October, 2012

Happy Halloween

October 31st, 2012 at 12:41 pm by under Bill's Blog, Weather

   9:20 PM – I just talked to my wife.  We have not had one single trick-0r-treater tonight at my house.  The most we ever had was 27 and the least was 3 (and we’ve been there through 35 Halloweens!).  Oh, well – I get candy when I come home!!  Click the picture to enlarge or click here.  This is four pictures of snow in the U.P. this morning from the NWS in Marquette.  Up to 4″ of snow has fallen across the U.P. with Negaunee, Grand Marais and Ishpeming all reporting about 3-4″ of new snow.  We’ll see widely scattered sprinkles/light showers this PM/tonight.  The new NAM prints out only a trace to 1/10th” (a few lakeshore spots) of additional rainfall.  October will end up slightly cooler than average.  It’ll be the first month of cooler than average temperatures since Sept. 2011.  The Average temperature for August in G.R. was exactly average and September was only +0.1 above average…so the period from August 1 to October 31 is going to come out almost exactly average.  Today is the 6th day in a row with a north or northwest wind.  We’ve had at least a trace of rain on 21 of 31 days in October and measurable rain on 16 days this month (today could be the 17th day).  We’ve had 6.23″ of rain this month in G.R., 6.71″ in Muskegon and 7.58″ in Holland.  Sandy drove cool air down into the Southeast.  The low temperature this morning was 29 in Rome GA and 36 in Tallahassee FL.  At one point we had over 130,000 customers without power in Michigan from the winds of Sandy, mainly in Southeast Michigan and especially near Lake Huron.  As I write this, that figure is down to 30,000.  Here’s the GFS model maps for Election Day next Tuesday.  Overall it’ll be a quiet day.  We could see a little light rain or even a mix in the PM, but roads would just be wet.  There will be showers in the Northeast and possibly some snow in the highest elevations of PA, NY and VT.  If anything, November looks a little on the cool side for Michigan and I still expect snow at some point in mid-November.  This will be the coolest and snowiest November since at least 2008 (and I don’t have the figures before 2008 here at home, so I may change that to an earlier year).  Temperatures will be in the low 40s this evening for trick-or-treat with a northwest wind at 10-15 mph.

Cool pictures here.


Happy Halloween

October 31st, 2012 at 12:56 am by under Bill's Blog, Weather

Local  Since we’ll still have a few widely scattered light showers and sprinkles around, I’ll leave radar at the top of the blog.  We could see a snowflake or a very small amount of sleet/ice pellets, but that would be isolated.  Temperatures will remain above freezing, so roads may be wet at times.  Temperatures will be in the low 40s while the kids are out this evening with inland winds this evening around 10-15 mph.

Here’s WOOD-TV Interactive Radar, looping radar. Check out the current conditions, regional radar, GRR radar, northern Indiana radar, Chicago radar and Milwaukee radar. Here’s the College of DuPage Radar Map, Storm total rainfall, the local warning/advisory map and the National warning/watch/advisory map. You can checkout the latest Grand Rapids NWS discussion, the Northern Indiana NWS discussion (includes the Michigan Counties that border Indiana), the discussion for Northern Lower Michigan, and Eastern Lower Michigan. Here’s the Spyglass Condos Weather Station the S. Haven GLERL station, the Muskegon GLERL station, the Grand Haven Steelheaders webcam and weather station, and the weather station at Holland State Park. Check out the WOOD lightning tracker and U.S. lightning Marantha Webcam at Lake Michigan and links to webcams. Here’s the infrared satellite loop (night) and the visible satellite loop (daytime). Here’s Lake Michigan water temperatures. Here’s storm total rainfall for W. Michigan and E. Michigan. Here’s data from the mid-lake buoy and the Wind Map.

