Upcoming Nor’easter

Posted in Weather News at 2:46 pm by Rebekah

Models over the last week have consistently been showing a nor’easter developing at the end of this week.

A nor’easter is a strong extratropical cyclone that forms off the New England coast, bringing strong northeast winds into New England. These storm systems are most often associated with wintry conditions.

Here’s what the GFS model shows in terms of the location and depth of the nor’easter (this map is valid for 00Z Saturday, or 8pm EDT Friday; click to enlarge):

This surface map, courtesy of the Oklahoma Weather Lab, shows a 988 mb low (fairly low pressure for this time of year) centered over southern Maine. The lines represent surface pressure, and the colors represent surface temperature. Temperatures at this time are forecast to be in the 30s in northeastern New York, Vermont, western New Hampshire, and northwestern Massachusetts.

The most likely scenario is for there to be some snow in the mountains of Vermont and New Hampshire tomorrow night, with cold rain and the possibility for flooding over much of the rest of New England.

It’s probably a good thing that the American League Championship Series starts in Texas tomorrow night. I can’t cheer for the Rangers and Cliff Lee, especially after the Rangers got Lee from the Mariners this year. So GO YANKEES!!


Take Me Out to the Ball Game…

Posted in General News, Weather News at 2:45 pm by Rebekah

The Big 12 baseball tournament starts tonight in Oklahoma City.

OU, at second in the Big 12, will be taking on number seven Kansas tonight at 7:30pm.  There are two pools in the tournament, each with four teams.  After each team plays every team in their pool, the two teams with the best records in their pools will advance to the Big 12 Championship game on Sunday.  I have yet to go to a college baseball game, but wish I would have taken the opportunity to go to a few games this spring, especially as three of the students that I taught last fall are on the baseball team (Garrett Buechele, Zach Neal, and Erik Ross).

Third baseman Garrett Buechele is doing very well this year, batting .387.  Garrett’s father, Steve Buechele, played major league baseball for the Rangers, Pirates, and Cubs.  Right-handed pitcher Zach Neal is also doing very well, with 8 wins and only 2 losses, and an ERA of 4.15.  Zach will be starting OU’s second game of the tournament.

Some friends and I plan on going to tonight’s game at Bricktown Ballpark (home of the Oklahoma Redhawks).



In other news, I finally bought Adobe Dreamweaver (it’s one of the best and least expensive [with a student discount] web design programs out there).  I have been using MS Publisher for my website so far, but it certainly was not designed for website development.  I am excited to be able to play around with Dreamweaver now, and to make the Green Sky Chaser site both nicer for viewers and easier for me to work on.

It may take me a while to figure out how to use the program, but within the next month I may be giving the site a bit of a facelift (perhaps for the one-year anniversary, coming up in late June?).

As I will be focusing my web development time on this, I may not get around to posting the May 19 chase log and photos as soon as I had hoped.  I may, however, try to take some time to get that done by or over the weekend.


In the meantime, here’s a look at our nice, summer-like Oklahoma weather lately (courtesy of the NWS Norman):


Exciting Weather

Posted in Weather News at 11:54 pm by Rebekah

Last semester when I took Weather Briefing, a 1-credit, 3-day-a-week discussion of weather maps, occasionally my fellow classmates and I would get into a bit of trouble with our instructor for calling the weather “boring” when it was our time to lead the weather discussion.  There’s always something going on in the weather world, somewhere on the planet!  =)  Today, the weather in the U.S. is far from boring.

There is so much to talk about, it’s difficult to know where to start.  A 977-mb low continues to hammer California, as the fourth low-pressure system has come ashore at San Francisco.  A potent trough assisted in the deepening of the low earlier today.  The jet stream is now in a solid El Niño pattern, taking storms on a west-east track across the southern U.S.  It’s raining along most of the California coast and Arizona and snowing in the Sierra Nevada and southern Rockies.  I imagine all the rain is a result of a combination of a number of a factors: the low, the fronts (occluded front alon the coast, warm front in southern Arizona), a large amount of positive vorticity advection in southern California and southern Arizona, and the fact that these are coastal storms being lifted up coastal mountain ranges.  Despite the recent drought, California is certainly not lacking in moisture right now.

There was also enough instability and wind shear combined with the strong lifting in order to produce several tornadoes today, around Santa Barbara, the California/Arizona border, and near Phoenix.  There were also a couple of tornadoes today around Huntsville, Alabama, associated with the other low in the U.S. that assisted in bringing some lovely thunderstorms to Norman last night.  There’s plenty of instability and lift out there as well, but as I’ve often seen with winter thunderstorms, the thermodynamics and the dynamics didn’t line up very well so the area of greatest shear was displaced from the area of greatest instability and lift.  I think this must be a significant reason as to why there were just a few weak tornadoes, rather than any strong tornadoes.

The California system will make it out to the Missisissippi River valley and Gulf Coast in a few days, bringing a chance for more severe weather and potentially some weak tornadoes again.  I haven’t looked at that forecast in much detail yet, but that will have to wait.

The Dallas Stars just lost to the Vancouver Canucks, in Vancouver–it was a sad ending, as Dallas was tied at 2 for a while before Vancouver got two goals in the third period.  Dallas came back to score one more goal with just 2.8 seconds left, but it was too little, too late.  They lost 3-4.  The Stars are the only hockey team we get on TV here, so I’ve decided they should be my favorite hockey team (as I didn’t become very interested in hockey until a few years ago, sadly).  On a much brighter note, the Mariners signed Felix Hernandez (my favorite Mariners pitcher for several years–he’s their ace now) to a 5-year contract extension, through 2014!  The Mariners continue to make great moves in an attempt to finally become a playoff contender again.

Bring on the spring: storm chasing and baseball!!  =D