desert Southwest. This ridge will
dominate the pattern for at least the next few days and bring dry
weather with a day to day warming trend across the County Warning Area. Wednesday
will likely be the warmest day in the period with maximum temperatures averaging
a good 6 to 10 degrees above normal. The nights will be relatively
cool...especially outside of the urban areas...with clear skies and
nearly calm winds. On Thursday...temperatures will begin to trend downward
a bit as the center of the upper level ridge migrates to The Four
Corners area. Nonetheless...temperatures will remain above normal
as Summer officially ends and autumn begins. (2:05 am PDT friday)


On Friday...the models amplify the upper level ridge over The Rockies
and develop a weak closed low off the Southern California coast. This type
of pattern opens the window to the advection of monsoonal moisture
northwestward into central California from Friday afternoon through Saturday.
The ecm is a bit more excited about bringing middle level moisture into
the County Warning Area than the GFS is during this time...but it was felt that this
was probably overdone. Hence...the forecast was kept dry although
there might be an increase in altocumulus later in the weak...especially
over the mountains and desert.


By next Sunday...the models develop a much deeper upper level trough
over the eastern Pacific and establish a southwesterly flow aloft over
central California which in turn would sweep any monsoonal moisture well east
of our County Warning Area. The GFS and ecm forecast further deepening of this trough
and actually form a rather strong closed low just offshore the northern
and central California coast by next Sunday night and Monday. If this comes
to fruition...the weather across the central California interior could become
unsettled and dramatically cooler by September 26th. It will be
interesting to see how the long range models handle this feature in
the days to come.
==================================================================

[end of update]


15-Sep-2011 8:46 PM

Climate Outlook for Fall 2011
Issued by the Climate Prediction Center on September 15th, 2011

For those who want the Reader's Digest version of the following, here are some visual aids! ;o)

Temperature Estimates for October

Weather Image

Precipitation Estimates for October

Weather Image

PROGNOSTIC DISCUSSION FOR LONG-LEAD SEASONAL OUTLOOKS
NWS CLIMATE PREDICTION CENTER CAMP SPRINGS MD
830AM EDT THURSDAY SEP 15 2011

SUMMARY OF THE OUTLOOK FOR NON-TECHNICAL USERS


THE MAIN FACTORS WHICH USUALLY INFLUENCE THE SEASONAL CLIMATE OUTLOOK INCLUDE:
1) EL NINO AND LA NINA - WHICH COMPRISE EL NINO/SOUTHERN OSCILLATION OR ENSO.
IMPACTS OF THESE EVENTS ARE SUMMARIZED BY SEPARATING 3-MONTH OBSERVATIONS FROM
3 OR MORE DECADES INTO EL NINO, NEUTRAL, AND LA NINA SETS, AVERAGING EACH
SEPARATELY, AND THEN COMPUTING ANOMALIES. THESE ARE CALLED "ENSO COMPOSITES",
AND ARE USED AT TIMES TO SUBJECTIVELY MODIFY THE FORECAST.
2) TRENDS - APPROXIMATED BY THE OCN TOOL AS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE MOST
RECENT 10-YEAR MEAN OF TEMPERATURE OR 15-YEAR MEAN OF PRECIPITATION FOR A GIVEN
LOCATION AND TIME OF YEAR AND THE 30-YEAR CLIMATOLOGY PERIOD (CURRENTLY
1981-2010).
3) THE TROPICAL 30-60 DAY OSCILLATION - SOMETIMES CALLED MADDEN JULIAN
OSCILLATION (MJO) - AFFECTS CLIMATE VARIABILITY WITHIN SEASONS.
4) THE NORTH ATLANTIC OSCILLATION (NAO) AND THE PACIFIC NORTH AMERICAN (PNA)
PATTERNS - WHICH AFFECT THE TEMPERATURE ANOMALY PATTERN ESPECIALLY DURING THE
COLD SEASONS. THESE PHENOMENA ARE LESS PREDICTABLE BEYOND A WEEK OR TWO IN THE
FUTURE.
5) THE PACIFIC DECADAL OSCILLATION (PDO) - AN ENSO-LIKE PATTERN OF CLIMATE
VARIABILITY AFFECTING THE TROPICS AND THE NORTH PACIFIC AND NORTH AMERICAN
REGIONS, BUT WHICH VARIES ON A MUCH LONGER TIME-SCALE THAN ENSO.
6) PERSISTENTLY DRY OR WET SOILS IN THE SPRING AND SUMMER AND SNOW AND ICE
COVER ANOMALIES IN THE WINTER. THESE FACTORS TEND TO PERSIST FOR LONG PERIODS
AND ACT AS A KIND OF MEMORY IN THE CLIMATE SYSTEM.
7) STATISTICAL FORECAST TOOLS - CANONICAL CORRELATION ANALYSIS (CCA), SCREENING
MULTIPLE LINEAR REGRESSION (SMLR), CONSTRUCTED ANALOGUE (CA) AND ENSEMBLE CCA
(ECCA).
8) DYNAMICAL FORECAST MODELS - INCLUDING THE NCEP CLIMATE FORECAST SYSTEM
(CFS). THE UPGRADED PARALLEL VERSION OF THE CFS (CFSV2) BECAME OPERATIONAL IN
LATE MARCH OF 2011. BOTH VERSIONS OF CFS ARE CURRENTLY RUN IN PARALLEL. AN
EXPERIMENTAL MODEL, THE NATIONAL MULTI-MODEL ENSEMBLE, COMPRISED OF SEVERAL
MODELS AND DESIGNATED NMME, MAY ALSO BE USED EXPERIMENTALLY AND SUBJECTIVELY.
9) CONSOLIDATION (CON) - AN OBJECTIVE, SKILL WEIGHTED COMBINATION OF THE OCN,
CCA, SMLR, ECCA, AND CFS FORECASTS IS USED AS A FIRST GUESS IN PREPARING THE
FORECAST MAPS. THIS TECHNIQUE MAKES OPTIMUM USE OF THE KNOWN SKILL OF OUR
FORECAST TOOLS.