Snowfall from Sandy:  29″ Redhouse MD, 28″ Davis W VA, 22″ Newfound Gap NC, 20″ Mt. LaConte TN.  Rainfall:  12.55″ Easton MD, 11.67″ Wildwood Crest NJ, 9.57″ Virginia Beach  VA.   More wind reports:  88 mph Montclair NJ, 86 mph Westerly R.I., 81 mph Allentown PA, 79 mph Highland Beach MD, 68 mph Cleveland OH, 63 mph Portland ME, 60 mph Gary IN.   Tuesday was the 2nd day in a row that temperatures held in the 60s at Tampa and Orlando.  It was the 2nd day with a 56 deg. high temperature in Atlanta.  Other chilly highs:  46 Knoxville TN (2nd day in the mid 40s), 39 Bristol TN, 37 London KY, 36 Sault Ste Marie, 30 Chapleau, Ontario (north of S.Ste Marie), 19 Red Deer, Alberta.  Record low barometer readings:   Harrisburg PA 28.46″, Baltimore MD 28.49″, Trenton NJ 28.31, Atlantic City 28.00″, Lowest pressure over water 27.76″ (this was NOT a record…the lowest was during hurricane Gladys in 1977).

It’s also been very cold in Alaska.  Tuesday morning it was -14 at Bettles and -7 at Fairbanks.  Fairbanks has been below zero 5 of the last 9 mornings and they are running 2 deg. cooler than average for Oct.   Record lows in southern Alaska:  14 Yakutat, 11 Juneau (broke record by 12 degrees) and 15 at Eaglecrest (broke record by 13 degrees).

Grand Rapids will end October slightly cooler than average for the month and the period from August 1 – Oct. 31 will be very close to average for temperatures and slightly above average for rainfall.

 


Images/Video

October 30th, 2012 at 11:57 am by under Bill's Blog, Weather

  Images from the storm – click to enlarge.  The picture on the left is Newfound Gap, Tennessee.  24″ of new snow at Bowden and Nettie, West Virginia.  Many trees are down from the weight of the snow with roads blocked.  The picture in the middle is water quickly filling up Ground Zero.  The picture on the right is the big fire that consumed up to 100 homes in Queens, NY.  Pictures hereFour New Jersey towns were flooded after a levee broke.  Helicopter footage of the New Jersey coast (building your house on shifting sand…).


Tuesday PM

October 30th, 2012 at 1:20 am by under Bill's Blog, Weather

Local  10:45 PM  Winds have not been terribly strong in most inland areas, gusts between 30-40 mph earlier today and down to 10-20 mph tonight.  Winds were much stronger in some lakeshore areas.  Peak winds:  69 mph at Michigan City, Indiana on the beach, 64 mph S. Haven Lighthouse, 59 mph at the Harrison Crib Water Intake 3 miles east of downtown Chicago, 52 mph Big Sable Point, 48 mph Holland St. Park, 43 mph Muskegon Beach, 38 mph Battle Creek.  Strong winds coming off Lake Huron caused many trees and wires to come down.  There were trees on vehicles at Port Huron, Sandusky and Fort Gratiot.  Winds hit 60 mph at Harrisville and 50 mph at Alpena.  We will continue to see breezy conditions.  There is some mixed snow/sleet east of G.R.  Temperatures are above freezing and with the warm ground, the snow should melt instantly on the roads.  Waves at the mid-Lake Michigan buoy reached 21.7 feet at 11:50 AM Tues. morning.

Current radar on the left (updates automatically) and the pretty red sunset Monday evening courtesy of the clouds of Hurricane Sandy.  Ironically, this picture was taken by “Sandy” at ReportIt.  Check out the sunset full screen.    No warm air in sight.  The NAM barely takes us to 49.5 on Thurs. and the GFS keeps us below 50 through the next 16 days with a chance of some accumulating snow around Nov. 10-15.  The European prints out 0.45″ of mostly rain thru Thursday AM and another 1/10th inch Saturday night.  The European keeps us below 50 each of the next 7 days.  There are some neat links below:

Here’s WOOD-TV Interactive Radar, looping radar. Check out the current conditions, regional radar, GRR radar, northern Indiana radar, Chicago radar and Milwaukee radar. Here’s the College of DuPage Radar Map, Storm total rainfall, the local warning/advisory map and the National warning/watch/advisory map. You can checkout the latest Grand Rapids NWS discussion, the Northern Indiana NWS discussion (includes the Michigan Counties that border Indiana), the discussion for Northern Lower Michigan, and Eastern Lower Michigan. Here’s the Spyglass Condos Weather Station the S. Haven GLERL station, the Muskegon GLERL station, the Grand Haven Steelheaders webcam and weather station, and the weather station at Holland State Park. Check out the WOOD lightning tracker and U.S. lightning Marantha Webcam at Lake Michigan and links to webcams. Here’s the infrared satellite loop (night) and the visible satellite loop (daytime). Here’s Lake Michigan water temperatures. Here’s storm total rainfall for W. Michigan and E. Michigan. Here’s data from the mid-lake buoy and the Wind Map.

