Puget Sound Post

Autumn Arrives

By: PugetSoundPost, 2:57 PM GMT on September 26, 2011

September 29, 9:00 PM
Wonderful Day!

The seesaw has swung back up again! What a terrific couple of days we have had! Blue sky sunshine and warm again. High pressure overhead has bathed us in glorious warmth - topping out at 83 degrees today! Love it! Our low, however, this morning was 44, which is easily our lowest of the season so far. Rain is coming, but for now - Wow!

September 26, 9:45 PM

Just finished cleaning up after serving a spaghetti dinner in our house to around 25 high school girls on my daughter's swim team! We both seem pleased with how well that all turned out and actually it was fun!

Our early season storm blew through today too. It has been overcast/rainy all day, with the rain easing up/quitting later this afternoon sometime (not exactly sure when, too busy cooking!), but it hasn't cleared either. At this moment we have had a high of 62 today, rang up .27" rain and had a high wind of only 20 mph, which occured this evening. In the end the totals aren't all that impressive, but the temperature dropped a lot even since yesterday, it is breezy this evening while the trees are rustling substantially outside, the clouds never cleared away or broke through, and all in all it is still a dramatic shift from just a handful of days ago. The headline today is Fall is Here.

Update: I just read that today dropped 5 inches of rain in the Olympics, and storm force winds were reached just off the north coast of the Olympic Peninsula. So I would say it was a potent storm out that way.

September 26, 8 AM

We knew that the late season blast of summer couldn't last long, and it didn't. Autumn has arrived with a pronounced statement.

This morning looks very different from the rest of September up to now. With sunrise not until 7 AM and the solid overcast, and presently a dripping light rain falling, by all appearances, it is surely fall now. We are expecting a lot more rain today, and another breezy/windy day on top of it.

Moreover, today is not the first of this. Yesterday brought in our first Autumn Storm of the season. It was a drier storm - .17" rain total for us, but after a summer of one continued lull, a sharp wind blew up and for us that meant 31 mph at the peak! It was gusty for much of the day, sending a lot of my deck pots and flowers tumbling. Even so, it is still early fall, and the remnants of the recent summer were still in the air too. By afternoon it had cleared and the sun brought the high temperature up to 71, which was quite pleasant in the sunshine, even with the gusts, but also a decidedly large drop in temp over what we have been experiencing. By evening the wind had blown itself out and it was pleasant.

Then today came and a whole new system is approaching, with more overall potency than yesterday's system. This one promises to be a lot wetter region wide (maybe 2-3 inches of rain in the mountains, much less down here - maybe half inch or so) and the wind is going to increase again today, back to another blustery afternoon/evening. This storm has remnants of Typhoon Roke entrained, so there is a decent amount of precipitation on the way. A rather deep offshore low tracking north will whip up our winds, so between the decent rainfall and the winds, today will be distinctly fallish and our first real shot of the change of the season. Currently it is 53 before 8 AM, so it is cooler by a lot than it has been, but it is still fitting into an early fall situation.

Sunny skies should return by mid week for a short spell and it will be nice, but again, not summer, and instead it is Fall.

September 26
Sunrise: 7:00 AM --- Sunset: 6:58 PM
(losing 3 min, 26 sec. tomorrow)

Updated: 4:02 AM GMT on September 30, 2011


Summer Reprise

By: PugetSoundPost, 5:27 AM GMT on September 23, 2011

September 22, 10:30 PM
Very Warm Nights

The pendulum has swung again back to summer. After the rainy weekend last weekend, this week has been quite delightful! The weather is not sure right now what to do, but it has decided to give summer another turn.

Mainly, this week has been quite warm, whether or not the sun comes out. Ours highs over the last three days has been 79, 84, and 77! Furthermore, our high of 77 today was under an overcast day all day, with a few misty showers of rain! Needless to say, it is also pretty muggy, by our standards. This is pretty unusual weather for western Washington. And to top it all off, our nights recently have been very warm and tonight is looking to maybe be the warmest night of the year, so far. Our low this morning was 61 and currently at 10 PM it is still 68 degrees!! Pretty unheard of around here, even in the real heat of summer! Our rain totaled only .02" today, so it was only misty showers once in awhile. The sky looked a lot more threatening, especially this afternoon, than it ever proved to be, but I have to say it is a bit unnerving to have dark, cloudy skies this afternoon, and the thermometer reading in the upper 70's ! Not our usual style. A weak frontal system has been passing nearby over the last couple of days, but there is not much left of interest from it. Still overcast tonight, and weirdly warm, and a muggy feel to the air.

Tomorrow looks to be even a little warmer, with more sunshine than today and Saturday looks quite good too. Things change on Sunday into next week, when a wrinkle will develop in the current pattern. I haven't had much "outdoors" opportunity, mainly for any yard work lately, and I know I should be taking advantage of this golden opportunity. Too many other "must-dos".

September 22
Sunrise: 6:55 AM --- Sunset: 7:06 PM (PDT)
(tomorrow we will lose 3 min. 26 sec of daylight)


Summer is Behind Us

By: PugetSoundPost, 5:25 AM GMT on September 16, 2011

September 20, 8 PM
Late Summer/Early Fall

Because the season officially turns in only three more days, the weather does not know what it wants to do. We are really on a see-saw right now. Summer has returned; sort of.

