Heavy snow and rain continue to pound California

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 8:30 PM GMT on January 05, 2008

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Heavy snow, flash floods, and damaging winds continue to pound California today as a weakening Pacific storm moves inland over British Columbia. The winds have died down considerably in the Sierra Mountains, where hurricane force winds were common on Friday. The storm's highest winds occurred at Ward Mountain near Lake Tahoe--sustained at 110 mph, gusting to 163 mph, on Friday. Prodigious snow amounts of up to six feet have fallen in the Sierras, with Blackcap Basin in Fresno County (elevation 10300 feet) reporting 71.3 inches (5.9 feet) of new snow as of 4 am PST Saturday. Continued heavy snows are expected in the Sierras through Sunday, with total amounts up to ten feet possible.

At lower elevations, heavy rain has triggered flash floods. In Chino Hills, just east of Los Angeles, a flash flood swept away a vehicle that had gone around a barricade. One occupant was found hypothermic and clinging to a tree, but the vehicle and its other occupant are missing. A mudslide forced the temporary closure of Interstate 15 nearby. Rain amounts exceeding ten inches (Figure 1) have fallen in the mountains of Central and Northern California, and in Nevada, heavy rains caused a levee to burst along the Truckee Canal in Fernley, flooding hundreds of homes.


Figure 1. Estimated rainfall from the blizzard of '08 in Central California as of 3 pm PST Saturday.

The storm pounded the San Francisco Bay area Friday with remarkable ferocity, bringing winds of tropical storm force to the entire region, accompanied by extremely heavy rain. Sustained winds of 53 mph gusting to 67 mph were measured at the San Francisco airport, forcing cancellation of 35 flights. High winds on the Richmond-San Rafael Bridge forced closure of the bridge during the morning commute, when trucks toppled over on both upper and lower spans. Winds gusting to 70 mph were recorded on the Golden Gate bridge. At Mt. Diablo State Park just east of Oakland, sustained winds of 62 mph were reported at 9 am PST. A wind gust of 105 mph was reported at Los Gatos south of San Jose at 12pm PST.

The CIMSS satellite blog has a nice description of the unique meteorology of this storm.

Jeff Masters

Sidewalk buckled with tree. (Scitech)
Wind storm damage in Athena
Sidewalk buckled with tree.
Trucks down as result of wind (Scitech)
This is the result of high winds along the Blue Mountains
Trucks down as result of wind

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115. NEwxguy
5:23 PM GMT on January 07, 2008
Ummmm, i love january thaws,kind of lets you get your breath before the next onslaught of winter.
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114. Buhdog
2:56 PM GMT on January 07, 2008
I hope that low forms in the gulf. Tropical, non tropical, sub-tropical....just GET LOW! and form a hair further south would ya? South Florida needs the rain worse than the rest......I would hate to see it go north of Lake O.
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112. NEwxguy
1:24 PM GMT on January 07, 2008
Good morning
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110. Weather456
7:53 AM AST on January 07, 2008
Tropical Disturbance 07R Update 4

Issued 1200 UTC JAN 07 2008

Tropical Disturbance 07R is centered near 17.5S-56.9E. Movement towards the southeast. Position was based on visible imagery and synoptic reports from Mauritius and Reunion. Surface winds are estimated to be 20 knots based on QuikSCAT, WindSat and cloud motion vectors moving into the system from the south. Estimated surface pressure is in the range of 1007-1009 mb, this is based on 24 hr pressure tendencies from the synoptic reports. Visible imagery showed the center has gradually move under the convective mass. The overall system still remains lop-sided. Wind shear is below 10 knots due to the development of a small upper anticyclonic circulation over the disturbance, whose outflow has skewed convection towards the north. Sea surface temperatures around the disturbance is 85F. The CMC is indicating wind shear should remain low enough for the cyclone to gain some organization in the next 24 hrs as it moves towards the south-southeast.

by W456
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
109. Weather456
7:30 AM AST on January 07, 2008
Tropical Disturbance 07R Update 3