Sandy shoved the cool air down south.  High temps. Monday:  69 Orlando, 68 Tampa, 66 Galveston, 65 Jacksonville and New Orleans, 56 Atlanta, 46 Asheville, 45 Knoxville.


Earthquakes rattle California

October 29th, 2012 at 1:03 am by under Bill's Blog, Weather

A 4.0 magnitude earthquake occurred at 12:25 AM today (Mon.) near Soledad, California.  The center was 138 miles south of Sacramento.  It looks like it was on or very near the San Andreas Fault. Click the image to enlarge.  Also, an earthquake rattled the Los Angeles area Sunday AM.  The earthquake was magnitude 3.9 and was centered 24 miles NNW of downtown L.A.


Hurricane Sandy

October 28th, 2012 at 9:40 pm by under Bill's Blog, News, Weather

[Image of 5-day forecast and coastal areas under a warning or a watch]   26″ of snow in Garrett Co., Maryland – I-68 was closed.  The massive fire in Queens consumed at least 100 homes.  Half of Hoboken, NJ was underwater, with 2 fire houses evacuated.    8.5 million customers were without power.  110 fatalities in the U.S. (many hit by falling trees). There were 67 fatalities in the Caribbean and one fatality so far in Toronto (woman hit by a flying sign).   Electrical Explosion in NYC!   Wind gusts hit 64 mph at the S. Haven Lighthouse  and 69 mph at Michigan City, IN.  Waves at the mid-Lake Michigan buoy peaked at 20.3 feet (water temp. 53).  The water level has surpassed the all-time record  at Battery Park in NYC, 13 ft. storm surge.  More than a million customers without power now.  The center of Sandy came onshore late this afternoon and is moving thru Pennsylvania, later to turn north into New York State and up into Quebec.   By Midnight, 12″ of new snow was reported at Odd, West Virginia with 6″ at Beckley.   Coastal Flooding.  Wind Gusts: 124 mph Mt. Washington NH, 94 mph Eaton’s Neck NY, 89 mph at Surf City, NJ,  85 mph Plum Is. (northeast edge of Long Island) and Madison CT, 90 mph Islip NY, 79 mph at New York (JFK), 78 mph at Newark NJ, 76 mph Bridgeport and Groton CT., 71 mph at N. Philadelphia, 69 mph New York Harbor, 61 mph Wallops IS. VA,  60 mph Boston, 59 mph Providence RI, Pamona NJ and Sussex NJ,  and Trenton NJ.  They’ve had a gust over 60 mph in St. Clair Co. Michigan with tree damage.    pic.twitter.com/7DVhqcup Much of Atlantic City NJ has been underwater.    60 mph gusts at the shore30-foot waves on the coast!  45-foot waves forecast just offshore.  The Atlantic City Boardwalk is already starting to disintrigrate.   25-foot waves reported in Cape May, NJ. Water was up to New York Ave., 2 blocks from the beach.   Buoy reports wind gust of 130 mph!  Sandy moved onshore in  S. New Jersey late Monday PM and is now moving thru Pennsylvania toward N.Y. and Quebec.  Here’s a satellite loopWebcams to watch.   Here’s a picture of the Ventnor Pier (you might know that place from Monopoly), which is just south of Atlantic City.  Check the current tide at Atlantic City.  Here’s JFK in NYC at 8:30 PM Sunday evening! This will be a historic storm from S. New England down to Washington D.C…all-time record low pressures for New Jersey and Delaware.  The strong E-SE wind to the north of where the center comes ashore (New Jersey, New York, possibly all the way NE to Cape Cod. will create a very high storm surge, made worse because of the full moon72-hour rainfall forecast up to 11″BLIZZARD Warnings are up for the higher mountain areas of W. Virginia.  Pictures here.