A beautifully clear, blue sky day today reminded us that summer is not gone yet, despite the collective wisdom of everyone around here. The temperature roared back to a high of 79 and on the surface it surely felt like a summer afternoon. BUT, all is not quite as it seemed on the surface either. The low this morning under clear skies was 47 - markedly more chilly than we have seen in quite awhile (although still not too chilly), and even in the afternoon heat and sunshine, there was definitely that little hint of fall nip in the air. If the little breeze blew by you could feel it, or if you stood too long in a shady spot you could feel it. And, for really the first time, I could detect the changing color of the sky and air around us that comes with the downwardly changing sun angle. Nonetheless, it was a really nice day and for practically thinking, it was a summer reprise day. We ate outside twice today, trying to squeeze in all the time we have left to leisurely enjoy the weather outdoors!

September 18, 10 PM
First Rain

A very different weekend than we have had lately; it rained! Our weekend total is .44", a nice start to the drippy season that is just getting her legs under her a bit. Yesterday saw the front approaching all day and finally be early evening the sprinkles turned into rain. Today has been rainy at times, and unsettled at other times. It never really did clear. However, a sign that it is still early in the season, our high reached 71, by some surprise, so we are in some ways teetering between summer and fall. A further sign of this is that the next few days are going to rebound closer to summer again. Our highs are going to shoot up quite a bit - above normal! And dry again with a strong ridge building. So, an interesting time of year - most anything has a chance right now.

While my husband and I were moving a daughter back to college yesterday, my other kids were busy harvesting from the garden. They brought in a nice (enough!) basket of onions, another load of peppers, and a medium bowl full of nice, red, tomatoes (mostly little cherries). A garden surprise this year has been our apple tree - lots of apples! Maybe I will elaborate more on it later, but for now - it is fall apple season at our house!

September 15, 10:30 PM
First Sprinkles

Since I last wrote, things have Changed here in the Pacific Northwest. Summer has ended and fall is on our doorstep. Even if it is Early Fall. Our summer streak was glorious while here. Officially we set a new record of eight consecutive days during any September reaching 80+ degrees. Here at home we did that for nine days in a row. The highest we reached was 89, this past Sunday. Beginning on Monday the turn started and since then we have seen a lot more clouds, a lot less sunshine, and temperatures mainly in the upper 60's for highs. And today we have seen our first light rain of the new season. It hasn't amounted to much - not sure it has even measured yet, but we have had some sprinkles off and on at times, perhaps with a bit more authority this evening. But this system is quite weak, and another weak one is coming in Friday night, and possibly a bit stronger system on Sunday. All are just harbingers of a LOT more, no doubt on its way until whenever Next Summer decides to arrive. A little fall color is starting to show here and there, although I think the late summer in some ways has kind of delayed some of our typical signs of fall too. I haven't really seen the garden spiders out too much yet, stretching webs across every walkway, and it hasn't really felt like fall yet, and I think I usually notice that vague (in the early season) feeling sooner than this. We have not had any chill to the mornings. Our lows have been quite warm, even still, in the upper 50's.

On another note, to take advantage of all we can with summer rushing to completion this late in the year, we did another family hike just yesterday. Our third trip to Mt. Rainier National Park in less than two weeks! Back to Sunrise, on the eastern side of the mountain, for another higher altitude hike very near the Lookout hike of Labor Day. Here in the lowlands, we were under marine layer clouds the whole day, but on the hike we were above those low clouds. The sunshine was clear and blue and even though it was cooler than Labor Day, it was still very pleasantly warm enough for hiking and a delightful day. Six miles in the middle-upper 7,000 foot range, on top of ridges where you feel you can reach out and touch the face of the Mountain. By late afternoon the clouds way below us did start to creep further in and higher into the valleys, and up the slopes as "slope fog", and as we hurried back to the car, we ended up in foggy, mostly dark conditions. But, a beautiful hike, with 360 degree panoramic views in places. Wonderful.

I think we may have gone on this hike on perhaps the last day of the year that will be as wonderful. Even today now the weather has changed from just marine layer to an actual system, bringing possible showers to the mountains. And by this weekend the snow level will be in the 6,000 foot range - about where we started the hike from. So, I would think a dusting of snow over those same trails could be possible, and while it likely won't last and some improvement is expected early next week, the Change is here and especially in the mountains, there is probably no looking back to even such a day as yesterday.

September 15
Sunrise: 6:45 AM --- Sunset: 7:21 PM (PDT)

Updated: 2:59 AM GMT on September 21, 2011


Burst of Summer

By: PugetSoundPost, 2:01 PM GMT on September 06, 2011

September 10

Happy 9-10-11 day today! Wonderful summer continues: high of 86, low of 56 today. A nice outdoor neighborhood potluck this evening, planned a few weeks ago, was a delicious way to enjoy this weather!

