Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Clearing In Northern California Valleys

Looks like rain will start ending today in Northern California valleys (although it will continue in the mountains). The follow up storm that was supposed to keep things wet here today is reforming to move south, along the coast and into Southern California, on Thursday and Friday.

Also, a shout out to synoptic modeling folks making the precipitation forecasts. Last week, they forecast 5.5 inches storm total for the Sacramento area, and they absolutely nailed it. That used to be the most inexact science of all, akin to guessing, but the science has improved to the point of witchcraft.

Puzzled by the misleading official pronouncements:
Haynes acknowledged that the second wave of storms produced somewhat higher flows than previously expected. The second wave was more intense than previously believed, and came sooner than expected, which meant the system didn’t have much of a chance to dry out from the weekend storms.

“We didn’t get as much of a break as we thought. The rivers didn’t get a chance to recede,” he said.

To me, this is mysterious. Yes, I will grant that second wave came sooner than expected, but only by a few hours. And the forecasts showed the second wave was going to be about as powerful as the first, and raining down on storm-soaked ground too. Somehow, that message got bollixed. I don't think the National Weather Service was at fault. Someone elsewhere, maybe at the CA Department of Water Resources, made a blue sky forecast and the poohbahs and the press ran with it.

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