Links:  New Jersey/NYC weather map, surface weather observations for New Jersey, E. Penn., Delaware, E. Maryland, estimated rainfall, Storm Discussion from the Hurricane Center, Forecast Advisory, Public Advisory, New York (City) radar, Long Island radarNew Jersey radar, Delaware radar, E. Virginia radar, E Coast Regional radar, Great Lakes Regional radar, Boston radar, New York City NWS Forecast Discussion, Philadephia NWS Forecast Discussion.

Check out Cool Weather for Storm Reports.  Also, Local Storm Reports from:  Wash. D.C./MD, E. North Carolina, E. Virginia.  Here‘s snow reports from W. Virginia.  Also, from Joe D’Aleo:  “Gasoline spiked today as 70% of the refinery capacity was shut down as a precaution (Philadelphia/Delaware Bay). If there is damage from flooding and the refineries are not able to go back on in a day or so, expect to see $4 gas again in the east. That area accounts for 2/3rds of the eastern gasoline.”


Wind Advisory – Storm Warnings

October 28th, 2012 at 7:25 pm by under Bill's Blog, Weather

This thread deals with the effects of “Sandy” on West Michigan and Lake Michigan. A Wind Advisory will be in effect from 5 PM Monday to 8 PM Tuesday. Wind gusts will reach 35-50 mph with the strongest winds along the Lake Michigan shore, especially from Allegan Co. to the south, where a north wind comes off the water. Cold air coming over relatively warm water will make stronger winds and bigger waves than warm air coming over cold water. That’s physics. There will be Gale Warnings (34 to 47 knots or 39-54 mph) for Lake Michigan from 2 PM Monday to 5 AM Tuesday EDT. At 5 AM, the Gale Warning is upgraded to a Storm Warning, which will be in effect from 5 AM to 5 PM. At 5 PM Tuesday, the Storm Warning will go back to a Gale Warning. Storm Warnings are rare. A STORM WARNING MEANS WINDS OF 48 TO 63 KNOTS ARE IMMINENT. A “knot” is a nautical mile per hour. One knot is 1.15077945 mph. So when they say 48 to 63 knots, that’s 55.2 to 72.5 mph. The National Weather Service says: “* WINDS…NORTH GALES TO 35 KT STARTING MONDAY AFTERNOON INCREASING TO 50 KT STORM FORCE WINDS LATE MONDAY NIGHT THROUGH LATE TUESDAY AFTERNOON. GALES WILL THEN CONTINUE THROUGH WEDNESDAY EVENING. * SIGNIFICANT WAVES…12 TO 16 FT MONDAY AFTERNOON BUILDING TO 20 TO 25 FT TUESDAY MORNING…THEN SUBSIDING TO 12 TO 16 FT LATE WEDNESDAY NIGHT. * OCCASIONAL WAVES…TO 20 FT MONDAY AFTERNOON…BUILDING TO 33 FT TUESDAY MORNING…THEN SUBSIDING TO 28 FT WEDNESDAY NIGHT. You would not get a 33-foot wave at shore. A wave is as deep as it is high above the water, and as the wave comes into shallower water, the wave “breaks” (the top falls over as the bottom drags). The strong north wind will will cause what’s called a “standing seiche” on Lake Michigan (similar to what occurred in Oct. 2010) from a similar deep low pressure center), with water piling up at the south end of the lake. Expect the water level (which fortunately is low right now) to rise up to 2-3 feet at the south end of Lake Michigan (and to fall 2-3 feet at the north end of Lake Michigan). Then add the huge waves on top of that and there is the potential for significant beach erosion and damage to whatever is at the shore. We’ll also have cloudy skies, a good chance of a period of rain and chilly temperatures. The cold air (temperatures in the upper 30s to mid 40s) combined with the strong wind, will result in wind chill readings in the upper 20s to low 30s.

Latest model data: 00Z Monday NAM (Caribou) wind forecast is very similar to past runs of the model…15-20 mph winds this Monday midday-afternoon, peaking at a steady 25 mph Tues. mid-morning.  The model gives us a fairly steady light rain starting later Tuesday AM thru Weds. evening with  1/2″ total for G.R. The model does print out a brief mix of sleet/ice pellets at the start of the precipitation.  I mentioned that the winds would be stronger near Lake Michigan.  The model gives S. Haven a steady wind of 33 knots late Monday night and  Tuesday morning, that’s 37 mph!  That’s about 10 mph faster than Grand Rapids.  The GFS model give G.R. a steady 25-29 mph wind for Tues.