SINCE THE LAST SEASONAL OUTLOOK, LA NINA CONDITIONS HAVE RETURNED. THIS IS
INDICATED BY A STRENGTHENING OF NEGATIVE SEA SURFACE TEMPERATURES ACROSS THE
EASTERN HALF OF THE EQUATORIAL PACIFIC AND AN INCREASE IN BELOW-AVERAGE
SUBSURFACE OCEAN TEMPERATURE ANOMALIES IN THE EASTERN PACIFIC, COUPLED WITH THE
FACT THAT THE ATMOSPHERIC CIRCULATION ACROSS THE PACIFIC ALSO CONTINUES TO
EXHIBIT CHARACTERISTICS OF LA NINA. IMPACTS ASSOCIATED WITH LA NINA ARE NOW
INDICATED DURING THE AUTUMN, WINTER AND SPRING MONTHS IN THIS OUTLOOK.

THE SEASONAL OUTLOOK FOR OND 2011 SHOWS ENHANCED CHANCES FOR ABOVE NORMAL
SEASONAL MEAN TEMPERATURE FOR AREAS STRETCHING FROM THE SOUTHWEST, ACROSS THE
CENTRAL PORTION OF THE CONUS TO PARTS OF THE GREAT LAKES AS WELL AS THE NORTH
SLOPE OF ALASKA. BELOW-NORMAL TEMPERATURES ARE FAVORED FOR PARTS OF THE FLORIDA
PENINSULA AND MUCH OF SOUTHERN ALASKA. BELOW-MEDIAN SEASONAL TOTAL
PRECIPITATION IS FORECAST FOR MUCH OF THE SOUTHERN PORTION OF THE COUNTRY WITH
ENHANCED CHANCES FOR ABOVE-MEDIAN PRECIPITATION INDICATED ACROSS PARTS OF THE
PACIFIC NORTHWEST. IN LOCATIONS WHERE THE LIKELIHOODS OF SEASONAL MEAN
TEMPERATURE AND SEASONAL TOTAL PRECIPITATION ARE SIMILAR TO THE CLIMATOLOGICAL
PROBABILITIES, EQUAL CHANCES (EC) OF BELOW, NEAR, AND ABOVE ARE INDICATED.

