Drought Conditions Persisting In The Pacific Northwest

While the east coast gets another shot of cold air and snow the west coast remains calm. This large ridge of high pressure continues to dominate the entire west coast bringing temperatures well above average from Los Angeles to Fairbanks. Los Angeles is running about 10 degrees above average with highs in the upper 70s today while Fairbanks was an astounding 33 degrees above average with a high of 34, there average high is 1 . Juneau AK ran 13 degrees above average today with a high of 45. So as you can see it has been very warm across the entire west coast.

As we mentioned the other day the entire Pacific Northwest is seeing some sort of drought conditions with most of Washington under a moderate drought and Oregon under a severe drought. Here is a map showing the drought conditions across the west coast.

west coast drough 1-18-13

The current drought situation combined with gusty east winds have prompted the National Weather Service in Medford to issue a Red Flag Warning for SW Oregon. Looking back to 2008 this is the earliest fire weather alert the NWS in Medford has ever issued. Usually they don’t issue fire products until the late spring and early summer but that isn’t the case this year. Certainly unusual and possibly record breaking to see.

2008 – June 26

2009 – July 11

2010 – July 22

2011 – July 24

2012 – May 13

2013 – May 5

2014 – January 21

Red Flag Warning 1-22-13

After cloudy skies with some sunbreaks today the inversion will begin to strengthen again. We will see a carbon copy of earlier this week and last week across the PNW with fog and low clouds in the valleys with chilly temperatures and sunny and warm up in the mountains with above average temperatures and melting snow.

 

demarce_dean@mailxu.com