Issued: 0400 UTC JAN 07 2008

Tropical disturbance 07R is located near 17.2S-56.3E. Position based on visible imagery. Movement towards the south-southeast. Movement based on 14 km infrared imagery. Estimated surface winds are 20-25 knots and estimated surface pressure remains constant at 1010 mb. LLCC remains south of the deepest convection. Infrared center showed an organizing system earlier today but tonight's first visible images showed the center well south of Update 2, just on the fringes of the convective mass. Dvorak estimated intensity* stands at CI 1.5. Wind shear above the disturbance ranges from 5-20 knots. SSTs are 86F. The future of this system is uncertain. Near term, conditions should favor tropical cyclogenesis, but new data suggest shear will increase from the south induced by the large cold core upper low south of Madagascar.

by W456

Tropical Invest 95S Update (Revised) 2

Issued: 1500 UTC JAN 06 2008

Tropical disturbance 95S centered near 16.2S-56.3E. Movement drifting southeastward. Position method was based on WindSat which place the circulation just on the southern edge of the convective mass. Movement was based on 24 hr position trends. Estimated surface winds is 20 knots. Estimated surface pressure is 1010 based on surrounding synoptic reports. The circulation of 95S remains broad and somewhat closed. The highest winds are within the region to the northwest and southeast where the low pressure area meets the monsoon westerlies and southeast trades. Satellite imagery have indicated that 95S appears to be gradually organize based infrared bias. Curve bands have become more distinct throughout the day. Dvorak estimated intensity stands at CI 1.5. Wind shear above the disturbance ranges from 5-20 knots. SSTs are 86F. Conditions are forecast to remain favorable for development in the near term. The steering flow is rather weak in the area so movement in the next 24-48 hrs is uncertain.

by W456

* based on me. Not the official estimate.

DISCLAIMER: These advisories are not official. I constructed them based on my knowledge of tropical forecasting. Visit the JTWC for any official information.

Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
108. Weather456
7:18 AM AST on January 07, 2008
100. MichaelSTL 12:20 AM AST on January 07, 2008
Tropical disturbance 07R is located near 17.2S-56.3E
Tropical disturbance 95S centered near 16.2S-56.3E


if u mean my posts...update 2 was 12 hrs earlier than update 3...and they are not from the official agencies.....
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
107. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
9:23 AM GMT on January 07, 2008
At 03:00 AM, Tropical Depression 07F [1008 hPa] analyzed near 18.0S 175.5W and is moving slowly. Position is FAIR based on Multispectral satellite visible and infrared imagery with animation and peripheral surface observation with sea surface temperatures near 28-29C. There is a more definite organization in the convection surrounding the system. (more so around the eastern half) The cyclonic circulation is evident from the surface to 250 HPA with the low level circulation center partly exposed. Tropical Depression 07F is located in a low to moderate vertical wind shear environment with global models picking up the system with very little intensification and moving slowly towards southwest.

The potential of this system to form into a tropical cyclone within the next 24 hours is MODERATE.
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106. KEEPEROFTHEGATE (Mod)
7:15 AM GMT on January 07, 2008
major severe weather out break tops to 50000 to 60000 feet in abnormal warm sector as flow off of gom combine with flow from cal trackin ne to nw grt lakes providing dividing line for the set up of severe weather from gulf coast n to mid/lower grt lakes beginning during the next 12 to 24 hrs
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105. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
6:54 AM GMT on January 07, 2008


There you go. now it can be shared by all =)
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104. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
6:41 AM GMT on January 07, 2008
[i]Tropical disturbance 07R is located near 17.2S-56.3E
Tropical disturbance 95S centered near 16.2S-56.3E

Aren't those really the same storm, being just one degree apart and with weak storms like that, positions can easily vary by that much among different agencies?[/i]

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

95S/07R position as of 0:00am UTC

from NRL 17.2S 56.3E
from sub-RSMC Mauritius 17.2S 56.4E
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103. listenerVT
1:35 AM EST on January 07, 2008
Looks like there's another swirl coming along after that big one. My goodness, but this is a strange winter.
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102. listenerVT
1:30 AM EST on January 07, 2008
Again...the huge Pacific low...
(Well, I tried to upload it to ImageShack and share it, but it doesn't seem to be working for me. So here's the link instead:
Link
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101. Levi32
7:29 PM AKST on January 06, 2008
Another shot of the hurricane-force low developing in the north Pacific.