AS WE SHIFT INTO AND THROUGH THE WINTER, ENHANCED ODDS FOR BELOW NORMAL
SEASONAL MEAN TEMPERATURE APPEAR FOR SOUTHERN ALASKA, THE WEST COAST AND MUCH
OF THE NORTHERN TIER OF THE U.S.. ABOVE NORMAL TEMPERATURES ARE EXPECTED ACROSS
MUCH OF THE SOUTH. FOR PRECIPITATION, ABOVE MEDIAN SEASONAL TOTAL PRECIPITATION
IS INDICATED FOR PORTIONS OF THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST AND NORTHERN ROCKIES AND
AREAS OF THE OHIO VALLEY AND GREAT LAKES DURING THIS SAME PERIOD. ENHANCED ODDS
FOR BELOW-MEDIAN PRECIPITATION ARE INDICATED FOR MUCH OF THE SOUTHERN TIER OF
THE U.S..

BASIS AND SUMMARY OF THE CURRENT LONG-LEAD OUTLOOKS
NOTE: FOR GRAPHICAL DISPLAYS OF THE FORECAST TOOLS DISCUSSED BELOW SEE:
HTTP://WWW.CPC.NCEP.NOAA.GOV/PRODUCTS/PREDICTIONS/90DAY/TOOLS/BRIEFING

You can read the entire climatology report HERE
===========================================================================================

[end of update]


15-Sep-2011 11:25 AM

Weekend Weather Update from The National Weather Service Hanford Ca.

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
945 am PDT Thursday Sep 15 2011

IR Satellite Image 11:05AM PDT 09/15/11

Weather Image


Synopsis...
the weak upper low that was over Nevada yesterday has moved further
east toward The Four Corners region. This will keep the possibility
of isolated showers and thunderstorms just over the higher
elevations of the sierras. Onshore flow will increase the next few
days bringing more stable air and cooler temperatures. Cooling will
start today in the northern valley region and then spread throughout
the entire valley tomorrow. Cooler temperatures and dry weather will
continue through the weekend.


&&


Update...
ruc80 upper air analysis showed very little movement of the upper
low that has been affecting the district. With this...will see
another day of mountain convection as additional wrap-around
moisture pushes on to the eastern side of the Sierra Nevada range.
While clear skies were observed this morning...short range models
still showing a northeast flow pattern at the upper levels along
with marginal instability across the mountains. Therefore...
orographic lift and an unstable atmosphere will support convection
this afternoon. Yet...visible satellite imagery and wind profiler
data show a very deep marine layer along the coast that will
influence conditions across the San Joaquin Valley today and into
this weekend. Short range models along with water vapor imagery is
showing the westerlies starting to push on to the coast which
will allow marine air to filter into the valley. Along with the
cooler air...the increasing westerly wind will push today/S
convection eastward into the Owens Valley and Great Basin toward
sunset and this evening. By Friday morning...the westerlies will
dominate the area...keeping convection outside of the district for
several days. For now...will make no updates and monitor the
district for today convection.

[end of update]



13-Sep-2011 9:59 PM

Storm Update

Just as the cells began to arrive over the Bass Lake area this evening, the sun went down thus removing the energy supply for the storm cells and they quickly dissipated.

The radar now looks totally clear.

The NWS is still predicting the possibility of yet another round of similar weather tomorrow afternoon, but by Thursday this threat would have moved east. It will be replaced with a gradual cooling trend through the weekend and into the first half of next week. Things should remain dry with no chance of precipitation through this period.

Here is the latest NWS update for your reading enjoyment. ;o)

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
900 PM PDT Tuesday Sep 13 2011

Synopsis...
a weak upper level low pressure area continues to linger across the
region and is expected to lift out by Wednesday. Shower and
thunderstorm activity in the mountains and deserts can be expected
to linger at least through this evening.

&&

Discussion...the center of the upper low is moving across socal
this evening. Numerous showers and thunderstorms over the mountains this afternoon
have for the most part died out...but some residual showers or
isolated thunderstorms are still possible in the mountains until about midnight.
Updated forecasts to end most precipitation except for a lingering shower
over the mountains


The upper low over the region will be slow to kick out...and Wednesday
looks like it could still be fairly active over the southern Sierra.
Raised probability of precipitation a bit for the afternoon and evening per latest models.