Links:  WOOD-TV Interactive Radar, looping radar. Check out the current conditions in Michigan, current conditions in Indiana, current conditions in Illinois, regional radar, GRR radar, northern Indiana radar, Chicago radar and Milwaukee radar. Here’s the College of DuPage Radar Map, Storm total rainfall, the local warning/advisory map and the National warning/watch/advisory map. You can checkout the latest Grand Rapids NWS discussion, the Northern Indiana NWS discussion (includes the Michigan Counties that border Indiana), the discussion for Northern Lower Michigan, and Eastern Lower Michigan. Here’s the Spyglass Condos Weather Station the S. Haven GLERL station, the Muskegon GLERL station, the Grand Haven Steelheaders webcam and weather station, and the weather station at Holland State Park. Check out the WOOD lightning tracker and U.S. lightning and links to webcams. Here’s the infrared satellite loop (night) and the visible satellite loop (daytime). Here’s Lake Michigan water temperatures. Here’s storm total rainfall for W. Michigan and E. Michigan. Here’s data from the mid-lake buoy, the GLERL Weather Station at Michigan City, Indiana…and the Harrison Crib (Chicago Water Intake), 3 miles east of downtown Chicago out in the lake.  Both of these last two stations will really show some wild winds.  The Michigan City, IN beach station was already showing 35-40 mph wind gusts Sunday evening.


Major Earthquakes in W. Canada

October 28th, 2012 at 3:58 am by under Bill's Blog, Weather

   A 7.7 magnitude earthquake struck the Queen Charlotte Islands at 11:14 PM EDT Saturday evening.  There was a strong 6.3 magnitude aftershock on Sunday.  The Earthquake was felt throughout the sparsely populated islands and on the mainland.  This is the strongest earthquake in this area since the 1940s.  There were no immediate reports of injuries, but power was out in at least one area.  There were powerful aftershocks, one measuring 5.8.  A relatively small tsunami was generated, reaching approx. 6 feet at Sandspit and 1.5 feet on the north side of Langara island.   A tsunami warning was issued for the North American Coast from the Alaskan Panhandle to Vancouver Island, and a two meter swell was recorded in Sandspit. The quake was felt in Prince Rupert and as far away as Kamloops.[4] Further, another tsunami warning was issued for the state of Hawaii, especially the towns of Kahului and Hilo, Hawaii. A tsunami advisory has been issued for California and Oregon  residents in Skidegate and Sandspit were evacuated to higher ground.[2] Electricity service was interrupted in Bella Coola. There are only about 3800 people that live in the Queen Charlotte Islands, which comprise a total land area similar to Rhode Island.  Here’s some pictures and maps of the islands.  The weather on the islands is cool year round.  Rainfall is generally heavy especially in the autumn months, when in the most exposed southwestern areas near Tasu  can record daily rainfalls as high as 6-12 inches!  The annual rainfalls are among the highest in the world outside the tropics.  In the relatively shielded areas around Tlell and Sandspit annual rainfall averages from 47 – 55 in).  Snowfall is generally moderate, averaging from 4 in on the SW coast to 70 centimetres (28 in), tho over 100″ on the highest mountains.  Precipitation is typically extremely frequent, occurring on around two-thirds of all days of the year, even in shielded areas, and direct sunlight is scarce, averaging around 3 -4 hours day or 25-33%.  Prince Rupert to the east on the mainland goes from an average high temperature of 40 in mid-January to an average high temperature of 62 in early August.  They haven’t been warmer than 68 this year.  Once in a while the Arctic air comes in from the east.  Last Jan. 17th they had a high/low of 6/-4F.  It would not have been that cold out on the Queen Charlotte Islands.  I’m amazed how fast articles on earthquakes and hurricanes appear on Wikipedia.