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99. Weather456
12:02 AM AST on January 07, 2008
night
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
98. Weather456
11:33 PM AST on January 06, 2008
....
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97. Weather456
11:30 PM AST on January 06, 2008
.
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96. Weather456
11:25 PM AST on January 06, 2008
Very large upper low over the Sahara....


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95. franck
3:00 AM GMT on January 07, 2008
Think the cool down may arrive by tomorrow? Weather girl said we may break the record for the date..79 degrees.
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94. lindenii
2:44 AM GMT on January 07, 2008
Next Climate Change

Lack of sunspots to bring extended period of deep cold to the planet

_____________________________
.
Space and Science Research Center

PRESS RELEASE: SSRC 1-2008

2 January 08 - Today, the Space and Science Research Center, (SSRC) in Orlando, Florida announces that it has confirmed the recent web announcement of NASA solar physicists that there are substantial changes occurring in the sun’s surface. The SSRC has further researched these changes and has concluded they will bring about the next climate change to one of a long lasting cold era.

Today, Director of the SSRC, John Casey has reaffirmed earlier research he led that independently discovered the sun’s changes are the result of a family of cycles that bring about climate shifts from cold climate to warm and back again.

"We today confirm the recent announcement by NASA that there are historic and important changes taking place on the sun’s surface. This will have only one outcome - a new climate change is coming that will bring an extended period of deep cold to the planet. This is not however a unique event for the planet although it is critically important news to this and the next generations. It is but the normal sequence of alternating climate changes that has been going on for thousands of years. Further according to our research, this series of solar cycles are so predictable that they can be used to roughly forecast the next series of climate changes many decades in advance. I have verified the accuracy of these cycles’ behavior over the last 1,100 years relative to temperatures on Earth, to well over 90%."

As to what these changes are Casey says, "The sun’s surface flows have slowed dramatically as NASA has indicated. This process of surface movement, what NASA calls the "conveyor belt" essentially sweeps up old sunspots and deposits new ones. NASA’s studies have found that when the surface movement slows down, sunspot counts drop significantly. All records of sunspot counts and other proxies of solar activity going back 6,000 years clearly validates our own findings that when we have sunspot counts lower then 50 it means only one thing - an intense cold climate, globally. NASA says the solar cycle 25, the one after the next that starts this spring will be at 50 or lower. The general opinion of the SSRC scientists is that it could begin even sooner within 3 years with the next solar cycle 24. What we are saying today is that my own research and that of the other scientists at the SSRC verifies that NASA is right about one thing – a solar cycle of 50 or lower is headed our way. With this next solar minimum predicted by NASA, what I call a "solar hibernation," the SSRC forecasts a much colder Earth just as it has transpired before for thousands of years. If NASA is the more accurate on the schedule, then we may see even warmer temperatures before the bottom falls out. If the SSRC and other scientists around the world are correct then we have only a few years to prepare before 20-30 years of lasting and possibly dangerous cold arrive."

When asked about what this will mean to the average person on the street, Casey was firm. "The last time this particular cycle regenerated was over 200 years ago. I call it the "Bi-Centennial Cycle" solar cycle. It took place between 1793 and 1830, the so-called Dalton Minimum, a period of extreme cold that resulted in what historian John D. Post called the ‘last great subsistence crisis.’ With that cold came massive crops losses, food riots, famine and disease. I believe this next climate change will be much stronger and has the potential to once more cause widespread crop losses globally with the resultant ill effects. The key difference for this next Bi-Centennial Cycle’s impact versus the last is that we will have over 8 billion mouths to feed in the next coldest years where as we had only 1 billion the last time. Among other effects like social and economic disruption, we are facing the real prospect of the ‘perfect storm of global food shortages’ in the next climate change. In answer to the question, everyone on the street will be affected."

... Soon, I believe this will be recognized as the most important climate story of this century."