[end of update]


13-Sep-2011 6:02 PM


Possible Lighting and Thunderstorm Activity!

Radar is showing a relatively large cell of thunderstorms moving towards the Bas Lake area from the north. Lighting strikes are already being indicated within a 5 mile radius of the station. (black dots with white borders on radar image)

Weather Image

Stay tuned to our home page for the latest weather conditions, to see this radar in motion and for real-time precipitation/wind updates!

[end of update]


12-Sep-2011 9:10 AM

The Latest from the NWS Hanford Ca.

Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
239 am PDT Monday Sep 12 2011


Synopsis...
the airmass over central California is expected to remain
unstable enough to allow the threat of showers and thunderstorms
to continue over the Sierra Nevada and foothills...as well as the
desert for at least the next couple of days. Drier air will arrive
later this week for an end to the thunderstorm threat.

[end of update]


11-Sep-2011 8:54 PM

Radar Indicates Large Band of Moisture Rotating Towards Our Location!

The low pressure system that brought us rain yesterday and mostly cloudy skies today, remains firmly in place this evening.

Weather Image

The RED ARROW indicates our station's location on this wide angle map of the state. The moisture band you see directly north of our position is rotating counter clockwise, pushing that disturbance south by southeast.

In addition to the systems rotation, it is also slowly moving east, which may put Bass Lake in a direct line to be right in line with this moisture band later this evening.

The NWS is giving us only a 30% shank of precipitation through tonight, but there is still a chance that the moisture band shown on this recent radar image could bring us some respectable rain later tonight.

NOTE: All the previous red flag warnings related to dry lighting and high winds have expired.

[end of update]


11-Sep-2011 12:08 AM

Low Pressure System Update

We picked up 0.02 inches of precipitation on Saturday the 10th of September along with some very close and loud Thunder and Lighting. This was the first Thunder Storm and measurable rainfall we have seen in the month of September since 2009 where we recorded 0.01 for the entire month.

Starting at about 8:00PM that same evening, the station sounded a high wind warning as another round of outflow winds came through the area. Our highest wind gust of the day was recorded at 8:16PM with 18 mph.

The wind continues to blow as of this update just after midnight on 09/11/11.

Have been observing a rather large swath of precipitation currently moving over the Kern County area and heading in our direction. If the rotation continues at its current rate, we could see a significant rain event later this morning.

[end of update]


09-Sep-2011 4:44 PM

FIRE WEATHER WARNING ISSUED BY NWS
RED FLAG WARNING ISSUED FOR SOUTHERN SIERRA BELOW 5,000 FEET

... Red flag warning now in effect until midnight PDT Saturday
night for dry lightning and gusty outflow winds for the southern
Sierra Nevada below 5000 feet...

The red flag warning for dry lightning and gusty outflow winds is
now in effect until midnight PDT Saturday night.

* Affected area... Sierra Nevada zones 293... 294... 296... and 297
below 5000 feet.

* Timing... thunderstorms developing over the Sierra Nevada will
spread into the lower elevations this afternoon and tonight.
Thunderstorms will continue over these same areas Saturday
through Saturday night. The storms are expected to be mainly dry
below 5000 feet.

* Outflow winds... strong... gusty and erratic winds are possible
in and near thunderstorms.

* Impacts... very dry fuels... scattered dry lightning strikes and
locally gusty outflow winds may combine to create a hazardous
fire environment near and below 5000 feet.

Precautionary/preparedness actions...

A red flag warning means that critical fire weather conditions
are either occurring now... or will shortly. Please advise the
appropriate officials or fire crews in the field of this red flag
warning.

[end of update]


08-Sep-2011 3:21 PM

FIRE WEATHER WATCH ISSUED FOR BASS LAKE AREA!

From the National Weather Service Hanford Ca.
URGENT - FIRE WEATHER MESSAGE
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE HANFORD CA
1156 AM PDT THU SEP 8 2011

...CHANCE OF DRY THUNDERSTORMS FRIDAY AFTERNOON AND NIGHT...