Windy Sandy – update

October 27th, 2012 at 2:29 am by under Bill's Blog, News, Weather

  Sunday 8:45 PM -   Buoys offshore of Hatteras are showing gusts to 60-65 mph with 25-35 foot waves.  Piney Island has a steady wind of 38 mph with gusts to 52 mph.  Check out the wave forecast!  It’s got waves over 20 feet at the shore in New York and New Jersey and up to 45-50 feet in a small area offshore!!  24-hour rainfall totals in far eastern N.C. have been around 5-6″.    Here’s the maximum 900 mb winds  (from WeatherBell).  This would be at a lower level close to the center of the storm where pressures are lower (maybe 2,000 feet) and higher over Michigan where the pressure won’t be as low, but that’s 60-64 knots (69-74 mph) less than a mile off the ground.    Landfall  Monday evening/night in southern New Jersey (this would bring very strong east wind and storm surge west down Long Island Sound).  This is the GFS model map for 2 PM Tuesday. Click the image to enlarge.  The center of the storm (Sandy) is now forecast to come farther west.  That puts West Michigan into stronger wind and gives us a greater chance of showers/period of rain and still open is the possibility for a period of mixed precipitation.  The NAM (Caribou) model which goes out to 72 hours gives G.R. a steady (sustained) wind of 23 knots at 10 AM Tuesday morning.  That’s 26 mph – and we’d probably be getting gusts 35… and that’s with a temperature of 39.  With cold air coming across the relatively warmer waters of Lake Michigan, winds would be stronger at the lake.  The NAM (caribou) gives S. Haven a steady wind of 33 knots (38 mph) Tuesday morning!  That’s not the gusts, that’s a steady wind!  And that’s for the airport, not the beach!  That kind of wind would create huge waves on Lake Michigan (open water probably 15-20 feet!  The regular NAM mos data shows the wind at 20 knots in G.R. (23 mph) by Monday afternoon.   The GFS model for Halloween isn’t quite as windy…but it’s still plenty breezy with light showers and chilly temperatures.  The European model gives G.R. 0.35″ of cold, intermittent rain from late Tuesday through Weds. night, with a chance of  a little wet snow mixing in.      Also:  Quite a bit of snow across Canada and Russia already…another sign that this winter won’t be as wimpy as last winter.


Weekend Sports – World Series Thread

October 27th, 2012 at 1:27 am by under Bill's Blog, Weather

  WORLD SERIES PHOTO GALLERY SIGH – TIGERS LOSE in 4 games!   That kind of solves the dilemma of trying to play in the wind, cold and rain the next couple nights.     The Lions had a nice comeback win.  The Bears lead the division at 6-1.   BIG win for Notre Dame.  Brian Kelly has been successful wherever he’s been.  I could see Notre Dame/Alabama in the BCS Championship.  Nice win for Michigan St.  First loss in 21 games at home for Wisconsin (my alma mater).  Wisconsin had just 19 net yards rushing!  The Badgers (now 6-3 – all 3 losses have been by 3 points) have had a consistent winning program now for 20 years, since Barry Alvarez showed up.  When I was there the Wisconsin offense was kind of like the Tiger offense in the World Series.  In 1967, Wisconsin was 0-9.  In 1968, they were 0-10 and that included 3 shutouts in a row.  They scored only 86 points all season in ’68 or 8.6 points per game.  I used to tell people the way to keep the Wisconsin football team out of your backyard was to put up goal posts…they’d never come near them!  1969 was the first year I showed up.  I got a season football pass for $20.  The student section went to the 40-yard line because they wanted to fill up the middle of the stands (no one sat in the end zones).  In 1969, they started with 3 blowout losses, then came back to beat Iowa 23-17.  The town went nuts!  First win in four years!  Thousands marched down University Avenue and around the State Capitol Building singing “On Wisconsin” past 4 AM.  Wisconsin went on to beat the other two I’s (Illinois and Indiana), that year, but they were still a generally awful team.  They opponents averaged 40 points against them in 1969.  Ohio State beat them 62-7 that year and it would have been triple figures if Woody Hayes hadn’t given the team the 2nd half off and let the cheerleaders play the last two quarters.  Nice wins for Grand Valley, Ferris St. and Central.   Michigan needs some help…only 52 yards of offense in the 2nd quarter?  No touchdowns in the last two games?