See entire press release:
http://www.spaceandscience.net/id16.html

Headquartered in Orlando, Florida, the Space and Science Research Center (SSRC) is the leading science and engineering research company internationally, that specializes in the analysis of and planning for climate changes based upon the "Relational Cycle Theory."

SSRC has on its staff of consulting scientists, some of the world's best known experts in the field of solar physics pertaining to the research into the matter of the coming major solar minimum.
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93. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
1:58 AM GMT on January 07, 2008
At 0:00 AM UTC, Tropical Disturbance [1004 hPa] located near 17.2S 56.4E or 415 kms north-northeast of the coast of Reunion had 10 minuted sustained winds of 20 knots with gusts up to 30 knots. The disturbance was reported as moving south-southwest at 5 knots

Dvorak Intensity: T1.5

Forecast and Intensity
=======================
12 HRS: 18.4S 56.8E 20 knots [Perturbation Tropicale]
24 HRS: 19.8S 56.7E 20 knots [Dissipating]

Additional Information
======================
This weak circulation has a poor potential for intensification. It generates nevertheless very bad weather condition north of Mascareignes Islands. It actually undergoes southerly vertical wind shear and deep convection is only present in the northern semi-circle. Location of the partially exposed low level circulation center is estimated by extrapolation of the last most reliable satellite data. Winds estimation is also estimated according to this swath.

Situation is poorly analyzed by numerical models, actual forecast location and intensity are rather uncertain. Only the french model Aladin analyzes this low.

The current intensity of this system does not justify issuance of regular six hour advisories.
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92. TayTay
1:10 AM GMT on January 07, 2008
North Pacific's like this every winter.
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91. Weather456
9:02 PM AST on January 06, 2008
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
90. Weather456
9:01 PM AST on January 06, 2008
89. ShenValleyFlyFish 7:55 PM EST on January 06, 2008
456 I was trying to be funny. I better keep my day job.


:-)
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89. ShenValleyFlyFish
7:55 PM EST on January 06, 2008
456 I was trying to be funny. I better keep my day job.
Member Since: September 9, 2007 Posts: 36 Comments: 4687
88. HadesGodWyvern (Mod)
12:52 AM GMT on January 07, 2008
Nadi: Tropical Disturbance Summary

RSMC Nadi hasn't numbered this system yet but gives it a low to moderate potential of developing into a tropical cyclone.
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87. Weather456
8:45 PM AST on January 06, 2008
84. ShenValleyFlyFish 8:20 PM AST on January 06, 2008
456 why do get Dj vu when I look at those Pacific storm pics? You sure you haven't posted those before? LOL


Those are pics from today.........they do look similiar. Also didnt u look at Java Loop?
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
84. ShenValleyFlyFish
7:06 PM EST on January 06, 2008
456 why do get Déjà vu when I look at those Pacific storm pics? You sure you haven't posted those before? LOL
Member Since: September 9, 2007 Posts: 36 Comments: 4687
83. Drakoen
12:14 AM GMT on January 07, 2008
GFS 18z

Rain chances look good 7 days out for Florida. Show help ease the drought.

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82. Weather456
7:44 PM AST on January 06, 2008
Interesting facts:

For tropical cumulus clouds to sustain over dust riden SAL in Summer, there needs to be a supersaturation inside the cloud to sustain condensation in the face of vapor removal.

Superstaturation
To cause water vapor to exceed the normal saturation vapor pressure at a given temperature. Typically only 4% of air is water vapor. The pressure of this air is known as partial pressure of water.
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
81. Weather456
7:35 PM AST on January 06, 2008
Another shot the pacific low with little brother looking rather subtropical (but its not)

Java Loop of Pacific Low

Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
80. Weather456
7:31 PM AST on January 06, 2008
Another low just east of the UK

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79. Weather456
7:26 PM AST on January 06, 2008
Extratropical Low south of Madagascar (bottom)
95S (top)

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78. Weather456
7:25 PM AST on January 06, 2008
Powerful storm over the North Central Pacific

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77. eyewall99
11:07 PM GMT on January 06, 2008
Previous Dr. Master's blog said the resaviors(sp) should be full when the spring melt occurs...so drought is over.
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76. sullivanweather
10:45 PM GMT on January 06, 2008
71. weatherblog 8:38 PM GMT on January 06, 2008
This was in February:


Not impossible for tropical systems to exist in the GOM off-season. This particular one actually stregthened after hitting the Florida peninsula.