.A LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM IS EXPECTED TO PASS OVER CENTRAL CALIFORNIA
ON FRIDAY AND INTO FRIDAY NIGHT. THUNDERSTORMS MAY DEVELOP ALONG
THE CREST THIS AFTERNOON...BUT ARE EXPECTED TO SPREAD INTO THE
FOOTHILLS BY FRIDAY AS THE LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM MOVES SOUTHWARD
FROM NORTHERN NEVADA.

DRY LIGHTNING IS POSSIBLE IN MUCH OF THE SOUTHERN SIERRA NEVADA
AND FOOTHILLS BY FRIDAY AFTERNOON. THUNDERSTORMS ARE POSSIBLE
THROUGH FRIDAY NIGHT AS THE LOW MOVES OVER THE CENTRAL CALIFORNIA
INTERIOR. STORMS WILL LIKELY BECOME WETTER BY SATURDAY AS MORE
MOISTURE MOVES INTO THE AREA.

IN ADDITION TO DRY LIGHTNING...DRY FUELS AND GUSTY OUTFLOW WINDS
WARRANT THE ISSUANCE OF A FIRE WEATHER WATCH FOR THE SIERRA NEVADA
BELOW 5000 FEET INCLUDING THE FOOTHILLS.

CAZ293-294-296-297-090400-
/O.NEW.KHNX.FW.A.0001.110909T1800Z-110910T1200Z/
MARIPOSA/MADERA AND FRESNO COUNTY FOOTHILLS-
TULARE COUNTY FOOTHILLS-
SIERRA NEVADA FROM YOSEMITE TO KINGS CANYON NATIONAL PARK-
TULARE COUNTY MOUNTAINS-
1156 AM PDT THU SEP 8 2011

...FIRE WEATHER WATCH IN EFFECT FROM LATE FRIDAY MORNING THROUGH
LATE FRIDAY NIGHT FOR DRY LIGHTNING AND GUSTY OUTFLOW WINDS FOR
THE SIERRA NEVADA INCLUDING THE FOOTHILLS BELOW 5000 FEET...

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN HANFORD HAS ISSUED A FIRE WEATHER
WATCH WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM LATE FRIDAY MORNING THROUGH LATE
FRIDAY NIGHT.

* AFFECTED AREA...IN SIERRA FOOTHILL ZONES 293 AND 294. BELOW 5000
FEET IN SIERRA NEVADA ZONES 296 AND 297.

* THUNDERSTORMS...MAY DEVELOP OVER THE SIERRA CREST FRIDAY MORNING
AND MOVE INTO THE FOOTHILLS BY FRIDAY AFTERNOON. STORMS ARE
EXPECTED TO BE MAINLY DRY FRIDAY AFTERNOON AND EVENING AND THEN
MOISTEN UP BY SATURDAY.

* OUTFLOW WINDS...GUSTY AND ERRATIC WINDS WITH GUSTS UP TO 30 MPH
ARE POSSIBLE NEAR ANY THUNDERSTORMS FRIDAY AFTERNOON AND
EVENING.

* IMPACTS...VERY DRY FUELS...OCCASIONAL LIGHTNING AND LOCALLY
GUSTY OUTFLOW WINDS MAY COMBINE TO CREATE A HAZARDOUS FIRE
ENVIRONMENT FRIDAY AFTERNOON AND INTO FRIDAY NIGHT.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

A FIRE WEATHER WATCH MEANS THAT CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS
ARE FORECAST TO OCCUR. PLEASE ADVISE THE APPROPRIATE FIRE
OFFICIALS OR FIRE CREWS IN THE FIELD OF THIS FIRE WEATHER WATCH.
LISTEN FOR LATER FORECASTS AND POSSIBLE RED FLAG WARNINGS.

[end of update]



07-Sep-2011 2:53 PM

Possible "WET" Pattern Change Coming This Weekend!

Based on the latest weather data coming in which includes some cautions by the Hanford office of the NWS, I thought it made sense to post an update here just in case!

