Friday, February 25, 2011

My Take on the Snow Cast

White caps in Bellingham bay from Fraser outflow winds

It was a bit chilly for field work yesterday with high wind from Arctic air rushing out of the Fraser Valley into the western Washington lowlands. In Bellingham it was sunny all day Thursday as the Arctic air pushed out the marine air and dried things out. It was comfortable out of the wind, but rather harsh particularly when the topography focused the wind. I was fairly close to home looking at a slope area in Bellingham. The view above was looking toward the north. But to the south the sky had a decidedly different look.

View south near Chuckanut Bay

While Bellingham had about 2 inches of snow, areas a few miles south near Mount Vernon had well over a foot. The Skagit Valley area had had convergence snow the day before and then had another round Wednesday and Thursday. 

Cliff Mass put up a post today in response to apparent criticisms of snow forecasting how-good-or-bad-was-snow-forecast. As regular reader of weather forecasts and models for field work planning, and the fact that I am not a member of the professional weather fraternity I will say the weather forecast was very good for this event. The National Weather Service out of Seattle consistently said that the snow would be spotty and in bands with heavy snow in convergence areas and little elsewhere and that predicting exactly where was not certain at all. Even with that I thought the NWS was reasonably close in where the heavy snow was most likely. All said I give them high marks.  

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