September 9

Another wonderful summer day! Not a cloud in sight and just brilliant sunshine! Our high today was 87 and our low this morning was only 55. We will surely miss these days, before too long, when the high won't even pass 55.

September 8, 10:30 PM

A part of summer that we don't see very often gave us a nice surprise this morning. Thunderstorm! It came up by quite a surprise. I do have to say there wasn't a whole lot of thunder - a couple of claps, but it did rain rather hard and was such a surprise, none of us in the house knew what that noise was! The sun was mostly shining at the time! Kind of funny. It rained hard, with huge drops, for just a few minutes, only totaling .03", our first rain in quite some time. Eventually the threat ended and this afternoon the sky was bright again and we hit a high of 86 degrees. Summer is managing to continue in the Northwest!

September 6, 7:00 AM

Summer has arrived! The long sought season is finally making a definite appearance. A strong ridge of high pressure has settled over us and it is packing some nice heat. The last while has been pretty nice - lots of sunshine and warm-to-hot days. But now as this week progresses it is going to get hotter over the next few days. The last two days have seen highs of 89 and 86, with more of that to come the rest of the week and into the weekend, perhaps. In fact, records could topple. We have not seen clouds now at all for a sustained period and that is making everything glow with summer! Looking forward to the rest of the week!

We did take advantage of the weather over this holiday weekend. Three big outdoor days over the past four! On Friday some of the family took a trip back to Mt. Rainier, but this time to a part of the park we had not been to before, Mowich Lake in the NW corner of the park. Hiking along the lake and up onto a ridge was very pleasant and nice; mostly in the woods, but occasional peeks of Mt. Rainier behind the ridges. We had some spectacular views of the Mountain on the way home and this quieter corner of the park was delightful. On Saturday we switched gears completely and headed east - over the Cascades - to a park on the Columbia River to meet family for a picnic and visit. Instead of the usual scorching hot it usually can be this time of year, it was pleasantly hot and tolerable, and just right for our gathering, with plenty of sunshine and no wind! Then yesterday, Labor Day, some of the family again took to the road and we were back to Mt. Rainier! This time we headed to the eastern side of the park, Sunrise. We took off on a hike up to an old fire lookout, nearly 6 miles roundtrip. What a glorious day it was! Nothing but sunshine and NO clouds to obscure anything around Mt. Rainier! The hike was between 6,400 and 7,200 feet, so while plenty warm on the open hillsides and ridgetops, it was not overly hot, with only breezes even at the lookout. The entire trail is out on the open, so unbelievable panaramic views the entire length of the trail, with Mt. Rainier looming very large and close the whole time. The trail was busy but even so we had solitude and the views, being so close to the mountain, are breathtaking. So, it was a busy holiday weekend for us! Lots of travel and repacking picnics and lunches; and now today putting all of that away, among a lot of other busy things to do today and this week. Life is not always a holiday weekend!

Sunrise: 6:33 AM --- Sunset: 7:39 PM
(losing 3 minutes, 22 seconds tomorrow)

Updated: 5:19 AM GMT on September 11, 2011


Old and New

By: PugetSoundPost, 4:01 PM GMT on September 01, 2011

September 1

Turning the page to September seems really significant. I think it is because it is like a second New Years. So many things either end or begin with the coming of September. Summer fun and weather begin to fade away quickly now. The season will be in more and more transition as each week passes. Our lives are in transition too. So much of American culture revolves around the school year calendar, thus a new beginning is underway for those with kids still in school. But even those without kids in school will notice it- schedules for all sorts of things change as all the summer traffic disappears, activities that were put on hold, or "vacation", will soon begin again. All those meetings for things that didn't happen over the summer months will now start up again. New programs begin. So much of life seems to run on a September to May or June schedule. Our kids in school begin a whole new experience and what they were doing just three or four months ago seems so very long ago now. Always looking forward as the "new" begins and at the same time, the earth is slowing down and everything around us will begin to feel "old" before too long. The flowers will begin to look decidedly faded and "old",the garden yields its fruit and begins to wither away, the tree leaves will eventually grow old and fall, and the earth will dim for awhile, while we as people will speed up with all those schedules and new things to do. The Calendar can be an interesting study.

But, that said, we are not quite finished with summer here, and as I have written all summer, it was so slow to arrive in the first place. Nevertheless, August turned into a quite nice month. Really, for the most part, many perfectly warmed days and it was very dry. The next week, at least, is looking pretty good. More sunshine and nice warm/hot days ahead. Hoping to enjoy these golden summer days while they are still here.

September 1
Sunrise: 6:26 AM --- Sunset: 7:49 PM (PDT)
(losing 3 min. 20 sec. tomorrow)


Avg. High: 80
Avg. Low: 54
Highest Temp: 92 (8/21)
Lowest Temp: 49 (8/1 and 16)
Lowest High Temp: 72 (8/5 and 31)
Warmest Low Temp: 61 (8/22 and 23)
Highest Wind: 17 mph (8/22)
Wettest Day: Aug. 22 (.15")
Days of measurable rain: 3

Total rain for August: .17"


The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.

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Weather has been a lifelong passion for me; while my husband and 4 kids, all grown, and one of them now married, have patiently gone along with me!

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