NWS Discussion Excerpt

"Speaking of the low, forecast models continue to project the path of the low to reach Reno area by Thursday afternoon and then by Friday afternoon
retrograde to a position near Point Conception. The low is then
prognosticated to become stationary in the Saturday and Sunday time frame
and its associated instability is forecast to remain over central
California. Given this continued model run to run consistency, I
have upped the probability of precipitation in the Sierra into the likely category for Saturday and Sunday and to chance probability of precipitation over all other areas of the forecast area. This system will certainly be a big weather changer with much cooler temperatures, the threat of lower elevation
showers and thunderstorms including the San Joaquin Valley and
even some higher elevation snow showers above 10000 feet in the
Sierra.

The biggest question mark at this time is moisture availability as
if enough entrainment of tropical moisture occurs, the rainfall
amounts could be very significant. Otherwise, just light showers
and a few embedded heavier thunderstorms will be the likely
outcome. Many changes to the grids have been made and many more
are likely as this dynamic pattern change evolves."
_______________________________________________________________

So... While this is no 100% guarantee that we are going to get wet this weekend, the chances do appear to be a lot higher than normal for this time of year. If you have weekend plans that include any outdoor activities, you would be well advised to prepare for the possibility of some showers or thunderstorms.

[end of update]


28-Aug-2011 10:18 PM

UPDATE!

Regular Weather Status Reports to Resume in Mid to Late September 2011

As the Sierra summer begins to wind down, we will be winding up our weather station status reports as well as local weather activity updates.

In the meantime, enjoy the rest of your summer, stay tuned to our website for the latest UV Index reports during the day, and check our FireWeather Information page for our current REAL-TIME Fire Risk Assessment. We currently have a continuous HIGH DANGER level which has been rising into the VERY HIGH risk levels over the last several days. If you are spending time in our local forests, BE VERY CAREFUL WITH ANY OPEN FLAME OR COOKING GEAR!

See you in the Fall!

Weather Station Operations
Madis D2149 - Bass Lake Ca.

[end of update]


16-Jul-2011 10:47 AM

Extremely High UV Index Values Continue Over the Bass Lake Area!

Our average high UV right now is hovering around 11, which on a scale of 0-15 is considered to be EXTREME! Folks spending time outdoors and especially on the lake need to be aware of how strong the UV levels are up here this time of the year. With levels this high, it only takes about 20 minutes in direct sun without protection to develop a VERY serious sunburn on all unprotected areas!

Check our home page before going outdoors this summer, to see what level of UV index you will be subjected to!

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

The Latest Weather Forecast from The National Weather Service / Hanford Ca.

_______________________________________________________________
National Weather Service San Joaquin Valley - Hanford California
1018 am PDT Sat Jul 16 2011


Synopsis...an upper level trough along the coast is expected to
dominate through the weekend. Temperatures will remain below
seasonal normals through Monday as cooler marine air invades the
San Joaquin Valley. High pressure will then build into the central
California interior allowing temperatures to gradually warm for
the rest of the week.

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

[end of report]


10-Jul-2011 5:42 AM

Important Announcement Concerning NOAA Weather Radio KIH-62 Streaming Audio on the Internet

Earlier this morning, the dedicated computer we use to stream the NOAA Weather Radio feed to the internet 24/7 shut down unexpectedly with a catastrophic motherboard failure. Unfortunately, we can not afford to repair or replace this machine at this time, and therefore, our volunteer support for the streaming of KIH 62 Fresno/Hanford is hereby terminated effective immediately.

We have contacted the NWS and informed them of the situation. Hopefully, they will be able to put another system in place to take over this 24/7 duty, or find an alternate volunteer and make them the primary.

Any questions on this matter should be directed to The National Weather Service Forecast Office - Hanford. Ca.

We apologize for the loss of service, but hope that those who have used this internet radio feed during our streaming server's nearly three years of 24/7 operation have appreciated our efforts.

[end of update]


05-Jul-2011 6:32 AM

Possible Thunderstorms Today and Tomorrow!

Monsoonal moisture moving up from the south will bring the chance of T-Storms to the Bass Lake area today and tomorrow. While the NWS is currently giving the chances at about 20%, past history has shown that when this condition is present, this area does tend to get some action with potentially HEAVY rainfall possible.

Keep this in mind when outdoors today because lightning strikes can often accompany these slow moving systems, and heavy downpours can create the threat of flash floods through normally dry or slow flowing creeks and streams.