-------

The strengthening was most likely due to interaction with a baroclinic zone and extra-tropical transition.
Member Since: March 8, 2007 Posts: 273 Comments: 12612
75. JLPR
5:30 PM AST on January 06, 2008
This image was posted by Adrian FLWeatherFreak91 and you can see the cold front was a strong one =P
263. hurricane23 4:34 PM AST on January 02, 2008

Member Since: September 4, 2007 Posts: 36 Comments: 5223
74. Drakoen
9:25 PM GMT on January 06, 2008
63. StSimonsIslandGAGuy 7:44 PM GMT on January 06, 2008
I don't think Drakoen was forecasting a tropical system. He doesn't say so. Anyway, water temps are now around 70 in the northern interior gulf away from the loop current. Just looks like a classic wintertime gulf low forming on a front.


right. Looks like a baroclinic low forming.
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73. JLPR
5:17 PM AST on January 06, 2008
69. StSimonsIslandGAGuy 4:22 PM AST on January 06, 2008
what's the coldest you've ever had there JLPR?


I dont remember the temperature getting under 65degree so I would say thats the lowest =P
Member Since: September 4, 2007 Posts: 36 Comments: 5223
72. Weather456
4:27 PM AST on January 06, 2008
Tropical Low Helen (05U) Update 7

Tropical Low Helen is crossing the Cape York Peninsula. Extrapolation based on the last visible imagery at 0400 UTC, the last QuikSCAT pass at 0824 UTC, a SSMI microwave overpass at 0924 UTC and surface observations at 1100 UTC suggest the center is near 13.8S-141.5E moving east southeastward. The surface circulation continues to remain strong with winds estimated around 20 knots. Surface pressure is estimated to be 999 mb. Helen remains a weak tropical cyclone in terms of convective activity but is still maintaining her cyclonic signature. The cyclone moved too quickly over the Gulf of Capentaria to have anytime to redevelop. The cyclone should continue further inland and dissipate.

by W456




Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
71. weatherblog
8:37 PM GMT on January 06, 2008
This was in February:


Not impossible for tropical systems to exist in the GOM off-season. This particular one actually stregthened after hitting the Florida peninsula.
Member Since: July 10, 2006 Posts: 27 Comments: 1623
70. FLWeatherFreak91
3:31 PM EST on January 06, 2008
Hey guys. i just returned from a cruise in the Caribbean and I waned to comment on the extraordinarily bad weather that we encountered. I was on the Carnival Legend out of Tampa visiting The Caymans, Cozumel, Belize, and Honduras. The rain began shortly after leaving the Caymans and that night on the way to Mexico we were having winds of 60 kn and waves 9 meters. (This info. from the TV channel of updates on weather conditions aboard the ship) I imagine all of this was due to the same front that pushed through the SE and made it soooo cold. Tell me if any of you remember how the front looked as it was in this area around tues-thurs...thanks
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68. Weather456
4:21 PM AST on January 06, 2008
66. CybrTeddy 4:17 PM AST on January 06, 2008
456 its 95S not 95L, 95L was I belive breifly (although the NHC was on Vacation and didnt name it) Pablo.


sorry about that 95L is still stuck in my head
Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076
67. JLPR
4:18 PM AST on January 06, 2008
umm getting cold here at 69 degree kinda cold for a tropical island looks like the cold front got here and its raining to =P
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66. CybrTeddy
8:16 PM GMT on January 06, 2008
456 its 95S not 95L, 95L was I belive breifly (although the NHC was on Vacation and didnt name it) Pablo.
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65. Weather456
4:04 PM AST on January 06, 2008
95S organizing nicely

Member Since: July 24, 2005 Posts: 407 Comments: 19076

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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.