[end of report]


04-Jul-2011 8:07 PM

SYSTEM UPDATE

LWC 2.1.1 Update Build #50 For OSX Lion Compatibility Installed.

This build of our weather software will allow for the upgrade of this machine's operating system to OSX Lion 10.7 when applicable.

We will be beta testing this release for backwards compatibility using OSX 10.6.7.

[end of update]


29-Jun-2011 2:29 PM

Statistical Updates - 2:30PM - Wednesday, June 29th, 2011

Storm Track Update:

As of this report, the bulk of the precipitation has moved east of the Bass Lake area. However, enough instability remains in the atmosphere that with enough clearing over the next few hours and the associated heating from the summer sun, there is a possibility that we will see a few Thunderstorm cells bloom up between now and sunset. These blooms could impact our area with yet more heavy rainfall, gusty winds and even hail at times.

Seasonal Rainfall Update:

Because of this impressive late season rainfall which currently stands at 1.15 inches for the day, our seasonal rainfall total which ends at midnight tomorrow stands at 54.94 inches. Nearly 5 inches higher than our 2010 seasonal total. This is one of the highest seasonal rainfall totals for Bass Lake in the last 25 years!

Extended Forecast:

As we move further into the extended forecast, we can expect the summer heat to return with a vengeance beginning as early as tomorrow, but then another possible surprise is in the offing...

The remnants of tropical storm Arlene down in Mexico could make their way into Southern California as early as Sunday, with the moist unstable air from that disturbance reaching as far north as Central California! While it is too early to know for sure, there is enough potential there that some models are predicting some significant T-Storm activity for our area by this time next week.

We will of course keep our readers apprised of the situation as more information becomes available.

In the meantime, enjoy the rest of your week and have a safe and sane 4th of July!

[end of update]


29-Jun-2011 9:45 AM

Upslope Cell Stalls Over Station Resulting in Heavy Rain!

The station has recorded 0.92 inches of rain so far today as the formation of an upslope cell over our area has resulted in some heavy rainfall. The instability is expected to continue with isolated showers lingering through the day today. Temps will obviously be far below normal for this time of the year.

More later today as the situation unfolds.

Check out the "Watches and Warnings" link above for the latest IR Sat Image.

[end of report]


26-Jun-2011 11:40 PM

Possibility of Rain Tuesday through Wednesday Morning!

As surprising as it sounds... YES! We may see some rain in here within the next 48 hours! A cut-off low is moving down from Alaska and will be knocking on the California coast's door by Tuesday. Some of that unstable air could make its way inland and effect our weather. Regardless of the rain chances, (which the NWS is currently listing as 40%), we will likely see increasing clouds Tuesday with Wednesday likely to be an overcast day! Something to keep in mind if you had plans to head out on the lake early this week!

I'm just as surprised as you are, and didn't see this one coming, but if you check the IR map in the "Watches - Warnings" link above, you will see the system I am referring to.

We will continue tracking this VERY LATE season system and will update the journal when we have more info.

[end of report]


25-Jun-2011 2:01 PM

Station Software Update

We just upgraded the weather station software to LWC 2.1 Build 1813. This is supposed to be the last beta before the public release. All of our previous extended run testing with 1811 and 1812 indicated no serious issues. This update contains a minor fix for a very small memory leak that we didn't encounter on our machine.

[end of maintenance update]


21-Jun-2011 10:18 AM

More Heat Till Friday Then Slight Cool Down

As we officially usher in the first day of summer today with the longest day of the year, the high pressure ridge responsible for our mini heat wave is intensifying and will remain in place until at least Friday afternoon followed by a slight cool down over the weekend. We say slight because the difference will only be a few degrees.

Meanwhile, the station has started to record the highest temps so far this year with the 88 degree high from yesterday becoming our new high for 2011 so far. UV radiation continues to be very high to extreme with our average daily max index reading flirting with 12 on an EPA scale that only goes to 15! The UV radiation this time of year at our altitude is nothing to take lightly if you value your skin and eyes! Always best to check the station before heading out on the lake to see what the current index reading is and heed any UV alerts you may see posted at the top of our home page.

In other weather news... The NWS aerial flood warnings and watches for the Sierra foothills and points below dams continues indefini